University for the Creative Arts Students’ Union By-laws
Regulation 1: General Regulations.
This regulation governs conduct of general Union affairs including, but not limited to, General Meetings, Board of Trustees and its standing committees, committees and groups relating to the governance of Union Societies and other committees and groups undertaking Union business.
1. These By-laws and policies of the Union are not subject to ratification from the Governing body and Charities Commission.
2. The Trustees and Executive Committees shall have the power from time to time to make, repeal or amend By-Laws as to the management of the Union and its working practices provided that such By-Laws shall not be inconsistent with the Constitution.
3. The final interpretation of these by-laws sits with the Trustee Board
Office Holders of the Union
4. The Principal Union Officers shall be the:
4.1 Four elected Officer Trustees who shall serve one year in office from 1st July to the last day of June, for no longer than two terms in office in accordance with the Education Act (1994).
4.2 The Officer Trustees shall be elected in accordance with Election Regulations of these By-laws and each being assigned to a Campus, shall also be known in these By-laws as Campus Presidents.
4.3 Each Campus Presidents will be allocated an annual allowance included in the budget discussed and approved by the trustee Board.
4.4 There will be a Campus Presidents’ contract of employment, and therefore if an officer resigns, and a Campus President is asked to take on additional responsibilities this should be agreed in consultation with that Officer by the Trustee Board.
Removal from Office
5. Officers of the union, as listed in regulation 3, may be removed from office by an officer report being rejected 3 times in an officers’ term or a petition being completed by 2% of the student population.
6. Motions of no confidence must be debated and voted on by a full students referendum in accordance with the rules outlined in the regulation and shall require a two-thirds majority in order to pass. The chair shall ensure that the officer to whom the motion refers is given the opportunity to speak in opposition to the motion
7. Motions of no confidence in an officer must be submitted by;
2% of the members of the Union, to include a proposer and seconder
8. Motions of no confidence must state the reason/s why the officer should be removed from office, to include:
8.1 Neglect of duties of the post as detailed in the job description to be found in the UCA SU Constitution
8.2 Failure to adhere to the officer’s employment contract
8.3 Persistent failure to adhere to the code of acceptable behaviour (Appendix D)
8.4 Gross misconduct
9. Successful motions of no confidence against a sabbatical (fulltime) officer shall be referred to the Board of Trustees as a matter of urgency. The Board of Trustees may either uphold the motion of no confidence and call a referendum or write to the proposer of the motion detailing their reasons for not upholding the motion (in which the case the officer shall continue be an employee of the Union).
10. The sabbatical officer shall cease the duties of their office, and be suspended on full pay until a full student referendum is called to a decision whether to uphold the motion of no confidence.
11. If a vote of no confidence referendum is called by the Trustee board this must be executed as quickly as it is feasible to ensure a free and fair referendum, but must be no longer than 28 days from the Trustee Board decision.
The term, “University Days” as used in these regulations shall refer to clear days within the University’s academic calendar and shall not be applied to University closed days, holidays or public holidays.
Regulation 2 – Membership
Types of Membership
1. There will exist two types of union membership:
i. Full members
ii. Additional Members
2. Full Membership gives;
i. Full access to UCASU facilities and resources
ii. Voting Rights
iii. Right to stand for election
3. Honorary Membership, Life and Associate Membership shall be determined by the Union Trustee Board. All Honorary Members shall be entitled to:
4. Join any Union club or society but take no part in the decision making of that club or society, or, in the case of BUCS affiliated sports teams they may not play competitive matches.
5. Attend and speak at any meeting of the Union with the permission of the members at that meeting.
6. Enjoy Union facilities and services in accordance with any rules that may be laid down from time to time.
7. Other privileges, as may be from time to time decided upon by the Union Trustee Board.
Regulation 3 – Clubs & Societies
1. There shall be Clubs and Societies of the Union.
Setting up a Club or Society
2. No club/society may receive funds from the Union or use Union facilities without being formally affiliated by the Clubs and Societies Committee.
3. To be considered for recognition, the club/society shall submit to the Clubs and Societies Committee:
3.1 A proposal or rationale for the club, including the aims and objectives of the club/society in line with;
3.2 A list of prospective members; and
3.3 Completion of a budget sheet for submission to the Clubs and Societies Grant Committee, including details of any potential membership fees.
4. No club/society will be recognised if its objectives conflict with those of the union. However, this restriction shall not be interpreted so as to prevent the establishment of political, religious or ethnically based clubs and societies, except where the Trustee Board deems them unlawful or in contravention of the Union’s ‘External Speakers Policy- Appendix B .
4.1 The responsibilities of the committee;
4.2 Ensure that the aims and objectives of the society are carried out through the academic year.
4.3 The club/society committee shall be responsible for the smooth running of any social events and activities.
4.4 The club/society committee shall be responsible for publicising the individual club/society’s meetings, and then be responsible for taking minutes if deemed necessary.
4.5 The committee shall be responsible for identifying and reporting financial needs of the individual club/society, for maintenance of kit and equipment. The committee shall also ensure that an accurate list of all equipment purchased is kept and all equipment is returned to the Union at the end of the academic year.
4.6 The treasurer shall ensure that all income received by the club/society is paid directly into the Union accounts and that no funds received by the club/society are withheld.
4.7 Ensure that Union policy on equal opportunities is followed
Finance for Clubs and Societies
5. The UCASU Trustee Board shall allocate a sum in the Union budget which shall be for grants toward the running of recognised Clubs and Societies.
