Wednesday 15 June 2011

Second day of UNITE Rules Conference

The big debates of the day were over election of officers and branch funding.

Rule 10 Members in Retirement
A1 Removes the requirement for RMA branches to be regional. Adds RMA Regional Co-ordinating Committees. CARRIED
A3 A long amendment setting out details of how the RMA will work. CARRIED
A4 Would give retired members identical participation in the union structures as working members. LOST
A5 Allows retired members to stand for Regional Political Committee. CARRIED
A9 Would give retired members a seat on the EC and some of them votes for regional EC seats. LOST
A10 Proposed that the RMA should have a constitution. REMITTED
A11 Would turn Retired Members Association into a sector. LOST
A13 Replaces the rule on retired members with what was previously the EC guidance on the rule. CARRIED

Rule 11 Equalities
A3 Regional Equality Committees to be elected by constituencies at Regional Equality Conferences, rather than nominated from RISCs and AACs. CARRIED
A6 Add members with caring responsibilities to equality structures. LOST

Rule 12 Policy Conference
A1 Adds LGBT and disabled conference delegates from each region. Requires motions which commit to expenditure to be put to the EC if carried. Clause 3 of the printed amendment was removed. Removes requirement for candidates for the Standing Orders Committee (SOC) to be conference delegates. Bans employees and ex-employees of the union from being conference delegates. CARRIED
In the debate Assistant General Secretary Diana Holland, speaking on behalf of the EC, promised that if passed, this would not give the EC the authority to overturn conference policy decisions.
A2 Requires the General Secretary to present a financial report to Policy Conference. CARRIED
A3 Adds three delegates directly elected from each Regional Committee. CARRIED
A4 Would have added a delegate from each regional equality committee. LOST
A5 Would have doubled the size of conference. LOST
A7 Would have added a delegate from each regional equality committee. LOST

Rule 13 Rules Conference
A2 Would have given each RISC at least one delegate. LOST
A3 Would have given each RISC at least one delegate. LOST
A4 Doubles size of Rules Conference to match Policy Conference. CARRIED
A5 Would have given each RISC at least one delegate. LOST
A6 Would have given three delegates directly elected from each Regional Committee. LOST

Standing Orders Committee Election
East Midlands: Simon Rosenthal
Ireland: Frances Hourihan
London & Eastern: Danny Freeman
North East, Yorkshire & Humberside: Stan Sims
North West: Dave Rochester
Scotland: Lisa Crawford
South East: Sam Webster-Moore
South West: Agnes Hilditch
Wales: Julie Evans
An additional election will be held for a seat to be filled by a Black, Asian or Ethnic Minority (BAEM) member, to ensure proportionality of the committee as a whole.
[update: This election was held on the third day, and Jay Mistry was elected]

Rule 14 Executive Council
A1 Tidying up. Adds EC seats for BAEM, LGBT and Disabled members. CARRIED
The EC had previously decided that if this was passed, elections for these seats will be held soon, rather than waiting for the next term of office.
A3 Would have changed the formula for allocation of seats on the EC to give larger regions more seats than now. LOST
A6 Dealt with disabled seat on the EC, covered by A1. REMITTED
A7 Adds equality seast to EC. LOST
A8 Adds disabled and LGBT seats to the EC. LOST
A11 Would have changed all requality seats to being voted on by the entire membership. LOST
A12 Replaces six normal 3-day EC meetings a year with four 5-day meetings. Allows a majority of EC members to call a special meeting. CARRIED
A13 Would have replaced 6 meetings with 4 and allow 25% of EC members to call a special meeting. LOST
A14 For election of all officers. LOST
A15 For election of all officers. LOST
A16 For election of all officers. LOST
A17 For election of all officers. LOST
A19 For election of Deputy and Assistant General Secretaries. LOST
A20 For election of Deputy and Assistant General Secretaries, National Officers and Regional Secretaries. LOST
A21 Selection panel for appointments of Regional Secretaries and Regional Coordinating Officers, with approval by the Regional Committee. LOST
A22 Would have given the EC control over appointment of senior staff positions. Specified an appointment panel process. Required vacancies to be advertised and circulated to branches. LOST
A23 Would have extended EC control over appointments to cover senior staff. LOST
A24 Requires the EC to determine constitutional committees to which each officer will report and be accountable. CARRIED

Rule 15 General Secretary
A1 Tidying up. CARRIED
A2 Prevents General Secretaries continuing in office without election if within 5 years of their retirement age. CARRIED
A3 Limit General Secretaries to two consecutive terms of office. LOST
A4 Requires a Deputy General Secretary and their election. LOST

Rule 16 Election of Executive Council Members and General Secretary
A1 Requires members and employees to cooperate with investigations by the Electoral Commissioner in relation to union elections. CARRIED
A3 Election of officers. LOST
A4 Election of officers. LOST
A5 Require General Secretary candidates to attend hustings in each region. LOST

Rule 17 Branches
A1 More flexible approach to allocation to branches, but retaining workplace focus. Regional Committees responsible for ensuring branches function properly. Meeting details to be advertised. CARRIED
A3 Add local industrial sector branches. CARRIED
A4 Replace local branch with active geographical/composite branch. LOST
A5 Would remove focus on workplace based branches. LOST
A6 Prevent break-up of existing functioning geographical branches into workplace branches unless branch members vote for it. LOST
A7 Restrict affiliations to national organisations to those which "share the aspirations of UNITE". LOST
A8 Give branches 10% of subs. LOST
In opposing the motion on behalf of the Executive Council, Len McCluskey stated his commitment not to reduce the funding to any branches, and to end the two-tier system that currently exists, with ex-Amicus branches only getting 3%.
A10 Give branches 10% of subs. LOST
A11 Detailed requirements for branches to function. LOST
A12 Require branches to elect an Equality Officer. CARRIED
A13 Refer branches which don't meet at least quarterly to the Regional Committee. LOST

Rule 18 Workplace Representation
A1 Change maximum term of office from two years to three. CARRIED
A2 Change maximum term of office from two years to three. CARRIED
A3 Add Environment Representatives. CARRIED
A5 Election of workplace representatives, where practicable, to have a gender and ethnic balance at least reflecting the members they represent. CARRIED
A6 Require 13 weeks continuous membership to stand as a rep. LOST
A7 Inquiry by the sector or region when any rep is dismissed, with a view to prevening victimisation. Industrial action ballots to be convened if necessary. CARRIED

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