YORK RACIAL EQUALITY NETWORK
CONSTITUTION

The name of the organisation shall be York Racial Equality Network (hereinafter referred to as the “YREN”)
B Administration.
Subject to the matters set out below, the Charity and its property shall be
administered and managed in accordance with this constitution by the members
of the Management Committee, constituted by clause H of this
constitution (“the Management Committee”).
C Objects
The objects of the YREN shall be:
To work towards the elimination of racial discrimination.
To promote equality of opportunity and good relations between persons of different racial groups without distinction of sex, race or of political, religious, or other opinions; and
To promote and organise cooperation in the achievement of the aforesaid purposes in particular but not exclusively in the area of York.
1 Mode of operation
1.1 In furtherance of the objects, but not further or otherwise, the YREN may undertake the following functions and within the limits permitted by the law and this constitution may do anything lawful and necessary to fulfil them:
1.2 Working policy
In furthering its objects and carrying out its functions in pursuance of this clause, the YREN:
(a) shall be non-party in politics and non-sectarian in religion;
shall, in its own activities and employment of staff, implement an effective
equal opportunities policy and shall not, therefore, discriminate against any
person on grounds of colour, race, nationality, ethnic or national origin,
gender, marital status, disability, sexual orientation, age and creed.
1.3 Assistance to individuals
To provide information, advice and support of a non-financial nature to
individuals who seek YREN’s assistance as a consequence of their
experience of racism or racial discrimination, in circumstances where
such information, advice and support are not readily obtainable from
other local agencies
D Powers
In furtherance of the objects but not further or otherwise, the YREN Management Committee may exercise the following powers:
power to raise funds and to invite and receive contributions provided that in
raising funds the Management Committee shall not undertake any
substantial permanent trading activities and shall conform to any relevant
requirements of law.
power to invest temporarily surplus funds not immediately required for the
objects;
power to buy, take on lease or in exchange any property necessary for the
achievement of the objects and to maintain and equip it for use;
(4) power to undertake research and publish the useful results thereof;
power to charge fees for services (including for training and corporate
consultancy) and publications supplied when it considers it necessary to do
so to recover its outlay, but on a non-profit-making basis and without
engaging in any permanent trading activities;
power to employ such staff ( who shall not be members of the Management
Committee) as are necessary for the proper pursuit of the objects and to
make all reasonable and necessary provision for the payment of pensions
and superannuation for staff and their dependants;
power to insure to full value against loss or damage any property belonging
to the YREN;
power to insure and to indemnify its staff and voluntary workers against all
such risks incurred in the performance of their duties as may be thought fit;
(9) power to otherwise expend funds as necessary to further its objects;
power subject to any consents required by law, to sell, mortgage, or dispose
of all or any part of the property of the YREN;
power to co-operate with other charities, voluntary bodies and statutory
authorities operating in furtherance of the objects or of similar charitable
purpose and to exchange information and advice with them;
(12) power to establish or support any charitable trusts, associations or
institutions formed for all or any of the objects;
(13) power to do all such other lawful things as are necessary for the
furtherance of the objects.
E Membership
Membership of YREN shall be open to:
(i) individuals (over the age of 18 years) who are interested in furthering the
work of YREN and who have paid any annual subscription laid down from
time to time by the management committee, and
(ii) any body corporate or unincorporated association which is interested in
furthering the YREN’s work, has paid any annual subscription and
operate in YREN’s area of benefit, and which at the time of their initial
application have been in existence for at least six months, may be admitted
for membership if they :
(a) make a written declaration of their commitment to YREN’s objects

and their desire to work strategically towards the achievement of
those objects;
(b) satisfy YREN that there is nothing in their constitution, aims or
actions which conflict with YREN’s objects and functions.
(any such body being called in this constitution a “member organisation”).