6. The Clubs & Societies committee shall meet and allocate the funds.
7. Allocations will be made on the basis of the level of activity in the club or society; the number of members it has and special equipment and travel considerations.
8. No one from a club/society may commit the club/society or the Union to any expenditure without prior authorization through the Union’s budgetary control system.
9. The club/society shall not hold its own bank account and all its finance will be administered through the Union.
10. The club/society shall hold no funds whatsoever outside the Union accounts.
Regulation 4: Officers of the Union
1. Full time (Sabbatical) Officers (also known as Officer Trustees):
1.1 Canterbury Campus President
1.2 Rochester Campus President
1.3 Epsom Campus President
1.4 Farnham Campus President
2. Role of the Full Time Officers:
2.1 The Sabbatical Team oversee and direct the day to day running of University for the Creative Arts Students’ Union and ensure that students are represented at every level to the University, locally and nationally.
2.2 Duties as a Trustee Board Member;
2.2.1 To ensure that the Union complies with its governing documents, charity law, company law and any other relevant legislation or regulations.
2.2.2 To ensure that the Union pursues its charitable objects as defined in the University for the Creative Arts Students’ Union’s Constitution.
2.2.3 To ensure the Union uses its resources exclusively in pursuance of its objects: the charity must not spend money on activities which are not included in its own objects, no matter how worthwhile or charitable those activities are.
2.2.4 To contribute actively to the board of trustees’ role in giving firm strategic direction to the Union, setting overall policy, defining goals and setting targets and evaluating performance against agreed targets.
2.2.5 To safeguard the good name and values of the Union.
2.2.6 To ensure the effective and efficient administration of the Union.
2.2.7 To ensure the financial stability of the Union.
2.2.8 To protect and manage the property of the charity and to ensure the proper investment of the charity’s funds.
2.2.9 To appoint the chief executive and monitor their performance.
2.2.10 To be responsible for any transfer to a Company Limited by Guarantee or to a Charitable Incorporated Organisation.
2.3 Duties as a Sabbatical Officer;
2.3.1 The Campus Presidents shall all be full members of the Trustee Board and Executive committees.
2.3.2 There will be one Campus President per campus and only nominated from that campus.
2.4 The Campus President will:
2.4.1 Be the figurehead of the campus they represent;
2.4.2 Actively Chair at least one allocated committee as outlined in Regulation 3, 4.1 ;
2.4.3 Carry out other duties as laid down by the Executive Committees, or any other policy passed;
2.4.4 Liaise with the University on the development of the student experience strategy, complaints, equal opportunities and disciplinary procedures;
2.4.5 Be a member of relevant committees established by the University; and
2.4.6 Work within the boundaries set by the Constitution, the Union Code of Conduct and the Trustee Board.
2.4.7 Be responsible for dealing with students’ concerns, aspirations and problems in relation to their courses.
2.4.8 Provide briefings to students on Academic issues and report concerns to the Executive committees
2.4.9 Liaise with the University over the criteria and distribution of the access and hardship funds;
2.4.10 Establish and maintain contact with and provide information from groups and organisations which work on welfare issues;
2.4.11 Accommodate, but not counsel, students who have welfare problems, respecting confidentiality at all times
2.4.12 When necessary, refer students to the University’s counsellors or other relevant organisations
2.4.13 Campaign on, and raise awareness of, welfare issues as agreed by the Executive Committee;
2.4.14 Meet with the University’s management to assure the quality of services provided by the University to students and the Students’ Union
Chair of the Trustee board
3. The Chair of the Trustee Board is a coordinating role to ensure trustee board priorities are met.
3.1 The Chair of the trustee board will be elected by those present at the first meeting of each year after July 1st.
3.2 Attend the University’s Board of Governors as designated Student Governor and other relevant University committees, and report back to the Union;
3.3 Be a cheque signatory to the Union bank account;
3.4 Be the prime representative of the Union to liaise with the University;
3.5 Be responsible for the agenda and preparations of the Trustee Board;
3.6 Act as the spokesperson for the Union and Trustee Board; and
3.7 Communicate all Trustee Board priorities and work to the Chief Executive.
Chair of Committees
4. Each Officer will be allocated a chair of at least one standing committee notably:
4.1 Trustee Board; Audit, Finance & Risk; Appointments; Clubs & Societies committee; Disciplinary Committee; and lead on this area across all campuses.
Each chair will:
5. Prepare the agenda and items for discussion;
5.1 Lead that area of work in the Union ensuring it is reported back to the Trustees and students;
5.2 Ensure minutes of meetings are published on the website;
5.3 Make sure attendance receives quorum; and
5.4 Coordinate all work of the committee.
5.5 Terms of Reference for Each committee will be compiled by the Trustee Board
Regulation 5: The Executive Committees
1. There will be two (2) Executive Committees
2. Each will act in relation to an area of student life – Student Experience Executive Committee & Academic Experience Executive Committee.
3. Quorum is 50% plus one of elected members of the Committee.
4. Executive Committees require 75% agreement to pass policy
5. Executive committees require 50% agreement to trigger a referendum
Under the Constitution (Article 66), the Union’s Executive Committees have the following responsibilities:
a. Executing policy: where policy has passed in accordance with the bye-laws it shall be the responsibility of the Executive to ensure it is carried out
b. Representational: to promote and defend the rights of Members
c. Campaigning: to campaign on issues affecting Members; and development: “to enhance the personal development of Students.”
d. Allocating: responsibilities amongst the student officers in line with the byelaws.
