FAQs Women for Independence National Committee Elections
You’re thinking about seeking election to the National Committee for Women for Independence | Independence for Women (or WFI, for short)? Fantastic!
We’ve tried to answer some questions you may have but if we’ve missed anything, please ask: [email protected]
Who is WFI for?
WFI is open to all self-identifying women who share our aims of independence for Scotland, gender equality and social justice.
I’ve never joined anything like this before, it’s a bit scary – is it for me?
Absolutely! One of the aims of WFI is to encourage more women into public life. Why not start here?
I’m worried I don’t know enough about feminism or independence – what if I’m not good enough?
It’s not about being good enough or being an expert – we all learn from each other, we all have experiences that contribute – we all give and we all take away!
What’s the commitment?
WFI National Committee holds about 6 meetings a year and up to 4 National Council events, plus our AGM. As a member of the national committee, we would hope you could commit to attend though obviously, circumstances may dictate otherwise at times. Do think carefully about this before submitting your application…
That might be a bit of a challenge because of my family/carer/work commitments – how flexible is that?
You can job-share! We've already had job-sharers because we believe in practising what we preach!
If I’m elected, what do I do?
Apart from attending meetings, we involve members in working groups to take forward ideas, campaigns, projects – everyone is expected to join in somewhere! It tends to be areas that you’re already interested in, or want to learn more about. These groups are expected to work together between meetings to deliver on ideas.
I live far out of the central belt – I can’t afford to travel there from where I live.
We reimburse travel costs, usually car mileage or public transport but if your needs mean that you have to use a taxi then that’s ok too – please don’t let that put you off. Also we reimburse overnight accommodation if you live too far away to get there and back in a day. We want to make sure women from all parts of Scotland can be part of our national committee. We do try to hold our National Committee meetings fairly centrally so we can be accessible for people who use public transport, which is why we generally meet in Glasgow or Edinburgh.
We take our National Council meetings around the country. We've held National Council meetings in Glenrothes, Inverness, Glasgow, Alloa, Kilmarnock, East Kilbride, Aberdeen, Galashiels, Edinburgh, Dundee, Paisley, Troon, Lerwick and Stirling. AGMs tend to be in Perth because it’s also good for access and *not* in the central belt! We have very fond memories of Perth!
Please, everyone, don’t let financial issues, or any disability, or caring responsibilities, get in the way of standing for national committee – WFI needs you!
I’m not a member of any local WFI group – is that a problem?
No! As long as you are a member of WFI nationally, you can stand for election. You can join WFI here. And we can accommodate all pockets:
Our membership rates are:
- £0 per year - Unwaged, aged under 21
- £5 per year - Retirees, students, part-time waged
- £15 per year - Waged
I’m not a member of any political party – is that a problem?
Absolutely not! The more the merrier. We have women who are members of different political parties, and of none at all. That’s vital to keep us on our toes! We don’t all agree on everything – and that’s OK. You don’t have to know lots about ‘politics’ either – being alive today is all the political experience you need (and a conscience!).
I can’t cope with political argy-bargy…
Well. That’s old skool politics, isn’t it? We try to ‘do politics differently’ – be part of the change!
I can’t go anywhere without my carer/Personal Assistant, who’s my husband/partner/male – is that a problem?
Of course not - carers and PAs, regardless of gender, can attend any WFI meetings with you to support you – and they can come free to paying events, too.
How do I find out more about standing as a candidate?
You need to be a member of WFI to stand for the national committee but as long as you join by the time nominations close, then you are entitled to stand. You can join here. All information related to the election appears in the members' section of the Women for Independence website. Once you have joined WFI, you will be able to login and read it.
When are the next elections?
Please email [email protected] and our National Coordinator can fill you in with for more information (no obligation). We're holding by-elections in January 2021 to fill vacancies on the committee and the following scheduled elections are in the autumn of 2021.
If you have any more questions or need any more information on anything then please contact our National Coordinator who will be happy to help.