USL Rules

Art. 1: Purpose and aim
Art. 2 : Groups and affiliations
Art. 3 : Rights of members
Art. 4 : Duties of members
Art. 5 : Resources and dues
Art. 6 : Union organs
Art. 7: The General Assembly
Art. 8 : Procedure for elections to the statutory organs
Art. 9 : The executive committee
Art.10 : The Bureau
Art.11 : The Trade Union Council
Art.12 : Delegations
Art.13 : The Audit Committee
Art.14 : Strike
Art.15 : Loss of the capacity of member of the union
Art.16 : Disciplinary procedure
Art.17 : Expulsion of a member from a statutory organ
Art.18 : Civil liability
Art.19 : Procedure to be followed to amend the rules
Art.20 : Final clause


Article 1 - Purpose and aim

These rules explain in detail the constitution of Union Syndicale Luxembourg, published in Mémorial, no. 102 (Special Compilation C) of 8 May 1977, then amended at the Extraordinary General Assembly of 21 February 1989, then at the General Assembly of 3 June 2002, then at the General Assembly of 23 January 2007 and set out the implementing arrangements.



Article 2 - Groups and affiliations

1. Any proposal concerning the affiliation of the union shall be submitted to the General Assembly. To be adopted, it must receive a majority of two-thirds of the votes cast.

2. The Executive Committee may, with a view to upholding shared interests and to strengthen the solidarity and unity of all the staff, set up inter-union action committees or enter into an agreement with professional organisations whose representativeness and democratic principles it recognises.



Article 3 - Rights of members

Members’ rights include the following:

1. For any questions relating to his/her professional status, any member may receive information from the union's legal adviser. In case of need, legal aid may be granted by the Executive Committee, which shall decide on a case by case basis about the nature and extent of that assistance.

2. In the event of death of a member of the union, the surviving spouse, subject to his/her agreement, will become a member of the union. In this capacity, the benefits mentioned in paragraph 1 of these rules are granted to him/her as well as the member's orphans.

3. The Executive Committee is empowered to grant, by a two-thirds majority vote of its members, the capacity of honorary member to former employees of the Community and international institutions and bodies located in the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg, and deserving of this title for services rendered to the union.



Article 4 - Duties of members

Members’ duties include the following:

1. Every member undertakes to defend the interests of the union and participate actively in achieving its statutory objectives and implementing the decisions of the trade union's organs. Members are bound by the decisions of trade union's organs.

2. Every member has the duty to pay union dues regularly.

3. In the event of the death of a member of the union, the surviving spouse who has become a member under the terms of Article 3 paragraph 2 of these rules may be exempted from payment of dues under conditions set by the Executive Committee.



Article 5 - Resources and dues

1. The resources of the union consist of members' dues, donations, bequests and other receipts.

2. The General Assembly sets the amount of membership dues, based on a proposal from the Executive Committee, as well as the form and method of collection of dues.



Article 6 - Union organs

The organs of the union are:

· the General Assembly;
· the Executive Committee;
· the union council;
· the delegations;
· the Audit Committee.


Article 7 - The General Assembly

Meetings of the General Assembly are held in principle during working hours.

1. Bureau and chairmanship:
 
a) the General Assembly elects its bureau, consisting of a chairman/woman, deputy chairman/woman an secretary;

b) the chairman/woman does not have a casting vote. He/she ensures that order is maintained during the meeting;

c) the chairman/woman opens the meeting and calls on the speakers in the order in which they were registered. On his/her proposal, the assembly may limit speaking time;

d) the chairman/woman declares the discussions closed, puts matters to the vote, receives ballot papers and announces the result of votes;

e) I. in the event of a secret ballot, the bureau of the meeting appoints a panel of scrutineers, consisting of at least three members. If the vote concerns a personal appointment, the scrutineers must not be candidates.
   II. the panel of scrutineers takes its decisions by an absolute majority of its members;

f) the chairman/woman may suspend the meeting;

g) the chairman/woman closes the meeting;

h) the deputy chairman/woman assists the chairman/woman, and replaces him/her in case of absence;

i) the secretary writes draft minutes of the debates, and finalises the version adopted. The draft minutes are sent to all members, who may notify any observations to the bureau of the General Assembly within 3 working days from the date when the minutes are sent out. Sections of the draft which are uncontested are deemed to have been adopted. Observations accepted by the bureau of the assembly are communicated to all members