These regulations detail the makeup of executive committee, its procedures and powers and should be read in conjunction with the relevant actions of the constitution and other regulations.
The Executive Committees shall have the authority to:
6. Represent the voice of the Students;
6.1 Set the Policy of the Union and refer Policy to Referendum of the Members (in accordance with these By-Laws and the Constitution);
6.2 Make, repeal and amend the By-Laws jointly between the two Executive Committees, should there be a disagreement this will trigger a referendum debate in accordance with the Constitution
6.3 Receive an annual report from the Trustees; and
6.4 Receive and accept or reject a report from the Campus Presidents.
6.4.1 The reports shall update Executive Committees on work conducted on campus, and as part of the Union Committee Chair roles. It shall include but is not limited to;
- Committee’s attended since last report, if not attended, reasoning given
- General update on activities / projects / work undertaken
- Annual leave taken since last report
6.4.2 If the report is rejected by an Executive Committee, a warning shall be issued via the Chair of the relevant Executive Committee to the Campus President, and the Committee will make recommendations for improvement
6.4.3 That Trustee Board shall investigate if 8.5.3 is triggered against a Campus President three times in a singular committee in an Officers term.
6.4.4 Has the authority to create working groups and sub-committees as deemed necessary
7 The composition and proceedings of the Executive Committees:
7.1 Each will act in relation to an area of student life – Student Experience Executive Committee & Academic Experience Executive Committee.
7.2 Quorum is 50% plus one of elected members of the Committee.
7.3 Membership of the Executive Committees is defined in By–law 10
7.4 The Executive Committees should meet at least five times in an academic year.
7.5 The Campus Presidents shall be responsible for the agenda and publicity of their respective Campus Meetings.
7.6 The Executive Committees will be chaired by an elected officer. The Chair of the Executive Committees will be elected by those present at the first meeting after July 1st.
7.7 In the event of any situation arising not being covered by meeting regulations then the Chair shall rule on the procedure to be adopted. Such ruling shall be subject to the approval of the Committee.
7.8 In the event of the Chair being in conflict or alleged to be in conflict with the item under discussion, the Chair should be resigned for the duration of the item under discussion to a Deputy Chair elected at that time by a majority of the officers present.
7.9 Any member may request that any item be discussed in full, provided that adequate notice is given in advance of the meeting.
The Executive Committees shall have the authority to:
Representing the voice of the Students;
8. Set the Policy of the Union and refer Policy to Referendum of the Members (in accordance with these By-Laws and the Constitution);
9. Make, repeal and amend the By-Laws jointly between the two Executive Committes, should there be a disagreement this will trigger a referendum debate in accordance with the Constitution
9.1 Receive an annual report from the Trustees; and
9.2 Also receive and accept or reject a report from the Campus Presidents on request.
9.3 Has the authority to create working groups and sub-committees as deemed necessary.
9.4 Appoint associate members in accordance with the Constitution
9.5 The reports shall update Executive Committees on work conducted on campus, and as part of the Union Committee Chair roles. It shall include but is not limited to;
9.5.1 Committee’s attended since last report, if not attended, reasoning given
9.5.2 General update on activities / projects / work undertaken
9.5.3 Annual leave taken since last report
9.6 If the report is rejected by an Executive Committee, a warning shall be issued via the Chair of the relevant Executive Committee to the Campus President, and the Committee will make recommendations for improvement
9.7 That Trustee Board shall investigate if Regulation 2, 5.8 is triggered against a Campus President three (3) times in a singular committee in an Officers term
Academic Executive Committee
10. “The Academic Experience Executive Officers” shall make up the Committee
10.1 The committee will be made up of one (1) student rep from each School, and all Campus Presidents
10.2 If all student members waive the Chair role, the Chair will default to the one of the Campus Presidents.
10.3 Roles and job descriptions will be compiled by the Officer Trustees
Campus Executive Committee
11. “The Student Experience Executive Officers” shall make up the Committee
11.1 The committee will be made up of one (1) student rep from each Campus, and all Campus Presidents
11.2 If all Council Officers waive the Chair role, the Chair will default to one of the Campus Presidents
11.3 Roles and job descriptions will be compiled by the Officer Trustees.
12. There will be autonomous community groups who will self-govern
12.1 This must include spaces for students who self-define as;
12.1.2 BAME Students
12.1.3 Women Students
12.1.4 Disabled Students
12.2 The Executive shall seek to form the following communities;
- International Students,
- Post Graduate Students,
- Further Education Students
- Mature Students,
- Part Time Students,
- Students Who Play Sport,
- Students Involved in Societies
- Students Who Volunteer.
12.3 The executive shall also have the power to form new communities, and amend this list on a yearly basis or where they see a student demand
13. Any full member of the Union shall be entitled to be a member of a Student Community and speak or vote at a Student Community meeting or debate at the discretion of the Chair.
Regulation 6: Referendum
1. A referendum shall be a vote in which every member of the union shall be able to vote on question.
2. Referendum has the ability to set all policy which governs students as students
Enacting a Referendum
3. Referendum may be called by either a simple majority of either executive committee or
4. Any full member of the union submitting a referendum idea through the UCASU ‘referendum trigger’ online procedures
5. For this to trigger there must be a minimum of 2% of students agreeing with the statement.
6. The persons or body proposing the referendum must propose the question for referendum
7. A referendum has the power to set policies which are not related to academic study, to challenge affiliations, or to amend or revoke the constitution.
8. A referendum to pass or amend policy shall be valid provided a simple majority has voted in favour and 2.5% students have voted
9. A referendum to amend or revoke the constitution requires a 75% majority of students and for 2.5% of students to have voted.
