Proposal:Motion to require the committee to provide copies of the members register upon request
This is a proposal to place an item on the agenda of the next General Meeting (AGM or SGM) to remove any ambiguity as to how the members register is to be accessible.
According to the current text of Rule 5(2), members are permitted to inspect the Association's membership register after they have been a member for two consecutive years. The rules and the act are vague about how this request is to be handled, and whether the committee is permitted to provide copies of the members register to members who ask for one, or whether members are only permitted to physically inspect the members register kept by the Secretary. This ambiguity has caused divisions within the Association connected with a recent request to view the register.
In order to remove this ambiguity, I propose a change to the rules to make it clear that the Association must provide copies of the membership register upon request to any member who is already permitted to view the existing register. As some members have pointed out, there is little practical difference between the Secretary providing copies of the register upon request, and the Secretary allowing a member to inspect the register, make notes which comprise the entirety of the membership register, and then provide those notes to other members. Making it explicit that the Secretary is required to send the register will reduce the need for "clever" workarounds, and make the matter clear in the future so that this issue does not reoccur.
The changes also provide an alternative wording for the current "free of charge" provision, to emphasise that while there can be no fee charged by the Association to inspect the register, any associated costs (such as transport, parking, computer software, etc) are to be borne by the person doing the inspecting and not by the Association.
This resolution does not in any way alter the rights of members to request their personal information be restricted per section 59 of the act, nor will it change the restrictions on what may be done with the information in section 58 of the act or in any other laws that may apply.
It is proposed to include the following motion at the next Annual General Meeting:
- That rule 5(2) is replaced with the following:
- (2) The register is available for inspection, in person, upon request by any person that has been a member of the organisation for the two consecutive years prior to the request. The Association may not charge a fee to a member to inspect the register in this way.
- That the following text is appended to rule 5:
- (4) A digital copy of the members register will be provided upon a request from any person that has been a member of the organisation for the two consecutive years prior to that request. This copy will be provided in an electronic format and delivered to the member via email. The Association may not charge a fee for a copy of the members register provided in this way.
As this motion involves a change to the rules, a 75% majority would need to vote in favour of it at a General Meeting in order for the rule change to take effect.
Instead of adding an additional provision to allow the members register to be sent to members, we could replace the current provision allowing inspection. The rationale for this would be that if it is possible to get a copy by email, then inspecting the physical register would be unnecessary. The above proposal is deliberately minimalist, but an alternative motion taking this approach could be raised if there is wide support from the membership.
Supporting this proposal should not necessarily be interpreted as supporting the motion; this proposal is merely to place the motion on the agenda for the general meeting.