Monday, June 16, 2008

LG conference: London Region delegate Meeting

On Saturday evening there was a delegation meeting at the Hermitage hotel, Bournemouth. The meeting was chaired by David Eggmore who had just beaten me in the Service Group elections. I went and congratulated David on his victory and told him that this was getting to be a habit which I am going to have to do something about (this is the 2nd time he has beaten for this seat). David replied that “in the nicest possible way” he hoped this would be a habit that I wouldn’t be able to break!

The meeting went ahead and was quite straight forward. I picked up my branch “Card vote” and a seating plan for us to find our seats. There was a briefing by UNISON head of local government, Vicky Easton on equal pay issues. Regional delegates Andrew Berry and Mandy Berger spoke about their role in supporting delegates (they will do most things except give advice on train timetables!).

The London Standing Orders Committee (SOC) representative Malcolm Campbell reported back on an earlier SOC meeting. A number of emergency motions had been ruled out of order on the sensible grounds that they were not “emergencies”. The only one allowed was one on fuel costs and mileage allowances. There was also an attempt to explain what “composite motions” are and “consequences” for new delegates. I’m not going to try.

Phil Lewis from the regional newssheet team (who was filming the meeting) gave the usual plea for delegates to write articles for the newsletter.

There was an excellent contribution by care workers from “Fremantle” in Barnet, London who are balloting for further strike action following the large cuts in their pay and conditions, which followed the privatisation of Barnet Council care homes.

There was also a presentation made to Jean Geldart, Chair of the Service Group (and my former branch secretary at Tower Hamlets- picture right), who is retiring after some 37 years. She gave the usual competent and very articulate speech.

That was it – next thing was start of conference at 9:30 Sunday morning.

Saturday night in Bournemouth seemed to have been taken over by very merry and high spirited “stag” and “hen” parties. Of course all UNISON delegates where in their rooms busy reading motions and writing speeches.

(Apologies for no photos but forgot to bring the camera cable – will try and get a card reader and add to post later)

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