CUSSU Constitution

The revised version of the Constitution was adopted by the General Assembly on November 2nd, 2011.

CONSTITUTION OF CONCORDIA UNIVERSITY SUPPORT STAFF UNION (CSN)

Adopted July 10, 1991 and Revised November 2nd, 2011

 

CHAPTER 1:  PREAMBLE

 ARTICLE 1 - NAME

 The Concordia University Support Staff Union (CSN), le Syndicat des employé-e-s de soutien de l'Université Concordia, as established in Montréal, on December 3rd, 1989, is an employees association within the meaning of the Labour Code.

ARTICLE 2 - HEAD OFFICE

 The Union head office is situated at 1601 de Lorimier Street, in Montréal, Québec, H2K 4M5.

ARTICLE 3 - JURISDICTION

 The Union's jurisdiction includes all employees in the administrative and support staff sector and may also cover any other employee.

ARTICLE 4 - UNION OBJECTIVES

 The Union subscribes to the declaration of principles of the CSN and has as its objectives the examination and improvement of the social, professional, economic and environmental interests of its members.  These goals shall be pursued collectively and include the negotiation and conclusion of a collective agreement, precluding any form of discrimination based on race, sex, language, disability, political opinion, religion or sexual orientation. The Union shall also seek to ally itself with similar union organizations.

 ARTICLE 5 - AFFILIATION

 The Union is affiliated with the Confédération des Syndicats Nationaux (CSN), the Fédération des employées et employés des services publics (FEESP), and the Conseil Central de Montréal Métropolitain (CCMM). The Union shall abide by the constitution of the organizations mentioned above in the present article, and shall act accordingly. The Union agrees to pay monthly the per capita dues that have been set by these different organizations to which it is affiliated. Any officer or Delegate of the above-mentioned bodies shall have the right to attend any Union meeting and participate in the deliberations, but shall not be entitled to vote.

ARTICLE 6 - DISAFFILIATION

 A motion of dissolution of the Union or disaffiliation from the CSN, the Federation or the Central Council, cannot be discussed at a Union meeting unless a prior notice of motion has been given ninety (90) days beforehand. The said notice of motion must be presented and discussed at a duly convened, regularly-scheduled or special general meeting. The General Meeting convocation notice must indicate the reasons for which a dissolution or disaffiliation proposal is demanded. Once a notice of motion for the discussion of dissolution or disaffiliation from the CSN has been presented, copy of the said motion must be forwarded to the Secretary-General of the Central Council, of the Federation and of the CSN. The said notice of motion must be forwarded at least ninety (90) days prior to the holding of the meeting.

The authorized representatives of the Central Council, the Federation and the CSN, may, by right, attend the meeting where the motion is to be discussed, and they may give their point of view if they wish. For the motion of dissolution or disaffiliation to be duly adopted, it must be approved by the majority of the Union’s members, whether they are working or are laid off and have prospects of returning to work soon, including members absent due to illness, a work-related accident or any other leave authorized under the Collective Agreement, or members on strike, locked out or dismissed and whose recourse is supported by the Union.

If the Union should disaffiliate from the CSN, or be suspended or expelled from the latter, the Union shall remit to the CSN Union dues in the amount corresponding to the three months of dues immediately following the disaffiliation, suspension or expulsion.

 ARTICLE 7 - REQUEST FOR CERTIFICATION

  The withdrawal of a request for certification cannot be decided without the agreement of a duly mandated CSN representative.

CHAPTER 2:  MEMBERSHIP

 ARTICLE 8 - DEFINITION

 Members shall enjoy the rights set out in the present Constitution, provided that they satisfy the eligibility criteria defined in article 9, as well as the conditions specified in article 10. Each member has the right to obtain one copy of the Collective Agreement as well as one copy of the present Constitution and the declaration of principles of the CSN.

ARTICLE 9 - ELIGIBILITY

 To belong to the union as a member, one must:

a)     Be an employee covered by the Union's jurisdiction, or have been laid-off yet maintaining the right to be recalled, or have been dismissed with a filed grievance sustained by the Union, or be on paid or unpaid leave, or be on strike or locked-out.
b)     Abide by the present Constitution and comply with the Union's bylaws.
c)     Pay the Union dues set by the Union's General Meeting.
d)    Not belong to any other association whose stated objectives are in conflict with that  of this Union.

