Our Virtual Biennial Convention convenes March 26-28
Due to the coronavirus pandemic and public health guidelines, we will be holding CFT Convention 2021 online, as previously scheduled for March 26-28.
The Convention is open to all CFT members, but only elected delegates can vote. It is the Federation’s highest governance body, where delegates shape union policy and positions on issues affecting all members.
The Convention elects officers of the CFT including the President, Secretary Treasurer, and 24 Vice Presidents. Delegates will also elect delegates to the AFT Convention and the California Labor Federation Convention. The CFT division councils meet and constituent local unions will elect officers of each division.
The CFT is reconfiguring Convention to work in an online format, but you can look forward to the usual general sessions, speakers, and debate on union resolutions.
The union’s vitality and democracy depend upon participation in the Convention by delegates from locals in good standing. Learn how to become a delegate to CFT Convention and how to be an active participant in the union’s highest policymaking body.
Rules for Delegate Election
Delegates must be nominated and elected according to the CFT By-Laws and the Labor-Management Reporting and Disclosure Act (commonly referred to as the “Landrum-Griffin Act”). This federal law, the AFT Constitution and the CFT Constitution, require that:
- Each member shall have a reasonable opportunity to be nominated as a delegate.
- Notice of election of delegates shall be mailed to each member at least 15 days in advance of the election. Notice may be contained in the local union newsletter as long as it is mailed to the last known address of each member.
- Election shall be by secret ballot.
- Results shall be published and records (including ballots) kept for one year.
- The president or other elected union officer may serve as a delegate without a special election provided:
- He or she was elected to office by secret ballot according to provisions of the Landrum-Griffin Act, and,
- The local constitution or by-laws state that one of the duties of office is to be a delegate to the CFT Convention.
Although many locals divide expense allocations equally by common practice, the Labor Department has ruled that expenses need not be distributed equally among the delegates, provided that the rule for allocating the expenses is passed before the nomination of candidates. The guiding principle to follow is that the rule must be reasonable and able to be uniformly enforced.
U.S. Department of Labor Guide to Delegate Election
Committee Service for Delegates
All proposed constitutional amendments and resolutions are first reviewed by one of the Convention committees. These committees are given the task of recommending whether an amendment should be adopted, whether a resolution needs modification, what action the Convention should take concerning the resolution, and the order of importance for resolutions to be considered.
All delegates are encouraged to participate in these important sessions to ensure a democratic Convention process.
The CFT President shall appoint Convention committee chairs and members of the Constitution Committee with the approval of the Executive Council.
- Nominations and Elections
- Resolutions (and Resolutions Subcommittees)
- Education Finance
- Health Care, Retirement and Benefits
- Professional Issues: EC/TK-12
- Professional Issues: Higher Education
- As Convention nears, delegates will be able to submit their choices for committee service here.
This section walks you through the rules for submitting resolutions and constitutional amendments, how to write an effective resolution, and how to upload both online here.
Rules for Submitting Resolutions & Constitutional Amendments
- Resolutions may be introduced by locals, by the State Council, by the Executive Council, by CFT standing committees, by division councils, or by Convention committees.
- A proposed resolution must bear the signatures of two elected officers of the local or council, or the signatures of two committee members, certifying that the resolution was approved for submission to the Convention.
- Resolutions from local unions must be approved for submission by the membership or by the local’s executive board.
- Resolutions introduced later than six weeks prior to the opening of the Convention must be approved by a two-thirds vote of the delegates and follow the procedures for late submissions.
- Resolutions must be submitted online six weeks prior to the Convention, no later than February 12.
- Locals or councils may submit to the Convention amendments to the CFT Constitution and Bylaws as provided in the Constitution (Article VII) and the Bylaws (Article IV). A two-thirds vote of delegates present and voting is required to amend the Constitution; a majority vote is required to amend the Bylaws.
- A proposed amendment must be signed by two elected officers of the local certifying that it was approved by the membership or the local’s executive board for submission to the Convention.
- Proposed amendments must be submitted online eight weeks prior to the Convention, no later than January 29.
Guidelines for Writing Effective Resolutions
When writing resolutions on topics that impact our union and the work we do, please take the time to research your whereas’s and resolves and write the resolutions as clearly as possible. It’s important that delegates cast informed votes at CFT Convention, so please follow these guidelines for writing effective resolutions.
- Write your resolution assuming that readers know nothing about the subject, why there is a problem, and what role the CFT should play in its solution. Please spell out names of organizations and proper nouns on first use.
- Use the “whereas” clauses to educate readers about the problem the resolution addresses.
- Be accurate in your facts and both succinct and complete in your presentation of them.
- Be sure the action you ask the CFT to take is an appropriate one. For example, if your concern is one that falls within the scope of negotiations, don’t ask for legislation to take the place of local bargaining.
- If your local adopts a resolution that came from another organization, take the time to modify it for CFT’s consideration. Don’t submit resolutions that are addressed to other organizations.
- Document that the resolution was approved for submission at a meeting of your local’s membership or executive board.
Resolution Template & Upload
The Resolution Template is posted below. It contains space for the required signatures and can also be used to craft resolutions.
You will upload resolutions and constitutional amendments for Convention 2021 here through the website. You must upload two documents for each resolution submitted.
- The Resolution Template with required signatures
Upload a pdf scan or a photo
- The text of the resolution
Upload the Resolution Template, or a separate Microsoft Word or Google Doc
Campaign Rules for State Officer Elections
The document below outlines the rules that govern election campaigning for state officer elections. The rules are meant to ensure fairness, keep order, and preserve the integrity of the election. In general, candidates should try to maintain “the spirit of the campaign” which is an atmosphere of friendly competition with others and respect for the election process. A copy of this document shall be distributed to all candidates.
The CFT will be presenting these awards at our Virtual Convention.
- Ben Rust Award is the CFT’s highest honor.
- Women in Education Award honors outstanding achievement by female unionists.
- Pride of the Union Awards honor both EC/TK-12 Council and Community College Council members for local union leadership and activism.
Please note: The Communications Awards honoring local unions for their outstanding communications will be shifted to a later time in the year, or another time to be determined.