Constitution

The following is the constitution of Trinity College Dublin Students' Union. It was adopted by the student body via a referendum on Thursday 20th March 2014.

You can view and download a Google Docs version of the constitution. There is also an archive of previous versions of the constitution.

Chapters

Preamble
  1. Introduction
  2. Lexicon
  3. Officers
  4. Governance
  5. Commissions
  6. Resignations, Removals from Office and Motions of Censure
  7. Voting, Elections and Referenda
  8. Policy and Mandate
  9. Schedules
  10. The University Times
  11. Transitory Provisions

Preamble

We, the students of Trinity College Dublin do hereby unite and form a union to represent our members to College, the University and other bodies. The Union shall represent all students and shall be the sole representative organisation for undergraduate students. It is recognised as such by the Board of Trinity College and the Council of the University of Dublin.

The Union shall also assist with academic, social and welfare needs of its members.

Copies of this constitution and the current Schedules of the Constitution shall be available in the Students’ Union Offices and as part of the Students’ Union’s online presence.

1. Introduction

1.1 – Membership

Membership of the union shall be:

  1. All capitated students.
  2. All sabbatical officers.

1.2 – Honorary Membership

Council may award, as a token of honour or service, to such persons or organisations, as it sees fit, Honorary Membership of the Union. Honorary Membership shall confer no rights, privileges, or obligations to an Honorary Member or on the Union to an Honorary Member.

  1. No more than four honorary memberships shall be awarded in an academic year. Honorary memberships shall be proposed to the second to last meeting of Council of the academic year where possible.

1.3 – Character

The union is a self-governing body answerable to its members in referenda and through their representatives at Council; its officers are its servants and its officers are wholly responsible for ensuring that the members are informed of the Union’s policies, the Union’s obligations to them and their rights both collective and individual. The Union shall be a non-profit organisation with any surpluses being returned to the members through services. No officer of the students’ Union may personally profit financially through Union activity, except through wages paid by the Students’ Union.

1.4 – Aims and principles

  1. To act as the recognised channel of communications between its members and the college and other bodies. The primary objective of the Union shall be to provide for and promote and defend the interests of its members. It shall endeavour in particular:
  2. To work for the maintenance and improvement of the quality of education in the college and for an equitable education system.
  3. To provide for the welfare of its members.
  4. To provide social and recreational amenities for its members.
  5. To provide commercial services for its members.
  6. To develop and maintain relations with other students’ unions, and the general public. These objectives shall be pursued without discrimination based on nationality, age, parentage, race, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, disability, marital status, creed or political group. The Union shall pursue these objectives independent of any political, racial or religious ideology.
  7. This constitution and the schedules of this constitution shall revoke and supersede all previous constitutions of the Students’ Union.

1.5 – Aid to Interpretation

This constitution and the schedules of this constitution shall revoke and supersede all previous constitutions of the Students’ Union.

2. Lexicon

The following definitions shall apply to this constitution:

Academic Year: A period of time spanning from the day following the end of Trinity term to the end of the following Trinity term as defined in the almanac of the University of Dublin Calendar.

Affiliate: Any institution that College considers affiliated to the University of Dublin.

Body: Any Union, Council, Union Forum, commission, committee or other group established under the provisions of this constitution to further the aims and principles of this constitution.

College, University or Trinity: the College of the Holy and Undivided Trinity of Queen Elizabeth near Dublin, established by the foundation charter of 1592 and shall include the University of Dublin where required.

Constitution: Means the constitution enacted by the members of the Union in April 2014

In Consultation with: Means while seeking the advice of

Council: Means Students’ Union Council as described in Chapter 4.2.

External: Means not within the Union.

Union Forum: The Union Forum as defined in Chapter 4.8.

Graduate Students’ Union (GSU): Means the Graduate Students’ Union of Trinity College Dublin.

Internal: Means within the Union.

Mature Student: Means any member of the Union who is defined by College as a Mature Student.

Member: Means a person that is by virtue of a provision of the constitution or by policy of the Union part of a body.

Officer Elect: Means a member of the Union who has won an election and has yet to begin their term of office.

Standing Campaign: Means the campaign concerning the issues and competencies of the PTOs of the Union.

Standing Committee: Means a committee that is enshrined in this constitution as one of the standing committees of Council.

Teaching Week: Means a week in either the first or second term of the academic year excluding the seventh week in each.

Term of Office: Means the duration of the tenure of any officer of the Union as defined in Chapter 3.7, during which they are bound by the provisions of this constitution.

Union: Means the Trinity College Dublin Students’ Union as defined under the provisions of the constitution and the University of Dublin Calendar.

Voting Member: Means a member of a body entitled to vote among that body.

3. Officers

3.1 – Class Representatives (Class Reps)

3.1.1 – Constituencies

Class Reps shall be elected from the constituencies laid down in Schedule 1 by and from amongst the students of those constituencies. They shall be elected at the beginning of the academic year.

3.1.2 – Class Reps’ Duties

The duties of the Class Reps shall be:

  1. To represent the interests of their constituencies to the College in general and to individual staff members. This includes sitting on departmental committees and school committees and course coordination committees where possible.
  2. To represent the interests of their constituencies to the Union and to the officers of the Union. This includes sitting on students’ Union Council and Faculty Assemblies.
  3. To be available for consultation by individual members of their constituencies and to present any concerns to the relevant body.
  4. To inform their constituents of Union Policy and activity.
  5. To implement the aims and principles of this constitution within their constituency.
  6. To represent their constituency to the University Council, their Faculty administration and their faculty’s Executive committee.

3.2 – Convenors

3.2.1 – Constituencies

There shall be a Faculty Convenor and a Deputy Faculty Convenor for each of the Faculties of the College and a School convenor for each of the Schools in the College as laid down in Schedule 1 and for the Business, Economics, and Social Sciences (BESS) and Two-Subject Moderatorship (TSM) courses.

The Faculty Convenors shall be elected by the Class Reps and Convenors of that faculty at the last ordinary meeting of Council of the academic year by the Class Reps and convenors of their constituency.

The School Convenors shall be elected by the Class Reps and convenors of their constituency at the last ordinary Faculty Assembly of the academic year.

3.2.2 – Faculty Convenors’ Duties

The duties of the Faculty Convenors shall be:

  1. To represent their constituency to the University Council, their Faculty administration and their faculty’s Executive committee.
  2. To coordinate the activities of the School Convenors and Class Reps of their constituency.
  3. To convene Faculty Assemblies.
  4. To represent their constituency on the Union Forum
  5. To provide a crossover manual for their successor.
  6. To provide reports to Council in accordance with Chapter 4.3.1.

3.2.3 – Deputy Faculty Convenors’ Duties

The duties of the Faculty Convenors shall be:

  1. To deputise for the Faculty Convenor in their absence.
  2. To act as secretary to Faculty Assemblies.
  3. To provide a crossover manual for their successor.

3.2.4 – School Convenors’ Duties

The duties of the School Convenors shall be:

  1. To represent the students of their constituency at the school’s executive committee meetings and at the school’s committee meetings.
  2. To report to the Class Reps of their constituency on these meetings.
  3. To advise and assist the Faculty Convenor with the coordination of the Class Reps within that school.
  4. To advise and assist the Class Reps in the school on their representative work.
  5. To provide a crossover manual for their successor.
  6. To provide reports to their Faculty Assembly at least once in an academic year. Students’ Union Constitution
  7. To formulate union policy on their area of competency to be debated at Council.

3.3 – Part-Time Officers (PTOs)

PTOs shall be elected by all of the members of Council at the last ordinary meeting of Council of the academic year.

3.3.2 – General PTO Duties

The general duties of the PTOs shall be:

  1. To formulate union policy on their area of competency to be debated at Council.
  2. To inform students of Union policy and activity in their area of competency.
  3. To advise the other officers of the Union on issues affecting their area of competency.
  4. To sit on any relevant college committees relating to their area of competency where possible.
  5. To foster relations with any external bodies that relate to their area of competency.
  6. To represent the interests of students at meetings of the Union Forum .
  7. To provide reports to Council in accordance with Chapter 4.3.1.
  8. To provide a crossover manual for their successor.