(1.1) with each application for initial and renewed affiliated membership, there
shall be supplied to YREN the following documentation or an assurance
that such documentation will be supplied to it within six months of the date
of its admission as an affiliated member:
(a) a copy of the organisation’s current constitution or other documents setting
out its aims and objectives;
(b) in the case of religious organisations, a copy of the organisation’s statement
of beliefs, address of place of worship, and name of governing body or
umbrella organisation (if any);
(c) if the organisation employs staff or provides services, a copy of its equal
opportunities policy;
Failure to comply with the foregoing requirements shall cause the affiliated
Membership to lapse at the end of the above-mentioned six months’ period.
(2) Every member shall have one vote
(3) Each member organisation shall appoint an individual to represent it and to
vote on its behalf at meetings of the YREN; and may appoint an alternate to
replace its appointed representative at any meeting of YREN if the appointed
representative is unable to attend.
(4) Each member organisation shall notify the name of the representative
appointed by it and of any alternate to the secretary. If the representative or
alternate resigns from or otherwise leaves the member organisation, he or she
shall forthwith cease to be a representative of the member organisation.
The Management Committee may unanimously and for good reason terminate
the membership of any individual concerned or member organisation: Provided that the individual concerned or the appointed representative of the member organisation concerned (as the case may be) shall have the right to be heard by the Management Committee, accompanied by a friend, before a final decision is made.
(6) Associate membership, YREN may at its discretion admit to non–voting
associate membership:
(a) any individual who lives outside YREN’s area of benefit, providing that
she/he is not a member or associate member of any other REC or REN.
(b) No person shall be admitted to associate membership unless she/he submits
a written declaration of his/her commitment to YREN’s objects and desire
to work for the fulfilment of YREN’s functions.
(c) Associate members may attend YREN meetings with the right to speak but
not to vote.
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(7) Membership Panel, the Management Committee may establish a
membership panel comprising:
(a) three members of YREN who are not members of the Management
Committee (to be elected to the panel at the annual general meeting); and
(b) two members of the Management Committee (to be appointed by that
committee at its first meeting after the annual general meeting).
(7.1) The Management Committee may delegate to the membership panel the
following functions and powers:
(a) to receive and consider all applications for individual, affiliated and
associate membership and annual renewals thereof;
(b) to determine all such applications provided that an organisation or
individual wishing to appeal against a decision of the panel shall have the
right to do so, and to be heard in such appeal, at the next ordinary general
meeting of YREN.
(c) to recommend to the Management Committee termination of membership
or withdrawal of recognition and the right to vote.
(7.2) Appeals against refusal of admission to or renewal of membership and
termination of membership or withdrawal of recognition and the right to vote.
(a) The outcomes of appeals to YREN under clause E5 and 7.1(b) above
shall be determined by a simple majority of members present and voting.
(b) When appeals are being heard, those members of the Management
Committee and/or of the membership panel who were present at a
meeting which took the decision now the subject of appeal, together with
individual appellants, or appellant’s organisations or appellants
representatives shall not exercise their vote.
G HONORARY OFFICERS.
At the annual general meeting of the organisation, the members shall elect from
amongst themselves a chairperson, a secretary, and a treasurer, who shall hold
office from the conclusion of that meeting.
(1) The honorary Chair, honorary Vice-chair, honorary Treasurer and honorary Secretary (if any) elected shall be ex-officio members and honorary members of the management committee.
(2) To assist it to fulfil its responsibilities, the management committee may elect from among its members such other honorary officers of the management committee as it sees fit.
(3) YREN may at any time, at its discretion, and on the recommendation of the management committee, confer the titles of honorary President or Vice-president on a person or persons subscribing to the objects of YREN and wishing to support its work. Any title so conferred shall be subject to annual review.
(4) YREN Members at its annual general meeting shall elect, from among the members a management committee and Honorary officers.
