State Branch Update, 10 March 2017


Dear Members,

As mentioned in yesterday's email update, ANZAC House is committed to providing up to date information to all RSL NSW members. Each update will contain the information we have at that point in time. We recognise that you may not want to receive multiple emails per week, however, to ensure you receive information in a timely manner, more than one email may be sent a week. If you do not wish to receive these updates via email, please email us at

Caretaker Management Team

The process for appointing the members of the Caretaker Management Team (CMT) was jointly agreed to by RSL NSW State Council and RSL National after an extensive period of negotiation during which other eminent members of the League were considered for the team. They were chosen for their independence from State Council i.e. they have never been councillors nor stood for election to council, and because they have held senior positions within sub-Branches and District Council. The Caretaker Management Team bring an outsiders perspective to the issues confronting State Branch and have already moved to expedite some of the issues which have been before State Council.

Whilst we have recently confirmed with our insurers that the CMT is covered by our Directors and Officers Liability cover we have also given the team time to consider what the consequences are regarding the release of their names. Bear in mind that those who have volunteered to perform this duty are ordinary members of the League who intend to return to their regular sub-Branch duties at the conclusion of these events. Given the way that the media and social media has focused attention on people who have not been charged with any offence, I’m sure you can appreciate the concerns of the CMT in releasing their names in the current circumstances. Having said that, the Team have agreed to be named with the caveat that it be recognised and respected that they will make no public comment to the media on any of the issues surrounding RSL NSW State Branch during the term of their appointment.

The Caretaker Management Team are:

Mr John Brien (Chair), member of Glen Innes RSL sub-Branch and Deputy Chair of the State Branch Tribunal

Mr David Clarke, member of Five Dock RSL sub-Branch and Vice President of Western Metropolitan District Council

Mr Warren Thompson, member of Candelo RSL sub-Branch and President of Monaro and Far South Coast District Council

Board of Enquiry

As part of the agreement with RSL National for State Council to step aside, the appointment of a Chair to a Board of Enquiry had to be mutually agreed to by RSL National. Before stepping aside, State Council submitted the names of two eminently qualified people to RSL National for consideration. One of these individuals has subsequently withdrawn from the process and negotiations are still ongoing with RSL National regarding the other candidate.

The Board of Enquiry is not a new investigation as reported in the media yesterday. The Board will gather the evidence from various reports and sources and operate under its Terms of Reference to make determinations regarding breaches of the RSL NSW Constitution. If such breaches are found to have taken place, people would be referred to the State Tribunal for disciplinary hearings. This information can be found in clause 13 of the Constitution and By –Law 4.

The formation of the Board of Enquiry was conditional on a final report being delivered by KordaMentha who were originally engaged by RSL National. In December 2016 RSL NSW agreed to an expansion of the Terms of Reference for the KordaMentha investigation and on 24 February 2017 State Council were told that the final report was due on 10 March 2017. The CMT was briefed by KordaMentha last week and is of the view that the Board of Enquiry should proceed without delay and will be working towards this outcome.

Extraordinary State Congress

As reported in a previous update, there are a number of sub-Branches who have sent correspondence to State Branch seeking an Extraordinary State Congress which will be actioned when 75 sub-Branches agree. It has been reported in the media that this represents a member revolt however to date there are less than 25 sub-Branches which have called for this action.

State Council

SAs reported earlier to members, State Council are still conducting their duties in relation to sub-committees and ceremonial activities. This requires their intermittent attendance at ANZAC House to attend meetings and confirm arrangements for representation at events. State Council or State Executive have not met and do not intend to meet anytime in the immediate future. The oversight authority of State Council now rests with the Caretaker Management Team who have been fully briefed on the internal and external issues regarding State Branch.

Any questions regarding this update can be sent to ANZAC House via

Yours sincerely,

Jeff O'Brien
Chief Operating Officer
Assistant State Secretary

The Returned and Services League of Australia (NSW Branch)

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