Te Hautū Kahurangi | Tertiary Education Union organiser Heather Warren has received an inaugural ‘Forever Young’ award – otherwise known as a life membership of ‘Stand Up,’ the youth wing of Te Kauae Kaimahi | Council of Trade Unions.

Stand Up co-convenor and U35 rep on TEU’s National Council, Zoë Port, says the award is to recognise Heather’s long-standing and deep commitment to the empowerment of young workers. ‘Heather has thoroughly demonstrated a passion for creating safe spaces for young people to talk about their issues as well as organise and participate both within TEU and beyond.’

‘In her time with Stand Up, she represented young workers both nationally with the Council of Trade Unions and internationally on the International Trade Union Confederation Asia Pacific Youth Committee. She also never shied away from the opportunity to speak up in select committees, making sure the interests of young workers were heard loud and clear.’

‘It was a real honour for me to present this award to Heather on the floor of our conference, after luring her to Christchurch on the false pretense of asking her to run a workshop on lobbying. The Forever Young Award itself is a spoon, which we bestow on recipients in the hope that they will ‘never stop stirring,’ but in Heather’s case it’s less of a hope and more of a safe bet.’

Upon receipt of the award, Heather said ‘the youth union movement meant so much to me after I joined in 2008 and I’ve strived in my working life to ensure it’s a space where young workers feel welcome.’