3.3.3 – Citizenship Officer (CO)

Any member of the Union may be nominated to the position of CO. Their duties shall be:

  1. To assist the Union Forum in relation to campaigns for the defense and promotion of students’ rights in the area of citizenship.
  2. Assist the President in relation to campaigns relating to citizenship in areas such as the environment, ethical trading, civic, social and political participation, with particular emphasis on voter registration, and working with community and voluntary groups.
  3. To work with the other officers of the Union to ensure that the Union’s impact on the environment is reduced.

3.3.4 – International Students Officer (ISO)

Any member of the Union who considers themselves to be an International Student may be nominated to the position of ISO. Their duties shall be:

  1. To deal with the issues faced by international students in Trinity.

3.3.5 – Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Rights Officer (LGBTRO)

Any member of the Union who identifies as lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender (LGBT) may be nominated to the position of LGBTRO. Their duties shall be:

  1. To deal with the issues faced by LGBT students in Trinity.

3.3.6 – Mature Students’ Officer (MSO)

Any member of the Union who is a mature student may be nominated to the position of MSO. Their duties shall be:

  1. To deal with the issues faced by mature students in Trinity.

3.3.7 – Officer for Students with a Disability (OSD)

Any member of the Union may be nominated to the position of OSD. Their duties shall be:

  1. To deal with the issues faced by students with a disability in Trinity.

3.3.8 – Oifigeach na Gaeilge (OnaG)

Any member of the Union who is an Irish speaker may be nominated to the position of OnaG. Their duties shall be:

  1. To assist the other officers of the Union with meeting the needs of Irish speakers in College.
  2. To deal with issues faced by Irish speakers in Trinity.
  3. To assist the Union Forum members with their duties

3.3.9 – Gender Equality Officer (GEO)

Any member of the Union may be nominated to the position of GEO. Their duties shall be:

  1. To assist the President and the Welfare & Equality Officer in the promotion of gender equality within the Union and College.

3.3.10 – Student Parents’ Officer (SPO)

Any member of the Union who identifies as a parent or legal guardian may be nominated to the position of Student Parents’ Officer. Their duties shall be:

  1. To deal with the issues faced by student parents in Trinity.

3.4 – Sabbatical Officers

3.4.1 – Election of Sabbatical Officers

Any member of the Union may be nominated to any of the Sabbatical Officer positions. They shall be elected by a ballot of all the members of the Union in accordance with Chapter 7.4.2.

3.4.2 – The Duties of the Sabbatical Officers

Each of the Sabbatical Officers shall:

  1. Act in the furtherance of the aims and principles of this constitution.
  2. Attend meetings of Union Committees when possible.
  3. Present a written report to each meeting of Council.
  4. Represent the Union on external bodies as necessary.
  5. Liaise with other Students’ Unions.
  6. Be a signatory on the Union’s chequebooks and contracts.
  7. Prepare and present an annual budget and regular financial reports as appropriate to the Union Forum.
  8. Provide a crossover manual for their successor.

3.4.3 – President

The duties specific to the role of President shall be:

  1. To act as the primary representative for the members of the Union in the furtherance of the aims and principles of this constitution as laid out in Chapter 1.
  2. To act as the Chief Campaigns Officer of the Union; including but not limited to:
    1. Acting as the chair of the Union Forum.
    2. Setting strategy for Union campaigns in conjunction with the Union Forum.
    3. Working with the Communications & Marketing Officer to publicise all Union campaigns.
  3. To represent the members of the Union on college committees including but not limited to:
    1. The Board of Trinity College Dublin.
    2. Sub-committees, working groups and advisory groups of the Board where relevant.
    3. Any other external group that is relevant to the furtherance of these duties.
  4. To act as the Chief Administrator and Chief Executive Officer of the Union; including but not limited to acting, with the Administrative Officer, as one of the co-treasurers of the Union.
  5. To:
    1. Manage Schedule 2 in consultation with the AO;
    2. Manage Schedule 5;
    3. Manage Schedule 8.
  6. To act as liaison between the Union and external bodies including, but not limited to:
    1. The Students’ Unions of the affiliated Colleges.
    2. The Central Societies Committee.
    3. The Dublin University Clubs and Athletics Committee.
    4. Any other external bodies relevant to the members of the Union.
  7. To maintain and improve Union services.
  8. To assist the other officers of the Union in the execution of their duties.

3.4.4 – Education Officer

The duties specific to the role of Education Officer shall be:

  1. To act as the primary representative for the academic interest of the members of the Union and to act as the Union’s Chief Academic Officer.
  2. To deputise for the President in their absence.
  3. To chair the Education Committee and along with the other members of this committee to:
    1. Ensure the maintenance and improvement of educational standards in College.
    2. Ensure the maintenance and improvement of academic student services in College.
  4. To represent the members of the Union on College committees including but not limited to:
    1. The Board of Trinity College Dublin.
    2. The Council of the University of Dublin.
    3. Sub-committees, working groups and advisory groups of the Board where relevant.
    4. Any other external group that is relevant to the furtherance of these duties.
  5. To act as the secretary to and a non-voting member of the Electoral Commission.
  6. To deal with the academic issues faced by the members both collective and individual.
  7. To:
    1. Manage Schedule 1;
    2. Manage Schedule 6
    3. Manage Schedule 9
  8. To conduct Class Rep Training.

3.4.5 – Welfare & Equality Officer

The duties specific to the role of Welfare & Equality Officer shall be:

  1. To act as the primary representative for the welfare interests of the members of the Union.
  2. To chair the Welfare Committee and along with the other members of this committee to:
    1. Ensure the maintenance and improvement of non-academic student services in College.
  3. To represent the members of the Union on College committees including but not limited to:
    1. The Board of Trinity College Dublin.
    2. Sub-committees, working groups and advisory groups of the Board where relevant.
    3. Any other external group that is relevant to the furtherance of these duties.
  4. To deal with the welfare issues faced by the members both collective and individual.
  5. In conjunction with the Union Forum to plan and implement campaigns for the benefit of the welfare of the members of the Union and to promote equality and diversity.
  6. To ensure the fair representation of all student groups within the Students’ Union and College and to act as the Union’s chief equality officer.

3.4.6 – Communications & Marketing Officer

The duties specific to the roll of the Communications & Marketing Officer shall be:

  1. To manage the Union’s communications both internally and externally. This includes, but is not limited to:
    1. The Union’s official press releases and internal communications.
    2. The Union’s online presence and online communication.
    3. Posters and other printed paraphernalia used to promote Union activity.
  2. To act as the Union’s Chief Marketing Officer. This includes, but is not limited to:
    1. Working with the Union Forum to ensure adequate sponsorship for Union activities
    2. Managing the Union’s branding and representations of the Union’s identity.
  3. To manage on a day-to-day basis, all Union publications with the exception of The University Times, as provided for in Schedule 10.
  4. To manage Schedule 7.
  5. To chair the Communications & Marketing Committee and along with the other members of this committee to:
    1. Ensure the maintenance and improvement of the Union’s communication services.
    2. Distribute Union Publications to the members of the Union.
    3. Develop communications and marketing strategies for the Union.
  6. To keep an archive of the documentation of all Union meetings.

3.4.7 – Entertainments Officer

The duties specific to the role of Entertainments Officer shall be:

  1. To organise and manage entertainments for the members of the Union.
  2. To assist the Class Reps in the organisation of entertainments for their constituencies.
  3. To engage with internal and external voluntary groups towards fundraising activities.

3.6 – Administrative Officer (AO)

3.6.1 – Appointment of the AO

  1. The AO shall be appointed by the Sabbatical Officers in the event of a vacancy for the position.
  2. The AO shall be a full-time staff member and not a member of the Union.

3.6.2 – Duties of the Administrative Officer

The Duties of the Administrative Officer shall be:

  1. To act as one of the co-treasurers of the Union.
  2. To support the Sabbatical Officers in the pursuance of their duties.
  3. To take the minutes of meetings of Council though the AO shall not be a member of Council.

