Participation By-Law #23



(passed Jan. 23, 1984 as By-law No. 11) Reconfirmed by members on September 30, 2010 as part of the adoption of the consolidated by-laws.

1. Each member shall participate in the operations of the Co-op by sitting on the Board or a committee, or volunteering time in some other area of the Co-op's operation. Each member will be expected to contribute an average of four hours per month.

2. Members will be required, upon joining the Co-op and annually thereafter, to list the activities and/or committees for which they are available.

3. Each member will normally give a minimum of one year commitment to the chosen participation activity.

4. Each year the Board will provide an up-to-date list of Approved Volunteer Activities, with provisions for members to make particular individual requests.

5. Members who have contributed an average of eight (8) hours or more a month may apply for a one year sabbatical.

6. A member may apply to the Board for exemption from this participation requirement for reasons of health or employment or others acceptable to the Board.

7. No member will be considered in breach of this policy if there are no volunteer positions open.

8. Breach of this policy will affect a member's status in the Co-op.

9. An Annual Survey of the Membership shall include an outline of "Implementation Procedures" as they exist at that time.

Consolidated up to April 2010 and adopted by the members on September 30, 2010.

Rules of Order for Meetings

Rules of Order adopted by Woodsworth Housing Co-Operative Inc, March 27, 1979

For most items of business, a decision by the General Meeting is required. Decisions come about as follows: the item is presented and a motion is made and seconded; the motion is debated, and possibly amended; and the meeting votes on the motion.

As each item on the agenda comes up for discussion, it is introduced by the Chair and/or a presentation is made by the sponsor. The sponsor may have a specific proposal for the meeting or, after some discussion, it may become apparent that the Co-op should make a decision about the item, in which case a motion should be proposed and seconded. Every main motion should be submitted to the Chair in written form. (This does not include Procedural motions.)

Once a motion has been made and seconded, it is debated by the meeting, with debate regulated by the Chair. Speakers must speak for or against the proposal and the chair may rule a speaker out of order if his or her comments are not relevant to the motion. All remarks should be addressed to the Chair, rather than any particular member at the meeting. Each speaker may only speak for five minutes or less at a time. At the discretion of the Chair, no person may speak more than once on the same item until all members present who wish to speak on the item have done so.

All persons desiring to speak must raise their hand until acknowledged by the Chair. The Chair will maintain a “speakers’ list” of all persons requesting to speak and will allow them to speak in order.

During debate on a main motion, amendments to the motion may be introduced. An amendment may delete part of the main motion, add to it, or change parts of it, but can not be contrary to the intent of the motion.

An amendment must be moved and seconded. If the mover and seconder of the main motion agree to the amendment, it immediately becomes part of the main motion. If they do not agree, a vote must be taken on the amendment.

Once the amendment has been moved and seconded, all speakers must address the amendment rather than the main motion. The Chair will keep a separate speakers’ list for the debate of the amendment. When the meeting is ready to vote on the amendment(s), the Chair will review all the amendments and then take a separate vote on each. Those that pass are incorporated into the main motion and debate continues on the main motion as amended using the main speakers’ list, until the meeting is ready for the vote on the main motion or another amendment is proposed.

Occasionally, a member wishes to amend a motion by replacing it with a whole new motion. This is not allowed as a valid amendment. However, the member may briefly outline the substitute motion and either ask the mover to withdraw the motion on the floor or urge the meeting to defeat it so that the substitute motion can be proposed.

The mover of a motion may withdraw the motion from the floor. This would be done if the mover has decided no decision should be made at this time, or to allow a substitute motion to be made.

During the debate of a main motion or an amendment, any speaker, in their turn, and other than the mover or seconder, may call for a vote on the question or “call the question”. This is an attempt to end debate on a motion and vote without allowing any more discussion. Because a motion to “call the question” may take away some members’ right to speak, it should be used carefully. Before proposing to “call the question”, there should be some indication that most members have made up their minds, and that speakers are not contributing any new arguments.

A motion to “call the question” requires a seconder and may not be debated. In order to be carried, the motion to “call the question” requires a 2/3 majority. If the motion is defeated, debate on the main motion or amendment continues. If the motion to “call the question” is carried, then the meeting is ready to vote on the main motion or amendment on the floor. The Chair should take the vote with no further debate.

During the debate on a main motion or an amendment, any speaker, in his or her turn, can move to “defer the question” to a subsequent meeting. This is an attempt to postpone a decision on the proposal on the floor until a future date or until after a specific action or decision has happened. A motion to “defer the question” does not need to be seconded. The mover, or if the mover declines, one other person may speak in favour of deferring the proposal, and one person may speak against deferring. A vote on the motion to “defer the question” is then taken. If carried, the proposal is deferred as per the motion. If it is defeated, debate continues on the main motion or amendment.

Members may only speak out of turn if they wish to raise a point of order or a point of information. To raise such a point, a member stands and with as much courtesy as possible, interrupts the current speaker or the Chair and announces that they wish to raise a point of order or information. The Chair may accept or reject such an interruption at its discretion.

If the Chair acknowledges the member, the point should be stated simply and briefly, and the member should sit down. A point of order should be raised when a member feels that an incorrect procedure is being followed, there is a better procedure, the Chair has made an incorrect ruling, or there is a lack of quorum. Once a point of order has been stated, the Chair will rule on its validity and, if appropriate, act on it. A point of information should be raised when a member feels that he or she has an important piece of information relating to the item under consideration that may save needless debate if it is raised immediately instead of at the member’s turn to speak.

