Young members' constitution

Our young members network has democratic structures in order to reflect broad views and encourage participation. Our young members' constitution was passed at annual conference in 2007 and sets out the rules and procedures of the young members' network.

1. Title

The title of the Committee shall be the Public and Commercial Services Union (hereinafter referred to as PCS) National Young Members Committee (hereinafter referred to as the Committee).

2. Status

The Committee shall be governed by the national rules and constitution of the PCS and will at all times conduct its business under these rules and in accordance with the policies of the union as decided by conference or the PCS National Executive Committee.

3. Amending this constitution

The constitution may not be amended except by an AGM or by an EGM convened for the purpose. A motion to amend the constitution shall require a majority of at least two thirds of the votes cast in order to be carried. Any amendment shall be subject to ratification by the NEC and shall not take effect until then.

4. Main functions

The main functions of the Committee shall be as follows:-

i) To co-ordinate the PCS approach to young members and the Young Members’ Network.
ii) To co-ordinate the PCS approach in developing of the Young Members Networks and to promote the maximum participation of branches, regions and Groups in the activities and campaigns of the Network
iii) To co-ordinate the PCS approach where relevant to young members for dealing with other bodies and institutions including those organisation to which PCS is affiliated Including the TUC and STUC young members committees
iv) To advise, assist and inform the work of branches, Groups, regional committees and the NEC on young members issues
v) To encourage young members involvement in the wider union
vi) To support and encourage the work done by groups and branches relating to the Young Members Charter. As well as review and maintain the Charter drafting amendments and inclusions when needed

5. Composition

i) The committee shall consist of 10 members representing each of the PCS regions and a separate representative from Northern Ireland.
ii) Officers of the committee will include Chair, Vice Chair and Equalities Officer each shall be filled by a different PCS Region.
iii) One member of the TUC and STUC youth committee shall attend as non voting officers of the committee.
iv) A full time officer of PCS shall provide secretarial support and will attend meetings.
v) Members of the NEC Youth Forum may attend meetings of the Committee and participate in discussions but not vote.

6. Observers to the meeting

i. Requests for an Observer to attend a meeting of the National Young Members Committee for developmental reasons must be made in writing to the Secretary of the Committee and agreed by the meeting of the Committee.

7. Voting

The Committee shall seek to reach decisions by consensus. In the event of a vote being required, it will be by a show of hands. Only elected committee members and elected officers of the committee may vote. In the event of a tied vote, the chair will have the casting vote.

8. Officers

The Officers of the Committee shall comprise of a Chair and a Vice Chair and an Equalities Officer and must be eligible to be a member of the Young Members’ Network at time of election.

If nominations have not been received for any post then nominations can be accepted from the meeting.

i) The Secretary of the Committee shall be the appointed PCS Full Time Officer
ii) The Officers, shall conduct the business of the Committee in between meetings and shall consist of: -
Chair
Vice Chair
Equalities officer
A representative from the TUC young members committee
A representative from the STUC young members committee
iii) Members of the NEC Youth Forum will attend and participate in the meetings
iv) The Committee shall have the power to fill Officer vacancies during the year in accordance with the provisions of this constitution. If committee members fail to attend 2 or more of the meetings without an acceptable apology then the committee may declare the post open and call for nominations to fill the vacancy.

9. Election of officers

Officers of the Committee shall be elected by secret individual ballot at the National Young Members Forum and should be proposed and seconded by members who are eligible to be members of the Young Members Network. The officers should be eligible to be members of the Young Members Network.

10. Elections of Regional Representatives to the National Young Members Committee; Area Convenors and Young Member Representative to the Regional Committee.

Each year, no less than 35 days following the Young Members Forum each area should hold an open meeting of young members to elect their Area Convenor, Regional Representatives to the National Young Members Committee and Young Members Representative to the Regional Committee.

Each area meeting shall be arranged and publicised by the local convenor with assistance from the Regional Organiser and the Regional Organiser shall act as the returning officer.

Notice of the meeting and opening of nominations for these positions should be distributed to branches and young members listed on the network no later then 4 weeks before the meeting. Branches should strongly encourage young members to attend and participate in the election process.

Nominations for these positions should be received by the Regional Organiser no later then 1 week before the meeting and nominees will be given to opportunity to submit an election address of 300 words or less to be circulated at the meeting.

Young members who are unable to attend the meeting may nominate a proxy to vote to the Regional Organiser on their behalf if available, and or time permitting could request a copy of the election address for these positions. Valid reasons for non attendance should be given and could include work commitments, unable to be released, TU business or exceptional personal circumstance.

