UNIONS NSW COUNCIL MEETING MINUTES - MEETING HELD THURSDAY 24 AUGUST 2017
IN TRADES HALL AUDITORIUM, SYDNEY AT 5:30PM.

The Acting President, Com. J. Dixon occupied the Chair.

PRESENT:   Com. M. Morey [Secretary], Com. T. Costa [Assistant Secretary].

ENING OF THE MEETING:   The Acting President, Com. J. Dixon opened the meeting and in doing so, recognised the traditional owners of the land on which the meeting was held, The Gadigal People of the Eora Nation.

MINUTES: 
The Secretary, Com. M. Morey moved:

"That the minutes from the meeting of 17 August 2017 as circulated be received."

Com. J. Wright  (ASU) seconded.

CARRIED

The Secretary, Com. M. Morey moved:

"That the minutes from the meeting of 17 August 2017 as circulated be adopted."

Com. R. Fortescue (AMWU) seconded.

CARRIED

APOLOGIES:   Apologies were received and accepted for:  J. Kiejda (President), E. Maiden (Assistant Secretary), R. Mallia & B Parker (CFMEU), C. Bolger (Prof. Aust.) Graeme Kelly (USU), N. Lang (ASU), P. Noack (AWU), D. McKinley (ETU), B. Smith (SDA).

The Secretary, Com. M. Morey moved:

"That the apologies be received and accepted."

Com. P. Robson (NSWTF) seconded.

CARRIED

GUEST SPEAKER:

John Robertson
former Secretary of the Labor Council/Unions NSW, former Leader of the Opposition and Member for Blacktown.

The Secretary, Com. M. Morey welcomed John Robertson who addressed council.  Mr Robertson spoke and said "I have a lot of stories but I want to start by thanking Kellie Hutchison, my longest serving staff member.  I would also like to thank former Assistant Secretary, Mark Lennon and my good friend Chris Christodoulou.  There are others I worked with that I would like to thank like Mary Yaager.  I am proud of my time in the union movement and the work that we did.  I started in 2001 with a baptism of fire with our campaign against changes to workers compensation, which, included a blockade of parliament.  We made some improvements as a result.  One of the things I'm most proud of was the renovation of Trades Hall.  I am also proud of the young people that we mentored during the Your Rights At Work campaign like Mel Gatfield, Natalie Lang and Daniel Walton.

I want to leave you with lessons and questions. The first is about the relationship with the Labor Party and unions.  The union movement is the strongest support on the ground for labor.  Despite talking about the decline of the union movement, it is still the largest membership organisation in Australia.  Without it Labor would not be able to win another election. But the relationship should be based on mutual respect.

Finally, I would like to say thank you to my wife Julie and my family."

The Secretary, Com. M. Morey thanked Mr Robertson for his service and for all his work and support over the years.

EXECUTIVE CORRESPONDENCE:

1.  From Unions Mid North Coast:  Unions Mid North Coast continues to be an active organisation promoting unionism and community based campaigns.  As a vehicle by which local unions can come together and influence current issues, we have become a prominent voice in our region's community and politics.

In the recent State election we supported Unions NSW through intense campaigning on the state-wide priorities framed by a local perspective.  Unions Mid North Coast looks forward to maintaining this opportunity for both regional unions members as well as providing a local voice for Unions NSW.

As per our Constitution:

3. Membership
Membership shall be open to delegates members of any union affiliated with Unions NSW.
Affiliation fe3es shall be $100 per delegate, limited to 3 delegates per union.

The period of membership is from August 2017 (Annual General Meeting) for twelve months.

The Secretary, Com. M. Morey moved the Executive recommendation:

"That the correspondence be received and Unions NSW will encourage affiliates to support the Mid North Coast Unions."

Com. S. Usher (NSWTF) seconded.

CARRIED

2.  From the South Coast Labour Council:  regarding the bans on political donations from private health/pharmaceutical corporations; above matter that was considered and unanimously endorsed at today's meeting of the South Coast Labour Council.  This issue was considered in the context of the privatisation agenda of government and, in particular plans for Shellharbour/Port Kembla Hospitals.  We urge all affiliates to support this position as outlined below.

