CAW Policy Paper #12: Advance Poll - Local Union Elections

November 25, 1991


LETTER NO. 12 November 25, 1991

Advance Poll - Local Union Elections

To: Local Union Presidents, Recording Secretaries and
Election Committee Chairpersons, CAW-Canada


The Constitution has been amended to provide for an advance poll in local union elections.

Article 36, Section 9

NEW (c) The use of an advance pool will be allowed in local union elections, after affirmative action of the membership and the appropriate bylaw change.

This section applies to local union executive officers. However, this would normally include elections for CAW Council delegates and/or Constitutional Convention delegates when being held at the same time as executive elections.

An advance poll for in-plant representative elections for chairperson, committee members, or stewards must be decided by each local based on the local union rules and procedures for these elections. Where the local union rules and procedures for these elections will permit the administration of an advance poll by the election committee, an advance poll will also be allowed.

The following procedure is required by each local union to implement an advance poll:

1. The local union membership must endorse the implementation of an advance pool.
2. Local union bylaws must be amended to provide for an advance poll.
3. The specific elections where an advance poll would be implemented must be clearly identified in the local union bylaws, e.g., executive officers, Constitutional Convention delegates, CAW Council delegates, in-plant representatives.
4. Local union bylaws should also provide that the call to the election shall specify that an advance poll will be available and will inform the membership as to the rules governing the advance poll and the time, date, place of such advance poll.

The following rules will apply to the holding of an advance poll:

a. An advance poll will be available to ONLY THOSE MEMBERS WHO WILL NOT HAVE ACCESS TO THE REGULAR ELECTION POLL. This will include those members who by reason of vacation, jury duty, bereavement, leave of absence, union business, WCB, sickness or other known and foreseeable reason or unavoidable circumstances WILL NOT HAVE ACCESS TO THE REGULAR ELECTION POLLS.
b. The member must sign a request for the advance ballot.
c. The advance ballot must be cast in such a manner that no member of the election committee shall know how any member voted.
d. The voting process must ensure that a member who had access to the advance poll will not be able to cast a ballot in the regular poll.

This procedure will assist local unions to implement an advance poll in the proper manner.

The rules to be applied to an advance poll will ensure there is no abuse of the election process.

Please contact Ron Pellerin in my office should clarification of this process be required by your local.

In solidarity,

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