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CULE Constitution & Regulations

CULE Constitution & Regulations Amended March 2010 – download as .pdf

CULE CONSTITUTION & REGULATIONS

SECTION 1 – NAME AND HEADQUARTERS

A. The name of the Union shall be “Canadian Union of Labour Employees – Union Canadienne des Employe-es de Syndicat”.

B The Union shall have its headquarters in the city in which the Treasurer resides.

C. Both English and French are the official languages of the Union.

SECTION 2 – OBJECTIVES

The objectives of CULE-UCES shall be:

(i) to unite all employees of labour organizations in Canada into a single organization capable of acting in the best interests of the members;

(ii) to negotiate collective labour agreements with the members’ employer(s) that will provide the members with the best possible wages, benefits and conditions of work;

(iii) to protect the interests, rights and privileges of its members and promote and uphold the principles of equality;

(iv) To affiliate with the Canadian Labour Congress, the Provincial and Territorial Federations of Labour and the appropriate Labour Councils whenever possible;

(v) to encourage its members to take an active role in local community, national and international solidarity affairs and;

(vi) to co-operate with any union or organization whose aims complement the aims of the Union.

SECTION 3 – MEMBERSHIP

A. Membership shall be open to the employees of all labour organizations that are recognized by the Union as being appropriate.

B. Upon being granted membership in CULE-UCES, each member of the Union agrees to abide by and to be bound by the provisions of the Constitution.

C. Upon being granted membership in the Union and for the term of such membership, each member of the Union nominates and appoints CULE-UCES as the agent for the purpose of entering into collective bargaining with the employer.

D. The executive shall have the authority to grant honorary membership upon the recommendation of three CULE-UCES members in good standing who are not members of the executive.

E. The executive shall have the authority to grant life membership upon the recommendations of three CULE-UCES members in good standing who are not members of the executive.

F. The membership Oath of Office shall be administered to each member.

G. CULE members in good standing from the day six months prior to the start of and the day following Convention be eligible to attend Convention and submit resolutions to Convention and sit on Convention Committees.

SECTION 4 – DUES

The membership dues of CULE-UCES shall be as proposed by the Executive subject to ratification by referendum vote by mail of all members in good standing.

SECTION 5 – EXECUTIVE

A. Subject to Section B (i), the Executive of CULE-UCES shall be composed of a President, Two (2) Vice Presidents, one for each of Admin Staff/Administrative Personnel Group and Officers Group; as defined by the President, a Secretary, a Treasurer, an Equity Director elected by the members of the equity caucus who is a member of that caucus and 6 Regional Directors, one from each of the following regions:

(i) Atlantic
(ii) National Capital Region
(iii) Ontario (Excluding Ottawa)
(iv) Prairies
(v) British Columbia
(vi) North

B. (i) To the extent possible, the Executive shall be comprised of members from Admin Staff/Administrative Personnel Group and Officers Group; as defined by the President on the basis of proportional representation. Should an election result in a lack of proportional representation in the opinion of the Executive, the Executive shall have the authority to create one or more “member-at-large” positions to be filled by an election among members of the bargaining unit concerned.

B. (ii) The Equity Director shall be a member of anyone or more of the following equity groups: Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, and Transgender, workers of colour, Aboriginal; First Nation, , Inuit, and Métis and persons with disabilities.
The position of Equity Director shall be filled by an election among members who self-identify as a member of one of the following equity groups: Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, and Transgender, workers of colour, Aboriginal, Inuit, and Métis and persons with disabilities.

B. (iii) All Executive officers shall be elected biennially and within the last sixty (60) days of the fiscal year. The new election takes effect on January 1st, of the year following the elections. For clarity, the two year term for the elected Executive Members begins January of the year following election.

C. (i) In the event that the office of President becomes vacant between elections, the Executive shall name the Vice-President who shall assume the duties of the President until nominations are solicited and a referendum election is held among the membership to fill the office of President, for the remainder of the term. The Executive shall cause this election to take place within sixty (60) days of such vacancy.

C. (ii) In the event that the office of a Vice-President, Secretary or Treasurer becomes vacant between elections, nominations shall be sought and an election by mail among the membership shall be conducted within sixty (60) days to fill the office for the remainder of the term.

C. (iii) In the event that the office of a Director or member at large becomes vacant between elections, the Alternate to the position shall assume the vacated office, for the remainder of the term. An election shall be conducted within sixty (60) days to fill the vacated Alternate position, for the remainder of the term.