SCLC Resolution 23/8/2017 - Political Donations from Health/Pharmaceutical Corporations 

That the report be received and Council notes:

1.    The millions of dollars in political donations made by Private Hospital, Health and Pharmaceutical Corporations to politicians and political parties at State and Federal level particularly during election campaigns as exposed by the South Coast Labour Council and others and reported by Fairfax Media.

2.    The corrosive effect these relationships between big health corporations and politics has had in Australia and internationally in both domestic policy and so-called Free Trade agendas, the latest being the TPP. Council further notes the opaque privatisation process that the NSW Government has adopted in the current round of Hospital Privatisation tendering.

3.    Accordingly, Council calls for the banning of all political donations from private Health and Pharmaceutical Corporations to parties and candidates at all levels of Government.  And:

4.    Until such a ban is legally imposed we demand all parties, politicians and candidates to voluntarily declare that they will not solicit or accept any donations from these sources with immediate effect.

5.    Council calls on Unions NSW to endorse this position. 

Com. A. Rorris spoke and said; ‘Had it not been for John Robertson, there would not have been a Your Rights at Work Campaign, so thank you John Robertson.

We cannot look ourselves in the mirror if we are campaigning against hospital privatisation but still accepting donations from corporate health. We must turn these donations away and ban these donations from all political parties. Labor must do it first to show we are against privatisation.

The Secretary, Com. M. Morey moved the Executive recommendation:

"That the correspondence be received and Unions NSW will convene a meeting of health unions to consider the correspondence."

REPORTS:

1.  Marriage EqualityThe Secretary, Com. M. Morey reported and took the opportunity to introduce two new campaign assistants, Jack Boutros and Katie Summers who will be working with Unions NSW for the next 12 months.

Their first campaign has been the marriage equality campaign.  As part of the campaign, Unions NSW has been enrolling people across Sydney for the upcoming postal survey and to ensure a yes vote.

The Secretary, Com. M. Morey moved:

"That the report be received and noted."

Com. J. Wright seconded.

CARRIED

2.  Don't Sell Our Buses Campaign
Com. Mary Yaager spoke and said thanks to John Robertson who has been a great mentor and leader over the past years.

Last week the Minister for Transport, the Hon. Andrew Constance announced his plans to increase transport privatisation.  The bus unions have stepped up their Don't Sell Our Buses Campaign.  We have been at bus stops throughout Sydney talking to commuters.  I want to thank the retired unionists and our junior campaigners for their help.

The Secretary, Com. M. Morey moved:

"That the report be received and noted."

Com. P. Davies seconded.

CARRIED

ANNOUNCEMENTS:

1. Rally To Protest the TPP
Monday 28 August at 1:00pm
Cnr. Phillip and Bridge Street (nearest Circular Quay),

2.  1917 Great Strike Goulburn Centenary Dinner
Saturday 26 August 2017 - 6:30pm for 7:00pm start  Goulburn Workers Club
Key Note Speaker:   Rodney Cavalier

3.  APHEDA Fundraising Dinner
Monday 28 August 6:30pm - 10:00pm
Aerial Function Centre, Level 7 (UTS B
uilding 10) 235 Jones Street, Ultimo
Tickets: $95.00 per ticket / $950 per table of 10 people.
Contact 1800 888074 or email office@apheda.org.au

4.  "Time to Fight Back" - Free Trade Agreement & Privatisation Workshop
When:  10:00am - 4:00pm on Thursday 31 August 2017
Venue:   USU Sydney Offices, Level 7, 321 Pitt Street, Sydney - Stephen Birney Auditorium
Speakers:
Dr. Patricia Ranald - AFTINET
Kate Lee - Union Aid Abroad
Michelle Higelin - ActionAid Australia

5.  Equal Pay Dinner
Wednesday 13 September 2017 at 6:30pm
Stacks Taverna, Darling Quarter 125, 158-166 Day Street, Darling Harbour
Guest Speaker:  Clea Smith -
two time Cricket World Cup winner and member of the successful ACA Negotiation Team
who delivered the most significant pay deal for women in Australian sport's history.

6. Robbo Drinks
Following tonight's meeting please join us for drinks and light refreshments in the Atrium.

 

MEETING ADJOURNED AT 6:10PM

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

  

 

Tagged: Minutes  /   News

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