Karl-Petter Thorwaldsson

Karl-Petter Thorwaldsson singing at the Swedish Social Democratic Youth League's general election camp 2014.

Karl-Petter "Kålle" Thorwaldsson (born 26 December 1964 in Kosta, Kronoberg, Sweden) is a Swedish union leader. He is the president of the Swedish Trade Union Confederation (Swedish: Landsorganisationen i Sverige or LO).


Thorwaldsson grew up in the industrial village of Kosta, part of the Crystal glass manufacturing region in the Småland region. He was the son of a glass blower.[1] Karl-Petter Thorwaldsson joined the Swedish Social Democratic Youth League (Swedish: Sveriges Socialdemokratiska Ungdomsförbund or SSU) and became its chair person from 1990–1995.

He later became a political advisor at the Prime Minister's Office and head of information at the Social Democrat Party before becoming ombudsman at the trade union IF-Metall. Since 2000 he has combined that position with being chairman of the Workers’ Educational Association (Swedish: Arbetarnas bildningsförbund, or ABF). IF Metall nominated him as president of LO in 2011 and he was elected on 26 May 2012.[2]


During 2018 and 2019, Thoraldsson was a driving force in the push to have the social democrat government restrict the right to strike and limit freedom of association for other unions than the major confederations, arguing that rather than the Swedish model being about avoiding government intervention in conflict of interests between employers and trade unions, the core idea is about the LO, TCO and SACO unions "taking care of the trash" by enforcing a strict union monopoly.[3] This strategy of going to great lengths to keep out independent unions from being able to mobilize members in industries where the three confederations have agreed internally to delineating agreements about organizing rights has been widely criticized both outside and inside the LO movement, by legal experts and grass-roots alike.[4][5][6]


  1. ^ [1] Nordic Labour Journal, 12 November 2012: Karl-Petter Thorwaldsson: I believe the future is Nordic
  2. ^ [2] LO: Karl-Petter Thorwaldsson
  3. ^ Axel, Green (2018-06-13). "LO:s kamp för fackligt herravälde". Arbetaren. Retrieved 2019-04-27.
  4. ^ Arbetsplatsklubb Umeå Trafiks styrelse (2018-06-28). ""LO äventyrar strejkrätten"". Kommunalarbetaren. Retrieved 2019-04-27.
  5. ^ Norling, Anna (2019-01-08). "Arbetsrättsjuristen: "Facken är lurade"". Tidningen Elektrikern. Retrieved 2019-04-27.
  6. ^ ""Skrota förslaget om förbud mot stridsåtgärder"". Sydsvenskan. 2019-01-30. Retrieved 2019-04-27.

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