Regulation 7: Elections Regulations
1. The Union is a democratic organisation and, as such, the conduct of elections is of paramount importance.
2. The Union shall conduct all elections fairly
3. Promote equality of opportunity in elections by ensuring that all members are able to take part in the democratic processes of their Union
4. Ensure that all breaches of election regulations are dealt with swiftly and efficiently
5. Run the electoral processes in a spirit of friendliness and cooperation
6. Elections will be conducted online where possible, but a elections provider as specified by the Trustee Board
7. The Returning Officer for the elections shall be an external staff member to The Union
8. The Deputy Returning Officer to the elections will be a full time member of The Union staff
9. These regulations apply to all elections conducted by the union including but not limited to all full time sabbatical officer positions, part time officer positions and NUS Delegate positions.
10. The Returning Officer will appoint a deputy to oversee the elections this will normally be the SU Chief Executive, or other nominated full-time staff member who will provide support to the returning officer.
The Timing of elections
11. The Returning Officer or Deputy shall ensure that election of all Officers (volunteered and trustees) takes place before the end of May each year. Once elected the officers will take office from July 1st of that year and shall serve for 12 months.
11.1 The dates of elections for all Student Officers, a copy of the election timetable and a copy of the election regulations shall be published through union media channels at least 21 days before the elections.
11.2 The Schedule for the election may be shortened by the request of the Trustee Board to the Returning Officer.
12. Only members of the Union enrolled at a specific campus shall be eligible to stand for the relevant position of Campus President.
13. Only members of the Union enrolled at a specific campus or on a specific course shall be eligible to stand for the other positions in Executive Committees
14. No member who has opted out may stand for any position.
15. Reopen nominations (RON) shall be a candidate in all Union elections.
16. Nomination forms will be provided by the Returning Officer and shall be available online 21 days before the election. All students should have access to a copy of the role description of each position, and election rules.
17. Members of the Union may stand for election upon completion of a nomination form signed (this can be electronically) by the candidate.
18. Nomination forms must reach the Returning Officer in person or online by the time outlined in the election rules.
Publicity about the election
19. The Returning Officer shall produce a list of candidates, which shall be available via union media outlets, as soon as possible after the close of nominations. The candidates have the option to produce a manifesto to a specification to be determined by the Returning Officer.
19.1 In receipt of a valid nomination form the Returning Officer or a person appointed by him/her shall provide the candidate with an election campaign pack.
19.2 The contents of the election campaign pack shall be determined by the Returning Officer in conjunction with the Deputy Returning Officer.
20. Candidates may commence campaigning at the time determined by the Returning Officer.
21. There shall be no campaigning within 5 meters of any polling device.
22. The Returning Officer shall publicise the location and arrangements of voting stations, together with a list of candidates and manifestos. The Union will enable candidates to campaign and provide publicly via its website for the elections.
23. Nominations will be open for a minimum of seven (7) days
24. The Returning Officer shall ensure that all members of the Union have access to vote no matter their place or time of study.
25. All members of the Union may vote.
26. The Retuning Officer may delegate any tasks they seem fit to the Deputy Retuning Officer.
27. If paper voting is active papers will be issued to each voter, which shall bear the Union stamp. Votes will be cast in sealed ballot boxes. Voting papers shall bear the name of each candidate and the office being contested. There shall be a facility for reopening nominations.
28. Voting shall be by secret ballot and shall be conducted according to the most recently published edition of the rules for the operation of the single transferable voting (STV) system as set by the Electoral Reform Society.
29. Ballots for all Officer Trustees will be available to the members in accordance with the 1994 Education Act section 22.
Counting and declaring votes
30. The Returning Officer shall inform the candidates of the time and venue of the count. The candidate or their appointed deputy may, if they so wish, attend the counting of the votes as observers only.
31. The Returning Officer may appoint anyone to assist him / her with the count. The count shall be conducted according to the most recently published edition of the rules for the operation of the single transferable voting (STV) system as set by the Electoral Reform Society.
32. Once the votes have been counted any paper votes shall be kept for a period of six months in case of appeals against the result.
33. Results of the elections shall be declared by the Returning Officer when the count for each post has been completed and any complaint has been resolved to the satisfaction of the Returning Officer.
34. A list of successful candidates will normally be posted at each site within 24 hours The Returning Officer shall send a copy of the result to all Executive Committee Meetings and the Clerk to the Board of Governors.
35. In the event of a complaint being received by the Returning Officer the results shall be suspended until the complaint has been resolved.
36. Any challenge or complaint concerning the administration and good conduct of the election shall be heard and determined by the Returning Officer within 48 hours of such a complaint being lodged by any full member or the candidate or their nominee.
37. Any complaint against the conduct or administration of the election shall be received by the Returning Officer before close of polling.
38. A challenge or complaint during or following the count, shall only relate to the conduct of the count, and shall be lodged with the Returning Officer who shall resolve the complaint within 48 hours of it being lodged.
39. In determining a resolution to the complaint, the Returning Officer after hearing all the appropriate evidence may not uphold the complaint; or may halt elections for specified post(s) or disqualify specified candidate(s) if, in their view, a candidate(s) has breached election regulations. The ruling of the Returning Officer on any complaint shall be final, subject only to a successful appeal to the Clerk to the Governors contained within the Code of Practice of this constitution.