2. Agenda:

a) the general meeting is informed of a draft agenda proposed either:
    · by the Executive Committee, for the ordinary meeting; this draft must include points a) to f) shown in Article 8 paragraph 3 of the Constitution;
    · in the case of an extraordinary meeting, by the organ or the members who requested that it be convened;
and distributed with the invitation notice.

b) the following documents are to be enclosed with the invitation notice to the ordinary General Assembly:
    · the activity report by the outgoing Executive Committee;
    · the financial report by the outgoing Executive Committee;
    · the report by the outgoing Audit Committee;
    · any drafts of amendments to the constitution or these rules.

c) any member may make proposals concerning the agenda.

d) the assembly has full sovereignty to decide the agenda, taking account of the provisions of the constitution and these rules.

3. Amendments:

Any member may submit and develop amendments. The amendments must relate to the text that they are intended to amend. In principle, they must be submitted in writing. The chairman shall decide whether they are admissible.

Amendments take priority over the text to which they apply, and are put to the vote before that text.

If two or more mutually-exclusive amendments apply to the same part of the text, the one which deviates most from the text shall take priority and be put to the vote first. If that amendment is adopted, the other amendments are automatically rejected. If it is rejected, the amendment with the next-highest priority is put to the vote and so on for each of the remaining amendments. In case of doubt about the priority, the chairman/woman decides.

4. Motions:

Members wishing to speak on a procedural motion are given priority, in particular:

· to raise a point of order;
· to move the closure of the debate;
· to call for the debate to be adjourned;
· to put the previous question.

These requests have priority over the main question, and they suspend discussion of the main question.

The only persons who may speak are the proposer of the motion, a speaker "for" and a speaker "against".


Article 8 - Procedure for elections to the statutory organs

1. Calls for nominations are sent out by the outgoing Executive Committee to all members at least three weeks before the General Assembly; the aim is to draw up a provisional list of candidates for the Executive Committee (list 1), a provisional list of candidates for the delegations (list 2) and a final list of candidates for the Audit Committee (list 3). The deadline for submission of candidatures is set at four working days before the date of the General Assembly.

2. a) the three lists are submitted to the General Assembly, which immediately holds elections for list 3, in accordance with Article 8 paragraph 5, subparagraph c) of the Constitution and Article 7 paragraph 2, subparagraph e) of these rules.

    b) for the elections on list 3, each voter may cast a maximum of three votes. only one vote may be cast per candidate.

    c) the panel of scrutineers declares that the three candidates who received the highest number of votes have been elected. In the event of a tie for the last seat, lots shall be drawn.

    d) the General Assembly, after having deleted from lists 1 and 2 the names of candidates who may have been elected on list 3, and taking account of Article 9 paragraph 2, subparagraph b) and Article II paragraph 3, paragraph a) of these rules, finally adopts lists 1 and 2.

3. a) within three working days following the date of the General Assembly, the panel of scrutineers, assisted by the Audit Committee:

        I. shall send all members voting papers for list 1 with a reply envelope;
        II. on the basis of list 2 and Article 11 paragraph 5 of these rules, shall prepare the voting papers for the various constituencies and send them to the members concerned with a reply envelope.


    b) these voting papers must be returned, in a double envelope so as to reach the panel of scrutineers at the address shown within eight working days following the date when they were sent out.

    c) for the elections for list 1, each voter may cast a maximum of eight votes. For the elections for list 2, each voter may cast a maximum number of votes equivalent to half the number of seats to be filled for each constituency, if appropriate rounded up to the next integer. Only one vote may be cast per candidate shown on a list.

    d) the panel of scrutineers, assisted by the Audit Committee, receives the voting papers and opens them in public, and ranks the candidates on lists 1 and 2, depending on the number of votes received.

    e) provided that there are candidatures, the various institutions or organisations must be represented on the Executive Committee by at least one person.

    f) I. after applying paragraph e) above and point II of this paragraph, the panel of scrutineers declares that the following have been elected:
              · from list 1, the first fifteen candidates;
              · from list 2 – depending on the number set in accordance with Article 11 paragraph 3 of these rules, for each constituency – the candidate(s) who received the highest number of votes.

