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The NEC are quite aware that due to the pandemic there has been no annual conference for 2020 and 2021. It has also been virtually impossible to hold Area Meetings to update branch officials as there have been no suitable venues for those Area Meetings to take place which could accommodate two officials from each branch adequately within the prison estate where such meetings are normally held.
I understand that many branches have contacted their NEC members requesting that such Area Meetings are convened when it was safe to do so in order that branch officials can meet up with their respective NEC representatives.
This has proved to be difficult as there has not been any suitable venue within the prison estate apart from Whitemoor where some consultative meetings have taken place, but it was decided that we couldn’t easily facilitate all Area Meetings. We also looked at the General Federation of Trade Unions Quorn Grange as well. It was decided to get branches together in England and Wales at the same venue on the same day, which will mean there is a consistency of message being given at the same time for all branches and the NEC can be at the same venue. This is not a decision-making meeting like a Special Delegates Conference but an opportunity for the NEC to give important information on the decisions that have been made whilst annual conference has not been sitting.
The NEC believed that we needed to hold this sort of meeting in the absence of Annual Conference being available. We recognise it isn’t ideal and that branches may not get facility time to attend and may have to take annual leave, but facility time has been applied for through the normal channels. I am hoping that this request will be granted given the fantastic work that local branches have done during the pandemic to keep the Prison Service operating to high standards and preserving life during one of the most challenging periods in our lifetime.
Please find attached an expense claim form, which should be returned to Paula Larwill - firstname.lastname@example.org.
Further information will be sent out regarding the agenda and topics for update in due course.
Representing over 30,000 Prison, Correctional and Secure Psychiatric Workers, the POA is the largest UK Union in this sector, able to trace its roots back more than 100 years.