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An update for Delegates on the 2020 ADC

Publish date: Monday, June 29, 2020 update

Dave Bulmer

Dear Delegates,

I hope you are well and ready to make the most of these summer months.

Today, I’m writing Delegates on behalf of the Board of Directors to advise you that the Board has unanimously decided to hold this year’s Annual Delegates’ Conference (ADC) online.

The Board is working with staff and vendors to make the transition to this new format as smooth as possible. While the ADC was originally scheduled for November 25–27, 2020, the dates may change to accommodate planning. We will confirm dates and share details with you as soon as possible.

Considerations

The Board took the decision to move this year’s ADC online seriously.

We all enjoy gathering face-to-face to conduct union business and socialize with our fellow activists. It helps renew the sense of community amongst our province-wide union.

But community also means looking out for one another, and as such, the Board determined this solution is the safest and most equitable.

Current regulations preclude a gathering the size of the ADC. While this is unlikely to change before the end of the year, the Board also considered risks and complications associated with space, food, and transportation—the latter having been identified on our telephone town halls as one of our members’ greatest sources of anxiety.

AMAPCEO is not alone in the labour movement in making this move to an online event. Some of our allies have already held their conventions online, while others, like us, are planning the transition. We are consulting with one another at the senior management level and with potential vendors to determine the best way forward.

Planning the agenda

In developing the agenda for the ADC, the Board is following the AMAPCEO Constitution and Robert’s Rules of Order, and taking guidance from our Parliamentarian, service providers, and other unions that have already held their events.

The agenda for this year’s virtual ADC will include all constitutionally mandated requirements, including a Board report, elections, and financial decisions (including our 2021 Budget). The Board has further decided the agenda will also include any constitutional amendments, by-law ratifications, and Board motions that require Delegate approval, of which there are typically few.

While these business items are required and thus prioritized, the consideration of resolutions at the ADC is not. In exploring how to facilitate debate at a virtual ADC, advice from experts has been resounding—keep business to an absolute minimum. Chairing, debating, and voting on this type of business—especially resolutions—is difficult online, and makes accommodating participants’ individual needs much more complicated.

Grassroots democracy and equity are founding AMAPCEO principles. The Board wishes for members to continue to help shape their union, and in the most equitable way possible.

That’s why the Board unanimously decided that while resolutions will not be considered at this year’s ADC, the Board will hold a special meeting, ahead of the ADC, dedicated to the consideration of resolutions. This is a step well beyond what other unions are doing. The Board has also decided that any resolution that is defeated may be resubmitted for re-consideration at the ADC in 2021, something not normally permitted. The Board continues to work with the Resolutions Committee on process and presentation and greater details will be made available on our website.

More to come

I continue to be impressed by the dedication, professionalism, and flexibility of AMAPCEO members, activists, and staff alike. Much as we have all adapted to new ways of working and collaborating during these extraordinary times, I am confident that this year’s ADC will be a success. It will just look a little different.

We will share more information on the ADC as soon as we have it. In the meantime, please feel free to reach out with any questions by sending me an email at bulmer@amapceo.on.ca. As planning is still underway, I may not have your answer immediately, but I will certainly do my best to reply as soon as possible.

Thank you for all you do for your colleagues and your union.

Stronger together,

Dave Bulmer
President & CEO

More about AMAPCEO and our Members: Established in 1992, AMAPCEO is a bargaining agent that represents 14,000 professional and supervisory public servants, most of whom work directly for the Government of Ontario in every ministry and in a number of agencies, boards and commissions; in 130 communities throughout Ontario and in 12 cities outside Canada. We also represent employees outside the Ontario Public Service in: the Financial Services Regulatory Authority of Ontario; Health Quality Ontario; the Ontario Arts Council; Public Health Ontario; the Waypoint Mental Health Centre in Penetanguishene; and in the former Offices of the Ontario Child Advocate and the French Language Services Commissioner (now part of the Ontario Ombudsman).