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(5) The duties of the Chair shall be:
(a) to preside at meetings of YREN and of the management committee;
(b) to prepare, in consultation with the senior employee of YREN and with the honorary Secretary (if any) the agenda for meetings of YREN and the management committee;
(c) as may be required by YREN or management committee, to act as a principal spokesperson on public occasions or when representations are being made on behalf of YREN to public bodies;
(d) to uphold the constitution of YREN, to ensure that efficient and proper conduct of its affairs, and to encourage co-operation and goodwill among members and paid staff in promoting YREN’s objects and fulfilling its functions.
(5.1) The Chair may, on the advice of the senior employee and/or of other members of the management committee, take decisions under “Chair’s action”, provided that:
(a) whenever possible, she/he shall normally so act only after consultation with at least two other members of the management committee;
(b) all such action shall be reported to the next meeting of the management committee with the request that it be ratified;
(c) expenditure that may be incurred under the Chair’s action between any two meetings of the management committee shall not exceed a sum to be pre-determined by the management committee;
(d) the Chair shall not have power to employ or dismiss a member of staff, but
may suspend a member of staff until such time as that member of staff’s case
may be properly dealt with under discipline and grievance procedures.
(6) The Vice-Chair shall deputise for the Chair in the performance of any of the duties listed under clause G.5
(a) when so requested by the Chair, or
(b) in absence or non-availability of the Chair.
In absence or non-availability of both these officers, the management committee shall appoint one of its number to act as Chair.
(7) If the office of Chair falls vacant, through resignation or any other cause, the management committee shall, as soon as possible, elect one of its number to assume the title and duties of the office until the next annual general meeting. If the person elected to the Chair is the person who has been serving as Vice-Chair, the management committee shall similarly elect a new Vice-Chair.
(8) The duties of the Treasurer shall be:
(a) to keep or ensure that proper accounts are kept of all monies received by or on behalf of YREN and of all payments made on its behalf, that they are presented annually for audit by a qualified auditor, and that the auditor’s report thereon is presented to the annual general meeting;
(b) in consultation with the finance and general purposes sub-committee, to prepare an annual budget to cover the work of YREN and to keep the outturn under review;
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(c) to advise the finance and general purposes sub-committee, and through them the management committee and YREN, on all matters, including those listed below under clause L relating to the YREN’s financial management.
(d) to present an account of current income and expenditure to the management committee at least once a quarter.
(9) If the office of Treasurer falls vacant, through resignation or any other cause,
the management committee shall, as soon as possible, appoint one of its number
or co-opt a person to assume the title and duties of the office.
H MANAGEMENT COMMITTEE .
(1) The management committee shall consist of :
(a) numbering not more than 15 members and not less than seven persons;
(b) not fewer than two thirds of the total at any time shall be voting members of the YREN elected by ballot at the time of the YREN’s annual general.
(c) the Management Committee shall, at all times have over fifty per cent of
voting members who are either Black, Asian or from another ethnic
minority group or part of a racially mixed family.
The Management Committee may in addition appoint not more than 3 co-
opted members but so that no-one may be appointed as a co-opted member if,
as a result, more than one third of the members of the Management
Committee would be co-opted members. Each appointment of a co-opted
member shall be made at a special meeting of the Management Committee
called under clause R and shall take effect from the end of that meeting
unless the appointment is to fill a place, which has not, then vacated in which
case the appointment shall run from the date when the post becomes vacant.
All the members of the Management Committee shall retire from office
together at the end of the annual general meeting next after the date on which
they came into office but they may be re-elected or re-appointed.
The proceedings of the Management Committee shall not be invalidated by any
vacancy among their number or by any failure to appoint or any defect in the
appointment or qualification of a member.
Nobody shall be appointed as a member of the Management Committee who is aged under 18 or who would if appointed be disqualified under the provisions of the following clause.
(6) No person shall be entitled to act as a member of the Management Committee
whether on a first or on any subsequent entry into office until after signing in the
minute book of the Management Committee a declaration of acceptance and
willingness to act in the trusts of YREN.