ARTICLE 10 - APPLICATION FOR MEMBERSHIP

 Anyone wishing to belong to the Union must sign a membership card to the Union which must contain a promise to comply with the Constitution of the Union. The said application for membership must be accepted by the Union's Executive Committee and ratified by the General Meeting. Once accepted, membership shall be considered retroactive to the date that the application was signed.

 ARTICLE 11 - UNION DUES

 The union dues that each duly accepted member must pay to the Union are determined by the Union's General Meeting.

ARTICLE 12 - PRIVILEGES AND ADVANTAGES

Only members in good standing shall benefit from the privileges and advantages conferred by the present Union Constitution. They may examine the Union's books on the day of or during any Union meeting, or when the Union office is open, provided that a request is made at least seven days in advance.

 CHAPTER 3:  RESIGNATION, SUSPENSION, EXCLUSION AND REJOINING THE UNION

ARTICLE 13 - RESIGNATION

 Any member submitting their resignation from the Union shall forfeit all Union advantages and privileges. The said resignation must be submitted in writing to the Executive Committee.

ARTICLE 14 - SUSPENSION OR EXCLUSION

 Shall be liable to a suspension or an exclusion from the Union by the Union's Executive Committee, any member who:

 a)     Neglects to abide by commitments made to the Union.

 b)     Causes a serious prejudice to the Union.

 c)     Is active or spreads propaganda in favour of associations that are detrimental to the interests of the Union and the members of the Union.

Any member who has been suspended or excluded from the Union shall lose the right to all Union benefits and advantages as long as the suspension or exclusion has not been lifted.

ARTICLE 15 - SUSPENSION AND EXCLUSION PROCEDURES

 a)     The suspension or exclusion of a member shall be declared by the Union's Executive Committee.

 b)     The decision of the Executive Committee shall only take effect upon ratification by the Union's General Meeting.

 c)     Before declaring the suspension or exclusion, the Executive Committee must give the said member at least an eight (8) day notice, inviting him or her before the committee to explain and defend his or her position, and indicating, in writing, the reasons supporting the suspension or exclusion of the member as well as the date, the time and the place of the proposed meeting.

ARTICLE 16 - RECOURSE AND APPEAL PROCEDURE

 The suspended or excluded member has the following recourse.

  1. If the member, whose suspension or exclusion has been declared by the Union's  Executive Committee and subsequently ratified by the General Meeting, wishes to appeal the decision, he or she must do so by informing the secretary of the Union's Executive Committee within ten (10) calendar days following the ratification vote by the General Meeting.
  2. In the case of an appeal, the appellant shall nominate someone to act as his or her representative on the appeal panel, and the Executive Committee of the Union shall do the same; both representatives shall then try to agree to the appointment of a presiding panel member; failing such agreement the Executive Committee of the Central Council shall make the choice.
  3. The two respective panel representatives must be nominated within ten (10) calendar days from the date that the appeal is filed; the designation of the president by the executive of the Central Council must be accomplished within the ten (10) calendar days that they are seized of the matter.
  4. The designated panel shall itself determine the procedure it wishes to follow; however, the panel must hear the submissions of both parties before rendering a decision.
  5. The unanimous or majority decision of the panel shall be final and binding on both parties. It must be rendered within the shortest possible lapse of time, preferably within ten (10) calendar days.
  6. If the member should win his or her appeal, the Union shall assume the entire cost of the appeal procedure including any loss of earnings if applicable; however, should the member lose the appeal he or she must assume the responsibility of the payment of his or her representative's fees and expenses as well as his or her share of other expenses incurred, resulting from the submission of the case to the appeal panel.
  7. The expenses of the president of the panel shall be assumed by the Union.
  8. If both parties agree on the choice of a sole arbitrator, the Union shall assume all the expenses of the case.

The suspension or exclusion of said member shall remain effective throughout the appeal procedure.

ARTICLE 17 - REJOINING THE UNION

 To rejoin the Union, a member who has resigned must be reaccepted by the Union's Executive Committee. A member who has been suspended or excluded from the Union can rejoin the Union pursuant to the conditions determined by the Union's Executive Committee or by the General Meeting, as the case may be.

ARTICLE 18 - UNION STRUCTURES

 The union shall be governed by the following structures:

  1.  The General Meeting
  2.  The Union Council
  3.  The Executive Committee

CHAPTER 4:  THE GENERAL MEETING

ARTICLE 19 - COMPOSITION

 The General Meeting shall be made up of all the members of the union.

