ANTI-SLAVERY
SOCIETY

FIGHTING SLAVERY TODAY

Constitution
of the
Anti-Slavery Society

(as amended on 26 May 1997)

1.

Name.  Under the designation the “Anti-Slavery Society” there is established a body to be known as the Anti-Slavery Society.

2.

Definitions.  In this Constitution:

“Anti-Slavery Society Fund” means the Anti-Slavery Society Fund encompassing all the property of the Society, and includes the Society’s:
(a)        General Fund; and
(b)        Designated Funds:

“Chairperson” means the Chairman or Chairwoman of the Board of Governors.  The person elected may elect to call herself or himself Chairman or Chairwoman;

“Constitution” means this Constitution as amended;

“Board of Governors” means the Board of Governors of the Society;

“Designated Funds” means the Slaves Fund, the Bonded Child Laborers Fund, the Child Laborers Fund and such other funds for specific purposes as may be established by the Board of Trustees;

“Honorary Treasurer” means the Honorary Treasurer of the Society;

“Officers” include the Chairperson of the Board of Governors, not more than two Vice-Chairmen, the Secretary and the Honorary Treasurer or Joint Honorary Treasurers;

“Secretary” means the Secretary of the Society;

“Society” means the body established under this Constitution;

“Vice-Chairperson” means a Vice-Chairperson of the Board of Governors.

3.

Nature of Society.  The Society shall be a charitable organization.

4.

Objects.  The objects of the Society are:

(a)

(i)

the relief of suffering;

(ii)

the emancipation; and

(iii)

the social reintegration —

of slaves and child slaves;

(b)

(i)

the relief of suffering;

(ii)

the emancipation; and

(iii)

the social reintegration —

of bondsmen, bondswomen and bonded children;

(c)

(i)

the relief of suffering;

(ii)

the rescue; and

(iii)

the social reintegration —

of child laborers;

(d)

(i)

the relief of suffering;

(ii)

the rescue; and

(iii)

the social reintegration —

of the victims of the international traffic in women and children for the purpose of prostitution;

(e)

(i)

the relief of suffering;

(ii)

the rescue; and

(iii)

the social reintegration —

 of child victims of sacred prostitution;

(f)

(i)

the relief of suffering;

(ii)

the rescue; and

(iii)

the social reintegration —

of children who are the victims of institutions and practices similar to slavery;

(g)

to encourage the manumission of slaves, bondsmen, bondswomen and bonded children by their owners;

(h)

to do all such things as may be appropriate and necessary to promote these objects;

and the Society shall be organized and operated exclusively for the attainment of these objects.


MEMBERSHIP

5.

Membership.  There shall be the following classes of members, namely:

(a)

Life Members, who must have paid a single contribution for membership of the Society for life; and

(b)

Ordinary Members.

6.

Admission of members.  Applications for membership shall be determined by the Board of Governors, which has an absolute discretion as to whether or not to admit any applicant as a member.
7. Expulsion.  The Board of Governors may, in its absolute discretion, expel any member of the Society if it is of the opinion that his, her or its conduct is such as to be injurious to the Society or its objects.
8. Contributions.  The Board of Trustees shall determine the contributions which are payable by each class of member.
9. Annual contributions must be paid by members not later than eight weeks after the end of the financial year for which they are due.
10. If any member fails to pay the appropriate contribution for twelve months after it has fallen due, then the Board of Governors has the right to cancel his, her or its membership without prejudice to the member’s right to apply for re-admission.
11. Resignations.  Any member may resign upon the expiration of one month’s notice in writing to the Secretary.
12. Appeal.  Any person affected may appeal against a decision by the Board of Governors to reject or defer admission to membership, or to expel a member, and such appeal shall be dealt with and decided by a simple majority at the next General Meeting thereafter and the applicant or the member concerned has the right to address the General Meeting.

GENERAL MEETINGS
13. Annual General Meeting.  An Annual General Meeting must be held every two years:
(a)

(b)
(c)
to receive and approve a report of the proceedings and the accounts for the immediately preceding two financial years;
to elect the Board of Governors and Officers for the ensuing two years; and
to deal with any other business specified in the notice convening the meeting.
14. A Special General Meeting may be called by:
(a)
(b)
the Board of Governors; o
at least twenty-five Ordinary or Life Members —
by the Chairperson or the Secretary giving at least six weeks’ notice in writing to the members, and specifying the business to be transacted at the meeting.
15. All General Meetings must be convened by the Secretary by the dispatch to all members at their respective addresses last notified to the Secretary at least three weeks prior to the meeting of a notice specifying the business to be transacted thereat.
16. Members are entitled to specify any special business they wish to be transacted at an Annual General Meeting by giving at least six weeks’ notice in writing to the Secretary.
17. All members, including Associate Members, are entitled to attend the General Meeting.
18. Chairperson.  The Annual General Meeting shall be chaired by the Chairperson of the Board of Governors (or, in his or her absence, one of the other officers).
19. Voting.  All questions must be determined by a majority of votes cast, except a resolution for a change of the Constitution which requires a three-quarters majority.
20 Life and Ordinary Members personally present at General Meetings shall be entitled to one vote at General Meetings.
21. All voting is by show of hands and the declaration of the Chairperson as to the result of any vote shall be conclusive and bind all the members.
22. In the case of an equality of votes, the Chairperson has a casting vote.