Vacancies for positions
40. If any post on the Committees falls vacant then a by-election shall be arranged by the Returning Office
40.1 Diagram of officer structure and roles
Regulation 8 – Transitional Principles
1. On adoption of this Constitution and its attachments, any previous Constitution previously adopted by University for the Creative Arts Students’ Union, as well as its regulatory appendices and standing orders, shall no longer apply or be seen to apply to the governance of the Union.
2. Any decisions made under the previous Constitution, schedules or standing orders shall be binding and these governing documents should be kept on file for reference
Regulation 9 – Accountability
Annual General Meetings
1. Any Full Member can attend the Annual General meetings and General Meetings, wherever they may be held. Any individual(s) who are not Full Members of the Union (including Honorary, Life and Associate Members) must be invited to attend by the meeting or must receive permission to attend from the meeting by submitting a request to the chairperson, who shall then take a vote on whether the individual(s) may attend.
2. The agenda is that set out in The Constitution, 10.3 .
3. The AGM has no link to the executive groups or student lead groups.
4. Quorum is 0.5% of the membership.
5. All students are able to attend and vote.
6. General meetings will only be called when resolutions are required by a meeting open to all members.
7. General Meetings will have the power to amend the constitution in reference to clause 11.1 of the Constitution.
8. The meetings are open to all students.
9. Quorum is 1% of the membership who shall be entitled to vote and speak.
10. General Meetings can be held virtually to ensure maximum student participation
11. The Trustee Board are responsible for calling the Annual General Meeting once an academic year
Appeals Committee (Trustee Board issues)
12. This appeals panel related to the removal of trustees and the right of the trustee to appeal to the body in the Constitution clause 51.
13. The Appeals Panel shall be made up of a nominee of the University for the Creative Arts, one independent person and a Chief Executive and full-time Elected Officer of another Students’ Union. The independent person shall be a Member who is not a Trustee or hold another UCASU elected post. The recruitment of the members shall be conducted by the Chief Executive in partnership with the Clerk to the board of governors.
14. The Chief Executive should act as clerk to the meeting.
Conduct and Disciplinary
15. Failure to abide by these By-laws, the Union Constitution, the Code of Conduct, the Student Disciplinary Policy and/or the Disciplinary Procedure for Clubs and Societies may result in the censure, suspension, de-recognition of the club/society, and/or potential disciplinary action.
16. Disciplinary/censure of clubs and societies as a whole shall be conducted in line with the Disciplinary Procedure for the Clubs and Societies as outlined in the Clubs and Societies Handbook.
17. Disciplinary/censure of individual members of a club/society shall be conducted in line with the Student Disciplinary Policy as outlined in the Clubs and Societies Handbook.
18. The conduction of the disciplinary procedure lies with the Chief Executive, or nominated full- time staff member.
Appendix A – Complaints and Disciplinary Procedure
1. Complaints about the Union or complaints about the actions of an individual officer, or democratic committee or any member of any Union committee in relation to the powers granted to each within the Constitution shall be dealt with under the complaints procedure.
2. Complaints about other members in relation to their general responsibilities as members shall be dealt with under the Disciplinary Procedure of these By-laws.
3. Any member of the Union has the right to initiate a complaint if they are dissatisfied in their dealings with the Union
4. All complaints concerning Student Officers shall be brought to the Chief Executive.
5. All complaints concerning the Chief Executive shall be brought to a Sabbatical Officer.
6. All complaints concerning another member of staff shall be brought to that member of staff’s line manager.
7. The addressee shall attempt to resolve the matter informally within five Union working days.
8. If the complainants are not satisfied with the outcome, the addressee shall:
8.1 Follow the disciplinary procedure for staff members; or
8.2 In the case that Student Officers are implicated, convene a meeting of the Complaints Committee within a further seven Union working days (i.e. up to a maximum of twelve Union working days after receiving the written complaint).
9. The Complaints Committee shall comprise:
9.1 An appropriate staff member from another union or from NUS;
9.2 A Student Trustee
9.3 An External Trustee; and
9.4 The Chief Executive (as Clerk)
10. After meeting to discuss the complaint and hear the case for the complainants and those implicated, the Complaints Committee shall;
10.1 Make a recommendation to the Trustee Board to treat the complaint as a HR matter and as such, to follow the Staff Disciplinary Procedure; or
10.2 Advice the student how to initiate a petition for a vote of no-confidence.
11. If the complainants are not satisfied with the outcome they may go to the University’s Clerk to the Board of Governors and request an investigation by an independent person.
12. Clubs, societies and members of the Union shall be expected to abide by the constitution and its schedules at all times, as well as the Union’s equal opportunities policy.
13. The Union’s Disciplinary procedure has authority over any premises managed by the Union, any Union activities, including the activities of any Union club or society, or any misconduct which takes place outside Union premises but is connected with the Union and is likely to affect the reputation of the Union.
14. If a student or club or society is deemed to have breached the rules of the Union their conduct shall be examined by a panel of three Campus Presidents known as the Disciplinary Committee.
15. The Complaints & Disciplinary Committee shall be convened within seven days of the alleged offence occurring. The student shall be given written notification of the time, date and place of the hearing, together with written notification of the alleged breach, at least three days before the hearing.
16. The Disciplinary Committee shall comprise:
16.1 An appropriate staff member from another union or from NUS; (This must not be the same as Complaints Committee)
16.2 A Student Trustee (This must not be the same as Complaints Committee)
16.3 An External Trustee; (This must not be the same as Complaints Committee) and
16.4 The Chief Executive (as Clerk)
16.4.1 In cases involving the misuse of Union facilities or resources or behaviour likely to cause potential danger or offence to students, staff or other persons, the student or club or society may be suspended from the use of particular Union facilities or resources until the Disciplinary Committee has reached a decision or for refused entry for a period of time.