ARTICLE 20 - RESPONSIBILITIES OF THE GENERAL MEETING

 The General Meeting is the supreme authority of the Union.  More specifically it has the following responsibilities:

  1. To determine the overall policies of the Union.
  2. To elect the Union's officers.
  3. To receive, amend, accept or reject all reports forwarded by members of the Union, the Union Council and the Executive Committee.
  4. To ratify, to amend or to annul any decision of the Union Council or the Executive Committee.
  5. To establish any committee deemed necessary to fulfill the Union's functions, in particular the Negotiation Committee for the Collective Agreement.
  6. To decide upon the Union's contract proposals, to accept or reject the employer's offer(s), to decide on strike action or any other pressure tactic(s).
  7. To modify the Union's Constitution.
  8. To set the amount of Union dues.
  9. To vote upon annual budgets that have been submitted for approval by the Union's Executive Committee.
  10. To dispose of the Auditing Committee's report and all other documents related to the administration of the Union's funds.
  11. To act upon and decide on all matters that are so judged to be in the interests of the proper functioning of the Union.

The Annual General Meeting shall take place no later than 90 working days after the end of the fiscal year which terminates on April 30th.

ARTICLE 21 - THE ANNUAL GENERAL MEETING

The Annual General Meeting must be convened at least ten (10) working days beforehand by means of notices sent electronically and by internal mail. The notice of meeting must contain at least the following information:

  1. The date of the meeting;
  2. The time of the meeting;
  3. The location of the meeting;
  4. The agenda.

At this meeting, amongst other items there must be: 

  • The presentation and adoption of the financial statements for the fiscal year just ended, as well as the Auditing Committee's report and the budgetary previsions for the upcoming year. 
  • On the odd-numbered years, elections shall be held for the positions of President, Secretary, Vice-President for Women’s Issues and Vice-President for Health and Safety.
  • On even-numbered years, elections shall be held for the positions of Treasurer, General Vice-President, Vice-President for Grievance, Vice-President for Information. 
  • On even-numbered years, elections shall be held for the Audit Committee. 
  • Elections of union Delegates whose terms has ended.

 ARTICLE 22 - REGULAR GENERAL MEETINGS

 There must be at least one regular General Meeting every six (6) months, including the Annual General Meeting, convened in the same manner as the Annual General Meeting.

ARTICLE 23 - SPECIAL GENERAL MEETINGS

 Special General Meetings may be convened by the President of the Union, upon approval of the Executive Committee of the Union; usually after an official notice of at least forty-eight (48) hours; however, in an emergency situation, the Executive Committee of the Union may call such a meeting within a reasonable lapse of time. The Union Council itself may also call a special General Meeting by following the same procedure indicated above.

The notice of meeting must indicate the reason(s) for the said meeting. Only this (these) subject(s) can be discussed at the said meeting.

At any time, the number of members corresponding to the quorum of a General Meeting, may obtain the calling of a special General Meeting by submitting to the President of the Union a written petition signed by them, indicating the purpose(s) or subject(s) of such a meeting. The President of the Union must then proceed to convene the said special General Meeting within the ten (10) days following his or her receipt of the petition, respecting the procedure and time limits outlined above.

The Executive Committee of the Union must call a special General Meeting when so requested by the Executive Committee of the Federation, the Central Council or the CSN, whereupon the reasons are serious and judged to be in the interest of the Union's members and the labour movement in general.

ARTICLE 24 - GENERAL MEETINGS:  QUORUM AND CRITERIA FOR A BINDING VOTE

  1. The quorum of a General Meeting is equal to 10 % of all members in good standing.
  2. Any vote of the General Meeting indicating that the majority of the members present support a given resolution shall be a binding decision, except for the cases  indicated in articles 6, 24 d) and 61 of the present Constitution, which decisions  shall be made according to the procedures described within said articles.
  3. Any vote of the General Meeting shall be taken generally by a show of hands, except in the cases indicated in subparagraph d) of the present article. However, at any time a member may ask that a vote be taken by secret ballot and this without debate.
  4. The following decisions must necessarily be taken by a secret ballot vote to be binding, all the while respecting the following conditions:

 

  1. Approval of the Collective Agreement -A quorum of 20% of all members in good standing and a common majority of the members present at the meeting must be in favor.  For an “approval of the Collective Agreement” vote to be valid and binding, the members must be advised in the notice of meeting that an “approval of the Collective Agreement” vote is on the agenda.
  2. Strike vote -A 55% majority of the members present at the meeting.  For a strike vote to be valid and binding, the members must be advised in the notice of meeting that a strike vote is on the agenda of the meeting.
  3. Disaffiliation -A common majority of the paid-up membership of the Union.
  4. Modifications to the present Constitution - A two-third (2/3) majority of the members present at the meeting.
  5. Dissolution of the Union- A common majority of the paid-up membership of the Union.  

