Could you be an NUJ Council Rep?
There are vacancies on some of the NUJ Councils, which hold regular meetings to represent the regions and different sectors of the industry. Email LindaY@nuj.org.ukRepublic of Ireland and Black Members. There are other regional seats that need filling on other Councils - Wales Council, Scottish Executive Council, Ethics Council, Broadcasting, Magazines and Book (including three seats for members working in magazines in London), Newspapers and Public Relations and Information. The New Media Industrial Council has several vacancies. Most Councils are still looking for representatives for Black Members, Disabled Members and Equality.
The seats run from after the Annual Delegate Meeting (Conference) in April 2008 for one year. Details
are on www.nuj.org.uk/inner.php?docid=1600. Freelances can get travel expenses and a "loss of earnings" allowance for attending Council meetings to cover income for work they would otherwise be doing.
What sector(s) are you in?
There has been at least one case in which a member sent in a nomination for for the New Media Industrial Council, only to have their nominee form disallowed because they were listed by the membership department as "freelance" not "new media".
It's perfectly possible for freelances to stand for seats on New Media: many new media workers are freelances.
If you want to stand for an NUJ Council but aren't sure whether you are eligible, contact the Membership Department. You can tell them, before you send in your nomination form, that you "wish to be regarded" as a new media worker, a disabled member, or whatever, and you should still be able to retain your freelance subscription rate and membership of a freelance branch.
Again, if you're unsure of this, check with the NUJ Membership Department on 020 7278 7916 or email email@example.com