16.4.2 No person shall sit on the Union disciplinary or appeals committees if they are a witness, potential witness, the complainant or directly connected with the student or club or society being charged.
16.4.3 The person bringing the charge or his/her representative shall call witnesses to give evidence as appropriate. They shall ask questions of the witnesses. The student or his/her representative may also ask questions of the witnesses. The student or his/her representative may call their own witnesses to give evidence and present any relevant documents to the panel. They may ask questions of the witnesses. The person bringing the charge or his/her representative may also ask questions of the witnesses.
16.4.4 The Disciplinary Committee may ask questions of any witnesses, the person bringing the charge or their representative, the student or club or society or their representative.
16.4.5 The Disciplinary Committee shall then deliberate on the matter and decide on the appropriate action to be taken. The Disciplinary Committee shall base its decision on evidence presented and examined in the presence of the person bringing the charge and the student, club or society being charged. Evidence of any earlier misconduct shall not be presented until after the decision has been reached on the facts of the case, but then may be admitted and considered in deciding on any punishment. The ultimate sanction shall be the suspension of Union membership for a period of time.
16.4.6 The Union Disciplinary Committee may refer any matter additionally to the University Disciplinary Committee.
16.4.7 The Disciplinary Committee must inform the person of their right of appeal and that any appeal should be made in writing to the chair of the Board of Trustees within five Working days.
16.4.8 If the student is not satisfied they may appeal to an Appeals Committee made up of three students appointed by Trustees from the Executive Committees. The student shall be notified in writing at least five days in advance of the meeting.
16.4.9 The Appeals Committee shall hear the reason for the appeal and the rationale behind the original decision. They shall also hear any new evidence that has emerged since the disciplinary meeting. The matter shall be put to the vote and the decision shall be final.
16.4.10 The Vote must be a two third majority
16.4.11 The hearing shall normally take place in private. However the subjects of any charge may request that the hearing is held in public. A record shall be kept for use in any appeal. The decision of the Disciplinary or Appeals Committee will be posted on a Union notice-board via union media outlets if requested by the subject of any charge.
17. The following complaints procedure shall be made available to all students or groups of students who are dissatisfied in their dealings with the Union or claim to be unfairly disadvantaged by reason of their having exercised their right to opt out of membership of the Union.
18. Any complaint about the Union shall be addressed to the Chair of the Trustees board. In any circumstances where the complaint relates to the Chair it shall be addressed to another Campus President
19. The Campus President shall investigate and make a written reply within 15 working days.
20. If the complainant is not satisfied with the response they may appeal to the Clerk of the Board of Governors of the University. The Clerk shall investigate and respond to the complainant within 15 working days seeking advice from the Union trustees who where not part of the original investigation. If the complainant remains dissatisfied with the response provided by the Clerk to the Board of Governors of the University, the University’s Board of Governors shall appoint an independent person and a Union external trustee to consider and resolve the complaint. This decision shall be final.
21. Members who complain will also be referred to the mechanisms in the constitution to remove officers and change the policy of the Union.
Appendix B – External Speakers Motion
An external Speakers policy is a key element in the fight against racism and extremism on campus.
1. That the no-platform policy compliments Equal Opportunities policies, The Race Relations Act and the Public Order Act.
2. This Union States that no platform policies safeguard its members from being subjected to listen to the lies, bigotry and hatred of racists, fascists and extremists.
3. That no platform policies safeguard members from being subjected to violence on the grounds of any protected characteristic.
4. That no platform should include incitement to racial hatred, incitement to sexism, incitement to sexual violence, incitement to Islamaphobia, incitement to Anti-Semitism, incitement to phobias directed at gender and sexual minorities or incitement to ableism. Or anyone who incites extremist radicalisation.
5. That the union should not be providing a platform to hate speakers such as those who promote speech as stated above.
6. That enforcing the no platform policy shall be the responsibility of the Trustee Board.
7. For a permanent standing task force of the trustee board to be created, which will be composed of 1 Officer Trustee, 1 External Trustee and 1 University staff member nominated quadrennially by the university executive (to be filled on an ad hoc bases should it become vacant).
8. Not to allow any individual who is known to hold racist or fascist views from entering union premises.
9. Not to allow any individual who is known to hold racist or fascist views, to speak at a union event.
10. Not to allow any individual who is known to hold racist or fascist views from distributing any written or recorded material in the union which expresses those views.
11. That no elected officer of the union will speak on a platform with an individual who is known to hold racist or fascist views.
12. That this committee shall meet once every two years, to discuss which organisations shall be deemed in breach of this policy, in line with the criteria outlined above.
13. That this committee shall meet when a particular; speaker, event or piece of material is referred to it by a full member of the union, and shall decide whether said speaker event or material should be viewed as in breach of this policy.
14. That these resolutions shall be known as the union’s No Platform Policy.
15. To widely publicise this policy, not only to its members but also to the institution.
16. To incorporate the no platform policy into all of the Union’s policies and procedures and to use accordingly.
17. That if members are found to be intentionally in breach of the no platform policy this will be dealt with through the code of conduct.
