IJEqH Volume 11
Supplement 1 to ISEqH VI International Conference
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Barbara Starfield



This Constitution shall come into force as of 30 June 2000.

1. Name

The Name of the Society shall be "International Society for Equity in Health, Incorporated" (ISEqH).

2. Purposes of ISEqH

ISEqH is organized under the Maryland, United States of America law and regulation exclusively for charitable, educational, and scientific purposes, including for such purposes, the making of distributions to organizations that qualify as exempt organizations under section 501

(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code, or the corresponding section of any future tax code.

The purpose for which ISEqH is formed is to promote equity in health and in health care services internationally through education, research, publication and communication.

The specific purposes of ISEqH are:

(a) to promote equity and expose inequity in health and in health care services internationally;
(b) to facilitate scientific interchange of, and disseminate conceptual and methodological knowledge on issues related to equity in health and health care services;
(c) to advance research related to equity in health; and
(d) to maintain corresponding relationships with other relevant international and regional organizations.

3. Definitions

In the ISEqH Constitution, unless the context requires otherwise:
"ISEqH" shall mean the "International Society for Equity in Health, Incorporated".
"General Assembly" shall mean the body constituting all Members with voting privileges.
"Executive Board" shall mean the Board of ISEqH as provided in the ISEqH Constitution and Bylaws.
"Scientific Advisory Council" shall mean the Council of ISEqH as provided in the ISEqH Constitution and Bylaws.
"Nominating Committee" shall mean a four member body elected by the General Assembly to provide names for the Executive Board election.
"Register" shall mean the Register of the Members of ISEqH.
"Executive Secretary" shall mean the person appointed by the Executive Board in accordance with the provisions of the ISEqH Constitution and Bylaws.

4. Establishment, Change and Dissolution

4.1 Incorporation
ISEqH is registered under the state of Maryland, United States of America law as a non-profit, non-stock corporation and will be registered in different states and countries as long as the Executive Board decides to do so.

4.2 ISEqH to Be Non-Profit
The property and income of ISEqH shall be applied solely and exclusively to the promotion of its purposes.
No part of the net earnings of ISEqH shall accrue to the benefit of, or be distributable to its members, trustees, officers, or other private persons, except that ISEqH shall be authorized and empowered to pay reasonable compensation for services rendered and to make payments and distributions in furtherance of the purposes set forth in the section Purposes of ISEqH hereof. No substantial part of the activities of ISEqH shall be the carrying out of propaganda, or otherwise attempting to influence legislation, and ISEqH shall not participate in, or intervene in (including the publishing or distributing of statements) any political campaign on behalf of or in opposition to any candidate for public office. Notwithstanding any provision of these articles, ISEqH shall not, except to an insubstantial degree, engage in any activities or exercise any powers that are not in furtherance of the purposes of ISEqH.

4.3 Members Compensation
The Executive Board may compensate a Member for services rendered or property acquired from that person in a special or private capacity, or in case of Members of the Executive Board, may contribute towards expenses incurred in the carrying out of their duties of office.

4.4 Alteration of the Constitution
(a) The Constitution of ISEqH may be altered or amended by three-fourths (3/4) of the Members voting by mail, fax, or electronic mail, provided such proposal, alteration or amendment has been submitted to the Membership, by publication, fax, or electronic mail or otherwise, at least ninety (90) days prior to the date of such vote.
(b) These rules and Statement of Purpose of ISEqH shall not be altered except in accordance with state and federal laws.
4.5 Validation of Acts
Every act of ISEqH and the Executive Board and every appointment made to each, shall be deemed to be fully valid and effective, notwithstanding any defect in the notice of the meeting, or in meeting procedure, at which the same was resolved upon, except if annulled at the General Assembly.

4.6 Dissolution of ISEqH
ISEqH may at any time, with the consent of a majority of three-quarters (3/4) of the Members present in person at the General Assembly and entitled to vote and voting or voting by proxy in accordance with the Constitution, be dissolved. At least sixty (60) days written, fax, or electronic mail notice must be given of any proposal to dissolve ISEqH.

