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Oceana Coat of Arms

A document to provide for the establishment and administration of a Parliament of Oceana at the University of Glasgow, and for connected purposes.

[Written 18 June 2011]

Article 1. The SocietyEdit

  1. There shall be a Parliament of Oceana.

  2. The Parliament of Oceana is a student-run Society in the form of a fictitious Parliament at the University of Glasgow and is an independent student body.
  3. A separate Constitution of the Republic of Oceana shall be established to detail the operation of the Parliament and its affairs.
  4. The Parliament of Oceana shall abide by the SRC Equal Opportunities statement and will provide and promote equal opportunities, whatever the person's race, colour, ethnic or national origin, religion, beliefs, sex, age, sexuality, HIV status, physical or mental disability, state of health, appearance, marital status, or family circumstances.

Article 2. NameEdit

  1. The Society shall be known as the Parliament of Oceana, and will hereafter be referred to as “the Society.”

Article 3. Aims and ObjectivesEdit

The Society aims to:

  1. encourage and foster political debate at the University of Glasgow through a democratic process;
  2. introduce students to political participation and explore the rudimentary mechanics of democratic politics and society, including fictional history and development;
  3. facilitate cross-society interaction and co-operation, thereby promoting the status of the University of Glasgow as a diverse forum of debate.

Article 4. MembershipEdit

  1. Any matriculated student of the University of Glasgow is entitled to become an Ordinary Member of the Society, subject to the payment of any membership fee due.
  2. In addition, membership of the Society shall be open to non-matriculated students and University of Glasgow graduates (Associate Members), as well as University staff (Affiliate Members) who together shall make up no more than twenty (20) percent of the total membership.
  3. Membership may be gained at any point during the academic year and shall expire at the beginning of the following academic year.
  4. Non-members may be entitled to participate in some Society events. The decision to open events to non-members shall be at the discretion of the Executive Committee.
  5. Executive Committee positions are only available to Ordinary Members who have been members of the Society for at least three (3) months, except in special circumstances as decreed by the sitting Executive Committee.
  6. Parliamentary positions are open to all Ordinary and Associate Members of the Society.
  7. Supreme Court positions are only open to Affiliate Members, subject to parliamentary confirmation.
  8. All membership shall be at the discretion of the Executive Committee.

Article 5. GovernanceEdit

  1. The Society shall be under the democratic control of members.

  2. Executive Committee meetings should be held regularly throughout the academic year, with at least two (2) per semester.
  3. The President shall compile an agenda prior to each meeting, which the Secretary shall ensure is circulated to all Society members and any other relevant party.
  4. Matters for discussion may be raised at any meeting by any Executive Committee member.
  5. In addition, any Society member wishing to raise an item may do so prior to any Executive Committee meeting, having first notified the Secretary no less than one (1) day prior.
  6. Executive Committee meetings shall be open session, unless otherwise stated by the President. In the case of a closed session, the President must provide reasoning.
  7. There shall be an allocated amount of time at the beginning of each open Executive Committee for the public to address the committee about any issue not on the agenda. The Executive Committee will not vote or decide upon any such issue at that time, but if it so chooses, may include the issue at the end of the meeting or to be put on the next meeting's agenda.
  8. The Society shall have an Annual General Meeting (AGM) towards the end of the academic year, at which:
    • the President shall address the Society as a whole concerning the state of the Society and the Republic;
    • the Vice President shall call for a summer recess of Parliament and deliver a report to review the sitting Parliament's activities and decisions;
    • the Treasurer shall submit the Society's accounts and deliver a report on the finances of the Society and the Republic;
    • the Secretary shall deliver a report on the administrative activities of the Executive Committee and the current affairs of the State.
  9. Members must be given no less than ten (10) working days notice of the AGM.
  10. Ordinary Members shall have full voting rights at the Society’s AGM. Associate and Affiliate Members may be granted certain voting rights, as decreed by the Executive Committee.
  11. Amendments to the Society Constitution may be proposed at the AGM by any Society member, in accordance with Article 11.
  12. A General Election for the Executive Committee shall be held at the AGM, in accordance with Article 6.
  13. The Society will conform to the SRC Equal Opportunities Policy and restrictions set out in the SRC Constitution Schedule 5.

Article 6. The Executive CommitteeEdit

  1. There shall be a committee of at least four (4) officers which shall be responsible for the organisation and administration of the Society and all its activities.

