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L.I.F.E. Love Is For Everyone Constitution

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Utah State University
A Gay Straight Alliance
Serving Cache Valley
CONSTITUTION

Preamble

We the members of L.I.F.E. know that a great deal of silence surrounding issues of sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, and gender roles has caused fear, ignorance, and misinformation throughout the USU campus. If this trend is not changed, it can lead to a threatening place to live and learn for any person.


L.I.F.E. as a student organization has five core goals:

  • Educate its members, USU students, faculty, staff and the Cache Valley community on issues regarding sexual orientation and gender identity as well as non-heterosexual and ally matters
  • Work for a united community through service
  • Advocate equal rights for ALL members of the community to the local, state, and national governments in a peaceable manner
  • Promote equality throughout the community
  • Provide a safe and equal network of social gatherings for everyone in a comfortable and supportive setting.

Through these goals we hope to create a more diverse, educated, and safe campus.

Article I
Name and General Statements

Section 1- Official Name

The official name of the organization will be Love Is For Everyone, L.I.F.E., a Gay Straight Alliance serving the Cache Valley Community.

Section 2- Nonprofit Statement

L.I.F.E. will operate as a nonprofit organization and any proceeds will be returned to the L.I.F.E. account for future operating expenses.

Section 3- Obedience Statement

L.I.F.E. shall abide by the applicable policies and procedures of ASUSU and the Utah State University Student Code.

Section 4- Goals for L.I.F.E.

The goals of the organization are those aforementioned within the Preamble.

Article II
Membership

Section 1- Membership Status

  • Full Members: All undergraduate and graduate students of USU who are LGBTQA may become full members of the organization. Every full member who is a current student of USU shall be eligible to hold office in the organization and have full voting rights, unless otherwise stated in the constitution.
  • Associate Members: All faculty members, staff, alumni, former students of USU and community members of the Cache Valley area may choose to become associate members upon request, and will be allowed voting rights on the stipulation that they are in good standing with Associate Membership requirements as well as not a USU appointed faculty member who is an advisor/mentor to any potential Full Members. They may not run for or hold positions on the executive council positions but may participate on any and all appointed committees.

Section 2- Non Discrimination Policy

Discrimination or harassment from within or outside the membership on the basis of race, color, religion, national origin, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, marital status, age or disability, at any program or activity offered under the control of L.I.F.E. is never permitted.

Section 3- Requirements for Membership

Requirements for Full Membership:

  • Must be a student of USU;
  • Must sign confidentiality and non-discrimination form; and,
  • Must pay full membership fees for the current USU school year.

Requirements for Associate Members:

  • Must be faculty, staff, alumni, former student of USU, or community member of the Cache Valley Area;
  • Must sign confidentiality and non-discrimination form; and,
  • Must pay associate membership fees.

Article III
Officers

Section 1- Executive Council

The officers of L.I.F.E. shall be known as the Executive Council which consists of:

  • Full Membership positions: President, Ally Vice-President, Queer Vice-President, Treasurer/Secretary, Public Relations Head, USU Advocate, and Activities Chair. All officer terms end after one year and shall not exceed two years.