3.7 – Terms of Office

The terms of office for all officers shall be from the end of Trinity Term following their election to the end of the Trinity Term of the following academic year, except for:

  1. The AO shall have no term of office.
  2. Annual members of the EC shall serve a term of office that lasts from the last meeting of Council of the academic year until the last meeting of Council of the following year.
  3. Biennial members of the EC shall serve a term of office that last from the last meeting of Council of the academic year until the last meeting of Council of the academic year two years hence, unless they refuse to take up the second year of their term
  4. Members of the OC shall serve a term of office that lasts from the last meeting of Council of the academic year until the last meeting of Council of the following year.
  5. Class Reps shall serve a term that lasts from their election to the start of Michaelmas term of the following year.

4. Governance

4.1 – Referendum

The members in Referenda shall be the sovereign body of the Union.

4.2 – Council

Council shall decide Union policy, with the help of its Faculty Assemblies, Standing Committees and the elected Officers of the Union. Council shall also oversee the management of the Union by considering the minutes of the Union Forum and standing committees of Council.

Council shall be conducted in accordance with the provisions of this constitution.

4.2.1 – Membership

The membership of Council shall be:

  1. The Chair of the Electoral Commission (Chair, non-voting)
  2. The Chair of the Oversight Commission (Secretary, non-voting).
  3. All Officers of the Union as defined in Chapter 3.
  4. The Presidents of the Students’ Unions of the Affiliated Colleges of Trinity or their appointed representative.
  5. The President and Vice-President of the Trinity College Dublin Graduate Students’ Union.

4.2.2 – Ordinary Meetings

  1. Ordinary meetings of Council shall take place as decided by the Sabbatical Officer Board in consultation with the Chair of Council and the Secretary to Council.
  2. There shall be at least three such meetings during teaching weeks of each term.
  3. No less than one week’s notice of each meeting shall be given by the Secretary to Council, to each member of Council stating the date, time and place of each ordinary meeting.

4.2.3 – Extraordinary Meetings

  1. Extraordinary Meetings of Council may be called by the Union Forum.
  2. Extraordinary Meetings of Council may be called by petition to the Secretary of Council signed by at least one fifth of the actual members of Council which shall state the purpose of the meeting and include the proposed agenda.
  3. Extraordinary Meetings of Council may be called by Council in accordance with Chapter 4.3.3.i).
  4. No less than three working days notice of an extraordinary meeting shall be given by the Secretary to Council, to each member of Council stating the date, time and place of the meeting.

4.2.4 – Points of Clarification at Council Meetings

Those present at any meeting of Council may request to make a point of clarification at any stage during the meeting.

  1. The speaker has discretion over acceptance of a request for a point of clarification. A point of clarification shall be:
  2. A request made to a speaker for clarification of information given by the speaker to Council or
  3. A request made to the Chair of Council to clarify any of the standing orders of Council or
  4. A request to clarify information for Council or for a speaker.

4.2.5 – Points of Order at Council Meetings

Any member of Council may make a point of order at any stage during the meeting.

  1. Points of order take precedence over all other business in Council, but cannot be used to interrupt a speaker other than the Chair. A point of Order shall be:
  2. A proposal of a procedural motion.
    1. Procedural motions must be seconded by another member of Council.
    2. Council must treat procedural motions, according to Chapter 3.3.1.e).
    3. All procedural motions must pass by a two-thirds majority of those present at the meeting
  3. Or a point made to the Chair regarding the running of the meeting to which the Chair should make a ruling.

4.3 – The Standing Orders of Ordinary Meetings of Council

4.3.1 – The Agenda for an Ordinary Meeting of Council

The Agenda for an ordinary meeting of Council is drawn up by the Secretary to Council and the Education Officer in consultation with the Electoral Commission in accordance with Chapter

It must include:

  1. Minutes of the Previous Meeting.
    1. A record of the previous Council meeting to be approved by Council and signed by the Chair.
  2. Matters Arising from the Minutes of the Previous Meeting.
    1. The opportunity for members of Council to raise matters arising from the minutes of the previous meeting.
  3. Elections
    1. Any elections that are required, which shall be run in accordance with Chapter 7.4.4.
  4. Sabbatical Officer Reports and Questions.
    1. A written report from the President, Education Officer, Welfare & Equality Officer, Communications & Marketing Officer and Entertainments Officer.
    2. Each sabbatical officer shall present their report to Council
    3. Members of Council will have the opportunity to ask questions of the officers pertaining to the substance of their reports.
    4. The report of the President shall include a proposed schedule of meetings of the Union Forum before the next meeting of Council.
  5. Discussion Items.
    1. Discussion Items may be submitted by any member of the Union.
    2. A titled, written statement must accompany the submission of any item for discussion that outlines the reason for the discussion.
    3. The proposer shall present the discussion.
    4. The Chair shall open the item up to discussion by those present.
    5. The Chair shall rule on the order in which people will speak.
    6. The Chair shall rule on the duration of the discussion.
    7. The Chair shall not take part in the substance of the discussion.
  6. Motions.
    1. Motions must be submitted in writing in accordance with Chapter 4.3.2.
    2. Motions may be proposed by any member of Council.
    3. Motions may be proposed by any 10 members of the Union who are not voting members of the Electoral Commission or Oversight Commission.
    4. Motions must be seconded by at least one member of Council who is not a member of the Electoral Commission of Oversight Commission.
    5. The proposer of a motion, or their nominee, will propose the motion to Council.
    6. Those present at the meeting will have the opportunity to speak either for or against the motion.
    7. If either there are no speakers for or against the motion, the Chair will offer the proposer or their nominee the opportunity to sum up.
    8. Voting members of Council will be asked to vote for or against the motion.
    9. Discussion of a motion ends with a vote being taken.
    10. The Chair will not take part in the substance of the discsussion.
    11. The Chair will rule on the speaking order and speaking times.
  7. Any Other Urgent Business.
  8. Items for Noting.
    These items shall include if required, but be limited to:
    1. Minutes of the Union Forum .
    2. Reports from the Part-Time Officers (minimum once per term).
    3. Reports from the Faculty Convenors(minimum once per term).
    4. EC reports when available.
    5. OC reports when available.
    6. These shall be taken as read and members of the Union shall have the opportunity to raise issues with them.
  9. Questions.
    1. Any member of the Union, who is not a member of the Electoral Commission, shall have the opportunity to ask a question of any other member of Council.
    2. Questions must be relevant to the member’s duties as a member of Council.

4.3.2 – Submission Regulations for the Agenda of Ordinary Meetings of Council

  1. The Secretary to Council shall call for submissions for the agenda no later than one week before the closing date for submissions
  2. The closing date for submissions shall be no later than four days before the Council meeting.
  3. The Secretary to Council and the Education Officer shall consult with the Electoral Commission on the admissibility of each submission in accordance with Schedule 4 and this constitution.
  4. The Education Officer and Secretary to Council shall compile the submissions into an agenda which will be distributed to members of Council no later than 72 hours before the start of the meeting.

4.3.3 – Procedural Motions for Ordinary Meetings of Council

Any member of Council as defined in Chapter 4.2.1 may propose a procedural motion. Procedural Motions must receive a majority of two thirds of members present to pass.