C. (iv) There shall be an Alternate elected from the same voting constituency as each Director or member at large. The election of the alternate will take place after the position is elected and such election shall be for the same term of office. The Alternate shall have all of the same responsibilities as the position holder in the event of the position holder being unavailable on a short-term basis.

D. All members of the Executive shall be members in good standing of CULE-UCES.

E. The President or one Vice-President and fifty percent (50%) of the other members of the Executive shall constitute a quorum of the Executive.

F. The Executive shall hold meetings at any time necessary at the call of the President or if requested by four members of the Executive. The Executive must meet at least six times annually, either in person or by conference call. All members of the Executive must be notified of the time and place of an Executive meeting at least one week before this meeting is held. Members may attend executive meetings with voice but no vote.

G. Between membership meetings, all executive powers of the Union, consistent with this Constitution, shall be vested in the Executive.

H. All actions by the Executive on behalf of the Union shall be subject to review at any membership meeting.

I. The Executive shall have the authority to establish any committee necessary for the operation of the union and/or the good welfare of the members, subject to review at any membership meeting.

SECTION 6 – DUTIES OF THE EXECUTIVE

A. The President shall:

(i) preside at all annual or other meetings of the Union;

(ii) interpret the Constitution of the Union subject to any appeal by an interested party in which case the Executive shall interpret the Constitution.

(iii) ensure that the Secretary and Treasurer carry out the day-to-day business of the Union as provided by this Constitution and as instructed by the Executive.

(iv) call a meeting of the Executive at least once annually, or more frequently if considered necessary, or upon request of four (4) members of the Executive.

(v) submit an activity report, in writing, to each executive meeting and the report will be distributed within one month to the general membership.

(vi) assign duties to Vice-Presidents and Directors, and ensure that these duties are carried out.

(vii) perform such other duties as are within the authority of presiding offices of deliberate bodies.

(viii) be an ex-officio member of each committee.

(viii) appoint a vice-president (where possible on an alternating basis), to perform the duties of the President in the President’s absence.

B. Vice Presidents shall:

(i) if appointed by the Executive or the president, perform the duties of the President in case of absence or in the event that the President vacates his/her office for any reason.

(ii) co-ordinate grievances for their respective unit.

(iii) serve on Union Management Consultation Committee.

C. The Vice-presidents and Directors shall:

(i) attend all executive and membership meetings, referred to in Section 7 when they are present in a particular location.

(ii) perform such other duties as may be assigned them by the President. Without affecting the generality of the foregoing, such other duties shall include service as Chairperson and/or members of standing and/or ad hoc committees.

(iii) file a report of their activities and recommendations, during their tenure, with the Secretary, prior to each meeting.

(iv) in addition to C. (i), (ii), and (iii) the Equity Director shall, in consultation with the Equity Committee:

a) apply an equity analysis to CULE executive deliberations and decisions and;

b) advance equality rights issues to promote equality rights within the workplace and;

c) act as a resource for representatives of CULE who sit on various committees such as the bargaining committee, joint employment equity committee, joint pension committee and any other committees.

D. The Treasurer shall:

(i) be responsible to the Executive for the proper discharge of his/her duties,

(ii) be responsible to the Executive for all finances and related official documents of the Union,

(iii) submit at each appropriate meeting a written report on the financial and membership state of the Union, which will be distributed to the membership within one month,

(iv) receive all monies payable to the Union and deposit such funds in a chartered financial institution to the credit of the Union, and keep proper records of all transactions,

(v) be responsible for the disbursements of such funds payable by the Union in settlement of its just debts,

(vi) make available current financial records of the Union to the auditors upon their request and, in any event once every two years.

(vii) carry out such other delegated duties as may be decided by the Executive within the terms of this Constitution.

E. The Secretary shall:

(i) be responsible to the Executive for the proper discharge of his/her duties,

(ii) be responsible to the Executive for all correspondence and official documents of the Union except those relating to the finances of the Union,

(iii) keep an accurate account of all Executive and membership meetings, prepare and circulate to all members appropriate reports of the business transactions, except those relating to the Union’s finances, including the Executive officers and committees,

(iv) make available to each appropriate meeting the written report of activities submitted by Executive officers and committees,

(v) be responsible for the transmission of information to the Executive and the members of the Union, without delay,

(vi) carry out such other delegated duties as may be decided by the Executive within the terms of this Constitution.

