A load of ballots?
Tim Kalvis, reporting on the "Arcane Delegates' Meeting"
(Freelance, May 2002), writes that
London Freelance Branch's "proposal for direct elections
of national officers was side-stepped".
LFB's proposal for annual postal elections for the posts of president,
vice-president and treasurer wasn't "side-stepped": it was put to conference
and overwhelmingly defeated. The reasons for that might include the £37,000
annual postage cost (enough for another assistant organiser in the Freelance
Office) and the desire to avoid marginalising the sovereignty of the annual
conference over the running of the union.
Branch members should be aware that the anti-union laws provides that a
union president must be elected by a postal ballot, unless he/she is an
honorary president serving for a year (like the NUJ's by rule) who cannot be
immediately re-elected (like the NUJ's by convention).
All the motion passed by ADM does is codify existing NUJ practice so as to
comply with the law, but Tim concludes that "it was a missed opportunity
to belatedly introduce one person-one-vote." So, as consistency is the
foundation of virtue, I look forward to Tim moving a motion at the 2003 AGM
calling for the branch's officers to be elected by post.