ARTICLE 25 - AGENDA

 The agenda proposed to the General Meeting should be clearly indicated on the notice of meeting.  Inasmuch as this can be determined in advance, any item that must be put to the vote must be included in the notice of meeting and on the agenda.  Any proposed amendment to the Constitution must be submitted in writing in sufficient detail and included as an attachment to the notice of meeting.

CHAPTER 5:  THE UNION COUNCIL

 ARTICLE 26 - COMPOSITION

The Union Council shall be made up of the following union members: 

  1. The Executive Committee
  2. The members designated as Union Delegates who are elected on the following basis: Proportional representation of one Delegate per thirty (30) members taking into account the geographical distribution of the members.
  3. The members appointed by the Executive Committee to represent the Union on various Inter-Union and University committees and who do not have voting rights. 
  4. The preceding shall constitute a minimum and the Union Council may increase the number of union Delegates if it sees fit. 

ARTICLE 27 - ELIGIBILITY 

  1. Any member in good standing of the Union is eligible to become a Union Delegate. 
  2. When an election for Union Delegates is held, a member unable to attend may present his or her candidacy to such a position, provided that his or her nomination is put forward by a member present at the election meeting, who must present a written signed procuration from the absent member who wishes to stand for election.

 ARTICLE 28 - RESPONSIBILITIES OF THE UNION COUNCIL

 The Union Council assumes authority between the General Meetings. In particular, it has the following responsibilities:

  1. To ensure that the Executive Committee follows through on the mandates given to it by the General Meeting; it shall replace any Union officer or Union Delegate who resigns, is unable to act or is absent; and thus, until the following General Meeting; where an election shall be held to fill the vacant position(s).
  2. To elaborate on the policy and activities of the Union between General Meetings, especially those involving the Collective Agreement and inter-Union matters. 
  3. To create and participate in the appropriate committees to see to the proper functioning of the Union and to elect the members to said committees.
  4. To name Delegates to represent the Union to the various bodies where the Union participates.
  5. To aid and assist in the preparation and execution of the General Meetings.

 ARTICLE 29 - MEETINGS OF THE UNION COUNCIL 

  1. The Union Council shall meet at least once a month.
  2. Any member in good standing of the Union may attend and participate in the Union Council, but the right to vote belongs only to those persons officially designated to the Council. 

ARTICLE 30 - QUORUM AND CRITERIA FOR A BINDING VOTE 

  1. The quorum of the Union Council is 50% of the people that, in fact, have been named to sit on the Council.
  2. The decisions of the Union Council shall be made by a common majority vote of the members who are present.

ARTICLE 31 - RESPONSIBILITIES AND AUTHORITY OF THE UNION DELEGATE

The responsibilities of the Union Delegate are as follows:  

  1. To ensure that the Collective Agreement is respected, within the group of employees that he or she represents.
  2. To encourage newly hired personnel to join the Union.
  3. To inform the group that he or she represents of the decisions made by the Union Council, and to defend in the Union Council the viewpoint(s) proposed by the unionized people in the group that he or she represents.
  4. To encourage the people in the group that he or she represents to attend all General Meetings, regardless of the prescriptions set out in Article 21.

ARTICLE 32 - LENGTH OF A TERM OF OFFICE

The term of office of Union Delegates is two (2) years and upon completion, the Delegate shall transmit to their successor, all the properties of the Union in their possession, as well as all pertinent information or documentation within twenty (20) working days.

ARTICLE 33 - ELECTIONS

Union Delegates are elected by the General Meeting and then assigned to represent a group by the Union Council.

 CHAPTER 6:  EXECUTIVE COMMITTEE

ARTICLE 34 - LEADERSHIP OF THE UNION

 The Union shall be headed by an Executive Committee.

ARTICLE 35 - COMPOSITION

The Executive Committee shall be made up of eight (8) members, as follows: 

  1. the President;
  2. the General Vice-President;
  3. the Secretary;
  4. the Treasurer;
  5. the Vice-President Responsible for Grievances;
  6. the Vice-President Responsible for Women's Issues;
  7. the Vice-President Responsible for Information;
  8. the Vice-President Responsible for Health and Safety.

