Statutes of the World Federalist Movement

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Statutes of the World Federalist Movement
by Council of the WFM

STATUTES OF THE
WORLD FEDERALIST MOVEMENT – INSTITUTE FOR GLOBAL POLICY

As adopted at the Sixth Congress (London, 1954) and amended at the Eighth Congress
(Stockport,
Cheshire 1956); Pietersberg Conference -1959; Twelfth Congress (San Francisco,
1965); Thirteenth
Congress (Oslo, 1967); Emergency Congress (Elsinore, 1968); Fourteenth
Congress (Ottawa, 1970);
Fifteenth Congress (Brussels, 1972); Sixteenth Congress (New Delhi,
1975); Eighteenth Congress
(Tokyo, 1980); Special Congress (London, 1985); Twentieth
Congress (Philadelphia, 1987); Twenty-
first Congress (Noordwijkerhout, 1991); Twenty-second
Congress (San Francisco, 1995); and
Twenty-fifth Congress (Geneva, 2007).

Preamble

  1. As members of the World Federalist Movement, we affirm our determination to exercise
    our rights and responsibilities as citizens of the whole world in order to achieve the high
    purposes of the United Nations.

  2. Ours is a planet in crisis, suffering grave problems unable to be managed by nations
    acting separately in an ungoverned world. It has become urgent for the world’s people
    and governments to join in achieving a new level of global solidarity such as can only be
    sustained by a commitment to the planet as a genuine community. We make that
    commitment, and call on our fellow citizens and governments to do the same.

  3. As world federalists, we view the world as one society embracing all of humanity in all its
    diversity. We affirm that the ideals and principles of community life which are basic to
    civilized existence can and must be applied to international relations. To this end, we call
    for urgent progress in developing democratic world institutions of law by which the world’s
    people and nations can govern their relations to assure a peaceful, just and ecologically
    sustainable world community.

  4. These institutions must have actual and sufficient authority to make and enforce law in
    their given jurisdictions in accordance with the basic federalist principle of subsidiarity,
    which is the division of political authority and jurisdiction between different levels of
    government and the solving of problems at the level at which they occur, in general at
    the most local level possible. For this is the essence of world federalism: to seek to
    invest legal and political authority in world institutions to deal with problems which can
    only be treated adequately at the global level, while affirming the sovereignty of the
    nation-state in matters which are essentially internal. Our objective is a world order in
    which the legitimate rights of nations to self-determination are balanced by and
    consistent with the collective rights of the global community to protect and advance the
    common good of humanity.

  5. Our objective is to have not only governments but individuals recognize their obligation
    to uphold and affirm world law through allegiance to these institutions. It is the citizen
    who is finally the rightful source and subject of the authority of world law. Individuals,
    whether heads of government or ordinary citizens, must be accountable under due
    process of world law for crimes against humanity.

  6. In our work for world federation, we are dedicated especially to work for:
    • understanding and amity among the world's cultures and political ideologies;
    • an end to the arms race, and the elimination of all weapons of mass destruction;
    • an end to the use and threat of use of military force;
    • respect for universal human rights and freedoms, including the right of all to the
      requirements of a dignified life, and the freedom of all to responsibly express their
      beliefs;
    • equitable participation of all in the global economy and in global decisions which
      affect their lives;
    • equitable distribution of world resources between rich and poor countries, in order
      to eradicate poverty, disease and illiteracy; 
    • the protection of our common environment and the preservation of the ecosystem
      for succeeding generations; and
    • the emergence of a global ethos and a consciousness of humanity as one
      community and of every person as a citizen of one world.

  7. In the service of our goals we support transnational tendencies which lead towards a
    more mature world legal order and world community. We especially support:
    • the important functions and work of the United Nations system, while working at
      the same time to make it more democratic, reliable and effective;
    • respect for international law, as well as its further development through such
      existing mechanisms as state ratification of treaties and conventions; and
    • the development of associations and/or federations for regional or functional
      purposes.

  8. We recognize that the building of a world community -- one based on fundamental justice
    and an appreciation of differences -- is the greatest intellectual, moral and political
    challenge of our time. It calls on each of us to examine our beliefs and priorities, and to
    express in our personal way our commitment to global change.