F. All officers of this Union shall deal promptly and appropriately with matters submitted to them by the membership.

G. At the termination of the respective positions they may hold, all officers of the Union shall deliver to their successors all documents, monies or other property of the Union.

H. The executive shall have the authority to establish Regulations and such Regulations shall be subject to approval by the members.

SECTION 7 – MEMBERSHIP MEETINGS

A. If an activity of the employer allows for several members to be in one Common location, the respective director or a member of the Executive shall call a membership meeting.

B. The meeting shall be convened in a location, at a time and with due consideration of other relevant factors (including economy) which would tend to assure the greatest possible attendance.

C. The quorum for membership meetings shall be thirty-three and one third percent (33 1/3%) plus 1 of the members in the location at that time.

D. Members shall be given as much advance notice as possible of the membership meeting. Whenever possible members will be given the opportunity to attend either in person or via conference call.

E. Motions from the membership shall be heard and dealt with at such meetings wherever possible. Any motions that need further research or information shall be placed before the Executive at the next meeting of the Executive. Decisions made shall be relayed to the membership in a timely manner.

F. (i) If and when CULE convenes a meeting that is open to all members of CULE, those members who are in attendance at the meeting and who also self-identify as a member of anyone or more of the following equity groups: Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, and Transgender, workers of colour, Aboriginal; First Nation,, Inuit, and Métis and persons with disabilities shall form an Equity Caucus for purposes of this meeting.

F. (ii) An Equity Caucus shall have the authority to table resolutions at any meeting that is open to all members of CULE.

SECTION 8 – MEMBERSHIP VOTES

A. The Executive must organize a vote by mail on a particular subject if one third (1/3) of the CULE membership so demand by motion or resolution at a
membership meeting. The motion or resolution must be submitted to the Chairperson in writing prior to or at the meeting.

This vote must be held by a committee, within one month once the Executive has received the motion or resolution. This Committee shall be composed of one member of the Executive and two members-at-large appointed by the Executive.

B. (i) When a CULE member is working outside of their home region (ie. where their substantive position is located) for more than four (4) months they shall vote in that region only;

B. (ii) When a CULE member is working outside of their home region for less than four (4) months they shall vote in their home region;
For greater clarity no CULE member shall be eligible to vote twice (2) in any voting process

SECTION 9 – ELECTION OF OFFICERS

A. Election of Officers shall be held by a vote by mail.

B. All members in good standing shall be eligible to contest any Executive position, other than a Director outside their own region and Vice-President for another unit.

C. A Nominating Committee of not more than three members will be appointed by the Executive at least two (2) months prior to the vote.

D. The Nominating Committee shall receive nominations for President, Vice-Presidents, Secretary, Treasurer and Directors, verifying the eligibility of nominees for the office, ascertain in writing the willingness of nominees to accept and perform the duties of any office to which they may be elected and proceed (if necessary) to the vote by mail by the members.

E. Regional Directors and Alternate Regional Directors shall be elected by region.

F. The position of Equity Director shall be filled by an election among members who self-identify as a member of anyone or more of the following equity groups: Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, and Transgender, workers of colour, Aboriginal; First Nation,, Inuit, and Métis and persons with disabilities. (all new)

G. The Chairperson of the Nominating Committee shall conduct elections and may appoint all necessary assistance to ensure an orderly election.

H. All elections shall be by secret ballot and decided by a simple majority. Any candidate for an elected position will have the right to obtain upon request the result of any ballot for that position.

I. In the event of more than two candidates for office, the candidate receiving the fewest votes shall be dropped from the ballot, whenever a clear majority of the votes cast is not accorded any candidate. This procedure shall continue on each succeeding ballot for the position until a candidate receives the necessary majority.

J. The installation of officers shall take place at the first Executive meeting and will be the first item on the agenda.

K. The Oath of Office shall be administered to all officers immediately before taking office.

L. (i) When a CULE member is working outside of their home region for more than four (4) months they shall not be eligible to run for the CULE Director’s position in their home region;

L. (ii) When a CULE member is acting outside the bargaining unit for more than six (6) months or if the assignment is of a duration that goes beyond six (6) months, they shall not be eligible to run for a CULE Executive position;

L. (iii) A CULE member who has been out of the bargaining unit will be eligible to run for a CULE Executive position if they have been back in the bargaining unit for one (1) month.

SECTION 10 – NEGOTIATING TEAM

A. For each round of negotiations, and not later than six (6) months prior to the expiration of the collective agreement, the Executive shall establish the composition of the Negotiating Team.