BOARD OF GOVERNORS
23. Board of Governors.  There shall be an Board of Governors.
24. Subject to the powers of the Board of Trustees under this Constitution and at law, the management of the Society is vested in the hands of the Board of Governors, which has power to transact all the business of the Society, other than such matters as are vested in the Board of Trustees.
25. The members of the Board of Governors must be elected Annually by the Ordinary and Life Members present at the Annual General Meeting.
26. All the Officers of the Society are members of the Board of Governors.
27. The members of the Board of Governors have power to appoint persons to fill vacancies thereon and to appoint additional members thereto.
28. Meetings.  The Board of Governors must meet at least once in every four months.
29. Quorum.  A quorum for a meeting of the Board of Governors is four, one at least of whom must be an elected Officer of the Society.
30. All questions must be decided by a majority of votes and in the case of equality the Chairperson of the meeting has a casting vote.
31. The Board of Governors shall otherwise regulate its own procedure.
32. The Board of Governors has power to appoint sub-committees to investigate and report upon any aspect of the purposes of the Society purposes and to exercise such powers of the Board of Governors which are expressly assigned to them by the Board of Governors.
33. Officers.  The Officers of the Society must be elected annually by the Ordinary and Life Members at the Annual General Meeting.
34. The Officers must perform such executive functions as are assigned to them by the Board of Governors.

BOARD OF TRUSTEES
35.

Board of Trustees.  There shall be a Board of Trustees whose members shall be appointed by the Board of Governors.

36.

The Board of Trustees shall stand possessed of the income and property of the Society upon trust for the charitable objects of the Society.

37.

Anti-Slavery Society Fund.  The Board of Trustees shall have the care and management of the Anti-Slavery Society Fund and of the finances of the Society, and shall exercise such discretions and powers as are vested in:

(a)
(b)

them by this Constitution; and
trustees by law.

38.

The Board of Trustees shall sub-divide the Anti-Slavery Society Fund into:

(a)
(b)

a General Fund; and
Designated Funds.

39.

General Fund.  Donations received for the general charitable purposes of the Society and contributions shall be applied to the General Fund.

40.

Designated Funds.  The use of donations received for the Slaves Fund, the Bonded Child Laborers Fund, the Child Laborers Fund and such other funds for specific purposes as may be established by the Board of Trustees shall be restricted to such specific purposes.

41.

The unutilized balance of the Designated Funds shall be carried forward in the specific designated fund, and such funds shall not available for the general charitable purposes of the Society.

42.

Treasurer.  All subscriptions, donations and other payments to the Society may be paid to the Honorary Treasurer who shall, subject to the supervision and direction of the Board of Trustees, be responsible for the day to day administration of the funds of the Society.

43.

Power of investment.  All moneys not required for the immediate purposes of the Society may be applied or invested as the Board of Trustees, at their discretion think fit, and any investments so made may at any time be realized and the proceeds applied for the objects of the Society.

44.

Application of income and property.  The Board of Trustees shall apply the income and property of the Society solely towards the promotion of the objects of the Society as set forth in this Constitution and no portion of such income and property shall be paid or transferred, directly or indirectly, by way of bonus or otherwise howsoever by way of profit, to members of the Society, and no member of its Board of Trustees or Board of Governors shall be paid any salary or fees or receive any remuneration or other benefit in money or money’s worth from the Society, provided that nothing shall prevent any payment in good faith by the Board of Trustees:

(a)

(b)

of reasonable and proper remuneration to any member or employee of the Society (not being a member of its Board of Trustees or Board of Governors) for any services actually rendered to the Society;
to any member of the Board of Trustees or Board of Governors for out-of-pocket expenses.

45.

In exercising their discretion, the Board of Trustees may consider, or have regard to, any recommendation from the Board of Governors.

46.

Accounts.  The dates of commencement and the termination of the Society’s financial year are 1 July to 30 June in the succeeding year.

47.

Presentation of accounts.  The Honorary Treasurer must present the accounts to the Board of Trustees at its next meeting after the end of each financial year, which the Board of Trustees may direct to be audited

48.

Power to appoint custodian trustee.  The Board of Trustees may employ a Public Trustee or a trustee company for the purpose of acting as a custodian trustee of the documents and securities of the Society.

49.

Remuneration of custodian trustee.  Any Public Trustee or trustee company so employed may be remunerated in accordance with its published scale of fees, commissions and charges.


DISSOLUTION
50.

Dissolution.  At any Annual General Meeting a majority of three-quarters personally present and voting may decide to dissolve the Society, provided that notice of such resolution is clearly set out in the agenda.

51.

If upon the dissolution of the Society there remains, after the satisfaction of all its debts and liabilities, any property whatever, the same shall not be paid to or distributed among the members of the Society, but shall be given or transferred to some other fund, authority or institution:

(a)
(b)

having objects similar to the objects of the Society; and
which prohibits the distribution of its income and property to a similar extent to that imposed on the Society under Article 44.

52.

That fund, authority or institution may be determined by the members of the Society at or before the time of dissolution, and insofar as effect cannot be given to such provision, then to some other charitable object which satisfies the criteria prescribed by Article 51.  


ALTERATION TO CONSTITUTION
53.

Procedure for alteration to Constitution.  This Constitution can be altered by resolution of the members at an Annual General Meeting, or at a Special General Meeting convened for that purpose.

 

Links to other pages dealing with the Society:

Legal status of the Society

Society's funding

Society's finances

Society's overseas programs in Africa and Asia

Structure of the Society

Society's governance

Membership


Links to other Societies:

American Anti-Slavery Society

Australian Anti-Slavery Society


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SLAVERY SLAVE
TRADE
HUMAN
SACRIFICE

BONDED
LABOR

HIERODULIC
SERVITUDE

TRAFFICKING

CHILD
LABOR

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