Arguably, the Administration and Labour Relations Division (ALRD) is the focal point within the administrative hierarchy of the Ghana National Association of Teachers, that is housed at the GNAT Headquarters in Accra.
Its prominence hinges on the fact that historically, the ALRD with its sub-parts namely; the Organization and Administration, Salaries and Conditions of Service, Membership Education, the Youth Desk and Welfare Units virtually perform the functions of the head of the administrative structure, being the Chief Executive or General Secretary.
The ALRD undertakes such key functions as labour or trade union education, membership mobilization, coordinates labour programmes with international development partners and supervises regional and district branches of the Association. It is also the responsibility of the ALRD to manage human resource issues or staff development and personnel matters. Moreover, the ALRD manages conditions of service and grievance events, welfare of staff and membership issues. It is also the mandate of the ALRD to collaborate with the National Labour Commission and Chief Labour Officer to handle labour disputes as well as study labour market conditions respectively. The ALRD participates keenly in negotiations concerning national daily minimum wage and the base pay relativity by the National Tripartite Committee (NTC) and the Public Joint Standing Negotiating Committee (PJSNC) respectively.
From the activities of the ALRD, accurate and reliable data are generated and made available to the General Secretary to offer technical advice to the political office holders to formulate desirable and relevant policies.
The Division is headed by a Deputy General Secretary.
FOCUS OF ALRD
In order to maintain consistent level of effectiveness, efficiency, success and improvement the division will focus on stringent measures based on the following elements:
a) Transformation – Bring about desirable changes using democratic approach based on consent of members.
b) Innovation – Generate new ideas or methods in a more participatory way that reflects the demographic trends in the teaching profession.
c) Modernization – Bring up-to-date the Association's ICT system.
d) Entrepreneurship – Design procedures and ways to make members business-like both in the pedagogic process and the labour market.
e) Dynamism – Design programmes that will stimulate enthusiasm and mental alertness.
f) Creativity – Utilize the pool of talents to enable the membership originate new things.
g) Competitiveness – Use clear-cut strategies to outmatch our competitors or be better than our rivals on the labour terrain.
The question often posed to union or labour associations' leadership is, what do the members want? Various writings or studies do not appear to provide adequate responses. The search for adequate answers continues unabated. The ALRD, together with the outfit of the General Secretary is obliged to:
i) safeguard the assets and protect the property of the association.
ii) defend the teacher, regardless, by making his or her welfare as our fundamental law
iii) faithfully utilize the financial resources of GNAT.
If the GNAT can do this convincingly we might be able to give an adequate answer to the age-old question, what do teachers want? before the end of the first quarter of the 21st Century.