The Chair may rule a motion out of order on the grounds that it is absurd, frivolous, obstructive, delaying or otherwise dilatory.


Co-operative Principles

Woodsworth Housing Co-operative follows the international co-op principles. These are guidelines by which co-operatives put their values into practice.

1. Voluntary and Open Membership
Membership in a housing co-op is open to all who can use the co-op’s services and accept the responsibilities of being a member, without discrimination.

2. Democratic Member Control
Housing co-ops are controlled by their members. Each member has one vote. Housing co-ops give members the information they need to make good decisions and take part in the life of the co-op.

3. Member Economic Participation
Members contribute financially to the co-op and share in the benefits of membership. The co-op does not pay a return on the members’ shares or deposits. Instead it sets aside reserves for the future and charges the members only what it needs to operate soundly.

4. Autonomy and Independence
Housing co-ops are independent associations. They follow the laws that apply to them and their agreements with governments or other organizations. But the members control the co-op.

5. Education, Training and Information
Housing co-ops offer education and training to the members, directors and staff so that everyone can play a full role in the life of the co-op. Housing co-ops find ways to tell the public what they are and what they do.

6. Co-operation among Co-operatives
By organizing together in federations, housing co-ops grow stronger and help to build a healthy co op movement. Where they can, housing co-ops use the services of co-op businesses to meet their needs.

7. Concern for Community
Housing co-ops work to build strong communities inside and outside the co-op. They help to improve the quality of life for others and they take care to protect the environment.

CHF Canada, Vision 2020

More about co-ops in Toronto: CHFT

CHFT Fall Education Event 2018

Date:  Saturday, November 3, 2018
Registration and continental breakfast – 9:00 am
Workshop 1 – 9:30 am to 12:30 pm
Lunch and Plenary Session – 12:30 pm to 2:00 pm
Workshop 2 – 2:00 pm to 4:30 pm

Location: Oakham House is located at 55 Gould Street, Toronto. (Ryerson)

Reminder – Woodsworth will pay the registration fee for our members. Apply in writing to the office – Woodsworth staff will register you.

Members under 30 – CHFT charges the co-op half price for you! Consider attending.

Choose one workshop for the morning and one for the afternoon.

Workshop 1 — 9:30 to 12:30

1a Legal panel: Employment issues
Our legal panel is always one of the most popular sessions. We are fortunate to have two lawyers with many years of experience working with co-ops. This time, we have decided to focus on issues that co-ops face in their role as employers. We will talk about human rights issues as well as what the new cannabis legislation means to employers.
Moderator: Tom Clement, CHFT
Panelists: Celia Chandler, Iler Campbell, and Nancy Collyer, Lewis & Collyer

1b Yikes, I’m the treasurer!
This workshop is for co-op treasurers, signing officers and other directors who want to learn about their financial responsibilities. Luckily, you don’t need to be a financial expert to be a co-op treasurer but you do need to know
• about signing cheques
• how to confirm a bank reconciliation
• what questions to ask about financial statements.
Choose this workshop and we’ll discuss these topics and more and help you be the best co-op treasurer ever.
Workshop leader: Judith Collins, CHFT

1c What makes a good board?
The board is responsible for overseeing the complex business of the co-op. We’ll give you the important information that every good board needs to know.
• the relationship between the board, the manager and committees
• the board’s basic legal obligations
• what makes a good board meeting and
• what it takes for the board to achieve sound management and good
Workshop leader: Anjala Kulasegaram, CHFT

12:30 to 2:00 — Lunch and plenary session

Workshop 2 — 2:00 to 4:30

2a Land trust panel
There has been a lot of talk recently about land trusts. Land trusts can be used to preserve our non-profit housing co-ops and to leverage our assets to build more co-ops. CHFT has been involved in land trusts since the 1980’s. We currently lease land to 31 housing co-ops. Find out about the history of land trusts in the GTA, the status of current land trusts and the future of
land trusts in this area.
Moderator: Tom Clement, CHFT
Panelists: Melissa Estable, CHF Canada, Dr David Hulchanski, University of Toronto, Anjala Kulasegaram, CHFT, and Bruce Lewis, Lewis & Collyer

2b Understanding conflict in your co-op
This interactive workshop will look at the sources of conflict in co-ops. You will learn useful skills to de-escalate conflict. We will look at the difference between needs-based problem solving and interest-based problem solving. You will learn effective ways to negotiate for what you need. Through discussion and practice, you will have the opportunity to practice what you have learned.
Workshop leader: Shawn Conway, St. Stephen’s Conflict Resolution Service

2c The $2,500,000 giveaway
Each year, co-ops in Ontario give away the equivalent of 25 luxury sports cars by not keeping their units full. Come along and hear from experts on how to reduce vacancy loss; money you could use to turn your co-op homes into dream homes. You can’t afford to take a break from this important responsibility. Get the skills needed to fill your units and take lavish vacations from the revolving door of vacancy loss. Act now! Don’t delay! Avoid disappointment! Sign up for this once in a lifetime opportunity.
Workshop leaders: Catriona McCallum and Rosalind Morton, The Agency

CHFT Fall Education Event 2018

Cannabis Legalization: What Social Housing Providers Need to Know

A webinar, presented on April 18, 2018
Speakers: Celia Chandler, Partner, Iler Campbell LLP & Brian Laur, Director, Insurance Services, Housing Services Corporation

You can hear about:
– the Canadian legislation, government plans and timelines for legalization
– the areas of obligations- human rights, tenant/member & buildings
– property management issues (community, property damage, costs and liability)
– property risk management implications
– practical measures for managing risk

This is a previously recorded webinar.