Council Report: 15 September 2018

As we celebrate the centenary of the Federation, it has been an opportunity to reflect on the democratic traditions of the union.

Council is and has always been one of those democratic traditions.

From 1919 to 1966, the rules stipulated that Council would meet once a month, except in January.

In 1967, the number of Councils held each year became nine, although the number was not stated. Instead, eight months plus spring were named and continued until 1976.

From 1977 until now, there have been eight Council meetings each year and although the word “eight” was not used until a decision was carried at 1989 Annual Conference, a change then reflected in the union’s Constitution.

Representatives elected by and from members of Associations, the Aboriginal Members Roll and Officers make up the Council and continue to meet eight times a year to debate.

Over time, the frequency of Council and the number of councillors may have varied, but Federation has long prided itself on being a democratic organisation. As such, members have always been vital in establishing the policies and strategic direction of Federation.

The decisions of Council are made after consideration of reports provided by Federation’s Presidential Officers and Officers in accordance with Federation policy.

Associations are also able to forward Motions from Association to Council (except February Council), which are then voted and debated on by the Council. Councillors and Officers of Federation are able to contribute to the debate, while only Councillors and the Presidential Officers vote on the decisions.

Decisions of Council are sent to all workplaces via TeFed. Association representatives on Council have the responsibility to represent the views of the members from the Association in these debates.

Federation is in the process of electing the next Council for the 2019-20 biennium, which will result in about 300 members from Associations across NSW elected to represent their colleagues.

Members are encouraged to engage at their local level, through their local Association to ensure their views are considered as we continue to grow and strengthen Federation.

Nicole Calnan, Deputy Secretary (Communication and Administration)