Guidelines on Producing and Publishing Position Statements
Adopted by the JUUstice Washington Board of Trustees on 14 April 2019
As an active social and environmental justice organization, JUUstice Washington will likely be called upon—by its members and partners and allies—to support and/or lend its endorsement to various causes, events, and legislation. While this is generally considered to be within the normal course of conducting business, there are some limitations to be aware of and guidelines to be followed.
Limitations and Restrictions. JUUstice Washington:
- is a 501(c)(3) and cannot be engaged in any activities or offer endorsements of any candidate that is running for elected office;
- having a 501(h) requires that we must also be conscientious of the amount of time and resources that are spent lobbying, ensuring that we do not exceed our limits put forward in law;
- will not condone any action, statement, event or legislation that promotes or advocates violence (but does support peaceful demonstration and civil disobedience) and
- Requires that any request for support or endorsement must be aligned with our vision and mission and with Unitarian Universalist Principles.
Process for Statements of Support or Endorsements. Requests for support and endorsements will include, but not be limited to, specific issue-related legislation, justice events, petitions, campaigns (not electoral), and events/activities (e.g. demonstrations, workshops).
- All requests for support and endorsements must be made in writing.
- Whether initiated internally or externally, the request should be reviewed by the Program Committee to ensure that the request meets the criteria above and has received feedback from the leads of Issue Action Teams impacted by the request.
- The request should be reviewed for compliance with our equity, diversity, and inclusion (EDI) goals.
- Once approved by the Program Committee, the request will be forwarded to the Board for a vote.
- The request must receive a majority vote for passage and can be obtained either through email or other communication consensus, as long as assent can be accurately documented.
Written Proposal of Request. The written request must include:
- Background information on the source of the request, particularly if it is from outside JUUstice Washington, like a partner or ally.
- A determination of whether the request is legal under our 501(c)(3) rules.
- Assurance that any request involved with lobbying efforts will be compliant with the “substantial” requirement as called out in our 501(h) election.
- An explanation of how the subject of the request supports the Vision and Mission of JUUstice Washington.
- A description of the issue that the subject of the request is attempting address and how it contributes to the resolution of the issue(s) involved.
- An explanation of how the request supports our EDI goals.
- A listing of other organizations or agents that are supporting the subject of the request.
- The scope of what is being requested of JUUstice Washington (e.g., statement of support/endorsement, financial contribution, volunteer or other resource support)
- A communication plan of how information on the approved stance will be disseminated.
Support/Endorsement Expiration. Any public policy stance approved by the Board will expire after one year from adoption unless otherwise stated in the approval or unless the board acts to extend the period. This limitation will keep JUUstice Washington from maintaining positions on stale issues and prompt it to 1) reconsider new information and modify its stance or endorsement or 2) determine if a new stance might be required.