The AEU workplace women’s contact officer has a key role in her workplace by:
- Providing information
- Promoting women’s issues
- Providing an opportunity for women’s voices
Different women choose to take on this role in a variety of ways, depending on their skills, the culture of their worksite and their relationship with their colleagues. It is critical that women undertaking this role have the chance and the choice to make the position one which works in their situation. Listed below are examples of what could be expected in the position.
- Be a worksite contact person for the AEU on gender equity and women’s issues
- Link AEU women members into information and support such as the AEU Information Unit.
- Follow-up with members to see that they have obtained information and support.
- Provide an opportunity for women’s voices
- Disseminate and promote AEU information such as the Women’s Contact Newsletter
- Become familiar with the AEU Women’s Contact Officer kit.
- Work collaboratively with Workplace Rep/Sub-branch Secretary
- Attend AEU Sub-branch meetings and/or Area meetings
- Develop solidarity among women members in your sub branch.
AEU Women’s Contact Officers have the opportunity to:
Be funded and supported to attend AEU training and development to develop skills. For example, through the women’s contact officer education development program; they can develop assertive communication skills and meeting procedures.
- Learn, develop and practice advocacy skills.
- Learn, develop and practice mediation skills.
- Participate in district and state-wide networking and information sharing.
- Be creative, engaging and have fun.
- Participate in social opportunities.
- Gain and share understanding of gender equity, social justice and women’s issues.
- Gain an understanding of the history of achievements women have won in education.
- Create a positive supportive culture in the workplace.
- Education Program for AEU Women’s Contact Officers
Each year the AEU offers a variety of training which is particularly relevant to Women Contact Officers. The Women’s Contact Officer Course is highly recommended for those who are new to the role or are seeking clarification about what is involved.
Core Women’s Contact Officer 1 Day Course
- Why have women’s contact officers?
- History of women in the union
- Women’s cultures
- Current context
- Unpacking the Women’s Contact Officer Kit (stats; scenarios/games; contacts; finding information; time management/balancing act; ideas)
- Social justice and gender equity issues for women
Skill building sessions
- Intro to advocacy and mediation
- Sharing successful stories about what’s worked
- Developing networks and mentoring
Women’s contact officers are strongly encouraged to attend this core course in 2011. Dates will be announced early in the year.
Advanced Women’s Contact Officers 1 Day Course
Women’s contact officers who have attended the core training are strongly encouraged to build their knowledge and expertise by attending this follow-up course which is provided every two years. This course was held earlier this year so the next will take place in 2012. Stay tuned for details.