  1. Motion to Suspend Standing Orders.
    1. Any voting member of Council may propose to suspend standing orders for a period of time specified by the speaker.
  2. Motion to Sum up and vote.
    1. A motion to sum up and vote, if passed, instructs the chair to put the motion being discussed to a vote.
  3. Motion Arising From a Discussion.
    1. Voting members of Council that feel that a matter of policy has arisen as the result of an item for discussion, they may draft a Motion Arising from a Discussion.
    2. The Electoral Commission must make a ruling on the admissibility of all motions arising from a discussion.
    3. If the Motion is accepted by Council and the Electoral Commission, it will be added to the list of motions to be discussed by Council.
  4. Motion to Submit an Emergency motion.
    1. A motion relating to an issue that arises after the submission deadline for the agenda can be proposed at Council.
    2. The Electoral Commission must make a ruling on the admissibility of all emergency motions.
    3. If the motion is accepted by Council and the Electoral Commission, it will be added to the list of motions to be discussed by Council.
  5. Motion to Amend a Motion.
    1. A motion to amend a motion may only be submitted after the proposing speech of the substantive motion.
    2. The chair will put the amendment to the proposer of the substantive motion.
    3. If the proposer accepts the amendment, the Motion to Amend the Motion is passed and the substantive motion is amended.
    4. If the Motion to amend is not accepted by the proposer of the substantive motion, the chair deals with motion to amend as a normal procedural motion.
  6. Motion to Challenge a ruling by the Chair of Council.
    1. The motion to challenge the chair’s ruling must consist of the ruling that is being challenged and a proposed alternative ruling to that of the Chair.
  7. Motion to Temporarily Replace the Chair of Council.
    1. The proposer of the motion to temporarily replace the chair must specify the duration for which the Chair will be replaced.
    2. Nominations will be accepted from members of Council for a temporary replacement chair.
    3. An Election will be held to elect a chair as per Chapter 7.4.4.
  8. Motion to overturn an EC ruling.
    1. The motion to challenge an EC ruling must consist of the ruling that is being challenged and a proposed alternative ruling to that of the Chair.
  9. Motion to call an Extraordinary Meeting of Council.
    1. The motion must consist of the proposed agenda for the extraordinary meeting.
    2. A motion to call an Extraordinary meeting of Council may be used to adjourn an ordinary meeting and to defer business to the extraordinary meeting.
  10. Motion to Impeach.
    1. A motion to impeach an Officer or ordinary member of a standing committee must consist of the reasons for proposing to impeach the officer or ordinary member of a standing committee.
  11. Motion to refer an item
    1. A motion to refer an item may propose that any discussion item or motion is not taken and is referred to a specified subsequent meeting of Council in the same academic year.

4.4 – The Standing Orders for Extraordinary Meetings of Council

4.4.1 – The Agenda for Extraordinary Meetings of Council

The Agenda for an extraordinary meeting of Council must be proposed to the Secretary of Council along with the petition for the meeting. It must include:

  1. Introductory Report.
    1. This shall state the reasons for calling the meeting.
  2. Discussion Items.
    1. As in Chapter 4.3.1.d)
  3. Motions.
    1. As in Chapter 4.3.1.e)
  4. Business Arising from the Discussion Items and Motions.
  5. Questions.
    1. As in Chapter 4.3.1.f)

4.4.2 – Procedural Motions for Extraordinary Meetings of Council

Any member of Council as defined in Chapter 3.2.1 may propose a procedural motion. Procedural Motions must receive a majority of two thirds of members present to pass.

  1. Motion to Sum up and vote.
    1. As in Chapter 4.3.3.b).
  2. Motion Arising From a Discussion.
    1. As in Chapter 4.3.3.c).
  3. Motion to Amend a Motion.
    1. As in Chapter 4.3.3.e).
  4. Motion to Challenge a ruling by the Chair of Council.
    1. As in Chapter 4.3.3.f).
  5. Motion to Temporarily Replace the Chair of Council.
    1. As in Chapter 4.3.3.g).
  6. Motion to overturn an EC ruling.
    1. As in Chapter 4.3.3.h).
  7. Motion to Impeach.
    1. As in Chapter 4.3.3.j).

4.5 – Attendance and Speaking Rights at Council

4.5.1 – Attendance Rights

  1. Every member of the Union has the right to attend meetings of Council.
  2. Non-members of the Union may be allowed the right to attend meetings of Council by a simple majority vote of those present.
  3. The Administrative Officer has the right to attend meetings of Council.

4.5.2 – Speaking Rights

  1. Every member of the Union has the right to attend and speak at meetings of Council except for:
    1. Voting members of the Electoral Commission, except for the Chair as allowed for in Chapter 5.1.5.e).
    2. Members of the Oversight Commission, except for the Secretary to Council as allowed for in Chapter 5.2.5.d), or during Questions.
  2. Non-members of the Union may be allowed the right to speak at meetings of Council by a simple majority vote of those present.

4.6 – Committees of Council

4.6.1 – The Standing Committees

The Standing Committees of Council shall be

  1. The Education Committee.
  2. The Welfare & Equality Committee.
  3. The Communications & Marketing Committee.
  4. The terms of reference for the standing committees of Council are contained in Schedule 9.

4.6.2 – Ordinary Members of Standing Committees

  1. Any member of the Union may be nominated to the position of ordinary member of a Standing Committee.
  2. Ordinary members of Standing Committees shall be elected at the first ordinary meeting of Council of the academic year.

4.6.3 – Ad Hoc Committees

A motion can be brought to Council to set up an ad hoc committee. The motion will be treated as in Chapter 4.3. The motion must contain:

  1. A description of the purpose of the committee.
  2. The membership of the committee.
  3. The terms of reference for the committee.

4.7 – Faculty Assemblies

4.7.1 – Membership of Faculty Assemblies

The membership of each Faculty Assembly shall be:

  1. The representatives of each constituency in that Faculty as described in Schedule 1.
  2. The Sabbatical Officers.

4.7.2 – Ordinary Faculty Assemblies

  1. There shall be at least two ordinary meetings of each Faculty Assembly per term.
  2. Meetings of Faculty Assemblies should take place two teaching weeks before or after a Council meeting.

4.7.3 – Extraordinary Faculty Assemblies

Extraordinary meetings of Faculty Assemblies can be called by:

  1. The Faculty Convenors for that faculty.
  2. A petition to the Faculty Convenors signed by one fifth of the actual members of the Assembly, which must contain the item to be discussed at the meeting.

4.7.4 – Agenda for Ordinary Faculty Assemblies

The Deputy Faculty Convenor for each Faculty shall be responsible for compiling the agenda for that Assembly. Submissions to the agenda should be made to the Deputy Faculty Convenor no later than three days before the meeting. The agenda must include:

  1. Minutes
    1. The Minutes of the previous Faculty Assembly to be approved by the Assembly and signed by the Convenor.
  2. Matters Arising.
  3. Elections.
  4. Faculty Convenor report.
  5. Items for Discussion.
  6. Questions.
  7. Any other Urgent Business.
  8. School Convenor Reports (For Noting, at least once a term).

4.7.5 – Agenda for Extraordinary Faculty Assemblies

The agenda shall be:

  1. Introduction
    1. Where the reasons for the meeting are outlined.
  2. Elections.
  3. Items for Discussion.
    1. The item as submitted when calling the meeting.
  4. Questions

4.8 – The Union Forum

4.8.1 – Responsibilities

The duties of the Union Forum shall be:

  1. To advise and assist the President in setting campaign strategy.
  2. To formulate policy on Union campaigns to be discussed at Council.
  3. To deal with issues facing the members, specifically relating to the areas covered by each of the part-time officers
  4. To assist with the planning and management of the Union Standing Campaigns.
  5. To foster relations with other external bodies with a view to maintaining and improving the Union’s campaign.
  6. To develop, plan and implement the ad hoc campaigns of the Union.
  7. To report to Council on the business of the Campaigns committee
  8. To set up sub committees where necessary:
    1. This shall be done to assist with the specifics of any campaign.
    2. Positions on these committees may be elected from Council.
  9. To assist and advise on the management of the services of the Union.
  10. To propose, by supermajority agreement, motions to Council. Such proposals shall be in accordance with established procedures for submission to Council and shall be seconded by the President.

4.8.2 – Union Forum membership

The Union Forum shall consist of:

  1. President (Chair).
  2. Education Officer (Secretary).
  3. Welfare & Equality Officer
  4. Communications & Marketing Officer
  5. Entertainments Officer.
  6. Citizenship Officer.
  7. International Students Officer.
  8. Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Rights Officer.
  9. Officer for Students with a Disability.
  10. Oifigeach na Gaeilge.
  11. Mature Students’ Officer.
  12. Gender Equality Officer
  13. Student Parents’ Officer
  14. GSU President (ex-officio)
  15. Chair of Council (ex-officio; non-voting)
  16. Secretary to Council (ex-officio; non-voting)
  17. The Faculty Convenors
  18. Officerships detailed in Schedule 10

4.8.3 – Meetings of the Union Forum

  1. Meetings of the Union Forum shall take place at least once every three weeks at the behest of the President acting in accordance with Council where appropriate.
  2. The agenda for meetings of the Union Forum shall be compiled by the Education Officer from submissions from the members of the Union Forum . It shall include but not be limited to:
    1. Minutes.
    2. Matters Arising.
    3. President’s Report.
    4. Any other Business.
  3. Members of the Union Forum shall meet formally with sabbatical officers on an individual basis once per week towards the furtherance of their duties. Sabbatical Officer Board shall exercise overall discretion in arranging these meetings according to compatibility of brief.

