At the AGM in 2018 the Association approved a new constitution drawn up in preparation for application to the Charity Commissioners for approval as a Charitable Incorporated Organization (CIO). The application has been submitted and is currently awaiting evaluation by the Charity Commission. As part of this process it was necessary to seek volunteers from among the existing AMH council to act as Charitable Trustees, while at the same time advantageous to leave some vacancies to facilitate future additions to the Charitable trustees on a rotational basis. As far as possible, the elements of the pre-existing constitution, approved in 2015, have been incorporated in the new Constitution that is, necessarily, a much more detailed document. The salient points of the constitution are set out below. A copy of the constitution can be downloaded here.
The constitution sets out, among other things, that:
The purposes of the Association are to:
- Provide facilities for the exchange of information, opinions and
experience between active workers in the field;
- Promote education and training in medical and health humanities and
research in the discipline;
- Encourage the publication of periodicals, journals, books, papers, abstracts, etc.
- Maintain an association with the journal Medical Humanities
- Co-operate with persons or organizations, national and international, with similar objects to the Association relating to the promotion of medical and health humanities in any part of the world;
- Act as a consultative body on the medical and health humanities
- Sponsor and hold meetings, symposia, conferences, lectures, classes, seminars, courses and exhibitions either alone or with others.
- Award scholarships, bursaries and prizes in connection with the Association’s objects;
- Membership of the CIO is open to any interested individual who agrees to abide by the rules of membership. Normally, decisions of the members of theAMH may be taken by vote at a general meeting.
- Certain decisions must be taken in a particular way including any decision to remove a trustee; any decision to amend this constitution and any decision to wind up or dissolve the AMH.
- The AGM must receive the annual statement of accounts and must elect trustees as required in the constitution.
The charity trustees shall manage the affairs of the AMH and may for that purpose
exercise all the powers of the AMH. It is the duty of each charity trustee to exercise his or her powers to further the purposes of the AMH and to do so with such care and skill as is reasonable in the circumstances
There should be not less than 9 nor more than 16 elected trustees, including the Officers; and additionally 1 ex-officio trustee. There must be at least five charity trustees.
At every AGM elected charity trustees who have completed their three year term shall retire from office but may be reappointed. Vacancies may be filled by the decision of the members at the annual general meeting; any vacancies not filled at the annual general meeting may be filled by co-option.
The appointed Officers are: (a) president; (b) vice-president; (c) secretary; (d) treasurer. Only one Office may be held at any one time. Term of office is normally for three years. Where a trustee is appointed as an Officer their terms shall be deemed to run concurrently. Officers shall not be eligible for immediate re-election into the same position but can be elected to other Officer positions or re-elected as a general council member.
The charity trustees may delegate any of their powers or functions to a committee or committees, and, if they do, they must determine the terms and conditions on which the delegation is made. The charity trustees may at any time alter those terms and conditions, or revoke the delegation.
Procedure at meetings
(a) No decision shall be taken at a meeting unless a quorum is present at the time when the decision is taken. The quorum is six charity trustees, or the number nearest to one third of the total number of charity trustees, whichever is greater, or such larger number as the charity trustees may decide from time to time.
The charity trustees must keep minutes of all appointments and proceedings, all meetings and those present, and all decisions made at meetings and made by the charity trustees otherwise than in meetings.
Amendment of constitution
As provided by clauses 224-227 of the Charities Act 2011: This constitution can only be amended by resolution agreed in writing by all members of the AMH; or by a resolution passed by a 75% majority of votes cast at a general meeting of the members of the AMH.
This is a synopsis only. Please see the full constitution for all matters pertaining to the constitution.