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Explanation-Constitution – Blind Citizens NZ

February 2019

Introduction to the Revised Rules – February 2019

Pricey Blind Citizens NZ Member

The Board was pleased to see the 2018 Annual Basic Meeting give the ‘go ahead’ for a revised structure to be developed embracing the modifications that have been adopted there. The knowledge that follows will search to elucidate where these modifications have occurred and, what this implies for Blind Citizens NZ. The Board hopes that you will discover the time to review our proposed new rules and provide feedback to us. The Board will then make selections based mostly on all feedback acquired. That is due by 4pm, Monday 1 April 2019. The Board will then circulate a last version of the constitution, to all monetary members, to be voted upon.

If you wish to examine the present constitution with the revised constitution, and you have web access, yow will discover the current constitution (final up to date in December 2018), on our web site underneath ‘Publications’, then search for ‘constitution’. Alternatively, you possibly can contact Rose Wilkinson at National Office for a replica in your most popular format. Contact particulars are on the finish of this doc.

Please observe that it’ll not be potential to match each sets of rules on a clause-by-clause foundation. Although some guidelines have remained largely intact, some clauses coping with operational issues at the moment are thought-about not match to be included in a structure. They have been moved into the Operational Policy Guide. There has additionally been some ‘tidy up’ work carried out to assist readability, such as the removing of repetitive info and a basic re-ordering of fabric to offer a more logical sequence.
Different modifications have been made in keeping with the proposed new Included Societies laws, which is making its means via the parliamentary course of.

We’ll now present a abstract of the modifications made to the present structure. We’ll cover each rule as outlined within the present constitution and refer you to its equal within the revised algorithm.

1. Rule 1 ‘Identify” is the first rule in each constitutions, but the revised guidelines also provide some history of the identify modifications that have occurred since 1945.

2. Rule 2 in the current structure (Badge) has been deleted since it is seen as having no relevance in a structure.

3. Rule three within the present structure is ‘Objects’. This has been changed in the revised structure by Rule four and is the set of objects circulated for remark throughout 2018 and modified consistent with recommendations acquired on the time.

4. Rule 4 within the present structure is ‘Registered Office’. That is now Rule 2 within the revised structure and has now been supplemented with some additional contact particulars.

5. Word that Rule three in the revised structure is now a new section on definitions of varied phrases used in this doc. We need to provide these unfamiliar with our organisation with a definition of how we intend these terms to be interpreted in our guidelines.

6. Rule 5 refers to Membership in each sets of rules. The membership class referred to as ‘Honorary Membership’ in the current constitution has been deleted from the revised structure as a result of, being for only one yr, its software is meaningless as a membership class. It has been changed with ‘Affiliate Organisation Membership’, which though previously talked about within the textual content, was not included as a membership class, despite the fact that it should have been.
The references to this class of membership on the end of the present constitution are decreased to some primary statements within the revised structure because of the protection offered in different paperwork. Other modifications are primarily round consolidation and the removing of repetitive info.

7. Rule 6 in the current constitution is ‘Annual General Meeting and Conference’. This is Rule 8 in the revised constitution. The revised constitution consists of the new definition of the position of the AGM as agreed at the Annual Common Assembly, changing the previous definition of “supreme governing Body”, and states:
“The Annual General Meeting and Conference enables members from throughout the country to come together to share our lived experiences of blindness and express our views on the issues that restrict our ability to enjoy equal rights with those in the sighted community. The collective and informed decisions we reach as an outcome of such discussions gives Blind Citizens NZ the mandate to speak on our behalf and obliges the Board to act in a manner consistent with this mandate”.

This can be a vital change because it establishes a relationship between the members and the Board that displays what has been the state of affairs for some appreciable time now however which the current structure does not acknowledge. Other modifications made to this rule embrace an inventory of the traditional business carried out at an AGM and a mention of how Branch and Network Representatives are purported to vote on pre-circulated remits and resolutions. This latter level was never mentioned within the current structure. Otherwise, a lot of the remaining stays unchanged.

8. Rule 7 in the current structure is ‘National Council’ and has been deleted from the revised structure. As agreed on the 2018 AGM, National Council has been disestablished as a part of our governance structure and Branch National Councillors at the moment are to be referred to as Department Representatives.
They may nevertheless retain their present features aside from their attendance at National Council conferences, which have also been disestablished beneath this identify. Provision has been made nevertheless to permit for their attendance at particular conferences referred to as to debate strategic points which now appears in a later rule in the revised constitution.

9. Rule 8 in the current structure is the ‘Board’. That is now Rule 6 within the revised structure. It has been updated in the revised constitution in accordance with the new Board composition as agreed on the AGM. These modifications are:
• A 3-year term of office for all Board members, including the Nationwide President;
• The Board to comprise six Members-at-Giant plus the Nationwide President;
• An annual election for two out of the six Member-at-Giant positions;
• The optionally available appointment (co-option) of a most of two Blind Citizens NZ members to the Board for a period of any length however not exceeding two years;
• The World Blind Union Consultant to be an appointed moderately than an elected position, with the WBU Representative being co-opted to the Board for the term of their appointment until the appointee is already an elected member on the Board.

