Elections Policy

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Nominations and Elections Policy

1.0 Purpose:

To explain the procedures for holding nominations and elections as implemented by the Canadian Association of Schools of Nursing (CASN).

2.0 Revision History

n/a

3.0 Persons Affected

Persons affected by the Nominations and Elections Policy are: the Board of Directors, the Awards and Nominations Committee, the Executive Director and CASN National Office.

4.0 Policy

To outline the Nominations and Elections Policy.

5.0 Definitions

n/a

6.0 Responsibilities

CASN National Office is responsible for ensuring this policy is followed.

7.0 Procedures

This policy will explain the procedures for holding nominations and elections as practiced by the Canadian Association of Schools of Nursing (CASN). The sections of this policy, as they occur in the document are:

I.        Eligibility Requirements
II.      Nomination of Candidates
III.    Time Line for Elections and Appointments
IV.     Scrutineers
V.       Voting
VI.     Results of Elections and Appointments
VII.    Invalid Results
VIII.  Dealing with Complaints
IX.     Misconduct

I.  Eligibility Requirements

The nomination period will run between May and November, the exact dates each year will be set by CASN National Office. During the first day of the annual Council meeting nominations will be taken from the floor. Any member of the faculty or administration of a member school may stand for election, in accordance with the bylaws (tbc, tbc).

Members of the Association who are completing their term in an elected office, and wish to run for another term, shall be considered eligible given the successful completion of the nomination process, in accordance with bylaw (tbc).

Members of the Association currently in an elected office, who decide not to complete their term, must resign from their office prior to being nominated for a different office or term. Resignations must be received in writing by the Executive Director twenty-four hours before the annual Council meeting.

II.  Nomination of Candidates

All potential candidates shall submit a valid nomination form in order to become a candidate eligible for election.

The nomination form shall contain the following information in order to be considered valid:·

  • Full name, common name, signature and school of said candidate.·
  • Contact information·
  • Name, signature, and school of the nominator

The Awards and Nominations Committee shall ensure that all names that appear on nomination forms are those of official members of a member school.

Knowledge of nominations shall be kept in the strictest confidence by the Chair of the Awards and Nominations Committee and the Manager of Corporate Services until the close of the nomination period. The official list of nominees shall be announced thirty (30) days prior to the Council meeting.

Prior to elections being held, each candidate shall be given the opportunity to provide a brief written statement of their qualifications to Council.

A majority vote by secret ballot shall be conducted. The winner of this vote shall be ratified by Council.

If there is only one candidate for an elected position that person shall be considered acclaimed pending a YES/NO vote during the election process.

 III. Time line for Elections and Appointments

Advertising for elections shall be done for the duration of the nomination period.

Advertising will include the following (where applicable):

The position(s) available, contact information for the Manager of Corporate Services; date, time, and locations of the opening and closing of the nomination period, the location of the Council meeting, and the date of the elections.

Advertising can be done through the following means, but are not limited to, the CASN website, general postings, email list serves.The nomination period will run between May and November, the exact dates each year will be set by CASN National Office.

Polling for all CASN elections shall occur for a minimum of one half hour, or until all possible votes are accounted for.

The election will be held annually during the Council meeting.

Official results of any elections and appointments shall be publicized through the CASN website and email list serves.

IV.  Scrutineers

Up to four scrutineers will assist the Chief Electoral Officer (CEO) with the polling and counting of ballots on the second day of the Council meeting. Scrutineers shall be non-voting Council meeting attendees. Potential scrutineers will be contacted, if possible, before the Council meeting by the Manager of Corporate Services. Training will be provided by the Chief Electoral Officer regarding policy and procedures to follow while on duty.

V.  Voting

Voter eligibility

Each member school in good standing duly represented in person (by its respective senior nursing head or by a faculty member or other designate from that school) or by proxy shall have the right to one vote.

A member school may, by means of a written proxy, appoint a proxy holder from their own institution or from another member school to attend and vote on their behalf.

To be eligible, a proxy holder must be a duly constituted representative of another member school

A proxy is designated through the appropriate form which must be received by National Office prior to the commencement of the Council meeting.

Proxy votes are limited to two for any one Council member.

Proxy votes are not included in the quorum count.

The name of the voter and the school must appear on a master list of registered voting delegated approved by the Manager of Corporate Services.

