From the AHA Activities column of the December 2008 issue of Perspectives on History
Resolution for the January 2009 Business Meeting
AHA Staff, December 2008
Article VII of the AHA constitution states that the Association’s Council shall call a business meeting, open to all members of the Association in good standing, to convene at the time of the annual meeting. The business meeting of the 123rd annual meeting is scheduled for Sunday, January 4, in the Hilton New York’s Beekman Parlor, beginning at 4:45 p.m.
At the business meeting, AHA members can consider resolutions, deal with proposals of any kind concerning the affairs of the Association, receive reports of officers and committees, and instruct officers and the Council. All measures adopted by the business meeting come before the Council for acceptance, nonconcurrence, or veto. If accepted by the Council, they shall be binding on the Association. The Council may veto any measure adopted by the business meeting that it believes to be in violation of the Association’s constitution, the law, or financially or administratively infeasible or which, on advice of counsel, it judges to be in violation of law. The Council shall publish an explanation for each such veto. The Council may vote not to concur in any measure adopted by the business meeting. Within 90 days of a vote not to concur, the Council shall submit the measure to a vote of the entire membership with an opportunity for the proponents of the measure and the Council to set forth their respective positions. If approved by a majority of the members voting, the measure shall be binding on the Association.
Bylaw 9(4), which provides procedures to carry out the provisions of Article VII regarding the business meeting, states that any member of the Association may present resolutions or other motions that introduce new business to the agenda of the annual business meeting. Such resolutions must be:
- Received in the office of the executive director not later than November 1 prior to the annual meeting, to allow time for publication;
- In proper parliamentary form;
- Signed by at least 50 members of the Association in good standing;
- Not more than 300 words in length including any introductory material; and
- Deal with a matter of concern to the Association, to the profession of history, or to the academic profession.
Resolutions submitted by the deadline, and meeting the criteria for consideration, shall be published in the December issue of Perspectives on History. The Council may decide on the priority of resolutions on the agenda, and may associate any resolution offered by a member with any item of business on the agenda. To ensure as far as possible the fair and equitable consideration of all member resolutions, the Council in preparing the agenda may, at its discretion, fix the duration of debate on any resolution. Bylaw 9(5) states that no motion, resolution, or other business shall be passed by a division of the members at the annual business meeting unless there is present a quorum of 100 members in good standing.
The following resolution, signed by more than 50 members of the AHA, was submitted to the AHA executive director for consideration at the January 4, 2009 business meeting:
That the American Historical Association Honor the Boycott of the Manchester Grand Hyatt San Diego, Presently Identified as Co-Headquarters of the 2010 Meeting
Whereas, The AHA supports combating discrimination based on sexual orientation;1
Whereas, The 2010 AHA annual meeting is currently scheduled to take place at the Manchester Grand Hyatt San Diego;
Whereas, Doug Manchester, the owner of the hotel has made a $125,000 contribution in support of Proposition 8 in California, which would deny marriage rights to same-sex partners;
Whereas, A coalition of lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgendered (LGBT) and labor activists has called for a boycott of the Manchester Grand Hyatt San Diego;2
Whereas, The AHA should hold its annual meetings in venues that uphold the anti-discrimination standards that the AHA expects from academic professionals and institutions; and
Whereas, The AHA should not force its members to choose between honoring the boycott of the Manchester Grand Hyatt San Diego and attending the annual meeting;
Resolved, That the AHA will not conduct its 2010 annual meeting at the Manchester Grand Hyatt San Diego.
1. Committee on Women Historians, “Gender Equity in the Academic History Workplace: Best Practices,” May 2005, http://www.historians.org/governance/cwh/GenderEquity.cfm.
2. The boycott has been called by UNITE-HERE, Sleep with the Right People Coalition, The San Diego LGBT Community Center, San Diego Pride at Work, and Californian Against Hate. It has been endorsed by San Diego City Councilmember Donna Frye; Congressman Bob Filner; Todd Gloria, Former Chairman, San Diego GLBT Center and community and people-of-color activist; City Commissioner Nicole Murray-Ramirea; City Commissioner Bob Faulkner; Carlos Marquez, co-chair, San Diego Pride at Work; Stephen Whitburn, San Diego District 3 City Council candidate; Gilbert Baker, creator of the Rainbow Flag; Ron deHarte, Executive Director, San Diego Pride; Cleve Jones, NAMES Project AIDS Memorial Quilt.