  2. Office bearers shall be elected at the Society's Annual General Meeting.
  3. All Ordinary Members of the Society are eligible to stand for Executive Positions.
  4. All current Society members are entitled to vote. Associate and Affiliate Members shall make up no more than twenty (20) percent of voters.
  5. The election shall be by secret ballot. In order to win a candidate requires 50% +1 of the vote. Further details on the electoral system are stated in the Constitution of the Republic of Oceana.
  6. The term of all Executive Committee members begins seven (7) days following the election and extends through the transition period after the next General Election (AGM). Each office-bearer is limited to two (2) terms.
  7. In the event of a vacancy, an Extraordinary General Meeting (EGM) shall be called within two (2) weeks to elect a replacement, and sufficient notice of its arrangement given to Society members.
  8. No elected positions shall be open to non-matriculated students of the University of Glasgow. In addition, office-bearers shall not have opted out of SRC representation under the Education Act 1994.
  9. Responsibility for holding and overseeing the Executive Committee elections lies with the sitting Executive Committee, which shall ensure that they are carried out in accordance with this constitution.

Article 7. Executive Committee MembersEdit

  1. The Executive Committee shall consist at all times of:

    • a President
    • a Vice President
    • a Treasurer
    • a Secretary.
  1. In addition any other position deemed necessary may be created at a later date. The decision to create further office positions shall lie with the Executive Committee, however all office bearers shall be elected as laid down in Article 6 and subject to a constitutional amendment.
  2. The main tasks of the Executive Committee members are as follows:
    • A) The President:
      • Shall be the spokesperson for the Society;
      • Shall hold overall responsibility for the administration of the Society and its activities;
      • Shall generally chair meetings of the Executive Committee;
      • Shall be the first point of contact for all outside communications;
      • Shall be responsible for communications with the SRC, Unions and other bodies;
      • Shall hold overall responsibility for social events and in conjunction with the Treasurer liaise with businesses involved where applicable;
      • Shall share responsibility for publicity with the Secretary;
      • Shall hear and deal with any complaints relating to any aspect of the Society, seeking advice from any relevant persons involved;
      • Shall act as President of the Republic of Oceana.
    • B) The Vice President
      • Shall undertake the responsibilities of the President in their absence;
      • Shall assist the President with communications;
      • Shall call for, open and facilitate all sessions of the Parliament;
      • Shall act as the Speaker of Parliament in the Republic of Oceana.
    • C) The Treasurer
      • Shall collect and manage the membership fee;
      • Shall maintain an accurate record of all Society income and expenditure and be responsible for the payment of any expenditure and for any reimbursements due;
      • Shall advise the Executive Committee on matters of spending and finance;
      • Shall draft budgets for any events arising throughout the year;
      • Shall, with the President, liaise with businesses involved where applicable;
      • Shall, together with the President, be responsible for any fundraising undertaken by the Society;
      • Shall act as the Treasury Chairman of the Republic of Oceana.
    • D) The Secretary
      • Shall take minutes of Executive Committee meetings and circulate these to all Society members;
      • Shall keep an up-to-date list of all members and their contact details, and shall ensure that it remains confidential and is not disclosed to anyone outwith the Executive Committee;
      • Shall assist the President with communications;
      • Shall share responsibility for publicity with the President;
      • Shall be responsible for communications with all Society members prior to Executive Committee meetings and shall take note of any issues to be raised at such meetings;
      • Shall be responsible for communicating to the Executive Committee any issues raised by members prior to an AGM;
      • Shall act the Press Secretary of the Republic of Oceana.

Article 8. Conduct of Executive Committee MembersEdit

  1. The Executive Committee undertakes to hold regular meetings to discuss matters relating to the Society, and to accurately inform all Society members of any decisions made and action taken. Any Society member wishing to raise an issue before the Executive Committee is entitled to do so.

  2. The Executive Committee shall at all times take responsibility for the general administration of the Society and the running of Society events. All Society events shall require the presence of at least one (1) office-bearer. Events involving the participation of more than twenty (20) Society members require the presence of at least two (2) elected office-bearers.
  3. Members of the Executive Committee shall at all times in their official capacity act reasonably and professionally, and deal with any issues arising efficiently and effectively. Executive Committee members shall take seriously any complaints from Society members relating to their conduct or the Society generally. Serious complaints and those from outwith the Society shall be directed to the President who shall deal with them as a matter of urgency.
  4. Any Executive Committee member found in violation of Article 8 Section 3 is subject to an impeachment vote, carried out at an Extraordinary General Meeting. Successful impeachment of an Executive Committee member shall require a 2/3 majority vote with at least fifty (50) percent of Ordinary and Associate Members casting a vote.

