The Graduate Student Society is holding a special Referendum to make essential changes to our Bylaws and Constitution. You have the power to review these changes and vote in this referendum, as a graduate student at UBC.
You can vote online between September 10-23rd. You’ll just need your CWL to sign in.
In November a new Societies Act will become law in British Columbia. The GSS needs to make changes to our bylaws and Constitution to comply with this act and remain a registered society.
What Changes are being made?
You can review all the changes required by the law change in the supporting documents below.
We are also taking the opportunity to offer two additional changes:
- To allow the GSS President to nominate a speaker to Council.
- To make the Governance and Accountability Committee a Standing Committee under the GSS Constitution.
See below for more details on these two changes.
Why are you holding a referendum?
The GSS is a democratically run society and we are required to consult our members (all graduate students) before making changes to our constitution and bylaws.
Why should I take part?
Although these changes are primarily as a result of the law change, your participation ensures that that the Society is run in a way that truly represents graduate students.
When is the referendum taking place
Voting in the referendum will run between September 10-23. We will be sending out an email on that date with details on how to vote, or you can visit this page for more information.
All participants will have the opportunity to be entered to win one of three $100 gift cards.
Why nominate a speaker?
Under the current GSS Bylaws, the President is the chair of Council meetings. Having an impartial arbiter of debate ensures that all voices are heard equally, regardless of their position on a matter, and that the rules of order of the house are maintained at all times. In essence, having a Speaker improves the quality of the representative democratic values by which our society is run.
Why have a Governance and Accountability Standing Committee?
The GSS has had a Governance and Accountability ad-hoc Committee for the past 2 years. By having a Standing Governance and Accountability Committee we will empower our Society by means of regular self-evaluation, including, but not limited to the performance of all other standing committees and the Financial and Executive Oversight Officer. We will also ensure the continued adoption and implementation of the GSS goal setting and review processes by the Standing Committees and the long-term presence of governance training within the Society, empowering our members at large and our Board of Directors in particular. A Governance and Accountability Committee will also bolster institutional memory for matters affecting the long-term health of the Society, and ensure timely creation of future strategic plans.