I Determination of Membership of Management Committee
A member of the Management Committee shall cease to hold office if he or she:
is disqualified from acting as a member of the Management Committee by virtue of section 72 of the Charities Act 1993 (or any statutory re-enactment or modification of that provision);
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become incapable by reason of mental disorder, illness or injury of managing
and administering his or her own affairs;
is absent without the permission of the Management Committee from all their
meetings held within a period of six months and the Management Committee resolve that his or her office be vacated; or
notifies to the Management Committee a wish to resign (but only if at least
three members of the Management Committee will remain in office when the notice of resignation is to take effect).
J Management Committee Members not to be personally interested.
no member of the Management Committee shall acquire any interest in
property belonging to YREN (otherwise than as a trustee for the Charity) or
receive remuneration or be interested (otherwise than as a member of the
Management Committee) in any contract entered into by the Management
Committee.
K Meetings and proceedings of the Management Committee
The Management Committee shall hold at least three ordinary meetings each
year. A special meeting may be called at any time by the Chair or by any two
members of the management committee upon not less than 4 days’ notice
being given to the other members of the executive committee of the matters to
be discussed, but of the matters include the appointment of a co-opted
member, not less than 21 days’ notice must be given.
The Chairman shall act as chairman at meetings of the Management
Committee. If the chairman is absent from any meeting, the members of the management committee present shall choose one of their number to be chairman of the meeting before any other business is transacted.
The management committee shall keep minutes, in books kept for the
purpose, of the proceedings at meetings of the management committee and
any sub-committee.
The management committee may from time to time make and alter rules for
the conduct of its business, the summoning and conduct of its meetings and
the custody of documents. No rule may be made which is inconsistent with
this constitution.
(5) The management committee may appoint other sub-committees, ad-hoc
working parties or task groups consisting of such persons as the executive
committee shall determine for the support of specialist areas of the YREN’s
work. Each of these shall:
(a) have power to co-opt persons, whether members of the YREN or not, with expertise to offer in its subject area;
(b) include at least one member of the executive committee, to represent the policy interests of the YREN;
(c) report to each meeting of the management committee, making recommendations on all
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matters requiring policy decisions.
Such sub-committees, working parties or task groups shall not have power to commit the management committee to any particular action.
(6) There shall be a quorum when at least one third of the number of members of
the management committee for the time being or three members of the management committee, whichever is the greater, are present at a meeting.
(7) Every matter shall be determined by a majority of votes of the members of the
management committee present and voting on the question but in case of
equality of votes the chairman of the meeting shall have a second or casting
vote.
(8) The management committee may from time to time make and alter rules for
the conduct of their business, the summoning and conduct of their meetings
and the custody of documents. No rule may be made which is inconsistent with
this constitution.
L Receipts and Expenditure.
The funds of YREN, including all donations, contributions and bequests, shall
be paid into an account operated by the management committee in the name of YREN at such bank as the management committee shall from time to time decide. All cheques drawn on the account must be signed by at least two members of the management committee.
The funds belonging to YREN shall be applied only in furthering the objects.
M Property.
YREN shall have power to appoint no fewer than three of its members or a trust corporation to act as holding trustees or Custodian Trustee respectively for the purpose of holding moneys or property for the time being belonging to the
YREN. Provided that they only act in accordance with the lawful directions of
the management committee, the holding trustees shall not be liable for the acts
and defaults of members.
N Accounts.
The Management Committee shall comply with its obligations under the Charities Act 1993 (or any statutory re-enactment or modification of that Act) with regard to:
(1) the keeping of audited records for the YREN;
(2) the preparation of annual statements of account for the YREN;
(3) the auditing or independent examination of the statements of account of the YREN;
(4) the transmission of the statements of account to the Charity Commissioners.
O Annual Report
The management committee shall comply with its obligations under the Charities
Act 1993 (or any statutory re-enactment or modification of that Act) with regard
to the preparation of an annual report and its transmission to the Charity
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Commissioners.
