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The Campaign for Homosexual Equality

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Standing Orders

These standing orders governed the conduct of CHE Conferences up to and including the final CHE Conference under the old constitution, on 15 October 2022 (minutes available on the CHERT website).

1. The Steering Committee

  1. The Steering Committee and its Chairperson shall be appointed for each Conference by the Executive Committee.
  2. It shall be the business of the Steering Committee to carry out the duties specified in these Standing Orders and generally to oversee the timetable of the Conference and to advise the chairpeople in the execution of their duties.

2. Agenda

  1. At its commencement Conference shall adopt an Agenda and Order Paper including the appointment of a panel of chairpeople. The Agenda and Order Paper shall specify the entire business before the Conference and shall indicate procedure to be followed in the event of there not being sufficient time to complete the business of Conference.
  2. No change in the business specified in the Agenda and Order Paper may be made during Conference, except as provided in these Standing Orders.
  3. All propositions from members for the introduction of Emergency Motions under Standing Order 4 or any other alteration to the Agenda and Order Paper shall be made to and received by the Steering Committee.
  4. The Steering Committee may at any time propose to the Conference the addition to the Order Paper of an Emergency Motion or any other alteration to the Agenda. Conference shall vote immediately upon whether to accept such a proposed addition or alteration.
  5. Once a motion has been adopted by Conference as part of the Agenda it cannot be withdrawn by the proposers except with the permission of Conference.

3. Motions and amendments

  1. The Executive Committee shall publish notice of the Conference in accordance with the Constitution.
  2. The notice convening a meeting of Conference shall specify the dates for receipt of Motions and Amendments.
  3. Submission:
    1. Motions may be submitted to the Secretary by three members of CHE, the Executive Committee or any Commission appointed under Standing Order 6.
    2. Constitutional Amendments may be submitted by six members or the Executive Committee.
  4. The Steering Committee shall scrutinise all Motions and Constitutional Amendments submitted and shall declare out of order any which:
    1. do not appear to be properly supported as laid down in c.i or c.ii above;
    2. deal with matters outside the powers of Conference as laid down in the Constitution;
    3. are worded in such a way as to be meaningless or incapable of implementation;

      The proposer (or first signatory) of any Motion or Constitutional Amendment ruled out of order shall be informed as soon as possible and shall have the right to:

    4. submit a revised version within a specified time;
    5. give notice in writing to the Steering Committee of an appeal to Conference.

      In the event of an appeal, Steering Committee will place the business on the Agenda of Conference in the usual way together with their ruling. Immediately the business is called, Steering Committee shall move the Procedural Motion that the item is out of order, the proposer will have the right to reply and the chairperson shall put the matter to the vote. The Steering Committee’s ruling shall be upheld unless two-thirds of those voting support the appeal. The chairperson will continue with the Agenda in accordance with the result of the vote.

  5. Motions received after the specified date may only be accepted at the discretion of the Steering Committee.
  6. Identical Motions (and Amendments) shall be tabled by the Steering Committee as joint Motions and Amendments.
  7. The Steering Committee may draft composite Motions and Amendments submitted on the same subject area. These composite Motions shall be circulated with the Motions and Amendments section of the Agenda.

4. Emergency Motions

  1. An Emergency Motion shall be any Motion submitted in writing by five members registered for Conference upon any matter which has arisen since the final date for the submission of Motions for Conference.
  2. Except where the Emergency arises during the meeting of Conference all Emergency Motions must be submitted to the Steering Committee prior to the commencement of Conference.
  3. The Steering Committee shall endeavour to arrange a time for debate of any Emergency Motion which, in its opinion, is in order, but shall not be obliged to do so if, in its opinion, the timetable does not permit this.

5. Workshops

  1. The Conference may, outside its plenary sessions, have workshops which shall examine in detail some specific items of business or other matter which the Conference may refer to them.
  2. The discussion area for workshops shall be recommended by the Steering Committee at the commencement of Conference, during the adoption of the Agenda.
  3. Each workshop shall appoint a reporter who shall prepare a report of the discussion in the workshop for presentation to a plenary session of Conference.
  4. If a workshop wishes to present a Motion or Amendment within its subject area for debate in plenary session it shall consult the Steering Committee in accordance with Standing Order 2(d).
  5. workshops shall determine their own procedure, subject to the normal rules of procedure or any instruction or decision of Conference.

6. Commissions

  1. Conference may establish Commissions to undertake work on behalf of Conference between its meetings.
  2. Conference shall adopt terms of reference for each Commission which will set out the purpose, objectives, membership and method of funding the Commission together with any other relevant points.
  3. Each Commission may report to the Ordinary meetings of Conference on progress with the matters referred to it.
  4. A Commission may hold a workshop session during Conference under Standing Order 5.