Article 9. The ParliamentEdit

  1. The main activity of the Society is to hold Parliamentary sessions. Details on the composition of Parliament and associated institutions, as well as their Rules and Procedures, are defined in the Constitution of the Republic of Oceana.

  2. Elections for Parliamentary positions and institutions are held at the beginning of each academic year, in accordance with the Constitution of the Republic of Oceana.
  3. The roles and tasks of Members of Parliament and other institutions are defined in the Constitution of the Republic of Oceana.
  4. The President, acting as Head of State, may influence the activities of Parliament by introducing new scenarios at any time.
  5. The Vice President, acting as Speaker of Parliament, is responsible for all affairs and sessions of the Parliament and its functions in accordance with the Constitution of the Republic of Oceana and the Rules and Procedures of Parliament.
  6. The Treasurer, acting as Treasury Chairman, shall handle and oversee all state finances, as well as may influence the economy of the Republic by introducing new scenarios.
  7. The Secretary, acting as Press Secretary, shall report on the activities of all institutions of the Republic for the benefit of its citizens, through state publications and media.

Article 10. FinanceEdit

  1. The Society shall be a non-profit making organisation.

  2. Financial matters shall be under the direct control of the Executive Committee, acting on the advice of the Treasurer. The Treasurer may make financial decisions on behalf of the Society having sought the relevant guidance and permission from the President or Vice President.
  3. The Treasurer shall publish a report on the activities and corresponding financial expenditure of the Society at the AGM, and ensure that it is available to all Society members.
  4. Fundraising for the Society may take place at any point throughout the year at the discretion of the Executive Committee, which shall hold overall responsibility for its administration.
  5. Signatories for all banking matters shall be the President, Treasurer and Secretary.
  6. The funds of the society shall be applied solely for the furtherance of its aims and the operation of the Society.
  7. The officers and members of the Society shall not receive payment from the Society, either direct or indirect, personal or professional, for any reason.
  8. No officer of the Society shall have special liability for any debts or losses incurred by the Society.
  9. All accounts and financial reports of the Society shall be kept for a minimum of four (4) years in accordance with Article 12.

Article 11. Amendments and ReviewEdit

  1. Outside of the AGM, any disputes arising with regard to this constitution, or amendments made to its meaning, shall be secured by a 2/3 majority vote, with at least fifty (50) percent of Society members casting a vote. Associate and Affiliate Members shall make up no more than twenty (20) percent of voters.

  2. On receipt of a petition signed by ten (10) percent of the membership, the Secretary shall give five (5) working days notice of an Extraordinary General Meeting to consider submitted amendments.
  3. Any Society member may propose amendments to this constitution at the Annual General Meeting (AGM). Voting on all such proposals is at the discretion of the Executive Committee. Successful passage of constitutional amendments at the AGM shall be secured with a 2/3 majority vote of the membership present.
  4. This constitution is to be reviewed each year prior to the Annual General Meeting (AGM) by the Executive Committee.

Article 12. Records and ArchivesEdit

  1. Any relevant materials of the Society shall be submitted to the University of Glasgow Archives at the beginning of each academic year.

  2. Financial Records shall be kept by the President and Treasurer for a minimum period of four (4) years before being submitted to the University of Glasgow Archives.

Article 13. Dissolution of the SocietyEdit

  1. If it is decided that the Society shall be dissolved, all funds of the Society shall be donated to a charity of the Executive Committee's choosing.

  2. The Executive Committee shall remain in office until all affairs and accounts of the Society have been closed.
  3. All materials of the Society shall be submitted to the University of Glasgow Archives following the dissolution of the Society.

Declaration of EstablishmentEdit

We, the founding members, hereby ratify the Society Constitution of the Parliament of Oceana. In the hope the Society may prosper through diversity, freedom of thought and dialogue, we dedicate this constitution to a society of students engaged in the study of democracy, politics, economics, law, history and human society by the means of democratic, open and fair debate.

It is our purpose to create the Society of the Parliament of Oceana as an academic and social student organization which shall encourage, educate and facilitate political participation and debate among students; and equally enthuse and inspire students to take a more proactive role in the society in which we all live.

Founding Members:

  • Andrew Foster
  • Jani Helle
  • Euan Loarridge
  • Alec Brasier