Another new function added is an outline of the position of the Board which includes the Board’s have to act in accordance with the mandate communicated to it by members, as well as quite a few different features widespread to boards typically. We cowl process round co-option in some element, as is the calling of special conferences to exchange these of National Council. Different Board processes have been re-ordered into a greater sequence.

10. Rule 9 within the present structure has two sections. The first refers to the Administration Committee. The unique intention was to delete this in the revised structure because it was completely operational in nature. The second section of Rule 9 refers to Employees and will now appear alone within the revised structure as Rule 7. There has been one minor change here referring to the necessity for monitoring and evaluation.

11. Rule 10 within the current structure is ‘Elections’. That is Rule 9 within the revised structure. The revised constitution is clearly very totally different from the current constitution in lots of respects since we now have a Board of seven and a three-year term of office with every annual Member-at-Giant election being for the now solely two Board positions held by retiring Board members. There can be no more extraordinary elections and, ought to one member-at-large position stay unfilled on the Board, no action will probably be taken provided that co-option is all the time obtainable if wanted. If there are two or more Member-at-Giant positions still vacant following the newest election, or there have been no candidates for the position of Nationwide President, the AGM itself can be required to take no matter remedial action is required.

12. Rule 11 in the present structure (10 within the revised constitution) offers with establishing and disestablishing Branches and Networks. The operational directions surrounding the formation of latest Branches have been deleted in the revised constitution and transferred to the Operational Insurance policies guide, leaving just some primary statements describing this process. There have been some minor modifications in the disestablishment area including what occurs to branch funds when a branch is disestablished. The clauses surrounding Networks have been largely untouched, with the exception that the AGM not has to endorse their institution/disestablishment but merely receives a report from the Board.

13. Rule 12 in the current structure (11 within the revised constitution) deals with Department and Network Duties. A number of references have been made to the features of a Branch Consultant in the revised structure in order that it is clear why there’s such a place, however the rest of the modifications are primarily cosmetic.

14. Rule 13 within the current structure (Rule 12 within the revised structure) is ‘Organisational Assets and Financial Administration’. The section on Pecuniary Achieve within the revised constitution has been strengthened according to the proposed new laws on Included Societies, which has come down exhausting on making certain that any transactions should not have a cloth monetary benefit for officials in the organisation. In any other case, there have been some other minor tweaks to mirror present follow.

15. Rule 14 within the current structure (Rule 13 in the revised constitution) ‘Common Seal’ stays the same.

16. Rule 15 within the current constitution (Member Self-discipline) has been replaced by Rule 14 in the revised structure (Complaints and Grievances). The rule on Member Self-discipline was all about how members who have transgressed must be dealt with. Though this has been retained in the new rule, the emphasis is now on a member’s proper to be heard in a dispute with the Board. This is in keeping with the new Included Societies laws and displays an analogous rule now included within the Blind Foundation’s structure.

17. Rule 16 in the present constitution on ‘Special Representatives’ has been deleted. Nevertheless, operational directions with respect to the position of Patron have been transferred to the Operational Policies Guide. Prior to implementing procedures for the appointment of Patron, the Board will interact with members and search suggestions.

18. Rule 17 in the present constitution (Rule 15 within the revised structure) referring to amending this structure has been changed to mirror the method agreed on the AGM to permit all members to vote on constitutional modifications.
It’s broadly based mostly on the Blind Basis’s process however in a a lot easier type and consists of two ‘mail-outs’ to members; the primary being notification of the proposed alteration and allowing for a discussion period, and the second of a a lot shorter period to allow for voting. A summary of feedback acquired in response to the draft structure, shall be included with the proposed Structure, when issued to financial members to vote on.

19. Rule 18 in the current constitution (Rule 16 within the revised constitution) on the winding up course of, has been amended slightly to convey it more into line with the Blind Foundation’s constitution, which acquired legal scrutiny when it was being revised. In the unlikely occasion that we’d have to implement this rule, we might little question search further authorized recommendation at the time.

Conclusion
The Board acquired its first draft of this structure at its Annual Planning Meeting in November 2018. With a number of minor amendments, this has the Board’s full help together with the timelines for implementation. One of many amendments sought by the Board in November was to vary the title of Government Officer to that of Chief Government. The current title provides a false impression of value to the organisation that would mirror unfairly on the place compared with the titles of those in comparable senior management positions. The Board is absolutely in help of this variation being adopted all through the organisation, and is mirrored within the draft structure. We regard this as simply another part of the process of bringing Blind Citizens NZ’s governance and operations into the fashionable era.

Feedback ought to be acquired no later than 4pm, Monday 1 April 2019.

This ought to be sent to Rose Wilkinson at one of the following:
[email protected]
• Telephone: 0800 222 694
• PO Box 7144, Newtown, Wellington 6242

Jonathan Godfrey
Nationwide President
On behalf of the Board, Blind Citizens NZ