 ARTICLE 36 - ELIGIBILITY

 Any member in good standing is eligible to become a Union officer. When an election for Union officers is held, a member unable to attend may present his or her candidacy to any position, provided that their nomination is put forward by a member present at the election meeting, who must present a written signed procuration from the absent member who so wishes to stand for election.

 ARTICLE 37 - RESPONSIBILITIES OF THE EXECUTIVE COMMITTEE

The responsibilities of the Executive Committee are as follows: 

  1. To guide the Union's affairs. 
  2. To determine the time and place of Union meetings and to convene when necessary the Union Council.
  3. To authorize expenditures set out in the budget, and whose maximum amount has been determined by the General Meeting; to check the Treasurer's accounting books and reports.
  4. In light of the priorities of the Union, and taking into account the available resources, to adopt budgetary projections for recommendation to the General Meeting.
  5. To ensure that the rules and regulations adopted by the General Meeting are respected.
  6. To set up any committee required to study, to discuss, to promote or to further the goals of the Union.
  7. To name people to represent the Union to the various bodies to which the Union is affiliated.
  8. To accept members.
  9. To receive member's complaints, to examine and dispose of them, in accordance with articles 14, 15 and 16 of the present Constitution.
  10. To receive and examine all communications and information submitted by the General Meeting to them, and to report back to the General Meeting.
  11. To abide by the decisions made by the General Meeting, which constitute a mandate to be executed on behalf of all of the members of the Union.
  12. To submit to the General Meeting any question or issue requiring a vote by the members.
  13. To present a report of the previous year's activities and accomplishments to the annual General Meeting.
  14. To see to the temporary replacement of the President if he or she is absent for a short period of time.
  15. To authorize all the procedures and legal acts necessary for the best interest of the Union.

 ARTICLE 38 - MEETINGS

  1. The Executive Committee shall meet at least once a month in accordance with the provisions that they, themselves, shall determine. 
  2. At all times, the Executive Committee has the power to invite a resource person to its meetings.

 ARTICLE 39 - QUORUM AND CRITERIA FOR A BINDING VOTE

 The quorum of the Executive Committee is 50% of the people that, in fact, are effectively on the Committee. The decisions of the Executive Committee shall be made by a majority vote of the members present.

 CHAPTER 7:  RESPONSIBILITIES AND AUTHORITY OF THE EXECUTIVE OFFICERS

 ARTICLE 40 - PRESIDENT

 The responsibilities of the President are as follows: 

  1. To be responsible for the internal operation of the Union;
  2. To chair the meetings of the Union, to preside over discussion, to share pertinent information and explanations with the members regarding the issues and proposals being discussed by the meeting.
  3. The President must temporarily abandon the chair to one of the vice-presidents if he or she wishes to take a position in a debate.
  4. To represent the Union in all formal matters.
  5. To oversee the proper application of the Union's bylaws and to make sure that each officer of the Union carefully executes their duties and mandate.
  6. To oversee overall Union activities.
  7. To jointly sign the Union's cheques with the Treasurer and/or the Secretary.
  8. To instruct the convening of General Meetings, of Union Council meetings and of Executive Committee meetings.
  9. To have the right to vote only in the case of a tie vote.
  10. To sign the minutes of all meetings, along with the Secretary.
  11. To sign the Union's financial statements, along with the Treasurer.
  12. To be the official spokesperson of the Union (to the media, to the affiliated Union bodies etc.) 
  13. To sit ex-officio on all other committees of the Union.

 ARTICLE 41 - VICE-PRESIDENTS

General Vice-President - In the absence of the President or in the case of his or her inability to act, the General Vice-President shall replace the President; is responsible for the proper handling of any particular file that the Executive Committee may attribute to him or to her.

Vice-President Responsible for Information - Is responsible for internal Union communications (Union newsletter, flyers) and maintaining the Union website; works together with the President on the Union's outside statements (to the media, to affiliated union bodies).

Vice-President Responsible for Grievances - Is responsible for handling the Union's grievance files.

Vice-President Responsible for Women's Issues - Is responsible for handling the Union's files pertaining to women's issues and human rights.

Vice-President Responsible for Health and Safety - Is responsible for handling the Union's files concerning health, safety and environmental issues on the job, as well as work-related accidents.