  9. Change requires the organized will and intelligence of many individuals, and each person
    has something positive and vital to contribute to the process of change. Believing that by
    working together we can achieve more than by working separately, we unite our efforts
    through the World Federalist Movement and adopt hereby this constitution.


Article 1 MEMBERSHIP

  1. Membership shall be open, irrespective of race, color, nationality, religion, class or sex to
    any individual, organization or group subscribing to the aims, Statutes and bylaws of
    WFM as is hereinafter provided. Membership shall be of the following categories:

  2. Member Organizations
    1. WFM members shall, within their countries, form wherever possible Member
      Organizations for World Federalism. The establishment of a Member Organization
      shall be carried out in close cooperation with the Council and Executive Committee,
      which shall receive for approval a copy of the statutes of the Member Organization in
      question.
    2. Member Organizations shall have a significant capacity to contribute to the
      enhancement of public and political support for the aims of WFM and the World
      Federalist Movement itself. They shall be committed to and shall practice
      democratic internal organization. They shall be organized and administered in
      accordance with the legislation of their respective countries. They shall have the
      disposition of the part of their membership dues which is not due to WFM. Each of
      the Member Organizations shall forward to the Secretariat an annual statement of
      paid-up members organized in that Member Organization as provided in the bylaws.
    3. Member Organizations can group themselves into area bodies in close cooperation
      with the Council and the Executive Committee. Regional groups may decide to
      participate either as a Member Organization or an Associated Organization, the
      dues, as specified in the bylaws, set accordingly.

  3. Associated Organizations
    1. Associated Organizations shall be those established with a primary purpose other
      than those of WFM as outlined under the above Preamble, but which are in general
      sympathy with the idea of world federalism and have some capacity to contribute
      to the enhancement of public and political support for the aims of WFM.
    2. The establishment of Associated Organizations shall be carried out in close
      cooperation with the Council and Executive Committee which shall receive a copy
      of their statutes. Applicants for Associate Organization membership shall endorse
      the WFM Statement of Purpose. The annual dues shall be established in the
      bylaws.

  4. Individual Members
    1. Individuals who prefer to join the International Membership Organization (IMO) and
      in countries where no Member Organization exists or – for whatever reason –
      cannot (yet) be established, or in other cases as provided in the Bylaws, persons
      who support the idea of world federalism can become members of the International
      Member Organization of the WFM. Unless otherwise stipulated by these Statutes or
      the Bylaws, this organization shall follow the same rules as any other Member
      Organization.
    2. The WFM IMO shall be incorporated in the country or countries where the WFM is
      incorporated and shall be administered in accordance with the legislation of such
      countries. The membership dues of the WFM IMO shall be paid to the WFM directly
      and administered by the WFM International Secretariat, according to rules to be
      provided in the Bylaws. The annual statement of paid-up members of the IMO shall
      be administered by the WFM International Secretariat.
    3. The President(s) of WFM is (are) ex officio president(s) of the International Member
      Organization. The members of the IMO will elect other board members among
      themselves by means as provided in the Bylaws of the IMO.

  5. Parliamentary Groups
    The Council may recognize Parliamentary Groups consisting of members of the
    legislature in a country who belongs to an existing organization, or which group
    themselves into an organization that is in broad sympathy with the main objectives of
    WFM as set out in the Preamble to the Statutes, world federalism or world government
    in general. The Council shall determine the minimum number required for recognition of
    such groups. Parliamentary Groups may decide to participate either as a Member
    Organization or as an Associated Organization, the dues, as specified in the bylaws,
    set accordingly.

  6. Youth Organizations
    The Council may recognize Youth Organizations in different countries which are in
    sympathy with the main objectives of WFM as set out in the Preamble to these Statutes.
    The Council may recognize international Youth Organizations under the same criteria as
    other members. Youth Organizations may decide to participate either as a Member
    Organization or as an Associated Organization, the dues, as specified in the bylaws,
    set accordingly.

  7. The Council may, on recommendation of the Executive Committee, withdraw by a two-
    thirds majority vote the membership of a particular WFM member if the individual or
    organization fails to comply with or contravenes the Statutes or Bylaws or acts in a
    manner harmful to the work of the Movement. The individual or a majority of the
    members of the organization may appeal against the action to the next Congress, the
    decision of which is final. Procedures for the expulsion of members shall be established
    in the bylaws.


