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Commission on Union Democracy

At Congress 2012 a decision was taken to set up a Commission on Union Democracy to 'consider, among other matters, the composition and size of the NEC' (National Executive Committee).

We consulted widely and reported back to Congress 2013. The relevant Congress motions on the future size of the NEC can be found here.

See also:


Final report

 (.pdf) file type icon Commission on Union Democracy: Final Report of Commission, Apr 13 (.pdf) [96kb]


NEC sub-committee on union structure and democracy

At its first meeting after Annual Congress 2012, the NEC passed a motion establishing a sub-committee to look at union structure including the size and composition of the NEC.

Two models ('NEC1' and 'NEC2') are included in the report of that sub-committee. Although these are separate from the examples ('A-E') included in the interim report (see link above) of the Commission on Union Democracy, the two sub-committee models have now been produced in the same format for ease of comparison.

There is also an updated chart showing the key features of models 'NEC1' and NEC2' and the Commission's examples A-E, which include the existing NEC structure (example E), based on the summary on page 14 of the Commission's interim report.

 (.pdf) file type icon NEC models 'NEC1' + 'NEC2' plus key features chart (.pdf) [52kb]



Joint statement by Commission for Union Democracy and NEC Sub-committee on Structures

We are writing to you about the progress so far of the two groups which have each been considering issues around the composition of the NEC and to advise you on how best you can feed into further discussions and decisions on this issue.

The Commission on Union Democracy was established by Motion 62 at Annual Congress in 2012. The remit of the Commission is to 'consider, among other matters, the composition and size of the NEC'. The outcome of the Commission's work is to be a report to Annual Congress 2013. Members of the Commission, who were elected by delegates to Annual Congress 2012, have decided to publish an interim report ahead of Congress 2013 in order to encourage debate ahead of Congress. This interim report will be available at the end of February and will be circulated to all members, regional and branch secretaries, and specialist group committees.

At its first meeting after Annual Congress 2012, the NEC passed a motion establishing a sub-committee to look into the future size and composition of the NEC. The NEC will be considering the report of this sub-committee at its meeting on 15 March and in particular a proposal from the sub-committee that the report be circulated to members/branches and to Congress for discussion and decision.

Both bodies agree that the best way in which decision-making could be facilitated is to present a range of examples, together with their implications, which could form the basis for discussion at Congress. We would emphasize that we do not expect Congress 2013 to do any more than take a decision in principle about the future composition of the NEC. The drafting of the rule changes that will be required to put into effect whatever decision Congress makes at this year's meeting will inevitably be complicated and will need to be undertaken with care. There is a Standing Orders and Rules group of the NEC (SORG), and we assume that this work will fall into their remit. Accordingly, we would expect the rule changes needed to give substance to any decision arising from this year's Congress to be brought to Congress in 2014. However, we do hope that all members will give some thought to this matter, and we urge branches to hold meetings at which the issues surrounding the future composition of our Union's National Executive can be aired.

February 2013


 (.pdf) file type icon CUD – consultation paper (.pdf) [148kb]

The Commission members:

FE members:
Caroline Gray (City College Birmingham)
Jude Letham (City of Sunderland College)
Alan Whitaker (Oxford and Cherwell Valley College)
Angie McConnell (Wigan & Leigh College)
Peter Jones (Wales FE Central Group)

HE members:
Elizabeth Lawrence (Sheffield Hallam University)
Catherine Pope (University of Southampton)
Liza van Zyl (Cardiff University)
Roger Walters (Open University)
Jean Crocker (Teesside University)

Contact: Alan Scobbie, secretary

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