Members may be nominated for one specified region but can attend as many area meetings as they like. Members will only be entitled to vote in their specified area (this could be where they work or live but they can only choose one). This will be monitored by the regional organiser who will act as the returning officer for their region.

Each regional area is outlined in appendix one and any amendment shall be subject to ratification by the NEC and shall not take effect until then.

11. Regional, Area and Town meetings

Any meetings of the regional, area or town based groups should be open to all young members and all efforts should be made to advertise meetings to all young members and every effort should be made to hold the meeting at a time most convenient for young members to attend.

This process shall begin by the regional YMN conducting a review of where there are convenors and large groups of young members in order to provide an assessment of where area based convenors are needed. Support, where required, will be provided, from the Regional Organiser and the National Young Members’ Organiser. There should also be an option for young members in an area to petition for the establishment of a convenor in that area.

12. Meetings

There shall be at least four meetings of the Committee every year. The first meeting of the calendar year will be the Annual General Meeting, (also known as the National Young Members Forum).

i) The notice convening the meetings of the Committee shall be sent to all Committee members no less than twenty-one days prior to the meeting together with the agenda.

ii) A special meeting of the Committee may be convened at the discretion of the Officers or at the request of the NEC. Discussions shall be confined to the items notified on the agenda.

13. National Young Members Forum

This meeting will be held in January or early February each year, on the Friday prior to the Forum a meeting of the NYMC will be convened.

Process for being selected:
1. Each Regional Network can nominate up to 10 people to attend the Forum, the first 7 people will automatically be selected with the additional 3 places going into a pool to fill vacant places once all the reserved places are finalised. Each list has to be signed off by a meeting of the PCS Regional Committee or where no meeting is due to take place the Officers of the Committee may agree to the list.
2. Up to 25 places will be reserved for people who are nominated by their Group or Branch to attend and put to the selection panel to decide.
3. If there is more people then allocated places, the Full Time Officer to the Committee and the Chair and Vice Chair of the NYMC and the Chair of the NEC Youth Forum will make a selection giving priority to under-represented groups and bargaining areas within the union.
4. All young members who are selected to attend through this process will be entitled to a vote at this Forum.
5. Those attending the Forum should reflect the composition of union membership based on employers. This should be done in accordance with PR 10A(g)

14. Working groups

The Committee may at times make a decision to create specific working groups to work on certain campaigns or events that the Committee is responsible for. These groups will always be assisted by the Secretary of the Committee and report back on progress at each meeting.

15. Young Members Network membership

Any member of PCS aged 27 & under is eligible to be a part of the Young Members’ Network.

Appendix to the constitution

Regional Areas

Regions will continue to follow the current PCS regional structure. However, regions will be split into definable areas for the purpose of holding open meetings to elect regional representatives, area convenors and representatives to the regional committee.

Consultation is taking place with regions regarding the number and names of each area with a view to providing a list for NEC agreement at its March meeting.

Position descriptions for the following positions

Chair

- Responsible for the overall running of the NYMC.
- Drafts agendas for meetings (in conjunction with Secretary).
- Liaise with the Committee on future strategy.
- Chairs and facilitates all meetings of the NYMC.
- Checks minutes are agreed and accurate.
- Responsible for making sure PCS and NYMC rules/ Constitution are followed.
- Uses casting vote.
- A contact point for members/ Regional reps/ PCS HQ/ PCS Groups and outside agencies.
- Raises the profile of NYMC in PCS and the wider trade union movement.

Vice Chair

- Deputises in the absence of the Chair
- Works with the Chair to support the work of the NYMC
- Raises the profile of NYMC in PCS and the wider trade union movement.

Equalities officer

- Responsible for advising and updating the NYMC and the Young Members Network on equality issues.

- Works with the NYMC to encourage greater participation of underrepresented groups within the Young Members’ Network.

- Liaises with PCS equality networks/groups to provide updates on equality issues and initiate campaigning activities.

- Ensures the Key Indicators from the PCS Charter For Equality are adhered to.

- Organise and encourage attendance at events to keep young members informed of equality issues

Regional rep to the NYMC

- Liaises with PCS Regional Office in the region to establish contact details of local young members.

- Raises the profile of the NYMC in their region by contributing to Regional Newsletters and speaking at local meetings.

- Establishes and maintains contact with members in their region through Newsletters, meetings, and social events.

- Report back to local young members on regional and national activity.

- Map young member hot spots in your region and work with other Branch reps to engage them in the Network

- Raise and represent the views of young members in your Region, nationally.

- Attend meetings of the NYMC.

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