4.9 – Sabbatical Officer Board

  1. The sabbatical officers of the Union shall meet once per week as Sabbatical Officer Board to:
    1. Review the day-to-day activities of the Union and all related matters
    2. Report individual work plans
  2. Meetings of Sabbatical Officer Board shall be chaired by the President, or the Deputy President in their absence.

4.10 – Board of Trustees

  1. All property, assets, investments and liabilities of the Students' Union shall be vested in its Trustees.
  2. The Trustees shall not be held personally at risk for the claims and liabilities against the Students' Union. The Trustees shall be indemnified against risk and expense out of the assets of the Students' Union arising out of their position as trustees.
  3. The Board of Trustees shall advise the President on matters of staffing, strategy, administration and finance and other issues of Trinity College Dublin Students' Union.
  4. There shall be no fewer than six and a maximum of nine voting trustees of the Union. They shall include the President with additional members being appointed by a two-thirds majority of Council.
    1. The AO shall serve ex-officio as a non-voting secretary to the Board of Trustees
  5. Trustees shall hold office unless they resign, are removed or are incapacitated.
    1. Trustees may be removed by a two-thirds majority vote at Students' Union Council.
    2. Trustees shall resign in writing to the President.
  6. The Trustees shall elect a chairperson and shall meet as a Board when necessary but at least once per annum.

4.11 – General Governance Regulations

The following regulations apply to all Union bodies.

  1. Quorum for meetings of Union bodies shall be one third of the actual members of the body.
  2. The minimum number of members of a body required to conduct business shall be 3.

4.11.2 – Agenda

  1. Each meeting of every Union body shall have an agenda which is available in advance of that meeting.
  2. The agenda shall set out the business to be conducted at that meeting.

4.11.3 – Decision making

Decisions made by Union bodies shall be made by:

  1. A simple majority of those present as indicated by a vote.
    1. Union Forum requires a supermajority (75%) vote to propose a motion to Council.
  2. Consensus of all of the members of the body.
  3. The only people who may vote on a decision by a Union body are those who are present voting members.
  4. A voting member of a body has only vote on any decision.
  5. Any member of any Union body may request that any decision be put to a vote.

4.11.4 – Chair

  1. Every Union body shall have a chair as defined in the membership of the body.
  2. The chair shall be responsible for regulating the following:
    1. Keeping order in the meeting.
    2. Speaking Order.
    3. Speaking Time.
    4. Duration of discussion.
    5. The conduct of the agenda.
  3. In the event of any tied vote, the chair shall have the casting vote and shall vote against the proposal.

4.11.5 – Secretarial business

  1. Every Union body shall have a secretary
  2. In the absence of the official secretary, the body should elect a temporary secretary.
  3. The secretary of each body shall be responsible for compiling the agenda for the meeting of that body and for giving members notice of the meeting.
  4. The secretary shall be responsible for taking the minutes of the meeting and distributing them to the members of the committee.
  5. The secretary of each body will be responsible for providing the Communications & Marketing Officer with a copy of the documents for each meeting of that body.

4.11.6 – In Camera

  1. Any Union Body, Except for Council, can vote to go in camera for any discussion.
  2. The secretary will continue to minute the portion of the meeting that is in camera.
  3. The body may decide to publicise the minutes at a later date.

4.11.7 – Meetings

  1. Meetings of any Union Body can be called by the chair, secretary or one fifth of the members.
  2. No business may be conducted by a meeting of any body unless 72 hours notice has been given to the body by its secretary.
  3. Meetings may be cancelled by the chair, secretary or one fifth of the members.

4.11.8 – Apologies

  1. Members of Union Bodies are entitled to miss meetings if they send apologies to the secretary of the body in advance of the meeting.
  2. If any member misses three meetings without giving apologies, the Secretary shall contact the member to inform them:
  3. That they may be deemed to have resigned their position on the body unless:
  4. The member provides an acceptable excuse for missing the meetings.

5. Commissions

5.1 – The Electoral Commission (EC)

5.1.1 – Membership of the EC

The EC shall consist of:

  1. The Chair of Council (Chair).
  2. The Education Officer (Secretary, non-voting).
  3. Two biennial ordinary members.
  4. Four annual ordinary members.

5.1.2 – Election of the EC

Any member of the Union may be nominated to run for the positions of ordinary members of the EC.

  1. Annual members shall be elected by Council at the final ordinary meeting of the Academic year for the following academic year. The term of office shall be until the last Council of the following year.
  2. Biannual members shall be elected by Council at the final ordinary meeting of Council of the Academic year for the following academic year. The term of office shall be until the final ordinary meeting of Council in the second year following that academic year.
  3. Biannual members, before the final ordinary meeting of Council in their first year in office, may reject their position for the second year. In this case extra annual members shall be elected.

5.1.3 – Election of the Chair of Council

Any member of Union who has previously served a term of office on the Electoral Commission may be nominated to run for the position of Chair of Council. They shall be elected at the last ordinary meeting of the academic year.

  1. In the event that no eligible person is nominated, any member of the Union shall be eligible for nomination and election.

5.1.4 – Meetings of the EC

  1. Meetings of the EC shall all be in camera unless otherwise stated by the commission.
  2. The EC must meet before each Council to review the submissions to the agenda.

5.1.5 – Duties of the EC

The duties of the EC shall be:

  1. To organise, run, monitor and return the results of all Union elections and referenda.
    1. This shall be done in accordance with Chapter 7 and Schedule 3.
    2. The EC may appoint polling clerks to assist with the running of the Elections.
  2. To manage Schedule 3.
    1. The EC shall review and submit Schedule 3 to Council in the first term of the academic year.
  3. Investigate potential breaches of election regulations
    1. The EC shall act autonomously or at the request of any member of the Union in this regard.
  4. Interpretation of this Constitution.
    1. The EC shall, at the request of any member of the Union, provide a constitutional interpretation on any provision of this Constitution.
    2. All interpretations must be submitted to the Secretary to Council as EC reports as in Chapter 4.3.1.h).v.
    3. In the event that quorum of the EC is unavailable, the Chair may make a provisional interpretation that can be ratified by the EC as soon as possible thereafter.
  5. Council.
    1. The EC shall be responsible for the organisation of Council meetings.
    2. The members of the EC shall attend all meetings of Council where possible.
    3. The EC shall be responsible for keeping order, counting quorum and running all elections at Council meetings.
    4. No voting member of the EC, except for the chair may take part in the substance of the discussion at Council and the Chair may not take part in the substance of the discussion unless they are presenting a report.
    5. The Chair of Council shall provide a crossover manual for their successor.

5.1.6 – Prohibitions on the EC

  1. No voting member of the EC, including the Chair may be nominated for any other position or officership within the Union during their term of office.
    1. This provision applies to members of the EC who have resigned their position on the EC or been removed from office during their term of office.
  2. This does not prohibit members of the EC from running for positions at the last ordinary meeting of Council of their term of office.

5.2 – Oversight Commission (OC)

5.2.1 – Membership of the OC

The OC shall consist of:

  1. Secretary to Council (Chair).
  2. Two ordinary members.
  3. One external member with knowledge of the sabbatical officerships
    1. The external member shall be appointed by the OC in consultation with the AO

5.2.2 – Election of the OC

Any member of the Union may be nominated to run for the positions of ordinary members of the OC. They shall be elected by Council at the final ordinary meeting of the Academic year.

5.2.3 – Election of the Secretary to Council

Any member of Union may be nominated to run for the position of Secretary to Council. They shall be elected at the last ordinary meeting of the academic year.

5.2.4 – Meetings of the OC

  1. Meetings of the OC shall be in camera unless otherwise stated by the commission.
  2. The OC must meet after each meeting of Council to manage the policy Manual.

