MEMBERSHIP MEETING STANDING RULES
Resolutions should be submitted at least 10 days before a meeting to be included on the meeting agenda. Secondary Amendments to agenda items should be submitted in writing before midnight the day before a meeting to be included on the meeting agenda.
People shall be eligible to participate in deliberations if they are members in good standing. Eligibility shall be determined using the most recent membership list provided to the chapter by the national DSA. In the case that a membership list is out of date and does not include a member in good standing, in order to be eligible to participate, a member must provide proof that they were a member in good standing 30 minutes before the beginning of a meeting.
The Chair shall abide by Progressive Stack when recognizing members from the floor for Debate. Progressive Stack is defined as alternating the recognition of members fairly when assigning the floor between members of all nationalities, ethnicities, classes, creeds, religious beliefs, gender identity, and disability, in order to ensure equal representation of marginalized groups in the deliberation of ideas.
Speakers on all motions shall be limited to two (2) minutes per speech and two (2) speeches per pending motion.
There is proxy voting for all chapter business. Before the midnight before a meeting, a member may contact the Executive Committee and designate another member in good standing to serve as their proxy for voting on any chapter business during the meeting. Members may only act as a proxy for one other member in any given meeting. Members acting as a proxy shall be issued an additional voting card to represent their proxied member’s vote.
CANDIDATE ENDORSEMENT ONLINE ABSENTEE BALLOTS
There is online absentee voting for chapter business pertaining to endorsements of candidates for government office. Before the midnight before a meeting, members may request an online absentee ballot to vote on resolutions pertaining to candidate endorsements. An in-person vote shall be held and counted in the meeting. After the in-person vote, the numbers of ballots cast in favor, of ballots cast in opposition, and of outstanding online absentee ballots shall be announced. The identities of members who requested online absentee ballots shall not be announced.
If no online absentee ballots were requested, the decision shall go into effect immediately. Otherwise, online absentee ballots will be sent to members who requested them, and members shall be allowed to vote until the midnight after the meeting. The decision shall then be finalized and go into effect at the midnight after the meeting, even if the number of outstanding online absentee ballots is not enough to change the outcome.
Officer elections will be conducted entirely using online voting. Before the midnight before a meeting, members may request an online absentee ballot to vote in officer elections. Online absentee ballots shall be cast during the same time period as online ballots of members attending the meeting. Voting in officer elections will open no earlier than the start of the annual elections meeting, and close no later than the midnight after the annual elections meeting.
Members shall applaud using American Sign Language applause. All debate must be germane to the pending motion on the floor.
NON-MEMBERS AND EXCLUSION
Non-members are welcome to attend GBMs but are unable to participate in deliberations. Presentations pertinent by non-members must be approved beforehand by the Chair or Executive Committee. Regardless of membership status, no candidate for government office may be present for any deliberation or vote on the question of whether to endorse them.
The Chair may deputize members to serve as the meeting’s Marshals. Unruly members will be subject to Marshal de-escalation, at the Chair’s discretion. In instances where de-escalation fails to resolve the issue of an unruly attendee, attendees – members and non-members alike – will be subject to expulsion from the meeting at the Chair’s discretion.
Attendees shall not film, photograph, or audio record the meeting’s deliberations without explicit permission from the Recording Secretary or Chair. It should be assumed that all deliberations in a meeting are public. This rule concerns protecting a member’s right to privacy, not privacy of information.
At any point, a representative of a campaign for a candidate or ballot measure may submit a request for the chapter to endorse the candidate or ballot measure they represent. This request will include a written statement explaining why they believe they deserve an endorsement from MADSA, as well as a completed endorsement questionnaire from the chapter. The endorsement request must be approved to be a potential endorsement by the Executive Committee or a body designated by the Executive Committee.
After being approved as a potential endorsement, the statement and questionnaire from the candidate or campaign representative will be made publicly available for at least two weeks. After the two week period, the next general meeting of the chapter will include an informational session about the potential endorsement. In the case of a campaign for a candidate, the candidate themselves must be present for this meeting. In the case of a campaign for a ballot measure, a representative of the campaign requesting endorsement must be present for this meeting. The candidate or representative will be required to answer any relevant questions proposed by the membership. This meeting will be recorded and the video and a transcript will be made publicly available until the endorsement comes to a final vote.
At the next general meeting after an information session, a member may move to endorse the candidate or ballot measure, according to a tier of endorsement described below. To receive the endorsement, at least 60% of all members present and in good standing must vote in support. If a candidate or ballot measure fails to receive the endorsement, a request for endorsement may be re-submitted; however, the full process must be completed again.
RESCINDING AN ENDORSEMENT
Any member in good standing may move to rescind an endorsement at a general meeting for any reason. If at least 70% of members present and in good standing vote in support of rescinding the endorsement, the endorsement shall be rescinded.
Endorsements shall be characterized by the material deliverables Metro Atlanta DSA provides to candidates. There shall be two tiers of endorsements.
Tier 1 endorsements, or “Extensive Support”, shall:
- Permit the chapter to organize DSA-themed Canvasses, Phonebanks, and other Volunteer actions to support the candidates’ campaign
- Permit the chapter to allocate funds towards supporting a candidate
- Include all deliverables of a Tier 2 endorsement
Tier 2 endorsements, or “Limited Support”, shall:
- Permit the chapter to promote the candidate on social media, in official statements, and in other literature without spending funds
- Permit the candidate to use the Metro Atlanta DSA name on their literature and website
Any requirement(s) of the endorsement policy may be waived for a specific candidate or ballot measure by a vote held at a general meeting with at least 70% of members present and in good standing voting in support of waiving.
HARASSMENT & GRIEVANCE POLICY
The Metro Atlanta DSA has adopted DSA’s national harassment policy, described in Resolution 33 from the 2017 DSA Convention, as its harassment policy.
In the case of suspension, at the end of the recommended suspension period, an individual will be placed on a period of membership probation equal to the length of the suspension (e.g. a three-month suspension period would equal a three-month probationary period).
Membership probation may include the following sanctions at the discretion of the Harassment Grievance Officer(s):
- Escalating sanctions such as an additional suspension or expulsion in the case of further violations of the Code of Conduct
- Access restrictions on membership data, digital assets, and digital spaces — including but not limited to social media accounts, the chapter website, chapter email lists, and chapter communication platforms such as Slack.
- Ineligibility to run for or hold any elected or appointed position in DSA, Metro Atlanta DSA, or any subdivision thereof
- Restriction of speaking rights or recognition in meetings of Metro Atlanta DSA or any subdivision thereof