4.7 Surplus Property after Dissolution
Upon the dissolution of ISEqH, assets shall be distributed by the Executive Board for one or more exempt purposes within the meaning of section 501 (c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code, or the corresponding section of any future federal tax code, or shall be distributed to the federal government, or the state or local government, for a public purpose. Any such assets not so disposed of shall be disposed of by a Court of Competent Jurisdiction of the county in which the principal office of ISEqH is then located, exclusively for such purposes or to such organizations, as said Court shall determine, which are organized and operated exclusively for such purposes.

5. Powers

ISEqH may exercise any or all of the powers herein set out in pursuit of its objectives:

(a) to purchase, take on, lease or hire or otherwise acquire and maintain any real or personal property;
(b) to sell, exchange, lease, mortgage, hire, dispose of or otherwise deal with all or any part of the real and personal property of ISEqH;
(c) to borrow or raise or secure the payment of money in such a manner as ISEqH may think fit with power to grant mortgage charges or any security upon or charging all or any of the property of ISEqH whether real or personal and to redeem or pay off any existing or future security;
(d) to invest or deal with monies of ISEqH not immediately required for the purposes of ISEqH in a manner from time to time determined;
(e) to own and publish an international journal for equity in health;
(f) to hold scientific meetings alone or in collaboration with other societies and associations whose objectives are wholly or in part similar to those of ISEqH;
(g) to determine Membership;
(h) to apply for, administer, and disperse grant funds, following the requirements of the Internal Revenue Code section 501, (c)(3) or any future federal tax code, to maintain tax-exempt status; and
(i) to do all such other matters as are incidental or conducive to the attainment of the purpose of ISEqH.

6. Membership

6.1 Membership
(a) Membership shall be available to any individual who is interested in or working in the field of equity improvement in health and health services and is not acting solely as an agent for an institution.
(b) Application for Individual Membership shall be in writing to the Secretariat in a manner determined from time to time by the Executive Board.
(c) All applicants for Individual Membership shall agree to abide by this Constitution.

6.2 Rights and Privileges of Members
Members shall be entitled:
(a) to receive notice by mail, fax, or electronic mail of the General Meetings of ISEqH at least sixty (60) days before the meeting;
(b) to attend the General Meetings of ISEqH and exercise one vote in respect to any motion put to a vote at such meetings;
(c) to be nominated and elected in accordance with the Constitution to be a Member of the Executive Board, provided Membership subscription is not in arrears;
(d) to utilize such facilities as are made available to Members of ISEqH to utilize generally;
(e) to attend or participate in such functions, events or activities for Members of ISEqH as the Executive Board may organize for Members generally; and
(f) to receive any publications or documents under conditions defined by the Executive Board.

6.3 Cessation of Membership
(a) A Member shall cease to be a Member:
(i) upon his/her death;
(ii) upon his/her written resignation being forwarded to ISEqH; or
(iii) upon the expiry of twelve (12) months after the last Membership subscription owed by him/her became due, subject to his/her having had forwarded to his/her last known address a notice of demand for subscription (unless the Executive Board at any time in a particular case otherwise determines).
(b) Any member who shall cease to be a Member shall cease to be entitled to all rights and privileges of a Member and shall have no right to or claim upon the property or funds of ISEqH.

6.4 Register of Members
(a) The Executive Secretary of ISEqH shall establish and maintain a Register of Members of ISEqH specifying the name and address of each member, together with the date on which that person became a Member.
(b) The Register of Members shall be kept at the principal place of administration of ISEqH or at any other place as determined by the Executive Board. This use of this information shall be the exclusive decision of the Executive Board.

6.5 Membership Fees and Good Standing
(a) The Executive Board may from time to time fix the amount and manner and time of payment of the Entrance Fee and the annual Membership Fee.
(b) Members shall pay the annual fee in the manner and by the time fixed by the Executive Board.
(c) A Member in Good Standing shall have paid the annual Membership Fee and such payment shall have been recorded by the Executive Secretary.