 ARTICLE 42 - SECRETARY

 The responsibilities of the Secretary are as follows:

 a. To take the minutes of each meeting and to distribute the minutes of each preceding meeting; to sign said minutes with the President and to enter them in a register.


b. To convene the meetings of the various Union structures in accordance with the present Constitution.


c. To make available to any member, who so desires, the register containing the Union's minutes, in the course of Union meetings.


d. To compose and send the Union's correspondence, keeping a copy of said correspondence in the Union's files.


e. To file and keep all Union documentation and information.


f. To transmit at the Union's meetings all the information that the meeting is to be made aware of.


g. To send to the various bodies to which the Union is affiliated a copy of the Union's Constitution, the names of the officers of the Executive Committee and any motions that the Union desires to submit to the convention of an affiliated body.

h. To jointly sign the Union’s cheques with the Treasurer and/or President.

ARTICLE 43 - TREASURER 

The responsibilities of the Treasurer are as follows:

a)      To be responsible for the Union's financial administration and the handling of the Union's properties.

b)      To ensure that all financial transactions are properly recorded in the appropriate accounting statements and registers as per the system established by the CSN or in accordance with generally accepted accounting principles in Canada.

c)      To collect all Union dues and any monies owed to the Union.

d)     To present to the Executive Committee, upon request, or at least every four (4) months, the bank reconciliation and the Union's financial statement.

e)      To make all disbursements authorized by the Executive Committee and to sign cheques jointly with the President and/or Secretary.

f)       To make available to any member, who so desires, the accounts ledgers as well as statements from the banking institution.  

g)      To deposit as soon as possible in the banking institution any funds on hand, and to send the appropriate amounts owed to the bodies to which the Union is affiliated.

h)      To prepare the budgetary previsions, in collaboration with the Executive Committee, and to ensure their presentation to the Executive Committee, the Union Council and the General Meeting.

i)        To prepare the annual financial statements at the end of the fiscal year and to ensure their presentation to the Executive Committee, the Union Council and the General Meeting.

j)        To be empowered, at all times, to disclose the Union's ledgers and all appropriate exhibits to the duly  authorized representative of the Executive Committee of the CSN and to the Union's own auditing committee.

ARTICLE 44 - LENGTH OF A TERM OF OFFICE

a)      The term of office of the Executive Committee officers shall be two (2) years.

b)      Half of the Executive Committee shall be elected on odd-numbered years and the other half on even-numbered years

i.    The positions whose terms end on odd-numbered years are:  President, Secretary, Vice-President for Women’s Issues and Vice-President for Health and Safety.

 ii.  The positions whose terms end on even-numbered years are: Treasurer, General Vice-President, Vice-President for Grievance, Vice-President for Information and the Audit Committee.

ARTICLE 45 - COMPLETION OF THE TERM OF OFFICE

 At the completion of their term of office, all of the Executive Committee officers must transfer to their successors all Union properties, as well as all useful information and pertinent documentation within twenty (20) working days.

ARTICLE 46 - ELECTION PROCEDURE

a) The meeting at which Union Executive elections are held shall name a chair of the election, someone to take the minutes of the election and scrutiners to participate in the counting of the ballots.  The preceding persons may not be nominated to any of the positions being filled.

b) If only one person accepts the nomination to any of the positions to be filled, that person shall be declared elected by acclamation.

c) If a vote is necessary, it is to be conducted by secret ballot. The scrutineers shall count the ballots and report the results to the chair of the election; the latter shall only vote in the case of a tie, or shall order a second ballot.

d) To be elected, the candidate shall obtain the absolute majority (50% +1) of the voting persons.  If there are more than two candidates and no candidate obtains 50% +1 of the votes, the candidate who obtained the least votes is removed from the ballot and a new vote is taken.  This procedure is repeated until there is a winner.

e) Only those members in good standing, present at the meeting, shall be entitled to vote.

f)  No election shall be held unless it has been included in the notice of meeting and on the agenda, and unless there has been a call for nominations in the notice of meeting.

ARTICLE 47 - INSTATEMENT INTO OFFICE

 Each of the officers shall officially take on his or her position as soon as he or she is sworn into office.

a)      When proceeding with the swearing into office of the Union Executive, as much as possible, a representative from one of the bodies to which the Union is affiliated should be invited to participate.

b)      The swearing in of the Union's executive officers should be performed immediately after the elections are held, or at the subsequent meeting.

c)      The election secretary shall call the names of the elected officers who shall take their respective places on the platform.

d)     The election chair shall request that the members present stand up and he or she shall proceed with the swearing in procedure;

e)      The election chair shall repeat:

Do you promise on your honour to fulfill the duties of your office, to abide by the Constitution, to further the interests of the Union and its members, to remain in office until the nomination of your successors; do you so promise?

