Construction, Forestry, Mining and Energy Union

The Construction, Forestry, Mining and Energy Union (CFMEU) is Australia’s main trade union in construction, forestry and forest products, mining and energy production. Our union has been a key pace setter in improving wages, conditions, safety and workplace democracy in Australia for much of our history.

Trade Unions are fundamentally about working people looking after each other.
In this era of individualism and greed, giving thought to your workmates’ needs and problems is not exactly encouraged. Yet despite the “me” approach that was institutionalised as government policy through the Howard years and is projected everyday by the big business controlled popular media, basic Aussie working class culture of mateship and solidarity remains strong.

Our campaigns have made Australia a better place to live for everyone.
The CFMEU looks after its own. No one can say we are slow or shy about protecting our members and our communities. Equally though, our members have made many great contributions through their union over the years to making the world a better place – through campaigning to get rid of the apartheid regime in South Africa, through the struggle to liberate East Timor, through active support over many years for world peace and disarmament and so many other big issues.

This legacy is something I want to build on in my time as National Secretary – but I need your help.
If militant trade unionism is an antidote to some of our society’s ills, then it must also be stated that militant trade unionism can exist only with the active involvement of union members. I encourage you to take an interest in your union, to always be financial and to get involved.

With the pressure we all face on our time, active union involvement is one of the few avenues left to working people to help make the world a better place.

The CFMEU is a progessive, militant and class struggle based trade union. It is also a rank and file focussed union that believes its responsibility is to build unionism in the workplace and to encourage workers to participate in the day to day affairs of the organisation. The CFMEU is a union which seeks to educate its membership and make them aware of the broader political forces that impact them at work and affect other aspects of their lives. We are a union that fights to build a better and fairer society.

The CFMEU has offices in all capital cities in Australia and in many major regional centres. The union has around 120,000 members and employs around 400 full time staff and officials.

Principal Officers of the CFMEU

National Secretary: John Sutton

National President: Tony Maher

Assistant National Secretary: Dave Noonan

Assistant National Secretary: Michael O’Connor

In between meetings of the National Conference and the National Executive the body responsible for the management of the union is the National Executive Committee (NEC).

Members of the National Executive Committee

  • John Sutton
  • Lindsay Fraser
  • Ian Murray
  • Dave Noonan
  • Martin Kingham
  • Michael O’Connor
  • Albert Littler
  • Tom Watson
  • Alex Millar
  • Andrew Ferguson
  • Tony Maher
  • Jane Calvert
  • Bill Oliver
  • Andrew Vickers
  • Leo Skourdoumbis

You can find out more about the CFMEU by visiting our website at