Charter of the National Youth Rights Association of the Greater Washington Area

Adopted August 2010 Article I: Name The name of our organization shall be the National Youth Rights Association of the Greater Washington Area, otherwise abbreviated as NYRA-DC. Article II: Purpose As a local chapter of the National Youth Rights Association, NYRA-DC exists to defend the civil and human rights of young people in Washington, DC and the surrounding region. Through educating people about youth rights and empowering youth to work on their own behalf in defense of their rights, NYRA-DC will take positive steps to lessen the burden of ageism. We believe certain basic rights are intrinsic parts of American citizenship and transcend age or status limits. Article III: Membership 1. Membership is open to any person interested in furthering the objectives of NYRA-DC and living in the greater Washington, DC area. 2. NYRA-DC may never discriminate on the basis of race, creed, color, religion, gender, sexual orientation, disability, economic standing or national origin. 3. NYRA-DC may charge reasonable membership dues or fees to cover the expenses of specific projects and general communication with members. 4. Active, voting members must attend NYRA-DC events and are expected to attend important meetings as designated by the President. 5. Active members are expected to join the NYRA-DC email list or provide working contact information in a manner otherwise determined by the Secretary. 6. Members can be removed from the roster due to inactivity at the discretion of the Secretary. 7. Any member may withdraw from the organization. The Executive Board may suspend, expel or reinstate members by an affirmative vote of at least two-thirds. Article IV: Executive Board Section 1: Executive Board Conduct The Executive Board is to consist of five elected officers who are responsible for communicating with NYRA-DC members and running the organization in cooperation with its members. The Executive Board may administer the affairs of NYRA-DC, and generally may exercise all such other powers as the organization is by its charter or otherwise authorized to do. 1. Members of the Executive Board will hold their positions for one-year terms. 2. Members may not serve more than two consecutive terms in the same position. 3. All five members have one equally weighted vote. 4. The President and Vice President, when voting together, may veto the decision of the other three Executive Board members.


5. Four voting officers constitute an Executive Board quorum. 6. Membership within the Executive Board shall be automatically vacated if a member of the Board has resigned their office by delivering a written resignation; on death or medical incapacitation; or if a member is expelled by a two-thirds absolute majority on the for the reason of poor conduct or attendance. The definition of “poor attendance” is reserved for attendance at less than 50% of Board meetings that an individual has been offered sufficient notice of. Section 2: Duties of Executive Officers A. President 1. To be in charge of and moderate the organizational agenda. 2. Manages the Executive Board and all meetings. 3. Responsible for representing NYRA-DC before government officials. 4. May appoint non-voting NYRA-DC Executive Officers (such as the Director of Political Affairs or Director of School Subchapters) at will for terms of no less than six months, and remove them for poor attendance or with the consent of the Executive Board. 5. Expected to address the membership when necessary. 6. Has, in cooperation with the Vice President, leadership powers and executive privilege necessary and proper to facilitate the operation of NYRA-DC. 7. Has the power to hold organizational referendums on important matters. B. Vice President 1. Shall have the authority to substitute for the President if unavailable during meetings or other NYRA-DC functions. 2. May form, chair and supervise committees of members to work for NYRA-DC that report to the Executive Board. 3. Expected to directly assist the President as the chief of committees and representative of membership, and to prepare reports accordingly. 4. Submits requests for mandatory votes or hearings from membership to the President. C. Treasurer 1. Responsible for coordinating logistics related to NYRA-DC, including but not limited to meeting locations, equipment and food supplies. 2. Must know and keep well-updated on all resources and assets of NYRA-DC, and cooperate in inventory and financial matters. 3. Oversees financial statements and records. 4. Disburses funds with the approval of the Executive Board. D. Secretary 1. Must help to promote NYRA-DC and keep it an accessible and known resource for the public. 2. Must record and keep files of all meetings, resources, legislation, posters, election results, forms and other documents relevant to NYRA-DC. 3. Must maintain the membership list. E. Ombudsman 1. Advises the Executive Board and membership on the legal impact of organizational decisions. 2. Must be comfortable with methods of legal research and government resources in order to ensure NYRA-DC compliance with local, state, and federal laws and NYRA chapter guidelines. 3. Expected to actively assist in the planning, proposal and construction of policy, procedure and amendments.


Article V: Organizational Conduct Section 1: Fiscal Year and Records 1. Unless otherwise ordered by the Executive Board, the fiscal year for NYRA-DC shall begin on the third Monday of May. Section 2: Elections 1. Annual elections for the Executive Board may begin no earlier than 120 days and no later than 92 days before the fiscal year-end of NYRA-DC. 2. Elections must take place for at least fourteen days. 3. Members must be given at least fourteen days notice of an upcoming election. 4. The Executive Board may impose minimal requirements for running for office, including but not limited to mandatory statements of candidacy. 5. The Executive Board may choose to include binding referendums or non-binding questions in an election. 6. In the event of a vacancy on the Executive Board, a member may be appointed by the Board if eight weeks or less remain before the next election; otherwise, a weeklong vote must be held, starting at the meeting following a vacancy. 7. Voting must be conducted by the membership of the NYRA-DC and verified by an observer from national NYRA. 8. New referendums will take effect and new members will take office at the beginning of each fiscal year. Section 3: Legislation 1. Decisions of NYRA-DC are to be reached through consensus when possible. All votes unless specified are to be determined by a simple majority. 2. The Executive Board of NYRA-DC may take up to 30 days to implement passed legislation unless otherwise specified. 3. NYRA-DC may put forth its opinion on issues of local public policy or youth rights in documents known as position papers. Position papers may be adopted or amended by an affirmative vote of at least two-thirds of the Executive Board. This does not preclude the organization from voicing opinions on specific controversies or pieces of legislation, provided that such statements do not conflict with previous position papers, the views of national NYRA or NYRA-DC's mission statement. 4. Any active member may propose a charter amendment. It is the President's duty to announce the amendment to the NYRA-DC membership, and the amendment must be included on the ballot of the next annual election unless it is rejected by the entire Executive Board. 5. This charter becomes effective immediately after receiving the support of 60% of active NYRA-DC members in a vote. The current Executive Board will remain in place until the beginning of the next fiscal year, beginning May 16, 2011, and will have the power to amend the charter by a majority vote for one year after the charter is adopted. X