B. The members of the Negotiating Team shall be members of CULE-UCES in good standing and elected by the members of their respective bargaining unit.

C. The Executive may appoint the President as a member of the negotiating team.

SECTION 11 – FINANCES

A. The financial records of the Union shall be reviewed by one or more persons who are not executive members every two years in a manner determined by the Executive. The results of the review shall be provided to the members in writing.

B. The signing officers of the Union shall be the Treasurer and any one of the following: President, Vice President or Secretary.

C. The fiscal year of the Union shall be from January 1st – December 31st.

D. Cheques and money orders shall be made payable to the Union.

E. A strike fund shall be established and maintained at the dues deduction rate of .25%.

SECTION 12 – DISCIPLINE

A. The Executive of the Union shall have the authority to suspend, expel or fine any officer or member for contravening any provision of the Constitution of the Union or for acting in a manner contrary to the best interests of the membership of the Union. The President shall not participate in the vote to discipline a member.

B. Prior to making a decision to discipline a member, the Executive shall forward a notice of its intention to the member in question together with the reasons for their action.

C. The member shall have (10) ten days in which to respond in writing to the allegations by the Executive.

D. Upon expiry of the ten (10) days or anytime after receipt of the member’s response, the Executive may proceed with the disciplinary action.

E. The decision to discipline a member shall be communicated to the disciplined member in the most expedient manner possible.

F. The disciplined member shall have the right to appeal the decision of the Executive within ten (10) days of receipt of the notice referred to in (E) above.

G. A Discipline Appeal Board shall be established and hear the appeal within thirty (30) days of receipt of the appeal by the disciplined member. The Discipline Appeal Board shall render a decision within thirty (30) days of the hearing.

H. The Discipline Appeal Board shall consist of:

I The President of the Union who shall act as Chair and,

II A member of the Union selected by the disciplined member and,

III A member of the Union who did not participate in the decision to discipline the member, as selected by the Executive.

I. The Discipline Appeal Board shall have the authority to sustain, revoke or amend the decision of the Executive.

J. The Discipline Appeal Board will decide upon all matters relating to how their decision is arrived at. This does not grant them authority to expend funds of the Union in excess of funds allotted by the Executive.

K. A member shall have the right to appeal the decision of the Discipline Appeal Board at the next membership meeting where at least one third (1/3) of the membership of CULE-UCES is in attendance.

L. The members will vote to either uphold or revoke the decision of the Discipline Appeal Board. Notwithstanding the provision of Section 7, the decision of the members is final.

SECTION 13 – RULES OF ORDER, DEFINITIONS

A. Unless otherwise mutually agreed upon, “Bourinot’s Rules of Order” shall apply at all meetings of the Union.

B. The following interpretations shall apply in this Constitution unless specifically indicated otherwise:

(i) “may” is to be construed as permissive;

(ii) “shall” is to be construed as imperative;

(iii) “he” or “she” shall be construed to include members of the opposite sex.

C. Self-Identification shall refer to the process of completing a voluntary confidential self-identification form. CULE shall maintain a confidential registry of members who have self-identified for purposes of electing an Equity Director and for fulfilling other rights and obligations of CULE members under the constitution. Equity Caucus shall mean all CULE members who self identify as being a member of an equity seeking group including aboriginal peoples (Aboriginal, Inuit and Métis), people with disabilities, racially visible persons, lesbians, gays, bi-sexual or transgender persons. CULE shall maintain a voluntary confidential self assessment registry.

SECTION 14 – AMENDMENTS

A. The CULE Constitution & Regulations can be amended by a 2/3 majority vote of the membership voting in either a referendum vote by mail or at a CULE convention.

B. Notice to amend this Constitution must be sent to the Secretary at least one month prior to an Executive meeting.

C. The Secretary or the Constitution Committee will distribute the proposed amendments to the Executive who will vote concurrence or non concurrence on each amendment.

D. Within ten (10) days after the Executive meeting, the proposed amendments together with the Executive recommendations and a ballot will be forwarded to the members.

E. The Executive will appoint a Ballot Committee to receive and count the ballots.

F. The Executive shall generate a review of the Constitution every two years.

G. A maximum of two (2) face to face meetings per year of the CULE Executive may be held; any remaining annual CULE executive meetings shall be conducted via video or telephone conference call.

