By-Laws for the SOGIE Committee


I. Preamble

The Mission Statement of the LGBTQ Committee

The mission of the LGBTQ Committee is to foster a safe and positive environment for the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer (GLBTQ) communities at the State University of New York College at Cortland. The committee provides advocacy and supports the development of curriculum, scholarship, events, and programs that are both educational and social and are designed to cultivate positive attitudes toward LGBTQ individuals and issues.

This committee:

  • Will provide advocacy for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer individuals to make it possible for LGBTQ individuals to benefit from a positive personal and professional experience while members of the SUNY Cortland community.
  • Will encourage full implementation of the New York State law and the SUNY Cortland policies barring discrimination and harassment on the bases of sexual orientation or gender identity/expression.
  • Will recommend plans and policies that promote diversity and mutual respect.
  • Will explore ways of expanding the curriculum to include opportunities for scholarly research and teaching in the area of LGBTQ issues and other ways to support intellectual activities in these areas.

II. Function

The committee will function based on the following steps:

1. An issue or idea is presented to the Chair/Co-chairs and placed on the agenda.
2. The agenda is finalized by the Chair/Co-chairs and sent to the members via email.
3. A meeting time/place is established and publicized via email.
4. A discussion on the issue or idea will take place with respect to the time it was given in the agenda
5. A decision to vote on the idea or issue will be made or the co-chairs will move to table the discussion and allow further input the following meeting.

III. Unit Head

The LGBTQC is chaired by one or two members receiving the majority vote by the second meeting of every fall semester.

The Chair/Co-chairs are responsible for:

Reporting and representing the LGBTQ to the Administration when necessary.
Organizing meetings:
Scheduling the regular (or any necessary immediate) meeting place/time
Preparing the agenda
Notifying members of meetings and events
Maintaining order and structure during meetings.
Creating and adhering to the allotted time of each agenda item.
Tabling a discussion if it requires more time.
Moving to vote on the issue or idea once the allotted time has been met.

Remaining Chair/Co-chairs until new Chair(s) are elected.

Secretary/Co-secretaries are voted upon by a majority vote on the second meeting of the fall semester.
The Secretary/Co-secretaries are responsible for:

Taking minutes during each meeting. Attendance will not be noted on the public minutes; however official minutes including full attendance will be archived and kept in a confidential location.

Preparing the Committee's annual report.

Preparing any other necessary written items.

Counting votes are keeping records of each tally.

Remaining Co-secretaries until new secretaries are elected.

Treasurer/Co-treasurers are voted upon by a majority vote on the second meeting of the Fall semester.

The Treasurer/Co-treasures are responsible for:

Developing a budget for the LGBTQ.

Organizing financial contributions.

Maintain financial records.

Remaining Treasurer/Co-treasures until new treasures are elected.

A voting member may ask (motion followed by a second motion) for a reelection of any officer with a 2/3rds vote. Once the vote has taken place, the new or remaining officer in response to the vote will uphold the responsibilities of the position immediately.

IV. Membership

Membership in the LGBTQC is open to any professional (nonstudent) employee of the State University of New York at Cortland who supports positive progress in research, politics, campus climate, and social atmosphere for LGBTQ individuals and issues.

To become a member, an individual must agree to adhere to the By-laws of the LGBTQC, and notify the Chair/Co-chairs via email or attend a meeting to acknowledge membership.

Members are expected to remain active by attending all meetings/events or maintaining communication with the Chair/Co-chairs via email.

V. Ex officio membership

The following shall be ex officio members and shall attend meetings of the LGBTQC; however do not vote:
1. Professional (non-student) employees of the State University of New York at Cortland who seek membership on the Committee but did not self-identify as a member by the second meeting of the semester.

2. Visiting individuals (such as the Project Coordinator of the Cortland LGBT Resource Center), based on the discretion of the committee.

VI. Voting Membership

Voting members must be self-identified (to the co-chairs) by the second meeting of each semester via email or by the presence in the first or second meeting.

Only members identified by the third meeting of each semester will have voting rights for that semester.

If an individual joins the committee after the third meeting, he/she will have voting rights once the next semester begins.

Visiting individuals (such as the Project Coordinator of the Cortland LGBT Resource Center) are non-voting members.

VII. Voting

All voting items will take place during the scheduled meetings.

Voting items are either formal or informal in nature.
a. Formal = anonymous voting ballots will be used.
b. Informal = Chair/Co-chairs will ask for a show of hands (In favor, Opposed, Abstain)

All items intended to be formally voted on shall be identified on the agenda.

A voting member may cast a formal vote (only) in the absence of the meeting if she/he acquires a voting ballot from the Chair/Co-chairs, seals it, and delivers it back to a Chair/Co-chair prior to the meeting.

All voting ballots shall be identical; preserving the anonymous nature.

All voting ballots shall be collected and tallied by the Chair/Co-chairs and Secretary/Co-secretaries.

Secretary/Co-secretaries will identify and record the tallied votes in the minutes.

VIII. Meetings and Agenda

The LGBTQC shall meet no less than two times each semester.

Meetings are called by the Chair/Co-chairs and scheduled for a regular time by the second meeting.

Meetings additional to the regularly schedule meetings will take place when necessary and scheduled by the Chair/Co-chairs.

The meetings should be conducted in an atmosphere of informal and open discourse but should be governed by the following (modifications of Roberts Rule of Order):

Review Minutes:
1. Members read minutes from the previous meeting.
2. Suggestions for corrections are given.
3. A member motions to accept the minutes with corrections.
4. A member seconds the motion.
5. An informal vote to accept the minutes takes place with a raise of hands.
6. Accepting the minutes is noted on the new minutes.
Agenda items:
1. Each item will be discussed with respect to the allotted time.
2. Once the allotted time has expired, the Chairs/Co-chairs will move to table the discussion or vote.
3. If a formal vote takes place, ballots will be distributed and collected.
4. If an informal vote takes place, the Chair/Co-chair(s) will ask members to raise their hands for either:
a. All in favor of......
b. Oppose?
c. Abstain?
5. The tally of each vote will be recorded in the minutes.
1. Conclusion of minutes.

Chairs/Co-chairs will organize order for discussions with respect to the following courtesies:
1. As members signal to speak by raising a hand - Chair/Co-chairs will identify the order.
2. A member who has not spoken on an issue has time to speak before a member who has already spoken on the issue speaks again.

Regularly scheduled meetings shall be open to any professionals (nonstudent) on campus that support the LGBTQ community.

An agenda including all formal voting items shall be disseminated via email to all members of the committee at least 24 hours prior to the meeting.

Each agenda must include the following categories:

Current research and curriculum suggestions
Political updates
Campus climate
Social topics/events
Suggested items

IX. Committees

Ad Hoc Committees:

Committees established by a majority vote (by members) to collect data, complete a project, or implement an idea.


X. Ratification and Amendment

These By-Laws shall be amended by a majority vote from the current members of the LGBTQ Committee.

Originally approved by the LGBTQ Committee (1/30/2009).
Prepared by: By-Laws Committee - (Dr. Laura Campbell).