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International Clothing Workers' Federation

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

The International Clothing Workers' Federation (IGWF) was a global union federation representing workers involved in making and repairing clothes.


The federation was established in 1893 at a conference in Zurich. The following year, it established headquarters in Berlin, moving to Amsterdam in 1920. It held conferences in different European locations every three to four years. In 1925, the International Furriers' Secretariat merged into the organisation, giving the organisation 29 affiliates with a total of 315,000 members.[1]

The federation ceased to operate during World War II, but was re-established in 1946, based in London. In 1949, it was refounded as the International Garment Workers' Federation,[2] which in 1960 merged with the International Federation of Textile Workers' Associations to form the International Textile and Garment Workers' Federation.[3]


In 1954, the following unions were affiliated to the federation:[4]

Union Country Affiliated membership
Amalgamated Clothing Workers of America United States 282,212
Clothing and Hat Federation France 5,000
Danish Clothing Workers' Union Denmark 22,204
Danish Hatters' and Furriers' Union Denmark Unknown
Felt Hatters', Trimmers' and Allied Workers' Unions United Kingdom 5,487
General Industrial Union of Textiles and Clothing Netherlands 4,500
International Ladies' Garment Workers' Union United States 368,000
National Union of Hosiery Workers United Kingdom 40,539
National Union of Tailors and Garment Workers United Kingdom 120,417
Norwegian Union of Clothing Workers Norway 15,500
Swedish Clothing Workers' Union Sweden 32,167
Swiss Clothing, Leather and Equipment Workers' Union Switzerland 3,360
Tailor, Tent, Sailmaker and Garment Workers' Union Kenya 1,250
Textile and Clothing Union West Germany 75,000
Union of Clothing Workers Finland 5,000
Union of Clothing Workers and Kindred Trades in Belgium Belgium 9,500
Union of Shop, Distributive and Allied Workers United Kingdom 15,000
Union of Textile and Clothing Workers Luxembourg 333
Union of Textile, Clothing and Leather Workers Austria 4,000
United Hatters, Cap and Millinery Workers International Union (UHCMW) United States 32,000
United Italian Federation of Clothing Workers Italy 53,000


General Secretaries

1894: Clara Zetkin
1900: Heinrich Stühmer
1920: Tonnis van der Heeg
1946: Andrew Conley
1949: Ian Milner[2]
1956: John Newton[2]


1910s: William P. Arup
1920: Martin Plettl
1933: Josef Andersson
as of 1957: Per Petterson[2]


  1. ^ Sassenbach, Johannes (1926). Twenty-five years of international trade unionism. Amsterdam: International Federation of Trade Unions. p. 98–99.
  2. ^ a b c d Yearbook of the International Free Trade Union Movement. London: Lincolns-Prager. 1957–1958. pp. 527–529.
  3. ^ "International Textile, Garment and Leather Workers' Federation (ITGLWF)". Union of International Associations. Retrieved 13 June 2019.
  4. ^ Mitchell, James P. (1954). Directory of International Trade Union Organisations. Washington DC: U.S. Department of Labor. pp. 35–40.
This page was last edited on 3 June 2021, at 19:20
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