The Local Convention is a special meeting of the Union’s leadership and rank-and-file delegates elected by the membership of each Unit. A Unit consists of the members at each company under an ILWU contract. Representation from each unit is based on their membership – roughly one official delegate for every 250 members. Units may send additional observers at the Unit’s expense.
The Local Convention is the highest policy-making body in the ILWU and meets once every three years in September. The last Local Convention was held in 2012, the next Local Convention will be in 2015, 2018, and so on.
Four important things happen at the Local Convention:
- Policies and programs are adopted which guide the work of the Union
- The operating budget is reviewed and adopted
- Changes can be made to the Constitution
- The three highest officers of the Local are nominated: President, Vice-President and Secretary/Treasurer
The work of the Convention must then be approved by the membership. Special meetings are held to report to the membership and to vote to approve Convention actions. Once approved, the Convention program is binding on all Officers and members of the Union.