Each of the officers shall reply:   I so solemnly promise.

The general meeting shall answer: We bear witness.

ARTICLE 48 - COMPENSATION

 The officers of the Executive Committee and Council members of the Union are not entitled to any remuneration or stipend (allowance for presence). However they shall be compensated for travel expenses, accommodation expenses, meal expenses, or childcare fees that are incurred in the course of union duties and as needed, based on and subject to the limits established by the General Meeting.  

 When Union duties require an uncompensated absence from work, the remuneration allotted shall not exceed the regular pay of the member who has been discharged from work.

CHAPTER 8:  AUDITING THE UNION'S BOOKS AND THE AUDITING COMMITTEE

ARTICLE 49 - EXAMINATION OF FINANCIAL RECORDS BY EXTERNAL AUTHORITIES  

 At any time, a person authorized to represent the Federation, Central Council or the CSN, may proceed with an audit of the books of the Union. The Treasurer shall submit all books and exhibits requested by this authorized representative to him or to her, so that they may pursue their audit.

ARTICLE 50 - ELECTION OF THE AUDITING COMMITTEE MEMBERS

Three (3) members of the Union shall be elected as the Union's auditors in the same manner as the executive officers are elected – every two years (even years) with the Treasurer.

No officer can be acting as a member of the auditing committee.

ARTICLE 51 - MEETINGS AND QUORUM

 The auditing committee shall meet at least once every six (6) months. The Treasurer must be present at the meetings of the auditing committee, unless the members of the committee decide otherwise. However, the Treasurer is always present when they are viewing the books and exhibits.

The quorum of the committee is two (2) members.

ARTICLE 52 - UNION’S AUDITING COMMITTEE AND RESPONSIBILITIES OF THE AUDITING COMMITTEE  

 The responsibilities of the auditing committee are:

a)      To examine all revenues and expenses.
b)      To examine and authenticate the reconciliation of the banking institution account, the Treasurer's report, as well as all other financial accounts of the Union.

c)      To verify the adherence to the resolutions of the Executive Committee, the Union Council and the General Meeting.
d)     Upon a unanimous decision, to call a Special General Meeting.

e)      To prepare an audit of the Union’s finances on a yearly basis.

ARTICLE 53 - ANNUAL REPORT

Once a year, the Union's auditing committee shall submit a written report of the findings of its audit, as well as any recommendations that they deem appropriate, to the annual General Meeting. The report and recommendations shall be submitted beforehand to the Union Executive Committee and the Union Council.

CHAPTER 9:  RULES OF ORDER

 

The Articles in this Chapter apply to all of the meetings of the Union structure.

ARTICLE 54 - CALLING THE MEETING TO ORDER AND THE AGENDA

The President shall call the meeting to order at the prescribed time. He or she shall not depart from the agenda, unless a majority of the members present so decide.

ARTICLE 55 - PUTTING A QUESTION TO VOTE

 Except for the cases previously specified herein, a majority of the members present shall be necessary for a motion to be binding. Only in the case of a tie vote shall the President have the right to vote.

ARTICLE 56 - VOTE

 When a vote is called, all discussion shall cease; the question shall be put to a vote by a show of hands, unless a secret ballot or nominal vote is duly requested.

A single member may request that a vote be taken by secret ballot, or nominally, as long as he or she has so requested before the President has called for the vote.

However, concerning the regulations regarding secret ballot votes in Article 24 d) they shall apply notwithstanding the above.

ARTICLE 57 - NOTICE OF MOTION (MOTION TO RECONSIDER)

To rescind a motion that has already been duly adopted by the General Meeting one must proceed as follows:

a)      A notice of motion must be presented to a General Meeting by a Union member. Said notice of motion cannot be discussed at the meeting at which it is presented.

b)      At the following General Meeting, the member who has presented the motion must be present. After said member has spoken on the motion, said motion must receive the support of a common majority of the members present so as to put the original motion that is to be reconsidered back on the table. Once the original motion is back on the table a common majority vote of the members present is again necessary.

ARTICLE 58 - ADJOURNMENT

 A motion to adjourn a meeting can always be received by the chair; however it can be defeated by a majority vote of the members present. The President shall adjourn the meeting when the agenda has been completed.

