Union governance may seem like a very complex issue. Who makes the decisions? How does Local 21 work? What do Councils do? What about Chapters? What happens at the Delegate Assembly? How many people go to that? Luckily, we break it all down for you below!
We’ve created a graphic above to show you how Local 21 works.
As a member, you control the direction of the union. Everything flows from the membership; you can see on the left hand side of the graphic that the Chapters, Councils, Executive Committee, and Delegate Assembly are all comprised of Local 21 members.
Local 21 members vote in Local 21 elections, and can run for office. All officer positions are unpaid and on a volunteer-basis only.
The general membership is broken into different Chapters; they are formed through a common employer, like Contra Costa County, or similar job classifications, like Accountants and Auditors. There are currently 51 Chapters in Local 21. Responsibility for program, direction and leadership of our union rests largely with Chapters. Each Chapter has their own elected officials and delegates.
The ultimate governing body of Local 21 is the Delegate Assembly. Elected delegates from each chapter come together to two to three times a year to decide the direction of the union. There is one delegate per 50 members. The Delegate Assembly decides the overall direction of the union. Chapter Presidents are automatically delegates at the Delegate Assembly, but non-officers can be delegates if they have been officialy elected by their Chapter. The Delegate Assembly consists of elected representatives from all Chapters, the Executive Committee, and the Executive Director.
The Executive Committeee is authorized to take all lawful action on behalf of Local 21 in accordance with the bylaws and the Delegate Assembly. The Executive Committee acts as the monthly decision-making body functions in between the Delegate Assemblies. Our current officers were sworn in at the Local 21 Delegate Assembly on January 2015 and will serve a three-year term.
The Executive Committee is made of 11 members:
- Executive Vice President
- Vice President for San Francisco Council
- Vice President for South Bay Council
- Vice President for Oakland Council
- Vice President for East Bay Council
- Vice President for Membership and and Organization
- Vice President for Legislative and Political Action
- Vice President At-Large
Councils meet monthly and are comprised of Chapter officers. Each Council has a Vice President. Council Vice Presidents are on the Executive Committee. Councils coordinate Chapter activity.
The Executive Director is employed by the Delegate Assembly, and supervises Local 21 affairs and Local 21 professional union staff. Local 21 union staff are responsible for negotiations, worksite representation, political advocacy, communications, and research for the union.
There are a number of things members can do to make Local 21 even stronger than it is today. Participating in your Chapter meetings, running for office, sticking together, and educating potential members and about our union are simple, everyday ways we can support our union.