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  6. Local Union Attendance Rules

Local Unions should establish attendance rules for elected officers or officials. These rules fall into two parts. One part concerns attendance by elected officers or officials at membership meetings and the other concerns their attendance at meetings where attendance is part of their official duties, such as an Executive Board Member attending Board Meetings.

In general, the Local Union may establish for all Local Union officers and officials, attendance requirements requiring their attendance at as many as two out of three general membership meetings. It should be emphasized that no prior attendance requirement can be made a condition of continued eligibility to occupy and hold the office, once elected.

The By-Laws may establish specific attendance requirements for various different elected officers and officials attending various board and committee meetings, attendance at which is part of their functions. If this is desired, each separate group of officers may be treated separately in the By-Laws. The Local Union may, however, if it chooses, establish a general requirement for all officers and officials attending any board or committee meetings which are a part of their duties. In either event, the attendance requirement should again not require attendance at more than two out of every three such meetings.

In this provision of the By-Laws, an excuse procedure must also be established. The requirements for attendance at meetings must provide a procedure whereby a member may be excused from attendance at a meeting for good cause, and any such excused absence could not be counted against her/him. The Local Union By-Laws should specifically state what group will be authorized to consider requests for excuses and should set up some general standard for granting such requests as an absence because of circumstances beyond a member’s control or because of very substantial inconvenience. Some Local Unions have a standing excuse or attendance committee while others place this function in the Executive Board. It is an optional matter and the membership should decide which form it decides is best. However, a By-Law giving the authority to excuse to some group is necessary.

Examples of provisions which Locals should have are:

All members of this Local Union holding an elective position are required to attend:

  1. Two out of three consecutive membership meetings unless officially excused for cause by the Local Union Excuse Committee;
  2. Two out of three consecutive meetings other than membership meetings expected of their respective office or position, unless officially excused for cause by the Local Union Excuse Committee;
  3. Failure of any elected official to comply with the above attendance rules shall result in automatic removal from their respective office or position, and they shall not be permitted to run for any elective office for the balance of the term of office from which they were removed, except as a delegate to the Constitutional Convention.

Note: The Local Union Excuse Committee may be the membership meeting, the Local Union Executive Board, a sub-committee from the Local Union Executive Board, or a separate Excuse Committee composed of members not holding executive offices or committee positions. In very large Local Unions, it is suggested that the Excuse Committee be composed of members other than those holding an elective position.

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