A 23 November Sydney Morning Herald news report by Paul Bibby has revealed that the Liquor, Hospitality and Miscellaneous Union (LHMU), ‘the Cleaners Union’, will next March take on a more contemporary and appropriate name, United Voice.
‘One of Australia’s oldest unions, the Liquor, Hospitality and Miscellaneous Union – with 120,000 workers from aged-care nurses to security guards – is about to ditch its quirky name for a very modern moniker.
‘In March the LHMU will become United Voice, one of the first labour associations in the country to drop any reference to unionism from its title,’ stated Bibby.
United Voice is the outcome of a corporate-style rebranding featuring surveys, focus groups and marketing consultants.
‘But in its application to the federal workplace tribunal Fair Work Australia, the union reveals that the change was driven, in part, by the desire for a name that was easier to spell,’ noted Bibby.
Apparently the word ‘miscellaneous’ is difficult to spell and has a pejorative association for many members, the application said. And it appears the acronym has been causing trouble, too.
”I think the biggest obstacle was that people constantly had difficulty with the initials – we were constantly called LMHU, HLMU – it wasn’t a name that got easy recognition,” said LHMU national president Louise Tarrant.