AAUW National Bylaws Amendment Vote FAQ

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Get answers to some of the most frequently asked questions about the 2018 AAUW Bylaws Amendment Vote.

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Bylaws Amendments


How do I submit my proposed amendment?

To propose an amendment, follow the process that is described on the AAUW Bylaws Amendment page of the AAUW election website:

  1. Read the current AAUW Bylaws and review the proposed changes.
  2. 2. Click on the dropdown menu to select the article/section of the bylaws for which you would like to propose an amendment.
  3. Click Go.
  4. 4. On the comment page, scroll through the proposals that have already been posted, if any, and then type your proposal in the text box.
  5. Click Submit.

Amendment proposals are limited to 4,000 characters. You may propose only one amendment for each bylaw article/section unless you first withdraw your former proposed amendment. You may, however, propose amendments for more than one bylaw article/section at the same time.

Can amendments be submitted by branches and/or states?

Yes. Although the system will only recognize a valid member ID number and branches/states are not assigned member ID numbers, a member designated to represent the branch may submit the proposed amendment by noting at the beginning of the amendment proposal that it is “Submitted on behalf of branch/state name.” It is important, however, to ensure that this submission is indeed a reflection of the will of the branch/state, with a majority vote taken at a meeting with a quorum present.

What happens if there is more than one proposed amendment to a particular bylaw?

There is no limit to the number of amendments that may be proposed for a given bylaw and no limit to the number of comments that can be entered by different people. There is also no limit to the number of articles/sections for which one individual may propose amendments. But the web format does limit an individual to only one active amendment proposal at a time for a given bylaw article/section. If you want to propose a second amendment to that same article/section, you must withdraw your first proposed amendment before you can submit the second proposal. If several individuals propose amendments to a given bylaw article/section, they are encouraged to collaborate on common wording, using the Let’s Chat tool if necessary.

What is the amendment proposal time frame, and how will l know which amendments will be on the ballot?

Bylaws amendment proposals may be submitted online from February 22 through March 22, 2018. After March 22, the AAUW Governance Committee will reconcile the proposed amendments and make recommendations to the board about proposed amendments that will be balloted. By April 25, the amendments approved by the board for vote by the membership will be posted on the website and prepared for the spring AAUW Outlook, which will be emailed to members (and mailed to members without email addresses) in April 2018 .

What is the Comment box?

The Comment box is a space to be used by anyone wishing to make a comment on an amendment proposal. It is limited to 2,000 characters. If this is inadequate for your comment, you may use another comment box. Each time you submit a comment, your name, home city and state, and the date will be posted in conjunction with that submission.

Who can comment on amendment proposals?

Any member can comment on a proposed amendment. Individuals who make proposals can comment on their own proposed amendments or those of others and may provide a rationale for their own proposal. Members may comment as many times as they wish on any of the proposed amendments. There is no way to comment on bylaws generally without the presence of a proposed amendment.

How do I comment on and discuss these proposed changes or amendments?

When you wish to comment on a proposed bylaw amendment, you can voice your opinion in the Comment section, which will automatically identify the date of your comment and your name as the commenter. Each comment is limited to 2,000 characters.

If you are commenting on your own proposal submission, you may choose to identify yourself as the submitter, and you may wish to include your rationale for the proposal submission.

It is suggested that those commenting on the particular proposed amendment indicate whether the comment is Pro, Con, or Neutral.

If a particular proposed amendment is withdrawn, it will remain visible, though marked Withdrawn, but all comments related to that proposed amendment will be removed. The comment period begins February 22, 2018, and comments will be accepted in this website section until April 25, 2018. Note that the close of the amendment proposal period is March 22, 2018. You may comment on a proposed amendment until April 25, 2018, but will not be able to propose new amendments after March 22, 2018.

What is Keep Me Informed?

This tool provides a way for members to monitor the proposal process. Any member can make a Keep Me Informed request for any bylaw article/section proposal. Each time a comment is submitted on a proposed amendment for which you have chosen to be kept informed, you will receive an automatic email notifying you of that activity. Each time another amendment is proposed related to this article/section, an automatic email will notify you of that activity. If a proposed amendment is withdrawn, all members who requested to be kept informed of activity on that article/section will receive automatic email notification of the withdrawal.

How can two or more submitters discuss and/or reconcile their proposals on a given bylaw article/section?