               II. in the event of a tie for the final seat, or, through the application of paragraph e) above, for the final seat to be held by an institution or an organisation, lots will be drawn.

4. The panel of scrutineers notifies the results of the elections for lists 1 and 2 to the elected candidates mentioned in paragraph 3 subparagraph f) of point I above, within a period enabling them to meet within eighteen working days following the date of the General Assembly.

5. The results of the elections for lists 1, 2 and 3 as well as those of the elections to the bureaux of the Executive Committee and the delegations are notified by the Executive Committee to all members of the union, within twenty working days following the General Assembly.

6. For all its work, the panel of scrutineers may make use of the administrative secretariat of the trade union, as mentioned in Article 9 paragraph 15 of these rules.

7. Any dispute or any question of interpretation relating to electoral operations is decided in the last instance by the panel of scrutineers, by an absolute majority of its members.

8. If an Extraordinary General Assembly should decide to hold early elections, the extraordinary general meeting which follows it is empowered for the requirements of interpretation of Article 8, 9, 10, 11 and 12 of these rules, and that mentioned in Article 9 paragraph 2, subparagraph a) of these rules. In this case, there is a derogation from the periods mentioned in the same paragraph 2 subparagraph a) and in Articles 10 and 11, paragraphs 3 sub-paragraphs 3.

9. a) during the period between the Ordinary General Assembly and the formative meetings mentioned in Article 9 paragraph 3 and Articles 10 and 11 paragraphs 7 paragraphs a) of these rules, the business of the union shall continue to be managed by the outgoing Executive Committee, the union council and the delegations, which will restrict their activities, however, to expediting pending business.

    b) during that period, if a candidate or an elected representative were to lose their capacity as a member or stand down, the provisions of Article 8 of these rules, in particular those of paragraph 3 subparagraph f) remain applicable, until such time as the bureaux of the Executive Committee and the Delegations have been formed; from the date when they have been formed, which marks the start of the period of union office, until the following Ordinary General Assembly, which marks its end, the provisions of Article 9 paragraph 4, Article 10 paragraph 9, Article 11 paragraph 9 and Article 12 paragraph 4 of these rules apply.

    c) if an elected representative from list 3 were to lose the capacity of member of that organ or to stand down, during the period mentioned in paragraph a) above, the unelected person called to occupy the third seat that has become vacant cannot take on that mandate if he/she is also a candidate or an elected representative from at least one of the two other lists. In that case, his/her name will be deleted from list 3.


Article 9 – The Executive Committee

1. The tasks of the Executive Committee are set out in Article 9 paragraph 2 of the Constitution.

2. a) the Executive Committee consists of fifteen members, elected by secret ballot, for a period of three years with a tolerance of three months more or less.

    b) any member in post who has been affiliated to the union for six months, at the date set by Article 8 paragraph 3 subparagraph a) of these rules, is eligible for any of the functions of the Executive Committee, except those of Chairman, Deputy Chairman, General Secretary or Treasurer, for which seniority on joining is two years, on the same deadline.

3. At its first meeting following the Ordinary General Assembly, and which must be held within the eighteen working days after that Assembly, the Executive Committee shall appoint its bureau, consisting of: the chairman/woman, the treasurer, two deputy chairmen/women and the General Secretary of the union. These five people must represent at least two different institutions or organisations. This meeting is convened by the eldest member among the elected representatives from list 1, who chairs it until the chairman/woman of the union has been appointed.

4. If one of the members of the Executive Committee should lose their capacity of member of this organ during the period of office, for one of the reasons foreseen in Articles 14 and 16 of these rules, or stand down, that seat will be filled, giving priority to a representative of the same constituency, by the first alternate member from the list of candidates for the Executive Committee. If this list does not contain the names of any more candidates, the remaining members of the Executive Committee may charge any other eligible member of the union and who fulfils the conditions of paragraph 2 subparagraph b) above to exercise the office that has become vacant until the next Ordinary General Assembly.