6.6 New Categories of Memberships
(a) The Executive Board may decide from time to time the creation of new categories of memberships and their rights and privileges.
(b) The Executive Board may: (i) remit or reduce fees or the arrears of fees for a Member upon application or create special categories of fees for defined categories of members;
(ii) suspend all or any the rights and privileges of a Member who has not paid the appropriate annual fee after the same has fallen due for payment, until such is paid; and
(iii) withdraw Membership if a Member's fees have not been paid within twelve (12) months of the date on which that Member's fees became due and payable.
(c) Any person ceasing by death or otherwise to be a Member of ISEqH shall have no claim upon or interest in the assets of ISEqH, but no such cessation of Membership shall prejudice the right of ISEqH to claim from any former Member or the personal representatives or trustees of a deceased or bankrupt Member any arrears of subscription or any other sums owed by the member to ISEqH when he/she ceased to be a Member.

7. Meetings of Members

7.1 Biennial General Assembly
ISEqH shall hold a General Assembly every other year in accordance with this part of the ISEqH Constitution.

7.2 Scientific Meetings
ISEqH may hold Scientific Meetings. Such meetings may be scheduled immediately before or after the General Assembly or at any time defined by the Executive Board.

7.3 Time and Place of the General Assembly
The Executive Board shall convene the General Assembly at such place, on such day and at such time as the Executive Board decides.

7.4 Period of Notice of the General Assembly
The Executive Board shall give written, fax, or electronic mail notice of the next General Assembly when the Minutes of the previous General Assembly are circulated to Members.

8. Elections

8.1 Election of the Executive Board
(a) The nine nominees who receive the most votes from members present at the General Assembly will be elected to the Executive Board. The four nominees who receive the most votes from members present at the General Assembly will be elected to the Nominating Committee.
(b) Starting in 2004 the Nominating Committee shall oversee the preparation of a list of nominees for the Executive Board and subsequent Nominating Committee to be presented for vote by members at the time when the current officers and Nominating Committee terms shall expire. The Committee will invite the membership to nominate members for both the Board and the Committee, giving them at least forty five (45) days to reply to the existing Committee. The nominations should have the support of five members and should be accompanied by a statement of interests and qualifications and a letter indicating willingness to stand for office. The Committee will then compile the names and add them to the list to ensure an appropriate balance of nominees is put forward to the General Assembly.
(c) Executive Board and Nominating Committee members will be elected for a period of two (2) years and at any time may serve no more than two (2) consecutive terms of two (2) years.
(d) The retiring Members of the Executive Board shall be deemed to have retired before the General Assembly for the purpose of the elections referred to in this Sub-Clause, but for all other purposes shall be deemed to hold office until the conclusion of the General Assembly.
(e) The President, Secretary and Treasurer of ISEqH will be elected among the members of the Executive Board. The Executive Secretary will be appointed by the Executive Board.
(f) The Executive Secretary will act as the returning officer for the election and he/she shall have absolute discretion to disregard any discrepancy in procedure which he/she regards as insubstantial. If he/she regards any discrepancy as substantial, the matter should be referred to the Executive Board. Upon completion of the election he/she shall convey the results to the Chairperson of the General Assembly whether or not the meeting shall have concluded, and the Chairperson shall declare the poll.

8.2 Vacancies
(a) If a casual vacancy occurs on the Executive Board then the Executive Board may appoint a Member of ISEqH to fill the vacancy.
(b) The Members for the time being of the Executive Board may act notwithstanding any vacancy in their body provided always that in case the Members of the Executive Board shall at any time be, or be reduced in number to, less than a quorum, it shall be lawful for them to act as the Executive Board for the purposes of filling vacancies in their body, or giving notice of a General Assembly but not for any other purpose.

9. Management of ISEqH

9.1 ISEqH Managed by the Executive Board
The Executive Board shall control all of the business of ISEqH except that which shall in accordance with the ISEqH Constitution be voted on by the General Assembly.

9.2 Powers of the Executive Board
(a) The Executive Board may exercise all of the powers exercisable by ISEqH under the Constitution.
(b) The Executive Board shall determine the site and date of all scientific meetings of ISEqH, and delegate organization of such meetings to a local organizing committee as necessary, which shall be required to furnish progress reports to the Executive Board in such a manner as determined at the time of the original determination of site and date.
(c) The Executive Board shall appoint an Auditor.

9.3 Bylaws
The Executive Board may from time to time make and rescind, alter, modify or add to Bylaws in respect to the whole or any part of the conduct of the activity of ISEqH.

9.4 Bylaws to be Constitutional
All bylaws might under the preceding clause shall be consistent with the provisions of the ISEqH Constitution.