SECTION 15 – EXECUTIVE MEETINGS

When applicable, the following items may be included on the agenda:

  1. Meeting call to order by the Chairperson;
  2. Roll call of Officers;
  3. Reading and approval of minutes of previous meeting;
  4. Business arising out of minutes;
  5. President’s Report;
  6. Secretary’s Report;
  7. Treasurer’s Report;
  8. Other Executive Officers’ Reports;
  9. Correspondence
  10. Committee Reports;
  11. Unfinished Business;
  12. New Business;
  13. Good and Welfare of the Union.

SECTION 16 – COMMITTEES

A. (i) The Executive may form committees to assist in the work of the Union.

A. (ii) The Executive shall form a Standing Equity Committee consisting of at least one member from each of the following equity groups: Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, and Transgender, workers of colour, Aboriginal, Inuit, and Métis, persons with disabilities and women. The Standing Equity Committee shall act as an advisory group to the Equity Director.

B. The Executive shall appoint committee members and, where applicable, alternates.

C. To assist committees in achieving their objective(s), the Executive shall provide them Terms of Reference, which may be amended from time to time.

D. A list of committees, their Terms of Reference, the names of the committee chairperson and members shall be distributed to the membership at least once per year.

E. Committees shall provide written reports to the Secretary prior to each Executive meeting.

SECTION 17 – OATH OF OFFICE

A. Oath of Executive Officers

“I…………………. in accepting election to this Office, make oath say I will be faithful to the duties and responsibilities incumbent upon me as an Officer of the Union, attend all meetings of the Union, if possible, and at the completion of my term of office, deliver to the Union or my successor, all books, papers, monies or other property in my possession, belonging to the Union. I further make oath that I will keep confidential all affairs of the Union.”

B. Oath of Membership

I………………….in accepting membership in the CULE-UCES, make oath that I will abide by the Constitution and Regulations of the Union. I further make oath that I will keep confidential all affairs of the Union and to abide by all decisions of the Union.

REGULATION 1 BARGAINING PROCEDURES AND GUIDELINES

1. BARGAINING INPUT

A. Copies of the Bargaining Input Form will be circulated with the call for bargaining input. Members will be encouraged to submit proposals on the Bargaining Input Form.

B. Bargaining input will be requested at least four months prior to the expiry of the Collective Agreement.

C. One member of the Negotiating team will be designated to receive bargaining proposals.

D. All bargaining input will be sent to the Regional Directors who will present to the committee

E. A package that includes all proposals received by the committee will be brought back to the respective regions by their respective Regional Director

F. A regional meeting shall be held and the members will give feedback and make recommendations on proposals and priorities they want brought forward for that round of bargaining

G. The negotiating team will review and consider all bargaining input and make a recommendation on each proposal. The originator of each proposal will be advised of the team’s recommendation.

2. PACKAGE OF PROPOSALS

A. The negotiating team will prepare a draft package of recommended proposals and priorities. The package will be distributed to the membership for review and further input.

B. The final package will be distributed to the membership.

3. COMMUNICATION

A. The Directors are the communication link between the negotiating team and the membership.

B. Directors will be responsible for:

• communicating the input call

• receiving proposals and forwarding them to the designated team member

• co-coordinating members’ inquires with respect to bargaining input and negotiations

• receiving negotiations updates from the team after each negotiating session and forwarding the information to the membership

4. NEGOTIATING TEAM GUIDELINES

A. DECISION MAKING

Decision making will be by consensus

B. ALTERNATE TEAM MEMBERS

(i) will be kept advised and updated on negotiations to the extent possible

(ii) will represent their respective unit at the table in the absence of a Unit representative

C. COMMUNICATION WITH THE EMPLOYER

(i) The President shall serve Notice to Bargain within 3 months before the expiry of the collective agreement

(ii) The negotiating team will name a chairperson to communicate with the employer prior to the start of negotiations and between negotiations sessions.

(iii) The negotiating team may share the responsibility for researching, presenting and responding to various proposals.

D. COMMUNICATION AMONG TEAM MEMBERS

(i) Any contact initiated by the employer with any team member other than the chairperson will be noted and the employer representative will be referred to the chair; any contact between the employer and the chair will be immediately communicated to the team.

(ii) The team will caucus after each negotiating session to develop a negotiations update to be distributed to the membership.

5. TENTATIVE AGREEMENT

A. Any agreement reached at the table shall be in writing and clearly outlined in the ratification package as a change to the collective agreement or as a Letter of Understanding

B. Articles and Letters of Understanding common to more than one of the units shall be ratified by the CULE membership in the applicable units. Those specific to a unit shall be subject to ratification by the members of that unit only.