Appendix C – Equality & Diversity Policy
The Students’ Union is committed to providing an inclusive and supportive environment where everyone is treated equally and with respect. We commit ourselves to promoting equal opportunities as an employer, as a representative and campaigning body, and as a provider of services. We will not tolerate any form of discrimination including harassment and bullying based on one or more of the following grounds:
Age, ability or disability, ethnic origin, caring or parental responsibilities, pregnancy, gender, gender identity or gender reassignment, HIV status, marital status, nationality, opinions or beliefs on matters such as religion and politics, physical appearance, race, sexual orientation, spent or irrelevant criminal convictions, trade union affiliation, employment status, socio- economic background, medical condition, full or part time student status, mental health status or any other irrelevant distinction.
This list is not exhaustive but illustrates our commitment in regarding such discrimination as unacceptable.
1. This policy exists to:
i. Ensure that the Students’ Union carries out its activities within a framework that respects and promotes equal opportunities, and alongside legislative requirements;
ii. Ensure that the Students’ Union is pro-active in promoting equality of opportunity;
iii. Make explicit the rights and responsibilities of all members; and
iv. Commit the Students’ Union to monitoring the implementation of this policy and the evaluation of its effectiveness.
2. The Students’ Union will work proactively to involve students in its activities who are typically under-represented or marginalized.
3. The Students’ Union is committed to providing a working and learning environment in compliance with all relevant legislation. This policy will be amended as appropriate to meet the demands of future legislation. This Union’s policy is guided by all current and relevant legislation. See the Appendix for details of relevant legislation.
4. The Students’ Union will work with the University and other relevant bodies to promote its Equality and Diversity policy, and to ensure that both the Union and the University are actively working to comply with policy on equality and diversity.
5. Any groups or individuals contravening this Equality and Diversity policy will be subject to disciplinary procedures and patronage and support will be reviewed.
6. The Students’ Union will regularly monitor practices to ensure that we meet our commitment to equality and diversity.
7. The Students’ Union’s procedures will apply to all aspects of our activity, including advertising, media and all forms of documentation. It will apply to all those involved in the Students’ Union, including students, staff, visitors, clients, contractors, consultants, customers and potential as well as existing employees.
8. Overall responsibility for implementation of this policy lies with the Trustee Board and Chief Executive.
9. All elected officers, members of UCASU staff and volunteers are responsible for their own behaviour and should strive to ensure equality and diversity best practice within their remit. They may be held personally accountable should any complaint arise against them.
10. All elected officers, members of Students’ Union staff and volunteers are responsible for ensuring that personal harassment of another member of staff or a student does not occur.
11. All Students’ Union members (i.e. students) are responsible for their own behaviour and should strive to respect and demonstrate equal opportunities principles.
12. The Students’ Union understands that the needs of different groups vary and will therefore strive to provide according to need, which in some cases will result in different provisions.
13. The Students’ Union recognises the need for liberation groups (BAME, Women and LGBTQ+ students for example) to have a ‘safe space’ and provide for this in keeping with its Safe Space Policy.
14. The Students’ Union is committed to making our service provision accessible to all students. Where offices are inaccessible, we will endeavour to find alternative space for meetings and events in order not to exclude any interested party. Any alterations to and/or development of the Union building shall occur with improving access as a priority.
Employment and elections
15. The Students’ Union commits itself to becoming an equal opportunities employer and a democratic body. It will eliminate unfair discrimination at each stage of the recruitment/election process and throughout an individual’s period of employment/term of office.
16. All staff, elected officers, Councillors and volunteers will receive equality and diversity training.
17. All staff and elected officers must be fully aware of the equality and diversity policy and its strategy for implementation.
Monitoring & Review
18. The full time officers and Chief Executive will be responsible for monitoring the day-to-day implementation of the policy
19. There will be an advisory sub-committee of the Trustee Board, called the Equality & Diversity Panel, which will consist of two sabbatical officers, the Chief Executive and the Head of Membership Services Director. Other staff and representatives from the Students’ Union’s liberation groups will attend panel meetings by invitation. The panel will meet every term to assess and assist with implementation and act as advisors to the annual review. This panel will also be responsible for instigating the reviewing of the policy in view of future legislative change. This panel will contact relevant people and organisations to ascertain their comments on Union policy and practice and how Union members and staff from under represented and marginalised groups:
i. Could participate more fully in the policy making and activities of the Union and Company; and
ii. Would want to see Union and Company services to them improved.
20. Trustee Board and Academic and Campus Executive Committees will be responsible for organising an annual review of the policy, its implementation and effect. The annual review will report on the development and implementation of the policy. It will also create an action plan containing explicit, measurable and achievable objectives and targets.
21. The annual report will be made public to:
i. All staff, through department meetings;
ii. All students, through general meetings (presented by the Chair of the Trustee Board);
iii. The University, at the review of their own policy; and
iv. Copies will also be available from the Union Reception and the Union website.
Promotion & Publicity
22. The Students’ Union will ensure that all members, staff and volunteers are aware of the Union’s commitment to equality and diversity and that they are expected to promote its objectives.
23. This policy shall be made available to all members, staff, sports clubs and societies as a requirement that they actively counter prejudice and discrimination and demonstrate their commitment to equality and diversity policies and practice.
24. Notices stating that the Students’ Union will not tolerate behaviour which contravenes the equality and diversity policy shall be displayed throughout our services.
25. If any (potential or existing) Students’ Union member, employee or volunteer feels they have not been treated in accordance with this policy, they have the right to make a complaint free of retribution.
26. All complaints will be handled with consideration to both sides and with the utmost confidentiality.
27. Complaints can be made through the Students’ Union complaints procedure, which can be viewed at www.ucasu.com.
This Union’s policy is guided by: The Equality Act 2010
Appedndix D – Code of Conduct
To follow when passed by Trustee Board
Appendix E – Financial Regulations
The financial Regulations are property of Audit, Finance & Risk committee and can be amended and changed with a 75% majority at this committee.
