VALUES & POLICIES
NGO CSW/NY is committed to ensuring that everyone has a fulfilling experience during the NGO CSW Forum. Our goal is to make this space as inclusive and productive as possible through a shared leadership model. Below are some guidelines for successfully navigating the forum, as well as principles to follow to assure a safe environment founded in respect and inclusivity. These principles apply to all of the NGO CSW Forum spaces, and NGO CSW/NY events.
- Use welcoming and inclusive language. Commit to open dialogue and transparency.
- Remain driven by our collective mission of advancing gender equality, feminism and women’s rights.
- Build a culture of excellence, compassion, integrity, and honesty.
- Respect one another. Listen, avoid assumptions, enable different opinions. Critique ideas, not people.
- Allow everyone to participate. Don’t dominate the conversation and honor time limits.
- Show empathy toward other participants.
- Respect the diversity of languages, opinions and expertise, while acknowledging that sexism, racism, classism, heterosexism, transphobia, global North domination and other institutionalized forms of oppression exist.
- Honor confidentiality and “I” statements (“I” instead of “they,” “we,” or “you”). Speak from your own experience instead of generalizing.
- Be positive and seek unity. Build people’s ideas up rather than knocking them down, and refrain from personal attacks.
- This is a space where the voices of the marginalized are amplified and given “expert” priority when recounting their own experiences. Their experiences of oppression are not up for debate or to be refuted in any way.
- This is an antiracist space meaning that we welcome, value and revere an intersectional approach to feminism. An anti-racist space requires that all of us need to consider our positionality and work actively not to replicate white patriarchal structures including subjugating voices of Black women and women of color.
- NGO CSW/NY will not tolerate harassment of any kind including but not limited to:
- Offensive comments related to gender, gender identity and expression, sexual orientation, disability, mental illness, physical appearance, political affiliation, age, race, national and/or ethnic origin, immigration status, language, religion, or indigeneity.
- Deliberate intimidation
- Sustained disruption of discussion
- Continued one-on-one communication after requests to cease
Please be mindful of your health as well as the health of other attendees, especially those who may be immunocompromised or vulnerable to COVID-19 illness. If you feel ill at any point during the NGO CSW Forum or any NGO CSW/NY in-person events, please wear a mask. Information on COVID-19 testing in NYC can be found here.
Take care of you!
The NGO CSW Forum can be a fast-paced and dynamic environment, and it is okay to feel overwhelmed. It is okay to step away and take a break or try deep breathing exercises: inhale for four counts, hold for four counts, exhale for four counts, hold for four counts and repeat 10 times.
Please feel free to visit our Healing and Community space during the NGO CSW Forum!
Reporting harassment or violations of these guidelines
If you have experienced any form of harassment or encountered a hostile environment during the NGO CSW Forum or in any NGO CSW/NY spaces, please report the experience to email@example.com immediately and we will address the situation. NGO CSW/NY has the right and responsibility to remove anyone who does not adhere to these guidelines and principles. Refunds are not given to those who are removed.
NGO Committee on the Status of Women, New York
As Amended in February 2023
ARTICLE I – NAME
The Name of this organization is the NGO COMMITTEE ON THE STATUS OF WOMEN NEW YORK, INC., herein after called the NGO Committee.
ARTICLE II – PURPOSE
The NGO Committee is a Substantive Committee of the Conference of NGOs in Consultative Relationship with the United Nations, at the United Nations Headquarters in New York. Its purpose is:
- To provide a forum for the dissemination of information, discussion and exchange of ideas on issues relevant to United Nations initiatives to advance the status of women and girls;
- To serve as a resource for Member States and organizations of the United Nations system on the challenges and successes of NGOs at the local, regional and international level to address the advancement of women and girls;
- To partner with UN Women, organizations of the United Nations system and Member States to promote policies and programs that further the rights of women and girls; and to work to mainstream a gender perspective throughout the system;
- To offer NGOs opportunities at the United Nations for collaborative action and network building to advance the status of women and girls around the world;
- To provide organization and leadership for the NGO community at the annual meeting of the UN Commission on the Status of Women.
ARTICLE III – MEMBERSHIP
- Regular Membership -Nongovernmental organizations in consultative status with ECOSOC, upon payment of their dues, hold regular membership. They shall be entitled to hold office. Each organization with regular membership shall be entitled to one vote.
- Associate Membership -Nongovernmental organizations associated with the United Nations Department of Global Communications or affiliated with a United Nations Program or agency, upon payment of dues. Such members shall not be eligible to vote or hold office.
- Supporting Membership -Other interested organizations and individuals, upon payment of dues. Such members shall not be eligible to vote or hold office.
ARTICLE IV - MEMBERSHIP DUES
Membership dues shall be set by vote of two-thirds of the Executive Committee. Payment of membership dues shall entitle members to receive notices and other materials as distributed by the NGO Committee. A notice for membership renewal shall be sent to members a month before their dues are due. Any member organization who fails to pay shall be not in good standing and not eligible to vote.