5. The Executive Committee is charged in particular with:

a) implementing the general policy of the trade union in accordance with the policy guidelines defined by the General Assembly;

b) accomplishing the tasks set out by the Constitution, these rules and the directives of the General Assembly, and taking the necessary measures to that end;

c) representing the union at the highest political level;

d) dealing with inter-institutional matters;

e) ensuring the representation of the trade union in federal matters;

f) appointing the political secretaries in the institutions based on a proposal from the relevant delegation, and organising and supervising granting of powers. The appointment of political secretaries, unless decided otherwise, shall be for a period ending 3 months after the next Executive Committee is set up. This mandate is renewable;

g) proposing strike action to the General Assembly and ensuring the smooth running of that action;

h) negotiating framework agreements;

i) dealing with external public relations;

j) informing the trade union Council and the delegations at regular intervals about its activities.

6. Unless provided otherwise in the Constitution or these rules, Executive Committee decisions are taken by a majority of the members present. However, the number of members present cannot be lower than half the total number of members.

7. The Executive Committee may consult any qualified person, in an individual capacity, or request that person to carry out specific tasks.

8. Where it is informed of a problem concerning a group of officials or employees, the Executive Committee is bound to consult, before deliberating about the matter, the officials or employees in question, and to refer the member to the bureau of the delegation(s) concerned.

9. a) the Executive Committee shall meet at least twice per month, except during holiday periods.

    b) it shall be convened by the chairman/woman or
        · on request by the Trade Union Council;
        · on request by a simple majority of its members.

    c) the chairman/woman chairs its deliberations and ensures that its decisions are implemented.

10. The Deputy Chairman/woman and the General Secretary assist the Chairman/woman and replace him/her in his/her absence.

11. The Executive Committee divides the tasks between its members, and may adopt its rules of procedure.

13. The Executive Committee involves the delegations closely with its activities, reporting to them regularly, and consulting them and responding to any initiative on their part. To the extent possible, it is represented at the meetings of the delegations by one or several of its members.


Article 10 – The Bureau

1. The bureau is responsible for the organisation and administration of the union. In particular, it is charged with:

a) managing the financial resources of the union and submitting the annual financial report to the Trade Union Council and the General Assembly.

The treasurer gathers and holds the union's funds. He/she maintains the accounts and reports to the Executive Committee about his/her management. The expenditure is committed by the bureau by a majority of its members, based on the annual budget adopted by the Executive Committee. The payment orders are made by the joint signatures of two members of the bureau.

b) representing the union from the legal viewpoint.

Valid representation in legal proceedings is ensured by the joint signatures of the Chairman/woman and the Deputy Chairman/woman or the General Secretary. In the event of two of these members being unavailable at the same time, the joint signature of three members of the Executive Committee shall be legally valid.

c) deciding on requests for legal aid from members of the union, based on rules adopted by the Executive Committee.

2. The bureau normally meets at least three times per month. Its decisions are taken by a majority of its members.

3. The bureau may invite any member of the union charged with carrying out specific tasks to attend its meetings.

4. The bureau is assisted by an administrative secretariat, whose composition and organisation it shall decide.


Article 11 – The Trade Union Council

1. The overall framework of the Trade Union Council is established in Article 10 of the Constitution. Its role is essentially to work in-depth on issues common to several constituencies and to assist the Executive Committee in implementing the general policy of the union. To this end, the Executive Committee submits an interim activity report at least twice per year as well as items enabling a policy debate to be held.

2. a) All members of delegations are members of the Trade Union Council.

    b) Members of the union have the right to attend the meetings of the Trade Union Council. They may speak, but do not have voting rights. However, the Chairman/woman of the Council may reserve certain meetings for the elected members of that organ.

3. a) the Trade Union Council meets at least twice per year.

    b) it is convened by the Chairman/woman, or
 
· at the request of the Executive Committee;
· at the request of one or more delegations;
· on request by a simple majority of its members.
 
    c) the chairman of the Trade Union Council chairs the discussions within this organ, and ensures that its decisions are implemented.

4. a) At its first meeting after the elections, the Trade Union Council shall appoint, from its ranks except members of the Executive Committee, the Chairman/woman, Vice-Chairman and Secretary of the Trade Union Council.

    b) This meeting is convened by the Chairman of the union, who chairs it until the Chairman of the Trade Union Council has been appointed.

