Opinion

Set the wheels in motion at the AGM

05 June 2019

Want to ensure your motion for this year’s Unite-CPHVA AGM is considered? Here are a few tips to help you…

The Unite-CPHVA annual general meeting (AGM) in Harrogate, on 15 October 2019, is an opportunity for members to influence and shape the professional agenda of the CPHVA by submitting motions for debate. All motions agreed by the regional delegates at the AGM are then pursued by the CPHVA professional executive committee or handed over to an appropriate group.

Any motion must cover professional rather than industrial matters. For example, asking the professional executive committee to challenge the down-banding of health visitors is outside its remit. But asking it to produce a briefing paper on the consequences of down-banding for individual practitioners and organisations is not.

Motions that commit Unite-CPHVA to spending money must be reviewed by the professional executive committee, while any requests for rule changes need to be raised through the Unite structures instead.

You can submit motions in advance to any Unite-CPHVA branch or committee. You simply need to ensure your motions follow these guidelines:

  • Start with ‘This AGM…’ and not ‘The Newtown Branch at its meeting in January…’. The branch may want the motion considered but it is the AGM that the policy must come from.
  • Make it clear what you want to achieve: is it to raise awareness among members, produce information, commit the organisation to run a campaign, or engage with the wider union?
  • Set out your motivation. For example, is it because you feel members need information to practise effectively and safely, or an issue threatens the level of service, or the CPHVA could do more to support the profession?
  • Include a time scale but be realistic – remember, as well as their CPHVA duties, the members of the professional executive committee also have their day jobs to do.
  • Keep to a reasonable word limit (200 is usually enough). You don’t have to include all your arguments in the motion; you can use them when you present it.
  • Finally, all motions need to be seconded. Try to come to the meeting having identified someone from another branch who is willing to do this.

Send your motions to cphva@unitetheunion.org by 1 July 2019.


An example of an ideal submission:

This AGM notes with concern the rise in the incidence of self-harm in children and young people in the UK. In 2016 nearly 19,000 children and young people were treated in hospital in England and Wales after self-harming, a 14% increase since 2012. School nurses are well placed to identify and support children at risk of self-harming but often feel ill-equipped to support such children. This AGM calls upon the CPHVA professional executive committee by the next AGM to:

  1. Produce a briefing paper for practitioners working with young people regarding their role in identifying and supporting those at risk of self-harm, including particular reference to the professional duty with regards to confidentiality
  2. Engage with appropriate organisations, such as the NSPCC, to raise awareness of school nurses’ valuable role in identifying and supporting young people.

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Image credit | iStock

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