7. Debates in Plenary Session

  1. Speakers shall announce their name, group and any other organisation they represent. Executive Committee members will announce their name and Office before speaking any point.
  2. Before the start of any debate the Steering Committee shall make recommendations as to the order in which the Amendments to ordinary motions should be voted on. Such recommendations shall indicate the effect of passing any particular Amendment upon later Amendments and may include proposals for drafting Amendments to such later Amendments.
  3. After a Motion has been moved there may be opportunity for debate on the principle of the Motion. Thereafter, there shall be debate on each Amendment or where the Steering Committee has so indicated two or more Amendments grouped together, and then general debate on the Motion as amended. Whenever an Amendment is carried the Motion as amended will take the place of the original or previous version of the Motion. This will be the Substantive Motion and shall be the Motion upon which any further Amendment may be moved.
  4. Save for the exercise of the right of reply and subject to the discretion of the Chair, no person may speak more than once in the debate on any Amendment or more than once in the general debate on the Motion. Any person who has already spoken retains the right to make a point of order or to make or ask a point of information or to move a procedural motion specified in Standing Order 10.
  5. At the end of an Amendment, the Chair may, at its discretion, either allow the right of reply to the mover of both the Amendment and the original Motion or to neither. At the end of the debate on the Substantive Motion the Chair may at its discretion call a speaker to sum up for those opposed to it and shall then allow the right of reply.

8. Voting

  1. Each member of CHE who has paid their current subscription for the Conference period and has registered for Conference may exercise one vote.
  2. Voting shall normally be by registered members showing their voting cards unless the Chairperson, upon the recommendation of the Steering Committee, shall direct otherwise.
  3. In an equality of votes the Chairperson shall have a casting vote.
  4. The declaration by the Chairperson that a Motion or Amendment has been carried or defeated shall be conclusive providing that a count may be taken at the Chairperson's discretion or it is requested immediately after the declaration by not less than 5 members showing their voting cards.
  5. Any member registered for Conference who is engaged on Conference duties as a steward or otherwise, which require absence from a plenary session in which votes will be taken, may vote by proxy. The member's voting card, together with written instructions, must be deposited with the Steering Committee who will exercise the vote accordingly.

9. Chairperson

  1. There shall be a panel of Chairpeople appointed by Conference, which in conjunction with the Steering Committee, shall arrange to chair the various sessions of Conference.
  2. Speakers shall at all times address the chair. The Chairperson shall be heard in silence and any member holding the floor when the Chairperson speaks shall be seated.
  3.  The Chairperson shall not participate in any debate.
  4. The Chairperson, being guided by normal procedural practice, and by the Steering Committee, shall conduct the debate in accordance with these Standing Orders. The Chairperson's ruling on any point of order or procedure shall be final unless challenged in accordance with Standing Order 11.

10. Procedural Motions

  1. The following procedural motions may be moved and if moved shall take precedence as follows:
    1. That the matter under discussion is out of order;
    2. That the vote may be taken on the Motion or Amendment;
    3.  That the Motion under discussion be referred back to the mover or remitted to the Executive Committee;
    4. That the Motion under discussion be not put to the vote;
    5.  That the Motion be taken in parts.
  2. If any procedural motion be moved, the proposer of the Motion or Amendment may, at the discretion of the chair, have the right of reply before the vote is taken on the procedural motion.
  3. In order to facilitate orderly debate a member may give notice of an intention to move a particular procedural motion at a certain point in the debate.

11. Challenging the Chairperson's Ruling

Any member challenging the Chairperson's ruling shall require 5 members showing their voting cards in support of the challenge. A challenge not so supported shall be out of order. If 5 members support the challenge the Chairperson shall hand over the chair to a member of the panel of chairpeople or the Steering Committee, the member making the challenge shall briefly state the reasons, the Chairperson shall briefly reply, and the Acting Chairperson shall put the matter to the vote. The Chairpersons ruling shall be upheld unless two-thirds of the members voting support the challenge. When the result of the vote has been declared the Chairperson shall resume the chair and proceed in accordance with the result.

12. Observers and Visitors

  1. The Executive Committee may invite organisations which are not affiliated and individuals who are not members to attend Conference as Observers. An Observer shall have full speaking rights but no voting rights.
  2. If the venue permits the Conference Committee may set aside part of the Conference Hall for Visitors and, at its discretion, charge an entrance fee. Visitors have neither speaking rights nor voting rights. Conference Committee may refuse admission and exclude any person once admitted.
  3. Conference shall have the power to exclude Observers and/or Visitors for specific items of business by going into closed session. The mover of a Motion to go into closed session shall indicate clearly the extent of the business to be so taken. If the Motion is carried the stewards will clear the meeting of non-members and not re-adrnit them until instructed by the Chair.

13. Standing Orders

  1. The suspension of these Standing Orders may be proposed by the Steering Committee or any member supported by 4 members showing their voting cards. The member proposing shall briefly explain the reason for and the duration of the proposed suspension, the Steering Committee may reply, and the Chair shall put the proposition to the vote. The proposal shall require a two-thirds majority of members voting.
  2. Standing Orders, once adopted shall remain in force from one Annual Conference to the next.


Adopted October 2002