Article 2 CONGRESS

  1. The Movement shall be governed by its Congress, which shall formulate the
    fundamental policy of the World Federalist Movement. The Congress shall be called by
    the Council normally every four years, and with no longer intervals than six years;
    Congress may also be called by one-third of all Member and Associated Organizations,
    currently paid-up, requesting the same in writing to the International Secretariat.
    Between Congresses all powers not reserved to Congress shall be vested in the
    Council.

  2. The Congress shall meet at such date and place as may be determined by the Council.
    All decisions of the Congress, unless provided otherwise, shall be taken by a simple
    majority of delegates present and voting.

  3. Congress shall always consist of a majority of Member Organizations, otherwise
    composed by the provisions in the bylaws.


Article 3 THE COUNCIL

  1. Between Congresses, the WFM shall be governed by its Council, which shall devise the
    appropriate programme and shall plan action on those matters relating to the objectives
    of the World Federalist Movement which the Member and Associated Organizations
    shall be bound to implement in ways appropriate within their own countries, provided
    that policy, programme or action affecting exclusively a Member or Associated
    Organization or an individual country shall be subject to the sole authority of such
    Organization(s).

  2. The Council shall meet immediately after the end of a Congress and once every year
    between Congresses. The Council shall determine the date, place and agenda of its
    meetings.

  3. The Council, which shall carry out the Congress decisions, is responsible to the
    Congress for its actions.

  4. The names of all Councilors shall be circulated one month prior to Council. Member
    Organizations are responsible for informing the Secretariat of changes in its
    appointments no later than two weeks prior to a meeting of Council.

  5. The Council shall have the power to co-opt members.

  6. The Council shall always consist of a two-thirds majority of Councillors elected by
    Congress and Councillors appointed by Member Organizations, otherwise composed by
    the provisions in the bylaws.

  7. The new Council will take office immediately after the election of its members.

  8. All decisions of the Council, unless otherwise specified, shall be taken by a simple
    majority of its members present and voting.

  9. Proxies shall be permitted on conditions to be determined in the bylaws.

  10. The Council may appoint such committees as it thinks fit.


Article 4 THE EXECUTIVE COMMITTEE

  1. The Council shall delegate policy execution to the Executive Committee between
    Council meetings. The Executive Committee is responsible to the Council for its actions.

  2. In addition to members formally defined by the Council in the Bylaws, the Executive
    Committee may co-opt members subject to ratification by the Council, provided that the
    Executive Committee shall always consist of at least a two-thirds majority of officers and
    other members elected by the Council.

  3. All decisions of the Executive Committee, unless otherwise specified, shall be taken by a
    simple majority vote of the members present and voting.

  4. The Committee shall meet not less than twice a year and its decisions shall be subject to
    review by the Council.

  5. The Executive Committee may appoint such subcommittees and working-groups, whose
    membership is not limited to members of the Executive Committee, as it thinks fit.


Article 5 OFFICERS

  1. The Congress shall elect at least one and no more than two co-Presidents of the
    Movement, the role of which shall be to represent the Movement and to publicly promote
    its aims. The presidents shall be persons with an international profile who have
    subscribed to the aims of the Movement, can appeal to a wide variety of audiences, and
    have an ability to attract funds and public and political support for the Movement.
    Nominations should be made that represent a balance of individuals in terms of gender,
    geographic origin and background.

  2. The Council shall elect its Chairperson and a First Vice-Chairperson to act in the
    Chairperson's absence, and a Second Vice-Chairperson to act in the First ViceChairperson's
    absence. The Chairperson shall preside at all meetings of the Council,
    receive and acknowledge communications and requests on behalf of the Council,
    develop in collaboration with other officers and the Executive Director the agenda for
    Council meetings, serve as a spokesperson for the Movement as appropriate, and
    assume other responsibilities as directed by the Council.

  3. The Council shall elect a Treasurer responsible for the safeguarding of assets, for
    banking arrangements and the financial soundness of WFM. He/she shall also ensure
    that material is available for audit review. The Treasurer may appoint an Assistant
    Treasurer from time to time subject to the approval of the Council at its next meeting.

  4. The Council shall elect the Chairpersons of the Executive Committee and the
    Credentials, Nominations and Statutes Committee from its members, each of whom
    shall be responsible for carrying out the responsibilities of the respective committees as
    described in the Statutes and Bylaws.

