How to become a Delegate
A delegate is an active union member who is recognised in the workplace as the local union contact. 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.
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 AWU members in the area up to date on union activities, meetings and 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.