Local Activist Tools

Tools + training + practice

An effective local leader can deal with management and the needs of local members in a competent and confident manner. Gaining those qualities comes through a mix of activities, not just through a review of these pages. The material here will provide a start for newly-elected officers and a reference point for more experienced local leaders. But two other activities are crucial to becoming an effective leader, so a few comments are offered before looking at tools for local leaders.

Local leaders need to pursue two key activities to become effective. The first is training. Without training, experience may be your only guide — and while experience is valuable, it may not be enough. The CEIU and the PSAC provide training so that local leaders can develop the necessary skills and become confident in their use. Other pages on this site highlight training opportunities; please visit them to find the training you need.

In addition to training, local leaders need practice. Union work is intensely practical, and the more you exercise the necessary skills — from dealing with management to running local meetings — the more effective you become. Your union provides support as you apply these skills and this support is easy to access. When you combine training with practice, the results are predictable.


The tools provided here begin with an outline of the responsibilities for each position on the local executive. This provides a starting point for new local executive officers and those thinking of seeking these positions.

The following section considers union-management consultation, a function that each local executive must carry out as part of its duty to represent the interests of its members. This is an area where training is especially important and the material presented there should, hopefully, act both as a useful reference and an incentive to further study

Next comes a review of key administrative practices that will be of particular interest to local secretaries. Finally, aspects of financial administration will taken up that will be of interest to both treasurers and other executive members.

For further reference, please see the PSAC’s publication titled Local Officer’s Handbook.


The following courses are available and can be provided by CEIU National Union Representatives upon a local/region’s request to their regional union office:

- Discipline
- Duty to Accommodate
- Staffing Complaint
- Grievance Handling

The following courses will be available soon:

- Local Administration
- Local Health & Safety Committee trainin