The Accountability Board is an oversight body that exists to fulfill the following: To ensure bodies and members act in accordance with the principles outlined in the Purpose, Values, Scope document; To ensure bodies and members act in a transparent, ethical, and actively anti-oppressive way; To continually assess the SGA's "best practices" to ensure compliance with the Purpose, Values, Scope document. The impetus for forming this body is the recognition that a lot of decisions at Hampshire are made based on interpersonal dynamics (e.g. friendship, knowing people), and we hope an outside accountability body will make the Hampshire Student Union more accessible to everyone at Hampshire. The area of work for this committee is still being developed. For now, the following are its responsibilities: Addressing and advising the Scope Groups on their best practices; Requesting reports from scope groups on their rate of participation, outreach, and potential improvement plans; annually assessing the scope groups by requesting end-of-the-year self-evaluations; working to achieve a high level of accountability of elected and appointed representatives by setting standards (i.e. must attend all committee meetings, must report back non-confidential information to the student body at large) (directly from the PVS document); in case of a violation of community norms by a student working with or on behalf of the SGA, appointing an SGA member to bring a case before the Community Review Board (directly from the PVS document) Membership structure and requirements: All members are not to be actively involved in any form of student government during their term on the committee. Members must attend 3 out of every 4 meetings, and can only miss 1 meeting per 4 meetings. The Accountability Board was formerly known as the Committee of Ten.
A member is someone who has attended three meetings in the timespan of four meetings (attended three with only one absence interrupting them). Members lose membership if they miss two meetings within a timespan of four meetings without getting an absence excused. Members cannot hold officer positions with scope groups or CoordBoard, and are expected to limit participation in governance with the exception of Town Meeting. Accountability Board can decide to remove members if they are found to be too involved in governance to separate their desires for certain political outcomes from their assessments of whether or not the methods used to reach an outcome are appropriate.
Accountability Board may negotiate contracts with officers and bodies of the HSU as a method of holding them accountible for misconduct. This system is especially designed to get around the current lack of concrete documents or agreed upon prescedent for misconduct. A meeting is held with the officer or body and a contract is negotiated where they agree that there was misconduct, what that was, what they will do from now on so it doesn't happen again and to remedy the situation, and what ramifications they will face if they breach the contract. The contract is entirely a consensual agreemtn worked on with the officer or body and does not affect them unless they sign it. It is not a legally binding contract, but an agreement between the officer or body and accountability board so that they can be held accountable on their own terms. Officers or bodies offered the contract process may also decide they would rather go through a different accountability process, and may also refute that there has been misconduct. This process will be re-designed after the Documents Committee finishes the formal documents of the HSU and accountability processes have been outlined.
The Accountability Board listserv is firstname.lastname@example.org , in addition to a listserv we also maintain a Facebook group!
(no meeting on 2/16)
On March 9th 2014, Accountability Board decided that as we aren't able to take any kinds of actions, because of the lack of official documents, lack of powers given to us, lack of cooperation from the rest of the union, and the rendering moot of our current initiative by the creation of Doc Com; we will be switching to a bi-weekly meeting schedule. Because of Spring Break, our next meeting will be on March 30th
March 30th: No Meeting, no members could attend for extraneous circumstances.