What is a Section?

A section is a mechanism to ensure that small chapters’ voices are heard and to allow chapters to pool resources to make attendance at the biennial delegate meeting more affordable. Participation in a section would be voluntary and open to chapters with fewer than 250 members. There would only be one section per state. A section could be formed by two or more chapters in the same state. A section would be entitled to one delegate for every 250 members, with a maximum number of 10 delegates per section. If a chapter elected to participate in a section then it could not also send its own delegate to the biennial meeting. Chapters that did not opt in to the section could send a separate chapter delegate to the meeting. AAUP members not in a campus chapter would not participate in the section because those members would elect delegates through the national at-large chapter.

Well in advance of the biennial delegate meeting, the national AAUP would notify eligible chapters of the opportunity to participate in a section. The AAUP would provide sample procedures, instructions, guidance, and other material for operating the section, such as lists of eligible chapters and of members in those chapters, sample nomination and election notices, and sample ballots. In addition, state conferences and chapters could assist the section, though the chapter or state conference elections could not substitute for the election of section delegates.

Once a section was formed, participating chapters would need to elect a delegate or delegates to send to the meeting. The number of section delegates, and the number of number of votes the delegates cast, would be based on the aggregate membership of the participating chapters. For example, if there were 10 participating chapters with a total membership of 150, the section would be entitled to 1 delegate casting 150 votes; if the total membership was 350, the section would be entitled to 2 delegates jointly casting 350 votes.

The nomination and election process would be conducted by the chapters and section. Due to federal law, there would be some minimal requirements for these elections. A nomination and election notice would need to be transmitted to all members of chapters participating in the section. Delegate election would need to be by secret ballot, either via a mail ballot or by secret ballot at a chapter meeting. If there was only one nominee per delegate position, no election would be required.

Chapter and section delegates would have the same rights and privileges at the AAUP biennial meeting.