Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Conference discussion at the UNISON NEC

UNISON’s National Executive Council today welcomed a delegation of trade unionists from Southern Africa attending a Conference on HIV/AIDS. We were also treated to a presentation on green issues, which provided one of the Conference motions to be proposed to National Delegate Conference by the NEC.

The NEC agreed to submit motions on;
Equality through Learning;
Organising;
Palestine;
South Africa and the Region;
Education and Skills;
Employment Rights;
Green UNISON;
NHS at 60;
Housing;
Local Services;
Public Services;
The Economy.

If any UNISON branches in Greater London would like to see copies of the motions please get in touch.

There was a fair bit of discussion about several of the motions, but the approach of our President was to take an affirmative vote and only to consider amending motions if a majority did not back the motion unamended. Few amendments were made to the motions as drafted by the office (NEC motions are not of course generally written by NEC members…)

Health service group rep Kate Ahrens suggested we might put fewer motions on the agenda from the NEC but that idea did not find favour, any more than the sensible suggestion from Yorkshire and Humberside Regional representative, John McDermott, that we might think of inviting the General Secretary of another public service union to address our Conference on the theme of unity over public sector pay.

One missing motion was a proposal from the Finance and Resource Management Committee for a motion on measures necessary to fund the cost of litigation on Equal Pay. The Committee had been advised (informally) that the Standing Orders Committee had indicated that such a motion would likely be ruled out of order. The NEC was therefore advised that these proposals would now appear in the Annual Report to Conference.

I shall return to this topic.

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