ARTICLE 59 - MOTION

 Every motion must be seconded, written down in the minutes by the Secretary and read to the meeting before discussion begins. At this point, the motion belongs to the meeting and it cannot be called back without the unanimous approval of the meeting.   However, the mover and the seconder may agree to non-substantial changes as long as there are no objections from those entitled to vote.

ARTICLE 60 - PRECEDENCE OF A MOTION

As long as a motion has not been disposed of, no other motion may be received by the chair except one aiming to amend, to table, to refer to a committee, to put immediately to a vote (previous question) or to adjourn the meeting.

 ARTICLE 61 - AMENDMENT

 An amendment must refer to the subject of the principal motion. The amendment cannot bring up a totally new matter; however, it shall be received by the chair even if it altogether changes the nature of the principal motion, without straying from its subject. On the other hand, without seeking to change the nature of the principal motion, an amendment may simply delete, add or replace certain words in the original motion.

ARTICLE 62 - SUB-AMENDMENT

 A sub-amendment must only refer to the terms of the amendment. It must aim only to delete, to add, or to replace certain words in the amendment. It must not seek to bring back the terms of the original motion that were modified by the amendment.

ARTICLE 63 - PREVIOUS QUESTION

The previous question permits discussion to be terminated, if at least five (5) people have already spoken to the motion, the amendment or the sub-amendment; thereby forcing the meeting to immediately decide and vote on the question at hand. The member who moves the previous question must not have spoken earlier on the motion. To be carried, the previous question must receive the support of two-thirds (2/3) of the members present. If the previous question is defeated, it may not be presented again until there have been five (5) more speakers.

The person who presents the previous question must indicate whether it applies to the sub-amendment, the amendment or the principal motion. Moreover, said person must indicate whether they permit those inscribed on the speaker's list to speak.

ARTICLE 64 - PRIVILEGED MOTIONS

Privileged motions are designed to permit a member, at any time during a meeting, to raise any pressing matter dealing with a unique item or a question of widespread interest to the Union.

ARTICLE 65 - ETIQUETTE

 Once the meeting has been called to order, members must remain seated and strictly quiet so as not to disturb the proceedings. When a member is given the floor, he or she must stand and address the chair. He or she must not stray from the subject under study and must avoid insults, contempt, threats, racist or sexist comments, personalizing any comments, as well as crude language. When several members ask for the floor at the same time, the President shall decide who shall be called upon first.

ARTICLE 66 - RIGHT TO SPEAK

The President shall give the floor to speakers who so desire in the sequence that said speakers have indicated their desire to speak.  A speaker shall not be recognized a second time until all who desire to speak on the first turn have done so. The same shall apply for succeeding turns. The President may require that speakers limit their statements to five (5) minutes on their first turn and three (3) minutes on their second.

ARTICLE 67 - TO CALL BACK TO ORDER

Any member who strays from the subject, or who uses injurious language shall be immediately called back to order by the President; and in the case of a recurrence, the latter, on the instruction of the meeting, shall no longer recognize the member's right to speak for the duration of the meeting.

ARTICLE 68 - POINT OF ORDER

When a point of order is raised, all discussion on the motion shall cease. The President shall dispose of the point of order, unless an appeal is put to the General Meeting.

ARTICLE 69 - PROCEDURAL DISPUTE

Where there is a dispute regarding a procedure not covered by the present Constitution or the rules of order of the CSN, Robert's Rules shall prevail.

CHAPTER 10:  AMENDMENTS TO THE CONSTITUTION

ARTICLE 70 - AMENDMENTS

Subject to Article 71, the General Meeting of members has the power to modify the present statutes within the framework of the statutes of the CSN, of the Federation and of the Central Council.

Any motion aiming to modify, in total or in part, the present Constitution, or wishing to change the name of the Union must be presented, in writing, to the Union Council before being read to the General Meeting.

Any modification of the Constitution must be approved by a two-thirds (2/3) majority vote of the members present.

Moreover, a copy of any such modification of the Constitution must be forwarded to the Federation and the Central Council.

ARTICLE 71 - RESTRICTION TO AMENDMENTS

Articles 5, 6, 7, 71 and 72 of the present statutes cannot be abrogated without written consent from the CSN, the Federation and the Central Council, except if the Union has disaffiliated in accordance to the procedure provided for in Article 6.

ARTICLE 72 - DISSOLUTION OF THE UNION

When a motion of dissolution of the Union has been adopted, in accordance to the present statutes, the assets of the Union shall be forwarded to the Professional Defense Fund (FDP) of the CSN, unless the General Meeting has decided otherwise.