Listen to this announcement here

Saturday 28th November 2020 at 12:00PM (AEDT)

Blind Citizens Australia (BCA) will hold its 45th Annual General Meeting (AGM) in a virtual capacity on Saturday 28th November 2020 at 12:00PM AEDT (NSW, ACT, VIC, TAS), which is 9:00AM AWST (WA), 10:30AM ACST (NT), 11:00AM AEST (QLD), 11:30AM ACDT (SA).

The AGM will be held via Zoom, and all members can connect through your landline phone, smartphone, tablet or computer.

The agenda for the AGM is available here and includes presentation and discussion of the Annual Review and Directors’ Report and Financial Statements; as well as the announcement of the election of Directors, and National Policy Council (NPC) representatives. There are no items of special business for consideration at this year’s AGM.

All full members are entitled to one vote each in relation to any resolution put to the AGM. If full members are unable to attend this meeting in person, they may appoint the chairperson, or another full member as a proxy.  Information about proxy voting is available by contacting BCA and a proxy form is available here.

It is important to note that no election will take place at the AGM. Instead, telephone and SMS voting will again be available for this year’s elections. All eligible full members of BCA will have the opportunity to vote via telephone or SMS should an election be necessary.

Elections

Call for Nominations for Directors

This year, there are four (4) vacancies for Directors of BCA, each for a three-year term.

The Directors who have served three-year terms on the BCA board are: Mick Baker, Helen Freris, Prue Watt and Fiona Woods.

All are eligible for re-election for another three-year term, however Mick Baker has advised that he is not standing for re-election.

Call for Nominations for NPC Representatives

There are vacant positions for “NPC Members” in New South Wales, Western Australia, Australian Capital Territory, and Tasmania. The term of office for an NPC Member is two years.

NPC Members whose terms of office conclude this year are Lynne Davis (NSW), Sean McLaughlin (filled casual vacancy) (WA), Andrew Webster (ACT). All are eligible for re-election. As at November 2020, David Morrell (Tas) has resigned from his position on the NPC, so a vacancy exists for Tasmania.

In order to nominate for a position on the NPC, members must reside in the state or territory they are nominating to represent.

How to Nominate

Potential nominees for all positions must be full members of BCA as at 30 June 2020, and are encouraged to familiarise themselves with the relevant position descriptions for Directors and NPC Representatives, and the BCA Code of Conduct. Eligible members may nominate for more than one position (using the combined nomination form). The ballot for Director will be determined first; followed by NPC positions.

People wishing to nominate are required to complete a nomination form. Valid nomination forms must include the names of a nominator and seconder, both of whom must be full members of BCA as at 30 June 2020. Please note that BCA is strongly committed to ensuring the nomination process is fully accessible to our members. As such, signatures are not required. Instead, Company Secretary, Emma Bennison will take all necessary steps to verify the validity of nominations.

All nominations should be accompanied by a written statement of no more than 300 words in support of the nomination by, or on behalf of the nominee. Nomination forms and nominee statements should be submitted in Microsoft Word or text format. Please contact Emma Bennison, Company secretary on 1800 033 660, if you need to submit your nomination in another format.

Nominations and accompanying statements must reach Emma Bennison, Company Secretary, at companysecretary@bca.org.au by 5.00pm Monday 19 October, 2020.

Telephone Voting Process

Only full members of Blind Citizens Australia as at 30 June 2020 may cast a telephone or SMS vote.

Election of Directors

  • If there are four or fewer valid nominations for election as a Director at the close of the nomination period, the member nominated will be declared elected and there will not be a ballot.
  • If there are more than four nominations for election as Director at the close of the nomination period, a ballot will be held. At the close of the poll, the nominees with the highest number of valid votes received will be declared elected for a three-year term.

Election of NPC Representatives

  • If there is only one valid nominee for election as the “State Representative” for a State or Territory at the close of the nomination period, that member will be declared elected and there will not be a ballot in that State.
  • If there are two or more nominees for election as the “State Representative” for a State or Territory at the close of the nomination period, a ballot will be held among members resident in that State. At the close of the poll, the nominee with the highest number of valid votes received will be declared elected.

If a ballot is required for any position, instructions on casting a telephone or SMS vote, along with the details of all nominees and their supporting statements, will be mailed to all eligible full members by Wednesday 4 November 2020. Voting will open on Monday 9 November and will close on Monday 23 November 2020. Any votes received after this date will not be counted.

The Company Secretary will declare the results of all polls at the AGM on 28 November, 2020.

Pre-election Information Briefings

BCA is holding pre-election briefings for potential candidates. These will provide an opportunity to gain information on BCA’s governance and ask questions of current board and NPC members about their roles and responsibilities. They are designed to assist candidates in making an informed decision before nominating.

The briefings are scheduled for Tuesday 6 October 2020 at 2pm AEDT, and Wednesday 7 October at 8pm AEDT. Please advise if you are attending via the contact details listed below.

Summary

On behalf of the Board and staff of BCA, I do hope you can join us at this year’s Annual General Meeting. I encourage you to consider nominating for a position as a Director of BCA, or as an NPC Representative. As an organisation of and for people who are blind or vision impaired, it is important that we acknowledge and support each other to enhance the lives of people who are blind or vision impaired.

Emma Bennison
Company Secretary

BCA Contact Details:

Phone: 1800 033 660
SMS: 0436 446 780
E-mail: companysecretary@bca.org.au

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