The first meeting after conference is mainly devoted to ‘committee filling and getting dates for meetings over the next year. I was appointed onto the Policy committee (my choice as it happens) which next meets on 4 February. This is my second ‘serving’ on Policy as I was on it before when I was previously on the NEC a few years back. It’s one of the three NEC sub-committees (the others are Development and Finance) and deals with relations with other organisations, international issues (where we get reports on the activities of the International Federation of Journalists and the European Federation of Journalists) press freedom and research matters. Appointments were made to all the committees and everyone got their first choice – so no problems there!
We went on to elect the NEC members to the Emergency Committee (in addition to those elected by conference). As the name indicates, this committee deals with urgent issues that arise and can’t be dealt with by the appropriate NEC committee. These meetings are held ‘as and when necessary’ and usually take place at NUJ HQ. More elections followed with appointments to the conference standing orders committee (2), the Equality Committee (1) and NUJ Extra (2). I’ll post up all the names when I get the minutes.
Items of any other business included approving a rule change in order to introduce the new subscription rates and a discussion on the way forward for the new photographers branch in London. The September meeting of the NEC agreed the setting up of a London Photographers Branch, following the photographers meeting held on 16 July which had passed a motion calling for such a branch to be set up. London NEC member Phil Sutcliffe gave the council an update on developments and it was agreed that the London NEC members together with the Freelance Organiser John Toner should write out to all potential members with details of just who was eligible to join the new branch and the date of the founding meeting in late January.
Having sorted that out, it was out into the rain and our homeward journeys (or was it still raining then I can’t remember?)!