The following bylaws were adopted on May 18, 2015.
Article I – Membership
UFT Solidarity is a caucus of the United Federation of Teachers (UFT) . It is comprised of members with similar values and goals and involves building a stronger UFT.
Membership is open to all UFT members, including substitutes, ATRs, retired UFT members and former (discontinued, terminated or those who were forced to resign) UFT members.
Solidarity membership is conferred when a person formally joins Solidarity by filling out an official membership form with their personal contact information, and subsequently acknowledges membership.
Solidarity Membership Privileges
Only Solidarity members may represent Solidarity on other committees, including standing committees of the UFT.
Membership can be terminated when:
a member formally writes to the Solidarity Council (see Article III – Solidarity Leadership) requesting a membership cancellation.
In the event a member’s actions hinder the mission of Solidarity; a ⅔ vote of the membership can terminate the membership of a Solidarity member. If terminated, a member can write a formal appeal that is distributed to the membership. After review, any member can call a vote of the membership to reinstate the terminated member. A ⅔ vote of the membership is needed to reinstate the terminated member.
Only Solidarity members may determine official Solidarity policy. Non-members do not vote but may participate in discussions at membership meetings. . (See Article V.A.2)
Article II – Dues
Solidarity members are not required to pay dues. Instead, members financially support the organization via periodic donations for various purposes; i.e. to cover costs of meeting spaces, acquire website maintenance, and production of media, such as newsletters.
A spreadsheet will document all donations and expenses and will be made available to Council members for review. A donation link is on the official website: http://www.uftsolidarity.org.
Article III – Solidarity Leadership
Solidarity is led by a Council elected by Solidarity members. . Logistical decisions, including those requiring an urgent or time-sensitive vote, are decided by this Council. Decisions made by the Council are decided by consensus.. These decisions are subject to review by the Solidarity membership. The Council is composed of a subgroup of Solidarity members. The size of the Council will be 9 members.
Council members must be members of Solidarity in good standing for at least four months.
Solidarity members interested in serving on the Council may be nominated by other Solidarity members or may nominate themselves.
Those nominated to serve on the Solidarity Council will be elected by a formal vote among Solidarity members.
Council Term of Office
The Council shall serve for a one-year term.
At the end of each term, Solidarity will hold an election for a subsequent Council. Former Council members can be re-elected.
Vacancies in Office
Temporary Vacancies. In the event that a Council member becomes ill, or is otherwise unable to serve temporarily, the other members of the Council can appoint a member to serve in the interim.
Replacement. If a Council member resigns or their seat is otherwise vacant, a new Council representative can be elected by the membership at the next membership meeting.
Duties and Responsibilities of the Council
To schedule Solidarity Council and membership meetings, as needed.
To set agendas for Solidarity Council and membership meetings, allowing for both continuity of work, and responsiveness to Solidarity members’ suggestions.
To hear and discuss reports from Solidarity committees liaisons.
To plan the overall flow of Solidarity work, including projects, campaigns, forums, etc., in conjunction with the various Solidarity committees.
To oversee the use of Solidarity monies.
The Council will meet two times each month, either at an in-person meeting or a telephone conference. Meetings shall be open to all members of Solidarity. Members of Solidarity may partake in the discussion at Council meetings.
⅔ of the Council shall constitute a quorum.
The acts of the Council may be amended or overruled by a ⅔ vote of the membership.
Article IV – Solidarity Decision-Making Processes
Solidarity policy-making decisions and other important decisions will be made by a formal vote of the Solidarity membership present at the meeting; or the body present at the meeting can decide to do an online vote. In either case, ⅔ of the membership shall be needed to approve a decision.
Article V – Solidarity Membership Meetings
Solidarity Membership Meetings are held monthly, and more often if needed.
Solidarity Membership Meetings are open to interested members of the public who wish to share in discussion of union matters and other issues of critical concern to the educational community. (See Article I.D.1)
The Council will schedule membership meetings as needed, and either plan the agendas, including items suggested by interested Solidarity members, or oversee a committee of Solidarity Members who will do the planning.
Notice of meetings and agendas will be posted on the Website, and in the Solidarity Newsletter, at least two weeks in advance of each meeting, except in cases of emergency.
Article VI – Solidarity Endorsements
People or organizations seeking Solidarity endorsements for activities or events that are in line with the Solidarity mission statement should contact the Solidarity Council.
Sufficient time should be allowed for the Council to discuss a possible endorsement and to bring the question before the membership for approval if possible.
If time restraints do not allow for Solidarity membership approval, the Council will make the decision.
Any statement to the press or relations with other organizations on behalf of Solidarity will be vetted and approved by the Council.
Article VII – Solidarity Committees
Solidarity committees include the following:
Standing committees, such as Paperwork Reduction, Abusive Administrators, Social Media and Contract Enforcement.
Ad Hoc committees:
Ad hoc committees are formed as needed, or as issues arise.
All Solidarity committees must select a liaison that reports to the Council. This written and/or oral report will bring the work of the committees before the Council and membership for discussion/approval.
Committees can be disbanded or created with the approval of the Council.
Article VIII – Solidarity Social Media
The Solidarity website includes Solidarity’s mission and goals, and a wide variety of information. The website allows visitors to join and become involved in Solidarity’s activities.
Solidarity can establish social media channels as needed to facilitate communication amongst Solidarity membership. The Council may establish the appropriate scope of topics for such social media channels and appoint a moderator to intervene and arbitrate disputes and traffic when necessary.
Article lX – UFT Elections
The Solidarity caucus is an independent union caucus of the UFT and as time progresses will make decisions regarding elections using the decision-making process above. (See Article IV – Solidarity Decision-Making Processes)