ARTICLE V - OFFICERS AND EXECUTIVE COMMITTEE
The responsibilities of the Executive Committee shall be to determine the means and methods of carrying out the work of the NGO Committee. The members of the NGO Committee shall be kept informed of the decisions and activities of the Executive Committee. All members of the Executive Committee shall reside in the New York Metropolitan Area.
- The Officers of the Executive Committee shall be the Chairperson, the Vice- Chairperson, the Recording Secretary, the Communications and Outreach Secretary, the Treasurer and the Members-at-Large. The immediate Past Chairperson shall be an ex officio member without a vote. No more than one representative from one organization shall serve concurrently on the Executive Committee.
- Officers and three Members-at-Large shall be elected.
- The term of office of elected officers shall be two (2) years. They may be re- elected for an additional two (2) years. No person shall be elected to the same office for more than two consecutive terms.
- Service for less than one year shall not be counted as a term.
- Up to an additional two Members-at-Large, who must be representatives from organizations with regular membership, may be appointed to serve on the Executive Committee on the recommendation of the Chairperson in consultation with the Executive Committee.
- The appointed Members-at-Large may serve for a term of two years. They may be re-appointed for an additional two (2) years, on the recommendation of the Chairperson in consultation with the Executive Committee.
- Upon each change of term, members of the Executive Committee may designate alternative arrangements such as Co-Chairs, more than one Vice-Chair, and other use of officer position, titles and roles.
- In the event that the Chairperson is unable to serve, the Vice-Chairperson shall become the Chairperson.
- It is expected that members of the Executive Committee will attend in person or on a digital platform the scheduled meetings of the Executive Committee. The Chairperson, upon consultation with the Executive Committee, may appoint the replacement of any officer who is absent for three Executive Committee meetings in one year, unless excused.
- It is anticipated that members of the Executive Committee will attend and participate in the monthly NGO Committee meetings on a regular basis.
- If a vacancy occurs on the Executive Committee, the position shall be filled for the remainder of the term by appointment of the Chairperson in consultation with the Executive Committee, within thirty days of the vacancy.
ARTICLE VI – DUTIES OF THE OFFICERS
- The Chairperson shall have general overall responsibility for the management, fiscal oversight and conduct of the work of the NGO Committee, preside over meetings and act as the primary liaison with all other NGO committees. The Chairperson shall represent the NGO Committee when consulting and collaborating with representatives of the United Nations system and Member States.
- The Vice-Chairperson shall serve as Chairperson in the absence of the Chairperson. The Vice-Chairperson shall work in close collaboration with the Chairperson and shall be responsible for special projects and the effective functioning of subcommittees, task forces or working groups. The Vice-Chairperson shall discharge other duties as assigned by the Chair or by the Executive Committee.
- The Recording Secretary is responsible for preparing and distributing the minutes of the Executive Committee, business meetings, monthly meetings and other meetings.
- The Communications Secretary oversees organization outreach including the website, social media, newsletter, public relations and other outreach to the committee constituency, partners, Member States and UN agencies.
- The Treasurer may disburse funds as determined by the Executive Committee; shall be responsible for the maintenance of accounts; shall be responsible for the annual budget; and shall submit a monthly report to the Executive Committee. At the NGO Committee’s June general meeting, she should present an annual report showing the assets, liabilities, revenues and expenses of the NGO Committee. The Treasurer shall be responsible for timely filing of tax returns, payroll, bank relationships, internal financial controls, administration of grant funding, payroll and financial contracts.
- Members-at-Large shall support the work of the NGO Committee; contribute to discussions and decision-making on goals, strategy and activities; and keep abreast of UN activities that may have implications for the work of the NGO Committee.
- The Executive Committee may from time to time hire/appoint individuals who shall perform specific ad hoc functions as decided by the Executive Committee.
ARTICLE VII – FINANCES
- The Executive Committee shall decide, upon the recommendation of the Chairperson and the Treasurer, the banks or depositories it deems proper for the funds of the NGO Committee. The Chairperson and the Treasurer are authorized to sign checks or other orders for the payment of money and to enter into contracts.
- The fiscal year shall be from 1 July to 30 June.
ARTICLE VIII – SUB-COMMITTEES
- The Executive Committee shall determine when a Sub-Committee, Task Force or Working Group is necessary to fulfill a current need to further the purpose of the NGO Committee.
- Members may petition the Executive Committee to form a Sub-Committee, Task Force or Working Group. The decision shall be made by the Chairperson in consultation with the Executive Committee.
- Conveners of such Sub-Committees, Task Forces or Working Groups, who are appointed by the Chairperson in consultation with the Executive Committee, shall be responsible to the Executive Committee and report periodically.