1.1 Cash in any of the floats within the Students’ Union must only be used for supplying floats for box office and bar tills.
1.2 Under no circumstances should floats be used to pay bills of any kind.
1.3 Float monies must not be used to pay loans or advances to students or members of staff.
1.4 The Venues Manager is responsible for bar and box office floats.
1.5 Cash must be kept in a locked safe when not being used to float tills.
1.6 Floats must be counted and reconciled by the Finance Manager on a regular basis, at least once a month.
2. Banking and Cash
2.1 All accounts shall be kept in the name of the University for the Creative Arts Students’ Union.
2.2 Our bankers are National Westminster Bank plc.
2.3 Cheque signatories shall be one from Pool A and one from Pool B on each cheque in line with the bank mandate as follows:
Pool A: Chief Executive or Finance Manager
Pool B: Trustees
3. Every cheque over £1,000 should be signed by an officer trustee
4. Balance of funds from the current account, shall be transferred by the bank, to an interest bearing reserve account at the close of business each day.
5. All takings must be counted each day and till or ticket totals reconciled with any amounts to be banked. The Finance Manager is responsible for double checking takings against till receipts and then banking all takings
6. Petty Cash
6.1 Petty cash claims will be made only in cash and directly to the claimant.
6.2 All petty cash vouchers must be authorised by the Finance Manager, Chief Executive or Chairman of the Union’s Trustee Board.
6.3 Petty cash claims will not be paid unless accompanied by appropriate VAT/till receipts (personal credit card slips are not acceptable).
7. Company Credit Card
7.1 A credit card will be issued for use within the Students’ Union in order to pay train fares etc., which have to be booked and paid for immediately.
7.2 The name on the card and the person responsible for the use of the card will be that of the Chief Executive.
7.3 The Chief Executive will keep the card in a secure place. In the event of the loss of the card, the card insurer must be immediately informed. The police must also be notified if appropriate.
7.4 The Chief Executive will approve use of the card in the following situations only:
i. When a payment needs to be made to a supplier who is not on the Students’ Union bought ledger.
ii. When travel arrangements have to be made and paid for on-line.
8. In both of the above cases a signed, approved and authorised purchase order must be completed before the credit card is used.
9. The Chief Executive shall not use the credit card for any purchases of a personal nature for themselves or any other person.
10. Purchase Orders
10.1 Purchase orders are currently pre-printed, pre-numbered three-part forms.
10.2 The top white form is for the supplier, the second yellow form is the Finance Department copy and the third blue copy should remain in the purchase order book as a file copy for use by our auditors.
10.3 All purchase orders require three signatures as follows:
Raised by: Any member of staff issued with an official purchase order book
Approved by: Finance Manager
Authorised by: Chief Executive or Trustee
10.4 The purchase order form must be raised, approved and authorised before the order is placed with the supplier.
10.5 The yellow copy must be forwarded to the Finance office immediately.
10.6 Any cancellations or amendments to the purchase order, once it has been raised, must be notified to the Finance Department immediately
11. Payment of Invoices
11.1 The Finance Manager is required to check all incoming invoices against signed and approved purchase orders. Once these checks have been completed, invoices can be passed for payment.
11.2 Invoices for supplies and services covered by regular bank standing orders can be cleared for payment without the need for a purchase order.
11.3 Invoices which do not match with a purchase order or standing order, will only be paid after authorisation by the Chief Executive or a Trustee.
12. Payment of salaries and wages
12.1 All salaries and wages shall be paid by BACS transfer.
12.2 Salary levels for monthly paid staff will be agreed by the Trustee Board and Chief Executive.
12.3 Wage levels for weekly paid staff will be agreed by the Trustee Board and Chief Executive, after consultation with the Venues Manager.
12.4 All weekly paid staff are required to submit a time sheet each week, which will be authorised by the Venues Manager prior to any payment being made.
12.5 The Finance Manager shall be responsible for processing wages and salaries on Sage payroll and the maintenance of Income Tax and National Insurance records for all employees.
13.1 Annual budgets are submitted by the Chairman of the Union’s Trustee Board, to the Head of Finance at the University for the Creative Arts. The budget is then discussed at a meeting of the Employment and Finance Committee for the University, where the level of block grant for the forthcoming year is set.
i. The Finance Manager is required to prepare the budget in conjunction with the Chairman of the Union’s Trustee Board, Chief Executive and Venues Manager.
ii. The Chairman of the Union’s Trustee Board is responsible for the Student Union sector of the budgeted income and expenditure account.
iii. The Venues Manager is responsible for the Bar and Entertainments sectors of the budgeted income and expenditure account.
iv. If there are any significant changes to the approved budget, which would result in a proposed surplus becoming a deficit, this shall be reported by the Chairman of the Union’s Trustee Board to the Employment and Finance Committee of the University.
14. Failure to Comply
14.1 All staff must be responsible for ensuring full compliance with these Financial Regulations.
14.2 Instances of non-compliance may lead to disciplinary action under the Union’s disciplinary policy, removal of all budget holding authority or any other action deemed necessary and appropriate by the Chief Executive in consultation with the Chairman of the Union’s Trustee Board.
14.3 The Trustees will not be able to handle union funds off campus.
14.4 All changes to these By-laws will seek advice from the Clerk to the Board of Governors only to ensure consistency with the constitution.