Section 2- Duties of Executive Council

  • The duties of the President shall be, but are not limited to:
    • a. Spokesperson and representative for L.I.F.E.;
    • Display exemplary leadership qualities by making decisions for L.I.F.E.;
    • reside over the election process for the next term;
    • Preside over the general meetings or delegate this responsibility to ExecutiveCouncil member(s);
    • Consult with advisor(s) of L.I.F.E. and keep them updated;
    • Delegate responsibilities to executive council members and/or committee heads;
    • Oversee and assist all other Executive Council members with all of their respective duties and assume duties unable to be performed by a council member; and,
    • Notify members in the case of a vacancy in an Executive Council position.
  • The duties of the Ally Vice-President shall be, but are not limited to:
    • Oversee and assist the USU Advocate and Treasurer;
    • Assume duties of President with the Queer Vice-President in case of President’s absence or office vacancy;
    • Organize and oversee at the least one appointed committee within the year;
    • Assist the President in all matters, especially in regard to delegation of responsibility to committee heads.
  • The duties of the Queer Vice-President shall be, but are not limited to:
    • Oversee and assist the Public Relations Head and the Activities Chair;
    • Assume duties of President with the Ally Vice-President in case of President’s absence or office vacancy;
    • Organize and oversee at the least one appointed committee within the year;
    • Assist the President in all matters, especially in regard to delegation of responsibility to committee heads.
  • The duties of the Treasurer shall be, but are not limited to:
    • Keep accurate records of incoming and outgoing funds;
    • Keep receipts, reimbursement forms, and accounting for all transactions made on behalf of L.I.F.E.;
    • Oversee and assist at the least one appointed committee within the year;d. Report accounting at weekly Executive Council meetings by maintaining a running financial record;
    • Transfer financial record and accounting summary to the incoming Executive Council;[a]
    • Advise on the most appropriate distribution of L.I.F.E. funds for all L.I.F.E. activities and promptly inform the Executive Council on any possible misuse of funds by any member and/or Executive Council member; and,
    • Keep accurate record of the minutes of every meeting as well as member attendance.
  • The duties of the Public Relations Head shall be, but are not limited to:
    • Keep L.I.F.E. members informed of meetings and activities as stated in the bylaws;
    • Promote membership on and around the USU Campus and Cache Valley Community;
    • Update and maintain the electronic presence of L.I.F.E. as stated in the bylaws;
    • Make and maintain relations with any current and future community-based programs with similar goals to that of L.I.F.E.; and,
    • Promote and advertise L.I.F.E. events and programs.[b]
  • The duties of the USU Advocate shall be but are not limited to:
    • Keep L.I.F.E. in good standing with ASUSU, the USU Administration and all other USU clubs and Organizations;
    • Attend or delegate attendance to all CSCO required meetings;
    • Be the representative of the membership’s needs and concerns to the Executive Council; and,
    • Oversee the formal organization of any petitions.
  • The duties of the Activities Chair shall be, but are not limited to:[c]
    • Oversee and assist at the least one appointed committee within the year;
    • Oversee the Executive Council in the creation and execution of a L.I.F.E. general meeting outline, to follow throughout the semester, as well as appoint an Executive Council Member as overseer/representative during and for each lesson;[d]
    • Oversee any standing committee not attended to by another Executive Council Member; and
    • Oversee survey(s) during the year to gauge how the general membership feels about events and meetings.

Section 3- Elections for officers

  • An election committee will be comprised of the Executive Council; council members running for office for the next year are not eligible.
  • Members running for office must fulfill the following requirements:
    • Must have a cumulative 2.5 GPA;
    • Be a paid member for the current academic year;
    • Attendance must be at least 75% of all general meetings;
    • Must fill out and submit application to Election Committee as stated in the bylaws.C. Election Committee will review applications and will submit a list of qualified nominees to members for voting.
  • Voting will take place by secret ballot.
  • Quorum must be met.
  • New officers will be decided by majority vote, even if running unopposed.
  • An advisor must tally the votes.[e]
  • In the event that the advisor cannot be there the votes will be counted twice by the Election Committee and one non-committee member who is not running for office.
  • Election Committee will announce new officers by the next meeting.

Section 4- Removal from Office

  • In the event that an Executive Council member resigns or is impeached the President shall declare the office vacant.
  • In the event that an Executive Council member is not performing the duties of the office or behaves in a manner contrary to the purposes of the organization, the office shall be declared vacant by a majority vote of Executive Council members and adviser(s) in a special Executive Council meeting.
  • In the event that an Executive Council member is not performing the duties of the office or behaves in manner contrary to the purposes and goals of the organization, any five members can call for a special Executive Council meeting to be scheduled for the purpose of taking a vote to declare the office vacant.
  • The Executive Council shall nominate and elect with a majority vote a new Executive Council member to the vacant position, which shall be ratified by the majority of members at the next meeting.

Article IV
Voting

Section 1- General Voting

  • Quorum must be met for all voting.
    • Quorum is defined by two-thirds of membership.
  • The president does not have a vote except:
    • In case of a tie, when the President will have the deciding vote, and
    • In general elections.
  • An active member has one vote.
  • Voting will be classified as deciding on events, budget spending, fundraising activities, nominations, and amendments.
  • Votes will be cast in whichever method as seen fit to what is being voted upon be it by secret ballot, voice, or show of hands.[f]
  • Decision will be made by a majority vote.

Article V
Committees

Section 1- Committees

Committees are special groups that may be formed by officers to oversee specific tasks and events such as:

  • Public Relations
  • Social Events
  • USU Events
  • Advocacy
  • Community Events
  • Service Projects

Section 2- Committee Chairs

Each committee will be chaired by the elected representative for that committee. All active members in good standing are eligible to perform within any committee.[g]

Section 3- Special and Sub Committees

  • The Executive Council will not create a special committee to do something that is within the designated function of a standing committee.
  • Special and sub committees have two functions:
    • To investigate, and
    • To carry out L.I.F.E. tasks and activities.
  • These types of committees are usually small so that the members can easily meet and get the work done.

Section 4- Rules and Regulation of the Committees

  • Standing committees are to give a written report to their respective Vice-President or Executive Council member(s).
  • Committees cannot act independently of the L.I.F.E organization.
  • All committee activities are to be for the benefit and promotion of the L.I.F.E. organization and its goals, as laid out in the preamble, both on campus and in the community.
  • Keep and file a detailed record of all activities, to be kept continuously for each new committee chair.
  • All funds which may be used on a committee that come from the L.I.F.E. general account shall first be voted on by majority vote by the Executive Council during an Executive Council meeting under the advisement of the Treasurer and their records.