Once a second proposed amendment to a given article/section has been submitted, both the original proposal submitter and the second submitter to this bylaw will see two buttons on their screen that are not visible to any other members — Send Email and Let’s Chat. Each new member submitting an amendment proposal to this same bylaw article/section will also be able to see these buttons. Any of these proposed amendment submitters may select Send Email, which triggers an email to all other proposal submitters for that particular bylaw article/section. This enables them to request discussion with the others who have submitted proposed amendments to that same bylaw article/section. These individuals can then decide to discuss their proposals via email and/or suggest to the others that they engage in a live chat — and via email they can decide upon a mutually acceptable time and date to chat online about their proposals, accessing the chat at the appointed time by using the Let’s Chat button.

If someone in this group decides to withdraw her or his own proposal, she or he can just click the Withdraw My Proposal button, and it will be marked Withdrawn. The comments to that particular proposal will no longer appear on the screen, and no more comments may be submitted related to the withdrawn amendment proposal. At this point, the individual who has withdrawn the proposal may submit another amendment proposal to that bylaw article/section. She or he may also submit a comment to another proposed amendment that indicates that the withdrawal of her or his own proposed amendment was done in order to endorse this one instead.

What are the Send E-mail and Let’s Chat buttons, and how are they different from the Comment section?

Only the proposal submitters are able to see Send Email and Let’s Chat. These buttons become visible to those who submit proposals to a given article/section once the second proposal is submitted. The Send Email button permits any active submitter to a given article/section to email the other proposal submitters to this article/section for the purpose of having an email discussion of the bylaw and/or to plan an online chat in the Let’s Chat area. The Let’s Chat button accesses an online chat area that is available only to individuals who have proposed an amendment to a particular bylaw article/section.

If two or more individuals who have proposed amendments to a particular bylaw wish to chat among themselves about how to improve the language of the amendment or to join their amendments, they may have access to this area for a private chat. Only those who have proposed amendments to a given bylaw can access this chat area. If you would like to initiate a Let’s Chat dialogue with others who have submitted amendments to a given bylaw, click this button to connect with them to ask them to join you in Let’s Chat.

If they agree to settle on a compromise amendment, they may submit it only after their original proposed amendments are withdrawn. If they wish, they may use the Comment section to discuss their process and present their rationale and conclusions — and they may identify it as a compromise or collaborative amendment if they choose to do so.

How do I withdraw my proposed amendment?

Only the individual who submitted the proposed amendment can withdraw that proposed amendment. If you are a submitter and wish to withdraw one of your proposed amendments, you can click Withdraw My Amendment, and the system will automatically mark the proposed amendment Withdrawn, though it will remain visible. You and all members who have made a Keep Me Informed request will receive an email affirming the withdrawn proposal.

How will members know if a proposed amendment is withdrawn?

A withdrawn proposed amendment is automatically marked Withdrawn, indicating that the individual who proposed the amendment has withdrawn the proposal. That proposed amendment will still appear on the screen, however, so that members who are tracking it can see on the screen that it has been withdrawn. All members who have asked to be kept informed of that proposed amendment are automatically notified by email when it is withdrawn. Once withdrawn, the comments related to that proposed amendment will no longer appear on the screen. No further comments to that proposed amendment may be submitted.


Proposed Resolutions


When can I propose a resolution?

The Proposed AAUW Resolutions page is open for proposals from February 22 to March 22, 2018.

How is a resolution proposed?

  1. Type the title of your proposed resolution in the title box.
  2. Type the text of your proposed resolution in the text box.
  3. Click Submit.

You may propose as many different resolutions as you choose.

How can we comment?

The comment procedure is the same for resolutions as it is for bylaws; please see the bylaws section for full discussion.

Can we propose amendments to the resolution?

No, the resolution stands as proposed. Once the resolutions proposal process closes on March 22, 2018, the Governance and Public Policy Committees will reconcile any proposed resolutions for board approval. Resolutions that will be included on the ballot will be posted on the AAUW website in April and will also appear in the spring AAUW Outlook.




When and how can I vote?

All voting will take place online in spring 2018 unless a member sends a specific request to AAUW for a paper ballot.

Vote online: Online voting is encouraged because it is fast, easy, secure — and green! Online voting is open at 9 a.m. ET, April 25, 2018, and available through 9 p.m. ET, June 9, 2018. To vote online, you must use your member number and a PIN number, which will be emailed to members before voting begins. The PIN will also be mailed to members who receive the spring AAUW Outlook in hard copy.

Many branches organize a voting day and bring laptop computers to a branch meeting where all who want to vote online can do so using their own member numbers and can receive assistance from other members if it is desired.

Paper ballot: Paper ballots must be requested from AAUW between April 16 and May 7, 2018. No ballot will be issued if the request is received after May 7, 2018. All paper ballots mailed to AAUW must be postmarked by 11:59 p.m., May 21, 2018, the deadline for the ballots to be scanned and counted. Paper ballots submitted after that date will not be counted. To request a paper ballot, email your name, address, and member number to connect@aauw.org or call 800.326.2289.

