WILD SALMON CIRCLE
1. The name of the association is the WILD SALMON CIRCLE, hereinafter referred to as “WSC”.
2. The primary purpose of the WSC is to provide a voice to members of the public concerned with the current state and management of B.C.’s salmon fishery;
3. The WSC will seek to ensure an immediate end to open net salmon farming in B.C.’s waters; and
4. The WSC seeks to protect the health and integrity of wild salmon generally, including individual salmon runs.
5. The WSC was founded upon the following principles, which shall form the basis of the WSC’s organizational structure and its actions:
i. WSC is a citizen-led association, independent from any other association, including unions, business associations and non-governmental organizations;
ii. Notwithstanding (i), WSC is permitted to collaborate with other associations on specific events or actions, where the other association is also working towards the protection of wild salmon;
iii. WSC is strictly non-partisan and will not publicly support any political party or the actions of a particular political party without the express consent of at least 2/3 of core circle members (“enhanced majority”);
iv. WSC will conduct itself transparently and in accordance with democratic principles;
v. The WSC as an association, and all individual members of the association, commit to acting ethically and with respect when dealing with both members and non-members of the association;
6. The WSC operates on the following premises:
i. Wild salmon are of vital importance to the ecosystems, cultures and economy of B.C.;
ii. Canada’s fisheries, including the salmon fishery, is a public resource that must be managed in a manner that protects the public interest;
iii. As a public resource, citizens have the right to be informed of the state of the fisheries and, where appropriate, to be consulted in its management;
iv. Government institutions involved in the management of the fisheries, including Fisheries and Oceans Canada (the “DFO”), are accountable to the citizenry;
v. Many salmon runs in B.C. are currently threatened to the point of potential commercial, and ultimately biological, extinction
vi. As a public resource, the management of the fisheries must be guided by science as well as in accordance with the Precautionary Principle which demands that the absence of full scientific certainty should not be used to delay actions or decisions when faced with threats of serious or irreversible harm;
vii. Although not the sole cause, the weight of scientific evidence indicates that open-net fin fish aquaculture farms are contributing to declining wild salmon populations in B.C.;
viii. Indigenous peoples in B.C. hold constitutional and legal rights and interests with respect to B.C.’s wild salmon as well as with respect to many of the territories through which wild salmon travel and in many of the territories where wild salmon spawn;
ix. The WSC support implementation of Recommendation 1.1 of the Final Report of the Legislative Assembly of British Columbia’s Special Committee Sustainable Aquaculture (May 2007) which called for a rapid, phased transition to ocean-based closed containment within three years.
7. All assets of WSC shall be used towards the furtherance of its purposes and under no circumstances shall assets be used in a manner that results in monetary benefit to any member of the WSC.
8. The WSC will not remunerate any person with respect to his or her actions on behalf of the WSC, but a person may be reimbursed for all expenses necessarily and reasonably incurred while engaged in the affairs of the WSC. In addition, speakers at event who are not members of the Core may be given a reasonable sum as an honourarium.
9. Every member of the WSC will ensure, to the greatest of his or her abilities, that all personal information provided by any individual is kept confidential. Under no circumstances shall any member of the circle share personal information collected from members of the public, including names and email addresses, without the express written consent of the person to which the information relates.
A. The Core
10. A group of not more than 11 people and not less than 8 people shall direct the actions of the WSC and shall hereinafter be referred to as “the Core”.
11. Decisions of the Core shall generally be decided on a majority rules basis. In certain cases specifically set out in this Constitution, including with respect to adopting and amending this Constitution, decisions shall be based on an enhanced majority vote (at least 2/3 of Core members).
12. With respect to decisions that must be made on a majority rules basis, a quorum of at least 5 people is required.
13. With respect to decisions that must be made on an enhanced majority rules basis, a quorum of at least 8 people is required. For enhanced majority votes, where there are 8 or 9 core members voting, at least 6 votes are required. Where there are 10 or 11 core members voting, at least 7 votes are required.
14. Day to day business may be carried out through email and without voting where such actions do not commit the WSC to any action, including the endorsement of any action in the name of the WSC.
15. Members of the Core shall endeavour to meet at least once every three weeks. Members of the core who repeatedly do not attend these meetings can be removed from the Core in a manner as set out in this Constitution.
16. Any person who becomes a core member must, at a minimum, commit to six (6) months of membership.
17. Members may be admitted to the Core on an enhanced majority basis.
18. Members of the Core can be removed on enhanced majority basis. Any removal of a member of the Core shall include stated reasons for the removal. Any person that is subject to a vote for removal shall be given an opportunity to be heard before such a vote is taken.
B. The Circle
19. Without limiting its general actions, the WSC will endeavour to ‘grow the circle’ so that the WSC will collect personal contact information from individual members of the public in order to inform them of opportunities to make their views on salmon issues heard and participate in salmon related events. The group of individuals that solely receive information from the WSC and are non-voting members are hereinafter referred to as “the Circle”.
20. Individual members of the Circle may participate in the activities of the WSC but may not attend meetings of the Core group without explicit permission from a majority of the Core group members. Even where members of the Circle attend Core group meetings, members of the Circle shall not be given an opportunity to vote and shall not count towards a quorum.
21. The WSC will also seek to set up multiple core groups in various communities. Each of these core groups will assist in furthering the goals of the WSC at a local level and will be bound by this constitution, except where that is impossible such as, for example, requirements for quorums in smaller communities.