UBCFA Constitution and Bylaws Referendum 2019

Referendum Results: 

The two motions presented to the membership related to the proposed changes to our Constitution and Bylaws passed with the required three-quarters vote. For the detailed results, please visit the link below. 

Explanation of the proposed bylaws to the membership
Updated on November 5, 2019

At last year’s fall general meeting, the Faculty Association presented an amended Constitution and Bylaws to the membership. The amendments were driven by legislative changes to the Societies Act and the Association’s responsibility to bring our bylaws into compliance with that Act. The Faculty Association received feedback from members on a handful of issues; the Executive Committee discussed the concerns raised by members and are now proposing additional changes to the bylaws.

Link to Bylaws showing proposed changes

Link to Bylaws – clean copy

Most of the substantive changes we are proposing are in relation to Executive Committee members and membership engagement. The first of these is that a candidate for President have prior service as member of the Executive Committee to ensure familiarity with the work of the Executive, and that a candidate for Chair, Member Services and Grievance Committee have prior service on that Committee due to the important labour relations role of that position. The second is that the Executive fill a vacancy on the Executive by appointing a member until a by-election is held so long as there are 9 months or more remaining in the term. We are also recommending adding term limits for the President, Vice President, and Chairs of Standing Committees to ensure that the Association continues to bring new perspectives to the work of the Executive, with the proviso that this amendment shall not go into effect until July 2020. And finally, we are recommending a provision for removal of a Director for cause and stipulating the voting threshold for the removal of a Director by other Directors.

The rest of the substantive changes are more technical in nature and are intended to improve the operations of general meetings: to lower the threshold for member resolutions from 5% of the membership to 2.5% (a concern we heard from members when we put forward changes to the bylaws last fall), to reduce the time the Association needs to wait to see if quorum is achieved at general meetings from 30 minutes to 15, and to add a requirement to ensure that the time to allow for a quorum is 30 minutes if the meeting is for the purpose of dissolving the society (per the Societies Act). We are also making our bylaws gender neutral. We are also proposing to change quorum from 50 to 20 and clarify that this is for all membership meetings of the Association. We want to ensure that members understand that while we are proposing to lower quorum, this provision is being proposed to try to ensure that the Association will be able to meet quorum requirements at all meetings so that we do not have to hold a subsequent meeting if quorum is not met (a requirement of the Societies Act). We can confirm for the membership that this will not reduce member participation and approvals of any proposed changes to the operations of the Association via bylaw or any other changes, nor any proposed member resolutions, as any such changes will be sent to the membership to vote on electronically.

In addition to these substantive changes, we are recommending a number of housekeeping changes:

  • Amend the first bullet in the Constitution for consistency with references to bargaining unit
  • Section 2.2 – added the word “both” to clarify the conditions under which a sessional lecturer would lose their membership status
  • Sections 2.2, 2.5, 2.6, 2.7, 3.15, 5.3, 5.4, 9.6 (c), 11.1, changed “his or her” to “their”
  • Section 2.9 – delete the subparagraph and move the text to main body (clean up)
  • Section 3.11 (re: Chairs of the OFC) moved to section to 6 (e) as the Chairs of the OFC are not Executive Positions; this change aligns with the description of the OFC under section 6 (Committees)
  • Sections 5.3 & 5.4 – remove references to OFC Vice chairs (this section deals with the Executive) and add the provision under 6 (e).
  • Section 5.6 – change his or her to their, change “does” to “do”.
  • Section 7.6 – corrected the cross reference
  • Section 7.9 – change “participants” to “participation”
  • Section 13.2 – correct the cross reference – change 14.3 to 13.3
  • Section 16.6 – correct the cross reference – change 6.1 to 15.1
  • Section 16.7 – correct the cross reference – change 15.1 to 15.2

Thank you.