How IL works

We are the PCS Independent Left (IL), a democratic organisation of socialists within the PCS union.

We are entirely funded and run by our membership. Regular meetings are held at which policy and approach is discussed and voted upon. IL is governed by its constitution which can only be amended by a national membership meeting.

PCS Independent Left candidates stand for election within PCS to put forward a vision for transforming our union.

We stand for rank and file democracy, creative industrial strategies and a leadership that empowers members to take action rather than holding them back.

The Independent Left Constitution

1. Name

The name of the organisation is Independent Left.

2. Membership

2.1 Membership is open to all members of PCS who accept the programme of the organisation.

2.2 Membership subscriptions are set at £2 per month, with recommended levels based on grade, to be determined by conference.

3.  Structure 

3.1   Members will be organised in regional groups consisting of at least 5 members.

3.2   These groups will be initially organised based on the regions and country boundaries determined by the PCS constitution.

3.3 Any region can divide into smaller groups if the region, the steering committee and the members involved all agree to do this.

If there are insufficient members to from a Regional Group of at least 5 members the Steering committee, with the agreement of the members concerned will merge with a neighbouring region.

4. Conference 

4.1 A conference of all members will be held every year between 1st and 30th November.

4.2 Conference shall be held at least twice a year and more may be called by either the steering committee or on request of 25% of members being received within a four-week span.

4.3 The conference will determine the organisation’s policies for the coming year.

4.4 Any member of the organisation can attend the conference with speaking and voting rights.

4.5 The chair of the meeting will have a casting vote in the event of a tied vote.

4.6 in the absence of the elected chairperson the meeting will elect a chairperson for that meeting.

4.7 The conference will agree slates for GEC and NEC elections.

4.8 Motions and papers will be submitted in advance of the conference that have been carried at meetings by regional groups.

4.9 One motion may be submitted by any member that has not been carried at a meeting of a regional group but must be moved and seconded at the conference.

4.10 Amendments to papers and motions can be made at the conference.

4.11 Special conferences can be called by the steering committee.

4.12 Subject to Rule 4.13, the Steering Committee will give at least 5 weeks notice of the venue, date and time of each conference, providing at least 3 weeks for the submission of motions and at least 1 week’s notice of the motions submitted.

4.13 Emergency meetings may be called by the Steering Committee to deal with important and unexpected situations (or on demand from 25% of the Independent Left membership) and the Steering Committee may give such notice as the situation reasonably requires  

4.14 Emergency motions, i.e. motions submitted after the stipulated deadline for the submission of motions, will be accepted by the Chairperson provided that the purpose(s) of the motion would not reasonably have been anticipated before the deadline.

4.15 Any individual member of the IL is entitled to submit a motion to any IL meeting which they are entitled to participate in. 

4.16 Challenges to any ruling of the Chairperson, including to any aspect of the agenda, will require a simple majority to succeed.

5. Steering Committee

5.1 The steering committee will consist of representatives of each regional group, elected by that group, in numbers determined by the conference.

5.2 The steering committee will meet at least every two months.

5.3 The steering committee will have the authority to make decisions between conferences, but may consult the entire membership as it deems necessary.

5.4 The steering committee will allocate duties/posts among its members.

6. GEC and NEC Slates

6.1 Candidates for the slates for GEC and NEC will be nominated by regional groups and elected by the conference.

6.2 All candidates will have the right to circulate election addresses to all members before the conference and/or to address the conference.

7. Changes to the Constitution

Amendments to this constitution can only be made by a majority decision of a conference.

8. Exclusion From Membership

8.1 Individual members of the Independent Left may have their membership cancelled only by vote of a properly constituted conference at which their exclusion from membership is a duly notified agenda item, and only after being afforded the right to address that conference before the vote is taken and only on one or both of the following grounds: 

  1. bringing the IL into disrepute by undermining basic trade union principles;
  2. standing for election to a union post in opposition to IL candidates approved by the IL within the rules of this constitution.

8.2 Prior to conference the steering committee has the power to suspend an individual from membership on the basis of 8.1 a) or b).

9. Membership votes

A membership vote shall be held by the Steering Committee at its discretion or where so requested by conference or where so requested by 25% of Independent Left members.

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