Become a delegate
A delegate is an active union member who is recognised in the workplace as the local union contact. The term ‘delegate’ is used to refer to a wide range of NTEU activists who might also be called departmental representatives, campus representatives, union contacts or something similar. Delegates play a vital role in being the two-way link between members in the workplace and other union structures, such as the local Branch Committee.
If you are interested in being a delegate in your workplace or finding out more information about what is involved, contact your Branch Organiser or a Branch Committee member (details at your local Branch homepage).
Delegates are not formally recognised under the NTEU Rules, and there are no formal mechanisms for becoming a delegate. An active union member might volunteer to be the local delegate, or they might be approached by the Branch Organiser of a Branch Committee member to consider being a delegate.
To be most effective, a delegate should have the support and respect of their union colleagues in that workplace. A good way to have this recognised is for a workplace meeting of union members to informally elect the local delegate.
The role of a delegate varies from Branch to Branch. There are some core tasks that delegates are well positioned to carry out and these include:
- Act as first point of contact for members including being clearly identifiable to members (door signs, email to colleagues).
- Approach new staff about joining the Union.
- Distribute union materials and keep NTEU members in the area up to date on union activities, meetings & issues.
- Ensure there is a union noticeboard in the designated work area and union notices are kept up to date.
- Keep the Branch Committee/Delegates Coordinator informed about issues and problems that may arise in the work area.
- Keep the Branch Office informed of any members in your designated area that have left to ensure Branch records are as up-to-date as possible.
- Hold small work area meetings to get and give feedback on specific issues of interest to the Union.