5. a) The Trade Union Council divides the tasks between its members, and may adopt its rules of procedure.

    b) unless provided otherwise in the Constitution or these rules, Trade Union Council decisions are taken by a majority of its members.

    c) the provisions of Article 8 paragraph 5 of the Constitution apply by analogy to the meetings of the Trade Union Council. Likewise for the provisions of Article 7 paragraph 2 sub-paragraphs b) to i) inclusive, of paragraph 3 sub-paragraphs c) and d) and paragraphs 4 and 5 of this article of these rules.

6. The Trade Union Council has the right to appoint two of its members as observers to the Executive Committee, in order to ensure good coordination between these two bodies. They can speak there, but do not have voting rights.


Article 12 – Delegations

1. a) the general framework of the delegations is set at Article 11 of the Constitution.

    b) the delegations form the link between the members of their constituency and the (statutory) representation of its personnel. They are set up on the initiative of the Executive Council or members of a constituency, by decision of the Executive Committee.

    c) unless decided otherwise, there is only one delegation per constituency. However, in the event of two delegations representing the members of a single institution, the Executive Committee sets the rules for relations between the delegations.

2. Delegations are charged in particular with:

    a) representing their constituency to their institution or organisation:

    b) representing the union to members of their constituency;

    c) arranging dissemination of information within their constituency by appropriate means, by agreement with the Executive Committee, and particularly to bring the union to the attention of non-members, particularly to newly-recruited officials and employees; to this end, they receive assistance from the union;

    d) providing the link between members of their constituency and the relevant (statutory) representation of the staff;
 
    e) assisting elected members within the (statutory) staff representation in the exercise of their mandate;

    f) contributing to the preparation of elections of the (statutory) staff representation of their constituency, by agreement with the Executive Committee;
 
    g) informing the Executive Committee about any internal problem concerning their constituency.

3. a) any member of the union may stand for election to the delegation of the relevant constituency;

    b) the tenure of delegation members lasts for three years, with a tolerance of three months more or less.

4. Members of the union have the right to attend the meetings of the delegation of their own constituency. They may speak, but do not have voting rights. However, the coordinator may reserve certain meetings for the elected members of that organ.

5. a) each delegation consists of at least three members and at most thirteen;

    b) before the elections, based on a proposal by each delegation, the Executive Committee shall decide the number of seats allocated to each of them;

    c) the delegations are elected by all the members of their respective constituency, all categories and services combined;

    d) the delegation elections are held at the same time as those of the Executive Committee under conditions set out in Article 8 of these rules.

6. a) the delegations meet at least ten times per year;

    b) they are convened by their coordinator, or
 
· at the request of the Executive Committee;
· based on the request of the Trade Union Council;
· at the request of a simple majority of its members.
 
    c) the coordinator of each of the delegations chairs its discussions and ensures that its decisions are executed.

    d) in the event of the coordinator being indisposed, the secretary will take his/her place.

7. a) at the first meeting after the elections, which must be held within 15 working days after the elections, each delegation appoints a coordinator and a secretary from its ranks;

    b) this meeting is convened by the oldest elected member from list 2 of the relevant constituency, who chairs it until such time as the coordinator has been appointed.

8. a) each delegation divides the tasks between its members and may decide its rules of procedure, which only come into effect after approval by the Executive Committee in accordance with Article 11 paragraph 2 of these rules;

    b) unless stipulated otherwise in the Constitution or these rules, delegation decisions are taken by a majority of votes cast.

    c) the provisions of Article 8 paragraph 4 of the Constitution apply by analogy to the meetings of the delegations. Likewise for the provisions of Article 7 paragraph 2 sub-paragraphs b) to i) inclusive, of paragraph 3 sub-paragraphs c) and d) and paragraphs 4 and 5 of this article of these rules.

    d) for the technical and administrative organisation of their activities, the delegations may use, under conditions defined by mutual agreement with the Executive Committee, the union's administrative secretariat.