P Annual Return.
The management committee shall comply with its obligations under the
Charities Act 1993 (or any statutory re-enactment or modification of that Act)
with regard to the preparation of an annual return and its transmission to the
Commission.
Q Annual General Meeting.
YREN shall meet not less than three times a year. One of these meetings shall be the annual general meeting, which shall take place in the month of June in each year or as soon as practicable thereafter.
The management committee shall call every annual general meeting. The secretary shall give at least twenty-one days’ notice of the annual general meetings, and twenty-eight days’ notice of annual general meeting to all members of YREN. All members of YREN shall be entitled to attend and vote at the meeting.
Before any other business is transacted at the first annual general meeting the
person present shall appoint a chairman of the meeting. The chairman shall be the chairman of subsequent annual general meetings, but if he or she is not present, before any other business is transacted, the persons present shall appoint a chairman of the meeting.
At the annual general meeting the business shall include: the election of Honorary Officers; the election of the Management Committee; the appointment of an auditor or auditors or an independent examiner or examiners as required under the Charities Act 1993; the consideration of an Annual Report of the work done by or under the auspices of the Management Committee and of the audited accounts; and the transaction of such other matters as may from time to time be necessary.
Nominations for election to the management committee must be made by
members of YREN in writing and must be in the hands of the secretary of the management committee at least 14 days before the annual general meeting. Should nominations exceed vacancies, election shall be by ballot.
R Special General Meeting.
The management committee may call a special general meeting of YREN at any
time. If at least ten members request such a meeting in writing stating the
business to be considered the secretary shall call such a meeting. At least 21
days’ notice must be given. The notice must state the business to be discussed.
S Procedure at General Meetings.
The secretary or other person specially appointed by the management committee
shall keep a full record of proceedings at every general meeting of YREN.
There shall be a quorum when at least one tenth of the number of members of
YREN for the time being, or ten members of YREN, whichever is the greater, are present at any meeting.
T Notices.
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Any notice required to be served on any member of YREN shall be in writing
and shall be served by the secretary or the management committee on any
member either personally or by sending it through the post in a prepaid letter
addressed to such member at his or her last known address in the United
Kingdom, and any letter so sent shall be deemed to have been received within
10 days of posting.
U Alterations to the Constitution.
Subject to the following provision of this clause the Constitution may be altered
by a resolution passed by not less than two thirds of the members present and
voting at a general meeting. The notice of the general meeting must include
notice of the resolution, setting out the terms of the alteration proposed.
No amendment may be made to clause A (the name of the charity), clause C
(the objects), clause J (management committee members not to be personally
interested), clause V (the dissolution clause), or this clause without the prior
consent in writing of the Commissioners.
No amendment may be made which would have the effect of making YREN
cease to be a charity at law.
The management committee should promptly send to the Commission a copy of
any amendment made under this clause.
V Dissolution.
If the management committee decides that it is necessary or advisable to dissolve
YREN it shall call a meeting of all members of YREN , of which not less than 21
days’ notice (stating the terms of the resolution to be proposed) shall be given. If
the proposal is confirmed by a two-thirds majority of those present and voting the
management committee shall have power to realise any assets held by or on
behalf of YREN. Any assets remaining after the satisfaction of any proper debts
and liabilities shall be given or transferred to such other charitable institution or
institutions having objects similar to the objects of YREN as the members of
YREN may determine or failing that shall be applied for some other charitable
purpose. A copy of the statement of accounts, or account and statement, for the
final accounting period of YREN must be sent to the Commission.
W Arrangements until first Annual General Meeting.
Until the first general meeting takes place this constitution shall take effect as if
references in it to the management committee were references to the persons
whose signatures appear at the bottom of this document.
This constitution was adopted on the date mentioned above by the persons whose
signatures appear at the bottom of this document.

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