5.2.5 – Duties of the OC

The OC Shall:

  1. Manage the Policy Manual (Schedule 4).
    1. The secretary to Council shall, with the assistance of the Education Officer, update the Policy Manual after each meeting of Council.
    2. The Secretary to Council shall provide a crossover manual for their successor.
  2. Policy interpretation.
    1. The OC shall, at the request of any member of the Union, provide a policy interpretation on Schedule 4.
    2. All interpretations must be submitted to the Secretary to Council as OC reports as in Chapter 4.3.1.h).vi.
    3. In the event that quorum of the OC is unavailable, the Secretary to Council may make a provisional interpretation that can be ratified by the OC as soon as possible thereafter.
  3. Investigate possible breaches of or persistent inaction upon: policy, mandate and constitutional obligation.
    1. The OC shall act autonomously or at the request of any member of the Union in this regard.
    2. Should the OC discover a breach of policy, mandate or constitutional obligation by any individual or group, they shall:
    3. Bring it to the attention of the individual or group concerned along with a request to rectify the situation and then if required,
    4. Bring it to the attention of Council as a discussion item.
    5. Motions of Censure or Procedural Motions to Overturn an EC ruling may arise from these discussion items.
  4. Council.
    1. All members of the OC shall attend Council meetings if possible.
    2. No member of the OC excluding the Secretary to Council may take part in the substance of the discussion at Council.
    3. The Secretary to Council may only take part in the substance of the discussion when presenting a report, discussion item or during a motion arising from an OC discussion item or any motion of censure.

5.2.6 – Prohibitions on the OC

  1. No member of the OC, including the Secretary to Council may be nominated for any other position or officership within the Union during their term of office.
    1. This provision applies to members of the OC who have resigned their position on the OC or been removed from office during their term of office.
  2. This does not prohibit members of the OC from running for positions at the last ordinary meeting of their term of office.

6. Resignations, Removals from Office and Motions of Censure

6.1 – Resignations

  1. An officer of the Union, as defined in Chapter 3, who wishes to resign, shall do so in writing to the President. Except for:
    1. The President who shall resign in writing to the Education Officer.
  2. A member of any Union body who wishes to resign in their capacity as a member of that body shall resign from that body in writing to the chair of that body, except for:
    1. The Chair of that body who shall resign in writing to the President.
  3. An election to replace any member who resigns a position shall be conducted in accordance with Chapter 7.

6.2 – Removals from Office

6.2.1 – Impeachment of a Sabbatical Officer

  1. A Sabbatical Officer shall be removed from office by the passing of a resolution by referendum to impeach that officer, as described in Chapter 7.5.
  2. The referendum shall be conducted in accordance with Chapter 7.5.

6.2.2 – Impeachment of a Faculty Convenor, PTO or General Officer.

  1. A Faculty Convenor, PTO or General Officer shall be removed from office by the passing of a Motion to Impeach by Council as per Chapter 4.3.3.j).

6.2.3 – Impeachment of a Member of a Union body.

  1. An ordinary member of a Standing Committee of Council may be impeached by the passing of a Motion to Impeach by Council as per Chapter 4.3.3.j).
  2. A member of an ad hoc body or subcommittee of Council or the Union Forum may be impeached by a two thirds majority of those present at any meeting of that body.

6.2.4 – Impeachment of a School Convenor.

  1. A petition of one third of the Class Reps in a School Convenor’s constituency must be submitted to the EC giving the reasons for seeking impeachment.
  2. A meeting of the Class Reps in that constituency shall be called by the EC
  3. Quorum of the Class Reps in that constituency must be present for the meeting to conduct an impeachment vote.
  4. The School Convenor shall be impeached if a two thirds majority of those present vote in favour of impeachment.
  5. The meeting of the Class Reps in the constituency can be called independently or as part of a Faculty Assembly.

6.2.5 – Impeachment of a Class Rep

  1. A petition of one third of the members of the constituency must be submitted to the EC giving the reasons for seeking impeachment.
  2. A meeting of the members of that constituency shall be called by the EC.
  3. Quorum of the constituency must be present for the meeting to conduct an impeachment vote.
  4. The Class Rep may be impeached by a two thirds majority of those present voting in favour of impeachment.
  5. Should the Class Rep be impeached, nominations shall open immediately and a re-election shall be conducted as in Chapter 7.

6.3 – Motions of Censure

  1. Motions of censure shall only be brought against officers of the Union or against Union bodies.
  2. Motions of Censure shall be brought to Council as per Chapter 4.3.1.f).
  3. Motions of Censure against an officer shall contain the alleged reasons for censuring that officer.
  4. Motions of Censure are the strongest reprimand that Council may give an officer without calling for the impeachment of that officer or removal of the member from the relevant Union Body.

7. Voting, Elections and Referenda

7.1 – General Electoral Regulations

7.1.1 – Electorates and Constituencies

  1. The electorate for any elections held at meetings of Council shall be the members of Council unless otherwise stated in this document or in the policy manual.
  2. The constituencies for each officership shall be as laid down in Schedule 1 or in this Constitution.
  3. The constituency for each position on a standing committee is specified in Chapter 4.
  4. The electorate for referenda and sabbatical elections shall be all of the members.
  5. Any Officer positions, excluding those of the Sabbatical Officers, which are unfilled after a specified time of election, shall be elected at the next available opportunity as decided by the EC.

7.1.2 – The EC

  1. The EC shall be responsible for elections and referenda as in Chapter 5.1.5.
  2. The EC shall manage and enforce Schedule 3.

7.2 – Voting System

7.2.1 – Voting in Union Body Decision Making

Union bodies may reach decisions by a vote as specified in Chapter 4.9.3.a)

  1. This shall be conducted by the Chair calling for a show of hands by the voting members or
  2. The members of the body may request to vote by secret ballot.

7.2.2 – Electoral Voting System

Union bodies may reach decisions by a vote as specified in Chapter 4.9.3.a)

  1. Union elections shall use a system called Proportional Representation (PR).
  2. All voters in Union elections shall have a secret ballot and shall vote by Single Transferable Vote (STV).
  3. If a clear first preference is not shown by the voter, the vote shall be deemed spoiled.
  4. Preference should be indicated by voting 1, 2, 3 etc in order of preference of candidates.
  5. The EC shall be responsible for Counting Votes.
  6. The system for counting PR-STV shall be as follows:
    1. For the purposes of counting votes, RON shall be treated as a candidate.
    2. The votes are sorted by following categories: One category for each candidate and one for spoiled votes.
    3. The votes in each category are counted.
    4. The valid poll (A) shall be calculated by summing the votes for all candidates summed.
    5. The number of seats (B) in the constituency is ascertained.
    6. The quota(Q=([A]/[B+1]+1)), which shall be the number of votes required to be declared elected without elimination of other candidates, is calculated by dividing the valid poll by the number of seats plus one, and adding one.
    7. Any candidate that has a number of votes greater than or equal to Q shall be declared elected.
    8. If the number of candidates elected does not equal B, the count shall continue. If the number of candidates elected equals B the result of the election shall be returned and the count shall end.
    9. If the candidate with the largest number of votes has a number of votes greater than Q, their votes in excess of Q (surplus) shall be transferred proportionally to other candidates according to the next highest preference on each ballot. The Surplus is divided by Q to give the value of each proportionally transferred vote.
    10. If no remaining candidate has a number of votes greater than or equal to Q, the candidate with the fewest votes is eliminated and their votes are transferred to other candidates according to the next highest preference on each ballot.
    11. This process is iterated from point vii.

7.3 – Nomination for Election

7.3.1 – General Nomination Regulations

  1. Only members of the Union may be nominated to run for election for a Union position.
  2. No person shall be nominated to more than one position on the same committee.
  3. Members may nominate themselves.
  4. All nominations must be accompanied by a number of seconding nominations. This number is specified in the nomination rules for each set of elections.
  5. Members may only hold one officership except for combinations of:
    1. Class Rep and/or School Convenor and/or Faculty Convenor or Deputy Faculty Convenor.
    2. Class Rep and/or School Convenor and/or PTO/General Officer.

7.3.2 – Class Rep Nominations

  1. Only members of each Class Rep constituency, as specified in Schedule 1, shall be nominated for election in that constituency.
  2. Nominees must have at least one seconding nomination from the same constituency.
  3. Nominations for the Class Rep Elections shall open and close at a time specified by the Sabbatical Officers, but shall be open for a minimum of two weeks.