  5. The Council shall elect the officers mentioned above by secret ballot on an absolute
    majority of members voting in person or by proxy in a manner prescribed in the bylaws.


Article 6 HONORARY OFFICERS AND MEMBERS OF THE ADVISORY BOARD

  1. The Council shall have the power to appoint Honorary Officers of the World Federalist
    Movement originating from different regions of the world and with due regard to the
    interest of WFM members existing in the areas.

  2. The Council shall invite distinguished individuals to serve as members of the Advisory
    Board. The size of the Advisory Board shall be determined by the Council.

  3. Such officers and advisors shall have no formal responsibilities in the governance of the
    Movement, and may serve, for varying lengths of time, at the pleasure of the Council.


Article 7 EX OFFICIO MEMBERS
        Ex officio delegates to Congress and all ex officio members of Council and Executive

        Committee shall have full member rights including the right to speak and vote in the

        respective bodies unless otherwise stated.


Article 8 SECRETARIATS

  1. The Council may appoint such executive officers and provide for their remuneration as it
    sees fit.

  2. The Head of the Secretariat shall be appointed by the Executive Committee subject to
    the approval of the Council which shall determine his/her salary and conditions of
    service. He/she shall attend the sessions of the Congress, the Council and the
    Executive Committee. Between meetings of the Council and the Executive Committee,
    the Head of the Secretariat shall be responsible as the Chief Executive Officer for
    managing the affairs of the Movement. The bylaws shall describe the powers and
    duties of the Head of the Secretariat.

  3. Other senior officers of the Secretariat and senior officers of the Regional Secretariats
    shall be appointed by the Head of the Secretariat subject to the approval of the
    Executive Committee.

  4. The Seats of the Secretariat and the Regional Secretariats shall be determined by the
    Council.


Article 9 FINANCES

  1. WFM shall be financed by:
    1. Annual dues paid by members through their Member Organizations
    2. Annual dues paid by Associated Organizations
    3. Annual dues paid by Parliamentary Groups
    4. Annual dues paid by national and international youth organizations
    5. Donations and grants

  2. The annual budget shall be prepared by the Head of the Secretariat in cooperation with
    the Treasurer. The budget shall be submitted to the Executive Committee for
    consideration and recommendation to the Council for approval.

  3. The execution of the financial policies is the responsibility of the Head of the Secretariat.

  4. The arrangements for appropriate auditing are to be approved by the Council and the
    report shall be presented not later than six months after the end of the fiscal year.

  5. The financial accountability of the Movement shall be maintained by the procedures
    established in the bylaws.


Article 10 bylaws

  1. The Council, by a majority of two-thirds of its members present and voting at a duly
    constituted Council meeting, may adopt and amend bylaws and rules of procedure.

  2. Any bylaws change affecting the dues of the Member or Associated Organizations
    must be circulated to all Council members and Member and Associated Organizations
    three months before the Council meeting at which such changes will be proposed.

  3. All bylaws and rules of procedure must be consistent with the Statutes of the World
    Federalist Movement.


Article 11 STATUTES AMENDMENTS

  1. Only Member Organizations, the Council and the Executive Committee may propose
    amendments to the Statutes.

  2. Proposals to amend these Statutes shall be sent to the Secretariat to be received there
    not less than three months prior to the meeting of the Congress and shall be dealt with
    by the Secretariat in accordance with the provisions of the relevant articles of the Bylaws.

  3. Any amendments to the Statutes shall require an affirmative vote by two-thirds of the
    delegates voting in person or by proxy.

  4. Amendments shall be operative as of the moment of their adoption.


Article 12 DISSOLUTION

  1. The Movement may be dissolved only by decision of the Congress acting on the
    proposal from the Council or any Member Organization.

  2. The Secretariat shall circulate such a proposal simultaneously by registered letter to
    every member of the Council and to each of the Member and Associated Organizations
    not less than 60 days prior to the date for a decision.

  3. Any such proposal shall be adopted if passed by a two-thirds majority of the delegates
    either at a Congress or through a mail ballot.

  4. The dissolution of the Movement shall be in accordance with the law and practice
    relating to non-profit organizations in the jurisdiction(s) in which it is incorporated which
    may include any distribution of assets.