The Annual NIPSA Union Learning Conference will take place on Wednesday, 10 March 2021 via Zoom from 10.00 am to 2.00 pm. A link will follow closer to the date.

Conference Programme

The theme of the Conference will be “Covid & Learning – How things have changed.” A copy of the outline programme to follow.

Conference Delegates

The Conference is open to all NIPSA appointed Union Learning Representatives.

Nomination of delegate(s) to attend the Conference should be made on Form 1a and returned to NIPSA Headquarters by 2.00 pm on Friday, 19 February 2021. More than one delegate from each Branch can attend.

Union Learning Committee Nominations and Election

Following the adoption of Paper 1 at NIPSA Annual Conference, an election for the Union Learning Committee will take place at the Annual Union Learning Conference.

Details of the composition of the Committee and election procedure are available from the links below.

Branches are entitled to nominate one Union Learning Representative from their own branch only for election. Nominations must be made on Form 1b and returned to NIPSA Headquarters by 2.00 pm on Friday, 19 February 2021.

The General Council have agreed to allow electronic/typed signatures on the completed forms.

Roisin Graham
Union Learning Project Co-Ordinator
Download this file (Form 1a.pdf)Form 1a.pdf176 kB
Download this file (Form 1b.pdf)Form 1b.pdf176 kB
Download this file (Procedure for Election.pdf)Procedure for Election.pdf81 kB


I’m delighted to let you know that Book Week NI will take place during 19 to 25 October and there will be many opportunities to get involved; either on air, online or through social media.

What is Book Week NI

Whilst we are in these strange and difficult times dealing with COVID-19, NIPSA would like to keep you occupied and focused on keeping your skills up, and be ready for when we can get back to work. It will also keep your minds active and help with maintain your mental health in these unusual and challenging times.

In recent years, the development of a new role for trade unions in promoting learning at work has had a significant impact on increasing motivation and enthusiasm for learning among employers and employees.

Trade unions have always seen learning and skills as being essential for their members and campaigned for the right of working people to develop themselves and to have access to education to help them with their careers and their lives generally. The trade union role in learning is continuing to grow. NIPSA is taking on a more active role within the movement and our union learning representatives are playing a key part in this. The ULR handbook is a useful resource for ULRs to help them give the fullest information and support to members. Click on the link below to download a copy of the Union Learning Reps Handbook.

The Benefits to Employees:
  • There are many advantages to employees in having Union Learning, such as:
  • Information about learning opportunities, that are available both inside and outside of work.
  • A source of reliable information about everyday training matters, as well as new and existing learning and skills initiatives such as Skills for Life, NVQs and Learndirect.

With a Union Learning Rep, employees have familiar face, someone who they know and who may have helped them in the past. A person who is completely independent, whose advice they can trust, who is properly trained and informed, capable of representing their learning needs and interests with their employer.

The opportunity to get advice in the familiar surroundings of the workplace.

The Benefits to Employers

All organisations benefit from having a skilled, trained and efficient workforce. Union Learning provides an opportunity to enable employees to update and acquire the new skills necessary in the world of work and beyond.

Union Learning helps organisations to:
  • Promote a positive attitude to learning and skills amongst employees.
  • Improve the skills and employability of the workforce, helping them to become more adaptable to change.
  • Increase participation in workplace learning.
  • Provide accessible independent advice and support for employees about learning, at shop level, where it is needed.
  • Introduce and help develop a “learning culture”, where training and education are highly valued in the workplace.