7.3.3 – Council Nominations

  1. Nominations for Council Elections shall be taken from members of Council by the Chair of Council.
    1. Only members of Council may nominate candidates for Council Elections.
  2. All nominations at meetings of Council require at least one seconding nomination.
  3. Members who may be nominated for each Council Election are specified in Chapter 3.

7.3.4 – Faculty Assembly Nominations

  1. Nominations for Faculty Assembly Elections shall be taken from members of the Faculty Assembly by the chair.
    1. Only members of the Faculty Assembly may nominate candidates for Faculty Assembly Elections.
  2. All nominations at meetings of Council require at least one seconding nomination.
  3. Members who may be nominated for each Faculty Assembly Election are specified in Chapter 3.

7.3.5 – Sabbatical Nominations

  1. Any member of the Union may be nominated for any of the Sabbatical Officer positions.
  2. Nominations must have at least 10 seconding nominations.
  3. Nominations for the Sabbatical Elections shall open and close at a time specified by the EC, but shall be open for a minimum of one week and should close a minimum of two weeks before the start of the Elections.

7.4 – Elections

7.4.1 – General Election Regulations

  1. The full Election Regulations shall be outlined in Schedule 3.
  2. Candidates’ names shall appear in alphabetical order by surname on any printed ballot.
  3. The option to re-open nominations (RON) shall be included as a candidate at the end of all printed ballots.

7.4.2 – Sabbatical Elections

  1. The Sabbatical Elections shall take place in the second teaching term of the academic year and shall start no sooner than two weeks after the closure of nominations.
  2. If no candidate is nominated or a RON result is returned, the nominations shall be re-opened as in Chapter 6.3.5
  3. The Education Officer of the previous academic year and the Administrative Officer of the Union shall return the results for the Sabbatical Elections if possible.
  4. The EC may eliminate any candidate from the election.
    1. The votes of an eliminated candidate shall be transferred to the next available preference.
  5. There shall be an Appeals Board which shall be convened in the event of a Sabbatical Election Candidate being eliminated from the election. It shall:
    1. Consist of: One former Sabbatical Officer; one member of the School of Law in Trinity (pro-patria) and one external member with a suitable background in Students’ Union elections. These members shall be appointed by the Sabbatical Officers.
    2. Consider evidence from both the EC and the candidate that has been eliminated.
    3. Either uphold the EC decision to eliminate the candidate or overturn it after due consideration.
  6. Candidates eliminated from the election have the right to continue campaigning until such time as the appeals board has considered their case.
    1. However the result of their election shall not be returned until the Appeals board has either upheld or overturned the EC decision.

7.4.3 – Class Rep Elections

  1. The Class Rep Elections shall take place in the first term of the academic year and shall start no sooner than two working days after the closure of nominations.
  2. If no candidate is nominated or a RON result is returned, the nominations shall be re-opened as in Chapter 7.3.2.
  3. The Education Officer shall return the results of the Class Rep Elections.
  4. If the nominations close with no nominees for any constituency, the first valid nomination thereafter shall be declared elected.

7.4.4 – Council Elections

  1. Council Elections shall take place as specified in the Council Agenda in Chapter 4.3.1.c).
  2. The Chair of Council shall return the results of Council Elections.
  3. If a candidate is uncontested in a Council Election, the Chair shall declare that person elected.

7.4.5 – Bye Elections

If a Sabbatical Officer, for any reason, ceases to be such during their term of office; or a Sabbatical Officer Elect should elect not to take up their position:

  1. Nominations shall re-open as in Chapter 6.3.5.
  2. A Bye-Election among all of the members of the Union shall be held within two weeks of the closure of nominations.
    If any Faculty Convenor, Deputy Faculty Convenor, PTO, General Officer or ordinary member of a Council Standing Committee, for any reason, ceases to be such during their term of office:
  3. The position shall be elected at the next ordinary meeting of Council.
    If any School Convenor, for any reason, ceases to be such during their term of office:
  4. The position shall be elected and the next ordinary meeting of that Faculty Assembly.
    If a Class Rep, for any reason, ceases to be such during their term of office:
  5. Nominations shall open in that constituency for one week
  6. An election shall be held thereafter.
  7. If the nominations close with no nominees for any constituency, the first valid nomination thereafter shall be declared elected.

7.5 – Referenda

7.5.1 – Calling Referenda

A Referendum shall be called by the EC when:

  1. A two-thirds majority vote at any meeting of Council in favour of any resolution is passed.
  2. A petition is submitted to the EC containing the relevant resolution and the signatures of:
    1. For a constitutional Referendum: Five hundred members.
    2. For a Long-Term Policy Referendum: Two hundred and fifty members.
    3. For an Officer Impeachment Referendum: Five hundred members.
  3. The referendum shall take place no earlier than two teaching weeks and no later than five teaching weeks after the calling of the referendum.

7.5.2 – Calling Referenda

  1. The Union shall provide impartial factual information on the resolution of any referendum.
  2. Any member of the Union may propose themselves to campaign either for or against the resolution of any referendum except:
    1. A Sabbatical Officer, unless the referendum is an impeachment referendum for that officer.
  3. The Union shall provide financial resources for each side to campaign.
    1. The amount and nature of these resources shall be decided by the EC.
  4. The Union shall provide non-partisan factual information on the resolution of any referendum.

7.5.3 – Constitutional Referenda

A Constitutional Referendum shall be a called when a resolution to amend or otherwise alter this Constitution is passed as in Chapter 7.2.1

7.5.4 – Long-Term Policy Referenda

A Long-Term Policy Referendum shall be called when a resolution to create or amend any part of the Union’s Long-Term Policy (Schedule 4) or on any other issue of concern to the Union’s members is passed as in Chapter 7.2.1.

  1. A long-term policy referendum shall be passed by a majority of a minimum of 60%.
  2. Long-term policy shall only be removed or amended by the passing of a resolution to remove or amend an item of long-term policy by a 60% majority.

7.5.5 – Officer Impeachment Referenda

An Officer Impeachment Referendum shall be called when a resolution to impeach a Sabbatical Officer is passed.

8. Policy and Mandate

8.1 – Long-Term Policy

8.1.1 – Setting Long-Term Policy

  1. Long-term policy may be set by the Union on any subject of interest to the members.
  2. Long-term policy shall be set by referendum as described in Chapter 7.5.

8.1.2 – Duration of Long-Term Policy

Long-term policy shall not expire unless changed or removed by referendum.

8.1.3 – Change or Removal of Long-Term Policy

Long-term policy shall only be changed or removed by referendum in an academic year other that the year it was set.

8.2 – Mandate

8.2.1 – Mandated Policy

  1. Mandated Policy shall be set at Council by the passing of motions brought as described in Chapter 4.3.1.f).
  2. Mandated Policy may be set by Council on any subject relevant to the aims and principles of this Constitution or the administration of the Union.

8.2.2 – Mandate

  1. Mandates may be given to officers of the Union by the passing of motions brought as described in Chapter 4.3.1.f).
  2. Mandates may be given to officers on any subject relevant to the aims and principles of this Constitution or the area of competency of the officer provided:
    1. No mandate given to an officer can impinge on their personal rights or freedoms.

8.2.3 – Duration of Mandate

  1. Mandate shall expire at the end of the second full academic year following the year of adoption.
  2. Mandate may be renewed by a simple majority vote at any meeting of Council.

8.2.4 – Change or Removal of Mandate

  1. Mandate may be changed by a two-thirds majority vote at any meeting of Council.
  2. Mandate may be removed by a two-thirds majority vote at any meeting of Council.

8.3 – The Policy Manual (Schedule 4)

8.3.1 – Content of Schedule 4 Schedule 4 shall contain:

  1. Section 1:
    1. All long-term policies of the Union passed by referendum.
  2. Section 2:
    1. All current mandated policies of the Union passed by Council.
    2. All current mandates on officers of the Union passed by Council.

8.3.2 – Management of Schedule 4

Schedule 4 shall be managed by the OC, this shall involve:

  1. Updating Schedule 4 after each meeting of Council and long-term policy referendum.
  2. Informing any officer or Union body of any mandates on them, or policies relevant to their area of competency.

8.4 – Policy Restriction

Policy shall not supersede any provision of this constitution.