No write-in proposals for bylaw amendments or resolutions will be accepted through paper ballots.

Who is an eligible voter?

As per the AAUW Bylaws, eligible voters are all individual members of AAUW, including life members, who have paid their full national dues by 9 a.m. ET, April 25, 2018.

What constitutes a quorum for a vote to be valid?

The AAUW Bylaws require that submitted ballots equal in number to at least 5 percent of the votes entitled to be cast by members. So five percent constitutes the quorum required for a vote to be counted.

How are votes being counted?

Online votes are entered directly in an AAUW voting database and are counted automatically. Paper ballots are scanned and also entered directly into the AAUW voting database without human interaction and are counted automatically. Paper ballots postmarked after 11:59 p.m. on May 21, 2018, will not be scanned or counted. Online ballots submitted before 9 p.m. ET on Saturday, June 9, 2018, will be counted.

Can I change my vote after I’ve submitted my ballot?

As is best practice in voting processes, the first submitted ballot is considered final. There are no changes, and any subsequent ballot submissions will be rejected.

How will I know if my vote is counted?

After you submit your online ballot, a printable confirmation message will appear on the screen, and you can print it out as confirmation of your vote. No confirmation process is available for paper ballot voting.

What security measures are in place to protect my identity when voting online and to prevent people from voting twice?

Your member ID number and the assigned voting PIN are required to submit a ballot whether online or by mail. PINs will be emailed to members before voting begins and will also be sent with the spring AAUW Outlook. A member’s online or paper ballot is uniquely tied to the member’s ID and to the assigned PIN number. Only the first ballot submitted by an individual will be counted.

Is this voting method consistent with our policies and Robert’s Rules of Order Newly Revised?

Yes. The online methods for proposing and discussing bylaws amendments and resolutions meet the requirements of both the 2017 AAUW Bylaws and AAUW Voting Policy. These methods provide a structure so that everyone can be heard, which is required by our parliamentary authority, Robert’s Rules of Order Newly Revised.




What are the key dates for the 2018 vote?

February 22, 2018 Comment period opens online for members to propose amendments to the AAUW Bylaws and propose resolutions
March 22, 2018 Proposal period closes at 11:59 p.m. ET
April 16, 2018 Opening date to request paper ballot
Mid-April 2018 Bylaws proposals and resolutions published in the spring AAUW Outlook; voter PINs emailed to members and mailed with the spring AAUW Outlook magazine to members without registered email addresses and those that have requested to receive Outlook in the mail
April 25, 2018 Voting begins online at 9 a.m. ET
May 7, 2018 Deadline for AAUW to receive request for paper ballot
May 21, 2018 Deadline for mailing paper ballot; ballot must be postmarked by 11:59 p.m. ET to be counted
June 9, 2018 Online voting ends at 9 p.m. ET
June 10, 2018 Vote results announced online

What do we do for members who don’t have Internet access?

The print edition of spring AAUW Outlook, which is sent to members who don’t have email, will contain information describing the key events and timeline. Outlook will also include the proposed bylaws amendments and resolutions that have been approved for the ballot by the AAUW Board of Directors.

All members are encouraged to vote online because it is fast, easy, secure — and green! Many branches organize a voting day and bring laptop computers to a branch meeting where all who want to vote online can do so using their own member numbers and can receive assistance from other members if it is desired.

Members may request to have a paper ballot mailed to them between April 16, 2018, and May 7, 2018. No paper ballots will be issued after that date. Ballots must be postmarked by 11:59 p.m. ET on May 21, 2018, to count. To request a paper ballot, call 800.326.2289 or email your name, address, and member number to connect@aauw.org.

Members who do not have internet access may submit proposed bylaw amendments, comments, and resolutions by enlisting help from a member who does have internet access. The person who provides that input can indicate at the top of the form “Submitted on behalf of [person’s name].” The proposed bylaw amendments can also be printed from this link and shared with members without internet access.



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How to Foster a Bylaws Amendment Discussion at Your Branch Meeting

Host a discussion at a branch meeting to facilitate debate and an exchange of viewpoints about proposed amendments to the AAUW Bylaws.

AAUW members vote for critical changes to the bylaws. Cast your ballot now in the 2018 AAUW national bylaws amendment vote.

2018 National Bylaws Amendment Vote

The degree requirement, staggered board terms, and opening board service to nonmembers are all on the ballot.

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Turn Your Branch Meeting into a Polling Place

Designate one or two of your branch meetings between April 25 and June 9 as AAUW Bylaws Amendment Voting Days.