Voting Procedure

All ballot boxes must remain sealed throughout the polling period.

The Chief Electoral Officer will keep the ballot boxes, and master lists of registered voters, and ballots for each assigned polling station.

All voters must provide the scrutineer with their name badge and voting card prior to being permitted to cast a ballot.

Scrutineer shall ensure that the information provided on the name badge is the same as the information given on the master list of voters.

The scrutineer shall make a permanent mark on each voter’s name on the master list of voters at the time of issuing the ballot.

Scrutineer must initial the back of each ballot that they hand out. This is for the Chief Electoral Officer’s reference as to the origin of the ballot. If the initial is absent the ballot can be declared invalid.

All voting shall be done by secret ballot.

Quorum for the vote shall be 50% +1 of the attending voting delegates of CASN.

If quorum fails the election will be declared invalid.There shall always be a minimum of two scrutineers in the elections room at all times.

Polling locations shall be designated by National Office.

Ballot boxes must remain in full sight at all times when they are not secured by the Chief Electoral Officer.

Ballots

The names of the candidates shall be listed in alphabetical order, last name first, as they appear on their nomination form.

Ballots must be secured prior to the opening of the polls by the Chief Electoral Officer.

Ballots shall be destroyed by CASN National Office no later than twenty-four (24) hours after final ratification of all elections and appointments.

Any mark on the ballot which clearly denotes a preference for one of the candidates, as determined by the Chief Electoral Officer, shall be valid and will be counted.

Ballots shall be numbered in sequence. The Chief Electoral Officer will keep a record of the number of ballots and which numbered ballots were distributed to each polling station. Ballots are only accepted during the polling period.

Tabulation and Validation of Votes

Tabulation shall begin immediately following the close of the polling period, when quorum is reached.

Quorum for tabulation is the Chief Electoral Officer and one of the scrutineers.

Only the Chief Electoral Officer and scrutineers are allowed to touch any ballot boxes, ballots, or the polling stations’ master lists voters, following the close of the polling period.

No persons may enter or exit the room in which ballots are being tabulated from the time the first ballot box is opened until the final count has been completed and approved by the Chief Electoral Officer.

The Chief Electoral Officer shall make all rulings on ballot spoilage. Any such rulings can be appealed to the Committee on Nominations and Awards when said spoiled ballots may alter the outcome of the election.

Ballots shall be counted a minimum of two times, unless the Chief Electoral Officer and the scrutineers determine that a second count is not necessary.

Any member of Council may request a recount with due cause.

VI.  Results of Elections and Appointments

The results for an election shall be decided by a simple majority of eligible voters. Said decision shall be considered as binding upon the Board of Directors and Council members.

Council shall ratify the results of the election by motion to make the results official.

Council shall not ratify the results until any and all disputes or appeals are resolved.

Ratification shall be by two-thirds majority. Failed ratification shall result in an invalid election. Ratification may only fail for policy infractions that provide an unfair process in the election, a ruling from the Chair of the Nominations and Awards Committee, or failed quorum during voting. No appeals may be made after the ratification of the final count and results by Council.

VII.  Invalid Results

Should the results of any election and/or appointment be ruled invalid, a re-vote shall occur no later than two weeks after said ruling is made.

The re-vote shall be publicized by email to all Council members as well as being posted on the CASN website.

VIII.  Dealing with Complaints

Any member of the Association may file a complaint regarding any aspect of a CASN election and appointment. All complaints shall be brought before the Chief Electoral Officer first. Complaints need not be in writing. The Chief Electoral Officer may consult with the Chair of the Committee on Nominations and Awards before making a decision regarding the complaint. Complaints which involve extensive investigation or witness testimony shall be brought to the Board of Directors for review.

IX.  Misconduct

Misconduct is the improper behaviour (intentional or not) or intentional wrongdoing of a candidate, their representatives, or voting members. Misconduct may include, but is not limited to, any violations of the CASN Elections Policy, Code of Conduct, and Bylaws. All misconduct shall be reported to the Chief Electoral Officer for investigation. If it is found that a candidate or voting delegate they will be given one verbal warning. If the misconduct continues, the candidate will be disqualified and/or the voting member will lose their vote for the election.

Approved by: CASN Council
Date: November 2011
To be Revised: Every 5 Years