- A Planning Committee shall be established for the organization of events to take place during the annual meeting of the UN Commission on the Status of Women.
ARTICLE IX – UN COMMISSION ON THE STATUS OF WOMEN
- The NGO Committee undertakes to enrich the contributions of NGO participants in the discussions and outcomes for the advancement of women and girls during the annual meeting of the UN Commission on the Status of Women by organizing events.
- The NGO Committee shall partner with the Bureau of the UN Commission on the Status of Women and with UN Women to brief and prepare NGOs for discussions on the priority themes to be presented at the Commission.
- The NGO Committee shall facilitate NGOs to bring their work to the attention of others by scheduling parallel events during the UN Commission on the Status of Women.
- The NGO Committee shall offer opportunities for NGOs from geographical areas to meet in regional caucuses.
- The NGO Committee shall disseminate announcements regarding updates and progress on the work of the UN Commission on the Status of Women, including the elaboration of agreed conclusions or any other outcome document.
- The NGO Committee shall organize an annual CSW NGO Forum.
ARTICLE X – GENERAL PROCEDURES AND MEETINGS
- The Executive Committee shall meet at least four times a year. A quorum shall consist of more than half of the Executive Committee members in person or on digital platform.
- The NGO Committee of the whole shall meet at least six times a year, usually on the third Thursday of the month. Voting for elections and adoption of the annual budget are restricted to regular member organizations. A quorum is a majority of regular member organizations in attendance.
- After consultation with the Executive Committee, papers on issues for the advancement of women and girls, congratulatory letters and statements of concern may be submitted in the name of the NGO Committee by the Chair.
- Joint statements by member organizations with ECOSOC consultative status may be submitted under the names of those organizations whose headquarters have expressed their wish to become signatories to the statement.
ARTICLE XI – ELECTIONS
- A Nominating Committee of five persons from regular member organizations shall be appointed by the Chairperson in consultation with the Executive Committee, no later than February 1 in the year in which the election takes place. Individuals seeking nomination may not serve on the Nominating Committee which shall be composed of a Chair and four other members. Individuals seeking nomination for the Executive Committee must be formally endorsed by their organizations which must be up-to-date with their membership dues.
- Nominations for the five officers and three members-at-large shall be presented by the Nominating Committee in a written report to be circulated to all regular members of the NGO Committee at least three weeks prior to the May general meeting preceding the last general meeting in June at which the election is to take place. Uncontested nominees will be elected by acclamation at the last general meeting.
- In the event that there is more than one nomination received for the same vacant position, the Nominating Committee will prepare the ballot to be circulated to all regular members of the NGO Committee in May, at least three weeks prior to the June general meeting at which the election is to take place.
- Nominations from the floor may also be made at the general May meeting preceding the last general meeting. Any nomination from the floor must be seconded. If there are nominations from the floor, a ballot will be issued to members for voting purposes at the last general meeting, which shall take place in June. All nominations from the floor must follow the same process of formal endorsement from their organizations.
- If there is more than one nomination received for the same vacant position, the Chair of the Executive Committee shall appoint an Elections Committee of three members to conduct the elections at the last general meeting in June. The Elections Committee will be responsible for counting the votes and presenting the results to the Chair who shall announce the results to the general meeting in June.
- The election of officers and members of the Executive Committee shall take place at the last general meeting in odd years. Elected officers shall take office on July 1.
ARTICLE XII – INDEMNIFICATION
NGOCSW/NY will indemnify and hold harmless all directors and officers of NGOCSW/NY while acting in their official capacities as members of the Executive Committee of NGOCSW/NY. Such indemnification will cover judgments, fines, amounts paid in settlement and reasonable expenses, including attorneys' fees. Indemnification will not cover any member of the Executive Committee that has committed a criminal or fraudulent act.
ARTICLE XIII – AMENDMENTS TO THE BY-LAWS
- Proposed amendments to these By-Laws shall be submitted to the Chairperson in time for consideration by the Executive Committee and for written circulation to each member organization not less than twenty days prior to the date of the proposed adoption. An amendment shall be adopted only after discussion in a general meeting of the NGO Committee and upon the majority vote of the designated representatives of ECOSOC accredited organizations with regular membership status.
- Those organizations will have the opportunity to cast their votes electronically or at the meeting designated to vote on any amendments.
- The NGO Committee shall review the By-Laws on a regular basis, at least every five years from date of adoption of revisions.
ARTICLE XIV – Robert's Rules of Order, Newly Revised, shall prevail for any procedure not specified by these By-Laws.
ARTICLE XV - DISSOLUTION
In the event of the dissolution of the NGO Committee on the Status of Women, New York, the Executive Committee, after the payment of all liabilities has been made, shall make assignments and disbursements of the remaining assets to the Conference of Nongovernmental Organizations Foundation, Inc. or to an advocacy group for women and girls to be decided by the Executive Committee.