Rules of Order

Section 21. Rules of Order

21.1   All meetings of the Local shall be conducted in accordance with the basic principles of Canadian Parliamentary Procedure. Some of the more important rules to ensure free and fair debate are appended to these By-Laws as Appendix “A”. These rules shall be considered as an integral part of the By-Laws and may be amended only by the same procedure used to amend the By-Laws.

21.2   In situations not covered by Appendix “A” (below), the CUPE Constitution may provide guidance, but, if the situation is not dealt with there, Bourinot’s Rules of Order shall be consulted and applied.

Appendix A. Rules of Order

A.1   The President or, if absent, the Vice-President, shall take the chair at all membership meetings. In the absence of both the President and the Vice-Presidents, the Recording Secretary shall act as President, and in his/her absence a President Pro-tem shall be chosen by the Local.

A.2   No member, except the Chairperson of a committee making a report or the mover of a resolution, shall speak more than five minutes, or more than once on the same question without the consent of the meeting or until all who wish to speak have had an opportunity. Chairpersons and movers of a resolution shall be limited to fifteen minutes, except with the consent of the meeting.

A.3   The President shall state every question coming before the Local, and before allowing debate thereof, and again immediately before putting it to a vote, shall ask: “Is the Local ready for the question?” Should no member rise to speak, the question shall then be put.

A.4   A motion to be entertained by the presiding officer must be moved and seconded; both mover and seconder must rise and be recognized by the chair.

A.5   A motion to amend, or to amend an amendment, shall be in order, but no motion to amend an amendment to an amendment shall be permitted. No amendment, or amendment to an amendment, which is a direct negative of the resolution shall be in order.

A.6   On motion, the regular order of business may be suspended, by a two-thirds vote of those present, to deal with any urgent business.

A.7   All resolutions and motions other than those named in A.17, or those to accept or adopt the report of a committee, shall, if requested by the presiding officer, be presented in writing before being put to the Local.

A.8   At the request of any member, and upon a majority vote of those present, a question may be divided when the sense will admit of it.

A.9   Any member having made a motion can withdraw it with the consent of the seconder, except that any motion, once debated, cannot be withdrawn except by a majority vote of those present.

A.10   When a member wishes to speak on a question or to make a motion, he/she shall rise in his/her place and respectfully address the presiding officer, but, except to state that he/she rises to a point of order or on a question of privilege, he/she shall not proceed further until recognized by the chair.

A.11   When two or more members rise to speak at the same time the presiding officer shall decide which one is entitled to the floor.

A.12   Every member, while speaking, shall adhere to the question under debate and avoid all personal, indecorous or offensive language, as well as any poor reflection on the Local or member thereof.

A.13   If a member, while speaking, is called to order, he/she shall cease speaking until the point is determined; if it is decided he/she is in order, he/she may again proceed.

A.14   No religious discussion shall be permitted.

A.15   The President shall take no part in debate while presiding, but may yield the chair to the Vice-President in order to speak on any question before the Local, or to introduce a new question.

A.16   The presiding officer shall have the same rights as other members to vote on any question. In case of a tie, he/she may in addition, cast a deciding vote or, if he/she chooses, refrain from breaking the tie, in which case the motion is lost.

A.17   When a motion is before the Local, no other motion shall be in order, except (1) to adjourn, (2) to put the previous question, (3) to lay on the table, (4) to postpone for a definite time, (5) to refer, (6) to divide or amend, which motions shall have the precedence in the order named. The first three of these shall be decided without debate.

A.18   A motion for the previous question, when regularly moved and seconded, shall be put in this form: “Shall the main question be now put?” If it is adopted, the President shall proceed to take the vote on the resolution and amendments thereto (if any) according to their priority. If an amendment or an amendment to an amendment is adopted, the original resolution, as amended, shall be put to the Local.

A.19   A motion to adjourn is in order except (1) when a member has the floor, and (2) when members are voting.

A.20 A motion to adjourn, having been put and lost, shall not be in order again, if there is further business before the Local until fifteen minutes have elapsed.

A.21   After the presiding officer declares the vote on a question, and before the Local proceeds to another order of business, any member may ask for a division. A standing vote shall then be taken and the Secretary shall count same.

A.22   If any member wishes to challenge (appeal) a decision of the chair he/she must do so at the time the decision is made. If the challenge is seconded, the member shall be asked to state briefly the basis for his/her challenge. The chairperson may then state briefly the basis for his/her decision, following which the chairperson shall immediately and without debate put the question: “Shall the decision of the chair be sustained?” A majority vote shall decide except that in the event of a tie the chair is sustained.

A.23   After a question has been decided, any two members who have voted in the majority may, at the same or next meeting, move reconsideration thereof.

A.24   No member shall enter or leave a meeting during the reading of the minutes, the initiation of a new member, the installation of officers, or the taking of a vote.

A.25   The Local’s business and proceedings of minutes, are not to be divulged to any persons outside the Local or the Canadian Union of Public Employees.