The Australian Labor Party is a political party in Australia.
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The party has been in opposition at federal level since the 2013 election.
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Bill Shorten has been the party's federal parliamentary leader since 13 October 2013.
William Richard "Bill" Shorten is an Australian politician who is the current Leader of the Opposition in the Parliament of Australia, in his capacity as Leader of the Australian Labor Party, after being elected party leader at the 2013 Labor leadership ballot.
The party is a federal party with branches in each state and territory.
Labor is in government in the states of Victoria, Queensland, South Australia, and in the Australian Capital Territory and Northern Territory.
The Australian Capital Territory is the federal district in the south east of Australia, enclaved within New South Wales.
The Northern Territory is a federal Australian territory in the central and central northern regions of Australia.
The party competes against the Liberal/National Coalition for political office at the federal and state levels.
Labor's constitution states: "The Australian Labor Party is a democratic socialist party and has the objective of the democratic socialisation of industry, production, distribution and exchange, to the extent necessary to eliminate exploitation and other anti-social features in these fields".
This "socialist objective" was introduced in 1921, but has since been qualified by two further objectives: "maintenance of and support for a competitive non-monopolistic private sector" and "the right to own private property".
Labor governments have not attempted the "democratic socialisation" of any industry since the 1940s, when the Chifley government failed to nationalise the private banks, and in fact have privatised several industries such as aviation and banking.
Labor's current National Platform describes the party as "a modern social democratic party", "the party of opportunity and security for working people" and "a party of active government".
The ALP was not founded as a federal party until after the first sitting of the Australian Parliament in 1901.
Nevertheless, it is regarded as descended from labour parties founded in the various Australian colonies by the emerging labour movement in Australia, formally beginning in 1892.
The Labour movement or Labor movement, or, respectively, labourism or laborism, are general terms for the collective organization of working people developed to represent and campaign for better working conditions and treatment from their employers and, by the implementation of labour and employment laws, their governments.
Labor is thus the country's oldest political party.
Colonial labour parties contested seats from 1891, and federal seats following Federation at the 1901 federal election.
Labor was the first party in Australia to win a majority in either house of the Australian Parliament, at the 1910 federal election.
The Australian Labor Party at both a federal and state/colony level pre-dates, among others, both the British Labour Party and the New Zealand Labour Party in party formation, government, and policy implementation.
Internationally, the ALP is a member of the Progressive Alliance network of social-democratic parties, having previously been a member of the Socialist International.
The Socialist International is a worldwide association of political parties, most of which seek to establish democratic socialism.