Article VI
Meetings[h]

Section 1- General Meetings

  • General meetings will be held on campus once a week with the exception of vacations, snow days, school closings, or if at least two Executive Board Members cannot be in attendance.
  • If a meeting is to be cancelled or re-scheduled, advance notice of at least 48 hours will be given by the Secretary of other Executive Board Members to all members in any form necessary.
  • Only the President can call the meeting to order; however in his/her absence it will be the following Executive Council Member present.
  • An attendance sheet will be passed out, that must be signed by all members present, at the beginning of every general meeting and then collected, to be kept in a file by the Secretary.
  • The President is the chairman of the meetings (i.e. calls on members to give them the floor); however in his/her absence it will be the following Executive Council Member present.
  • A formal agenda for each meeting will be followed.
  • The minutes of the previous meeting are read and approved.
  • All unfinished business is then brought to the floor and discussed.
  • The members then proceed with new business.
  • Once topic of meeting is discussed, the members move to vote on the topic by following Voting rules as laid out in Article IV.
  • The President will adjourn the meeting; however in his/her absence it will be the following Executive Council Member present.

Section 2- Special Meetings

Special Meetings:

  • Can only be called by any member of the Executive Committee members;
  • Are held to discuss topics such as future event ideas, the budget, fundraising ideas, the impeachment of an officer if a charge is brought forth, etc; and,
  • An attendance sheet will be passed out, that must be signed by all members present, at the beginning of the meeting and then collected, to be kept in a file by the Secretary.

Section 3- Executive Council Meetings

Executive Council Meetings:

  • Can only be called by the Executive Council members;
  • Only active Executive Council members may be actively involved in the meeting but any member and/or visitor may attend these meetings;
  • An attendance sheet will be passed out, that must be signed by all ExecutiveCouncil members present, at the beginning of the meeting and then collected, to be kept on file by the Secretary;
  • Any Executive Council member who is not in attendance needs to give notice in order for the meeting to take place in their absence (in the event that no notice is given then all Executive Council members who are to be in attendance must agree unanimously to continue the meeting).

Article VIII
Advisor

Section 1- Selection Process

  • The advisor shall be a faculty member employed by USU who shows interest in L.I.F.E.
  • Once a suggestion has been made as to which faculty/staff member L.I.F.E. would like to formally ask then a majority vote must be conducted to determine whether or not to invite the faculty/staff member to the following general meeting.
  • The advisor shall be formally asked by an appointee of the Executive Council as to whether or not he/she would like to be the advisor.

Section 2- Term of office

  • The advisor shall remain in office until:
    • The advisor feels he/she cannot fulfill their duties, or
    • The members (with a majority consensus) feel the need for a new advisor (a reason and suggestion must be present at the time).

Section 3- Role of Advisor

The Advisor will:

  • Serve as the official staff representative of the college;
  • Work closely with the club to insure a cooperative relationship between the advisor.
  • Assist each officer of L.I.F.E. in understanding their duties and responsibilities;
  • Assist members to understand and apply democratic principles within L.I.F.E.;
  • Be present at majority of meetings if not all;
  • Advise students of the policies and procedures which they must follow as a club/organization;
  • sure that all reasonable steps are taken to ensure the safety and welfare of members;
  • Insure the appropriate university policies are upheld; and,
  • Be present on the day of elections to tally the votes.

Article IX
Amendments

Section 1- Submission

Amendments to the constitution should be submitted to the Secretary during Executive Council Meetings.

Section 2- Executive Council Approval

Amendments must be approved by a majority of the Executive Board before being voted upon in a general meeting.

Section 3- Official Approval

An amendment to the constitution must be voted upon in general meeting obtaining a two-thirds vote of the members in attendance at the meeting.

Section 4- Unacceptable Amendments

Amendments are deemed unacceptable if they violate USU or L.I.F.E. policy.

[a]Maure left at this point,. —isaac.furniss
[b]HP;DNV —isaac.furniss
[c]Passed except for the purple highlighting per Maure’s review/suggestions. — isaac.furniss
[d]Should we include the second portion of this line, or does “and execution” include it already? —isaac.furniss
[e]Should we have an Exec Member [Not Running], a non-Exec Member, and the Advisor tally the votes? —isaac.furniss
[f]Clunky, can we refine this at all? (Not fancy)—isaac.furniss
[g]Should this remain? We have said that full/associate members can participate abovealready. —isaac.furniss
[h]Stopped here. —isaac.furniss