Next generation taking the lead
A group of early career members gathered recently at our NexGen Conference in Brisbane to turn an eye to the future of our profession and our union more broadly.
Our union originated in 1919 and has achieved many significant things over that time, including securing equal pay for women in Catholic primary schools in the 1970s and last year elevating classroom teacher wages to a new state benchmark.
Despite securing achievements like these, the union movement has broadly seen a decline in membership. This decline has formed part of a cultural shift in recent times, which has coincided with workers’ condition generally diminishing.
Despite the fact Australian workers are among the most productive in the world, generating $53 (US) in GDP every hour, wages have stalled. Hourly incomes have fallen below levels of productivity and wages growth is the slowest on record.
A key part of the NexGen Conference’s focus was how our union can expand and grow into the future. Hear what NexGen attendees had to say on this topic in the video below.
The two-day NexGen Conference held in mid-May brought together early career teacher members from across Queensland and the Northern Territory.
IEUA-QNT Branch Secretary Terry Burke said the NexGen Conference was just the start of an important conversation about our union’s future.
“Attendees at the conference took a hands-on approach to building our union’s future by helping to devise strategies that will directly influence upcoming campaigns and activities,” he said.
“They will also play an important role in sharing what they have taken away with other members and potential members in their schools – and encouraging these people to become more involved with our union.
“Only when we work together, collectively as a group of union members, can we hope to address these significant issues affecting our members and all workers generally.”
View conference photos in the gallery below.