Cover of December AEU Journal  AEU SA Journal:  December 2021Contents

Nominate for Branch Council!

Branch Secretary Leah York reminds us it’s not too many sleeps till the next round of union elections.

This edition of the Journal details who will make up the Executive of the AEU SA Branch for 2022-23. This is the result of our democratic processes at work. Branch Executive operates as the Union’s Committee of Management to conduct and manage the affairs of the Branch between meetings of the Branch Council.

Branch Council is the supreme governing authority of our Union, and meets four times per year (once per term), on Saturdays from 10.00am to 1.00pm. It is preceded by a Women’s Breakfast providing the opportunity for women delegates to support one another and to caucus about Council business.

Country delegates may be supported to attend with travel and accommodation assistance, and childcare is also provided on request. However, if time, distance or family commitments are barriers to attending Branch Council in person, we offer a hybrid format, enabling delegates to participate via Zoom.

Some of the position and policy settings recently determined by Branch Council include:

  • Every School Every Child campaign demands
  • TAFE State election demands
  • AEU SA Merit Selection Policy and Procedures – Schools and Preschools
  • AEU SA Data Collection, Assessment and Reporting Policy
  • AEU SA Classroom Observation of Teachers Policy
  • Release time for sub-branch secretaries
  • Access to COVID Vaccines for education employees
  • Country Incentives Review – allocation of financial resources.

Some of the matters that will come before Branch Council in 2022 include:

  • Enterprise bargaining claims and direction
  • Strategic direction of our Union
  • Professional interests
  • The investment in and development of our property assets.

Members will soon have the opportunity to nominate as a Branch Council delegate to be part of the decision making, policy and direction setting of our Union. At the commencement of each year, elections for Branch Council delegates are conducted and delegates hold office for one year or until their successors take office.

Other than TAFE members, each member is allocated to one of 34 geographically based Areas depending on your workplace or sub-branch location. Delegates are elected to represent an Area. (Alternate Delegates are also elected from each Area, and can take the place of a Delegate unable to attend a meeting.)

The election schedule is tight. Nominations need to be called in January to enable the election to be completed by 20 March of each year. This ensures that delegates are current in terms of Area location and representation.

Nominations will be called via a Union Notice emailed to all eligible members in January 2022. You may wish to consider nominating for a position using the AEC nomination form included with the notice.

If the election timeline permits, Area meetings may be held early in Term 1 before nominations close to discuss and support nominating others.

Most importantly, vote in any ballot for delegates from your Area. Check out the candidates and determine who you think will best represent you.

For TAFE members, your Branch Council representatives are elected from TAFE Divisional Council. TAFE Divisional Council is made up of delegates from your TAFE sub-branches. Election notices for TAFE sub-branch delegates will be sent to TAFE members in early 2022.

Branch Council delegates are required under Registered Organisations regulatory requirements to undertake Union Governance training. This only needs to be undertaken once, within 6 months of your initial appointment to that office. Backfill and associated costs (such as travel and accommodation) to undertake the training are provided.

The Australian Electoral Commission runs our elections in line with the strict requirements of the AEU Rules, and therefore we can only advise on some matters such as the timing and length of ballot period. However, we are keen to hear from members about the barriers faced in participating in elections, and what processes or communication we could put in place to better engage members to participate in Union-wide elections.