9. Schedules

9.1 – Schedule 1 – Union Constituencies

9.1.1 – Management of Schedule 1

  1. The Education Officer shall be responsible for the management of Schedule 1.
  2. The EC shall be responsible for ensuring the validity, relevance and fairness of Schedule 1.
  3. If the EC deem Schedule 1 to be invalid, irrelevant or unfair, they shall bring it to Council as a report.

9.1.2 – Content of Schedule 1

Schedule 1 shall contain:

  1. A list of every constituency in the Union.
  2. The number of seats in every constituency in the Union.

9.2 – Schedule 2 – Sabbatical Officer Contracts

9.2.1 – Management of Schedule 2

  1. The President and Administrative Officer shall be responsible for the management of Schedule 2.

9.2.2 – Content of Schedule 2

Schedule 2 shall contain:

  1. The Presidential contract.
  2. The Education Officer contract.
  3. The Welfare & Equality Officer contract.
  4. The Communications & Marketing Officer contract.
  5. The Entertainments Officer contract.

9.3 – Schedule 3 – Election Regulations and dates

9.3.1 – Management of Schedule 3

  1. The EC shall be responsible for the management of Schedule 3.
  2. The EC shall bring Schedule 3 to Council as a report in the first term of the academic year.
  3. Schedule 3 may not be altered thereafter.

9.3.2 – Content of Schedule 3

Schedule 3 shall contain:

  1. The Election Regulations.
  2. The times and dates of the sabbatical Elections.

9.4 – Schedule 4 – Policy Manual

9.4.1 – Management of Schedule 4

  1. The OC shall be responsible for the management of Schedule 4.
  2. The OC shall update Schedule 4 after each meeting of Council in consultation with the Education Officer and each referendum in accordance with Chapter 5.2.5.

9.4.2 – Content of Schedule 4

Schedule 4 shall contain:

  1. Section 1:
    1. All long-term policies of the Union passed by referendum.
  2. Section 2:
    1. All current mandated policies of the Union passed by Council.
    2. All current mandates on officers of the Union passed by Council.

9.5 – Schedule 5 - Staff Relations

9.5.1 – Management of Schedule 5

  1. The President shall be responsible for the management of Schedule 5.

9.5.2 – Content of Schedule 5

Schedule 5 shall contain:

  1. A list of all staff of the Union and their job descriptions.
  2. The Union rate of pay.

9.6 – Schedule 6 – Representation Strategy

9.6.1 – Management of Schedule 6

  1. The Education Officer shall be responsible for the management of Schedule 6.

9.6.2 – Content of Schedule 6

Schedule 6 shall contain:

  1. A list of Union representatives on external bodies.
  2. Any vacant positions in Schedule 6 shall be elected from Council.

9.7 – Schedule 7 – Union Communications and Publications

9.7.1 – Management of Schedule 7

  1. The Communications & Marketing Officer shall be responsible for the management of Schedule 7.

9.7.2 – Content of Schedule 7

Schedule 7 shall contain:

  1. A list of Union communication media and publications with a description of each.
  2. A list of people responsible for each medium and publication.

9.8 – Schedule 8 - Memoranda of agreement

9.8.1 – Management of Schedule 8

  1. The President shall be responsible for the management of Schedule 8.
  2. Council shall ratify any changes to Schedule 8

9.8.2 – Content of Schedule 8

Schedule 8 shall contain:

  1. Any memoranda of agreement that exist between the Union and external bodies.

9.9 – Schedule 9 – Terms of Reference of Committees of Council.

9.9.1 – Management of Schedule 9

  1. Council shall be responsible for the management of Schedule 9.

9.9.2 – Content of Schedule 9

Schedule 9 shall contain:

  1. The terms of reference and membership of:
    1. The Education Committee.
    2. The Welfare & Equality Committee.
    3. The Communications & Marketing Committee.
  2. The terms of reference of any ad hoc committee of the Union.

9.10 – Schedule 10 - Ad Hoc Part-Time Officerships

9.10.1 – Management of Schedule 10

  1. Council shall be responsible for the management of Schedule 10

9.10.2 – Content of Schedule 10

Schedule 10 shall contain:

  1. The title and role description of all part-time officerships appointed by Council.

10. The University Times

10.1 – The University Times and TCDSU

  1. The Union shall support the publication of The University Times in the following ways:
    1. Provision of financial resources towards publication and related expenses.
    2. Provision of a salary for the editor only, granted on a monthly basis during term.
    3. Provision of an office and adequate facilities for the publication of the newspaper.
  2. There shall be a newspaper published at least once a month in both teaching terms.
  3. The election for the position of The University Times editor shall be co-ordinated by the Electoral Commission alongside the annual sabbatical officer elections.
    1. The election for the position of The University Times shall be subject to election regulations as set out in Schedule 3.
    2. Any member of the Union may be nominated for the position of The University Times Editor.
    3. The Editor of the newspaper shall take an intermission of studies for their term of office.
  4. The Editor of The University Times must present a detailed & fully costed budget to the Union Forum at its first meeting at the first meeting of the academic year
    1. This budget can be accepted or rejected, but not altered by the Union Forum.
  5. The University Times shall be guaranteed editorial independence from the Union.
    1. There shall be an Oversight Board which shall be convened by the Board of Trustees in the event of a dispute arising between the Union and The University Times.
    2. The Oversight Board shall consist of: A member of the Law School (pro-patria; chair), an external member with appropriate background in student publications, an external member with an appropriate background in Students’ Unions.
    3. The ruling of the Oversight Board is final.
    4. Members of the Oversight Board shall be appointed by the Trustees.
  6. Any profit generated by the newspaper will be available for the Editor to invest in the newspaper.

11. Transitory Provisions

11.1 – Policy

All policy of the Union which is policy immediately before the commencement of this constitution shall continue to be in effect until or unless:

  1. It expires in accordance with:
    1. Its terms.
    2. The terms of the previous constitution of the Union.
  2. It is deemed to be repugnant to this constitution.

11.2 – Amendment

Notwithstanding the provisions for referendum as described in Chapter 7.5, this constitution, except for the transitory provisions, may be amended as follows:

  1. Motion to amend the constitution shall be submitted to the EC, proposed by 10 members of the Union.
  2. Motions may be proposed to change any provision of this constitution except for:
    1. Chapter 11 – Transitory Provisions.
    2. New chapters may not be added.
    3. Chapters may not be removed.
  3. The EC may deem a motion to change the meaning or spirit of the constitution as intended by the members of the Union when enacting this constitution.
  4. A special meeting of Council at which any member of the Union may vote shall be called by the EC in the first term of the 2014/15 academic year.
  5. Quorum for this meeting shall be 100 members.
  6. A two thirds majority of those present voting in favour of a motion shall cause the amendments proposed therein to be adopted.

11.3 – Transition

This constitution shall come into effect immediately upon being enacted by the members of the Union, provided:

11.3.1 – Sabbatical Officers

  1. Sabbatical officers holding office on the commencement of this constitution shall continue in their roles until their term of office ends as defined under the previous constitution.
  2. Sabbatical Officers Elect, elected under the previous constitution shall be deemed to be elected under this constitution as follows:
    1. The President Elect shall be the President Elect
    2. At the beginning of their term of office, the Communications Officer Elect shall become the Communications Officer as per the terms of the previous constitution for the 2014/15 academic year only. Amendments to the role of Communications Officer and/or with consequence for The University Times shall come into effect as of the 2015/16 academic year. Elections for the position of Communications & Marketing Officer and The University Times editor will first occur alongside the 2015 sabbatical officer elections.
    3. The Education Officer Elect shall be the Education Officer Elect.
    4. The Welfare Officer Elect shall be the Welfare Officer Elect.
    5. The Entertainments Officer Elect shall be the Entertainments Officer Elect.

11.3.2 – Elections

  1. Nothing in this constitution shall invalidate any election held under the previous constitution provided that it was held in good faith.
  2. Elections for the positions elected at Council under this constitution shall be elected at the last Council meeting of the academic year 13/14.

11.4 – Expiration of Transitory Provisions

Chapter 11 of this constitution shall expire and be deleted from the constitution at the end of the special meeting of Council called to amend this constitution, or at midnight on the 31st of December 2014.

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