Association by-laws

Association by-laws

  1. Name and place
    The association’s name is Ulkoasianministeriön puolisoyhdistys, ULPU ry (Foreign Ministry Spouses’ Association), and it’s home place is Helsinki.

  2. Purpose and method
    The purpose of the association is to serve as a bond between the spouses of foreign ministry civil servants, guard their interests and improve the knowledge and know-how of its members in tasks and matters related to remit of the foreign ministry. In order to do so, the association organises negotiation, training and presentation events, gives statements and maintains personal and associational connections both at home and internationally. The association also organises free-time activities for its members. Information communication to and between members is maintained through members’ mail and other suitable methods. To support its activities the association can accept donations and testaments, own both movable and fixed property needed for its function and organise fund-raisers and lotteries, having received the necessary permits.

  3. Membership
    Those eligible for membership are the spouses of Foreign Service civil servants. The spouses of retired or passed away civil servants can continue their membership. The governing board can also accept other members on petition. Members have the right to leave the association by writing to the board or the chairperson or by having their resignation registered in the minutes of the association.

  4. Membership Fee
    The sizes of fees for joining and yearly membership are decided at the yearly meeting.

  5. The Board
    The affairs of the association are taken care of by the board, which is constitutes the chairperson and at least 8 members. The chairperson and other members are decided at the election conference, with the exception of the treasurer and the accountant, along with their deputies, who are chosen at the annual conference. It is only possible to have at most two spouses of deceased or retired civil servants on the board at one time, unless the election conference decides otherwise. The term of office for board members is the period between election conferences, with the exception of the treasurer and accountant, for whom it is the period between annual conferences. The board nominates from its members a deputy chairman, a secretary, a treasurer and other necessary officers. The board convenes at either the chairperson or, on their inconvenience, their deputy’s invitation, when they see fit or when at least two board members demand it. The board can make decisions when at least half its members, counting the chairperson or deputy, are present. Matters are solved with a simple majority vote. In the case of deadlock, the chairperson’s decision is final, except in elections, where it is decided by lot.

  6. Signing as the association
    Signing under the association’s name can be done by the chairperson or their deputy together with the secretary or treasurer.

  7. The financial year and accounting
    The association’s financial year is the calendar year. The financial statement, with needed documents and the board’s annual report must be given to the accountant at least two weeks before the annual conference.

  8. Calling a conference
    Association conferences are called to convene by the board. Written invitations must be sent at least two weeks before the date, to each member of the association.

  9. Association conferences
    The association’s annual conference is held every year on a date decided by the board before the end of March. The association’s election conference is held every year before the end of October. The treasurer and accountant, plus deputies, are chosen at the annual conference in the spring. Additional conferences are held if the board sees there being reason for it, or if one tenth (1/10) of the membership demands it for a specific reason, in written form, from the board. The meeting is to be had 30 days from the receiving of the demand. In all conferences, association members are entitled to one vote. Decisions are made, unless otherwise stated in these by-laws, by simple majority. If the vote is to be split, the result will be put to a lottery, but in other matters the chairperson has final say.

  10. Annual and Election Conferences
    The following matters are handled at the annual conferences:
    • Opening of the conference
    • Choosing of a conference chairman, secretary, two reviewers of the minutes and two vote counters
    • Stating the legality and decision-power of the meeting
    • Approving of the conference’s agenda
    • Presentation of financial statement, annual report and the auditors’ statements
    • Decisions on the approval of the financial statement and the discharge of the board and others in positions of responsibility
    • Approving of an action plan, estimates of income and expenses and the amounts of registering and membership fees
    • Choosing of a treasurer and two auditors and two deputies for them
    • Any other matters, set out in the invitations
    • Any other matters that have arisen during the meeting

      The following matters are handled at the election conferences:
    1. Opening of the conference
    2. Choosing of a conference chairman, secretary, two reviewers of the minutes and two vote counters
    3. Stating the legality and decision-power of the meeting
    4. Choosing a chairperson and other board members (with the exception of the treasurer)
    5. Any other matters, set out in the invitations
    6. Any other matters that have arisen during the meeting. If there are any matters that members want to bring across at these meetings, they should be delivered to the board well before

  11. Changing the by-laws and disbanding of the association
    Any changes to the by-laws or the possible disbanding of the association must achieve a three quarters (3/4) majority at one of the associations conferences. Voting can be done through the post as well. The invitation for the conference where such matters would be decided must explicitly include these matters. On the possible disbanding of the association, the association’s funds will be spent in a manner decided at the meeting where the disbanding is decided.

  12. This change in the by-laws does not infringe on already established membership rights.

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