9. If one of the members of a delegation were to lose the capacity of member of that organe during the period of office, for one of the reasons set out in Articles 14 and 16 of these regulations, or to stand down, that seat would be filled by members of the delegation corresponding to the constituency concerned, who may charge any member of that constituency to exercise the mandate that has become vacant until the next Ordinary General Meeting. This appointment must be approved by the Executive Committee. While awaiting that approval, the remaining members of the delegation will exercise all the functions devolved to that organ.

10. a) the delegations shall send the agenda and minutes of their meetings to the members of the Executive Committee and the Trade Union Council.

    b) the delegations may issue an opinion on matters of common interest or which the Trade Union Council is competent.

    c) the commitment of the union's financial resources is subject to the approval of the Executive Committee.

11. On the occasion of any circumstance that necessitates the replacement of at least half the members of a delegation, the Executive Committee shall initiate the election procedure provided for in Article 8 of these rules. This new delegation is elected for the remaining period of office of the delegation.
 
 

Article 13 – The Audit Committee

1. a) the Audit Committee has three members elected by the General Assembly. It is informed by the Treasurer about any matter concerning the regulatory of payment of dues.

    b) in addition to the role defined in Article 13 of the Constitution, the Audit Committee is charged with managing disputes.

    c) membership of this Committee is incompatible with membership of the Executive Committee or the Trade Union Council.

2. The Audit Committee:

    a) may attend the meetings of all the organs of the trade union, but do not have voting rights;

    b) holds a list of actual members of the union at the disposal of the Executive Committee.

3. Any member of the union may stand for election to the Audit Committee.

4. If one of the members of the Audit Committee were to lose the capacity of member of that organ during the period of office, for one of the reasons provided for in Articles 14 and 16 of these rules, or stand down, that seat is filled by the Trade Union Council, which may charge any other member of the union, in accordance with the provisions of paragraph 1 subparagraph c) above, to exercise the mandate which has become vacant until the next ordinary general meeting.



Article 14 – Strike

1. a) a strike is proposed by the Executive Committee, deciding by a majority of its actual members, if possible after obtaining the opinion of the Trade Union Council or the delegations.

    b) in principle, the decision is taken by the General Assembly, voting by a majority of two-thirds of the votes cast, or if it is not possible to convene the General Assembly, after appropriate consultation of the staff concerned;

2. The Executive Committee shall take any measures necessary for the organisation and running of the strike. It shall draw up and serve the customary notice.



Article 15 – Loss of the capacity of member of the union

The capacity of member of the union is lost by:

· resignation notified in writing to the Executive Committee;
· death;
· unjustified delay in the payment of dues, after two reminders from the Treasurer have failed to produce the result required;
· Exclusion from the union, pursuant to Article 15 of these rules.



Article 16 – Disciplinary procedure

1. Any member who has failed to live up to his/her obligations, or whose conduct is of such a nature as to harm the trade union, may be subjected by the Executive Committee to a disciplinary procedure.

2. The person concerned is informed in writing of the decision by the Executive Committee to subject them to disciplinary procedure, and is invited to explain their conduct to the Audit Committee which is charged with handling disputes.

3. After having heard the explanations given by the person concerned, the Audit Committee decides to dismiss the case, issue a warning, or to exclude the member.

4. The Audit Committee's decision is notified in writing to the person concerned (e).

5. The person concerned has a right of appeal to the Trade Union Council, meeting in a select committee of five of its members, which will give the final ruling.



Article 17 – Expulsion of a member from a statutory organ

Where a member of one of the union's statutory organs is absent, without valid justification, from three consecutive meetings of that organ, to which he/she was duly invited, he/she is considered to have resigned, and shall be replaced under the arrangements provided for in these rules.



Article 18 – Civil liability

The civil liability of the trade union or its members is limited under all circumstances to the assets which belong to the union by right.



Article 19 – Procedure to be followed to amend the rules

Any proposal to amend these rules, on a proposal from the Trade Union Council, must be notified in advance and in writing to members, and appear expressly on the agenda of the General Assembly.

Amendments to these rules are adopted by the General Assembly voting by a majority of votes cast.



Article 20 – Final clause

These rules cancel and replace the rules of 21 February 1989, as amended.

These rules were amended on 23 January 2007 by the Extraordinary General Assembly.

The Extraordinary General Assembly of 9 March 2015amended these rules, in agreement with the Trade Union Council.