Making a submission.

A submission is your chance to present your opinions, observations, and recommendations on a matter being considered by a decision-making body, e.g. your organisation, your local council, or government. Usually a proposed change (to processes, rules, plans, legislation etc) is presented in a written proposal and you will be invited to make a comment or provide feedback before a final decision is made.

Submissions are usually written, but you may also have the opportunity to make a spoken submission depending on what process for the consultation has been set out.

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General tips for writing a submission

  1. Consider if the priority is to produce lots of (similar) submissions or a few special ones? Or a mixture of both? Where does your submission fit into that?
  2. Start the submission with information on who you or the submitting organisation are; who you represent; why your viewpoint is particularly valid.
  3. Consider what are you uniquely or specially experienced to write about? Can it be backed up by facts or figures? Does it link to a specific amendment or change? – if so, be specific and detail that.
  4. If you have stories to tell, tell them. If you speak better than you write, keep it simple and request to provide an oral submission too.
  5. Be constructive – Present amendments etc. in as detailed a way as you can. Present your argument in a logical order that flows well.
  6. Write to the level of understanding of the likely audience – You need to know whose minds you are trying to move.
  7. Make it look professional – Keep it succinct; Summarise and use bullet points; Use visuals and white space effectively; Write using clear language.

Making a submission to a Parliamentary Select Committee

Responding to a change proposal in your organisation

Tertiary education institutions in Aotearoa seem to be constantly reviewing, restructuring or making changes that affect TEU members. TEU recognises that restructuring and reviews, even when done very well, can make a work environment very difficult for members.

The Court has determined that an employer fundamentally has a right to determine how they will manage their business. However, it is not an unfettered right; Legal and contractual obligations, organisational statutes and collective employment agreements all provide parameters on an employer’s ‘right to manage’. 

TEU has the right to organise collectively to oppose proposed change which TEU members do not support. This right can be exercised even when the employer is acting within the law. You may be directly involved in a proposed change or you may become involved because the change will impact on TEU members or the way things are done in your organisation. If you are a TEU women’s representative you may be asked to review proposed changes from the perspective of gender equality.

A document has been written to help guide TEU members in how they might respond to change proposals and make a submission. This is under review but if you would like to read teh final version please contact the national women's officer: