Statement from the Student Bar Association:
2020 has been a momentous year for progress in racial equity in our world, our
state, and our UNC Law community. The horrific killings of Asian Americans in
recent weeks call for renewed considerations of our culture and our
institutions. The brutalization of black people at the hands of American law
enforcement have inspired protests and change across the country. It is
undeniable that this change cannot happen at higher levels alone if we are to
make significant strides toward racial equity, and the UNC School of Law is no
To that end, the UNC Student Bar Association is announcing a constitutional
amendment for the creation of permanent, voting seats elected by student
organizations representing historically underrepresented student populations.
This amendment will initially include seats for AALSA, BLSA, HLSA, and Lambda Law, but
our work towards a more equitable community at UNC Law can’t stop there. There
will be another mechanism to add another seat for other qualifying student
groups. These seats are aimed at creating representation on the Board of
Governors for students of color and student members of the LGBTQ+ community who
have previously gone unheard, and any student group believing it meets the
criteria for such seats may apply for a permanent, voting seat.
The Student Bar Association began working on the amendment at the beginning of
this semester, and the members are happy with the progress we’ve made and the
potential it has to advance equity in our law school. However, we also
understand that we still have work to do as individuals and institutions. This
is only a first step toward achieving a more equitable community for law
students at UNC.
UNC Student Bar
Current Constitution Language
Article IV: Board of Governors
Section 1. The
governing body of the SBA shall be the Board of Governors, which shall possess all powers that may be exercised
by this association; provided that, during the months of May, June, July and August, the Executive Committee may jointly, or severally,
exercise such administrative powers as are proper to carry out their duties and the affairs
of the SBA.
The Board of Governors shall be composed of:
The President, Vice President, Treasurer and Secretary of the SBA, such officers to constitute the Executive Committee of the Board of Governors.
Two elected representatives from each class.
The President of each class, as elected by each respective class.
A representative from the LLM
(v) A Deputy Treasurer.
The quorum of this body
shall be made up of two-thirds of the members of the Board of Governors. Decisions
of the Board are to be by majority vote of the members present, unless otherwise noted by the SBA Constitution or SBA Bylaws.
The Deputy Treasurer and Parliamentarian are appointed,
and shall not have voting powers.
(d) Meetings of the Board shall be held at least two times a month
All meetings of the Board of Governors shall be open to attendance by members of the
SBA and adequate notice of all meetings shall be given by the Secretary.
Section 3. The
Board of Governors may establish ad hoc committees and subsidiary bodies not specifically provided for in
this instrument which it deems to be necessary for the property operation
of the SBA.
By-Laws may be appended to this constitution by the Board of Governors to provide a reasonable framework within
which the powers granted by this instrument may be exercised. Such
by-laws may supplement any provision of this instrument to the extent that they are not inconsistent with the plain intent and language thereof.
Article VI: Elections
Section 1. General Provisions. Elections
to fill all offices provided herein shall be held annually in
accordance with the by-laws. All voting shall be by secret
Section 2. First Year Class Elections. Elections for officers of the first year class shall be held in the fall.
Section 4. Where any member (or members) of the SBA Board of Governors, not including
the SBA President, shall fail to serve, or for any reason ceases to serve in
the office for which such officer shall have been elected prior to the completion of the term of
office and before the end of the second week of the fall semester, a special
election shall be held in conjunction
with the First Year Elections as governed by the By-Laws, in order to fill the office (or offices). Where a Special Election shall be deemed impracticable, such election may be
postponed by a two-thirds (2/3) vote by the SBA Board of Governors. Where a Special Election shall occur within
5 weeks of the General Election, such
election may be dissolved by a two-thirds (2/3) vote by the SBA Board of Governors.
(a) A recall election for
removal for any member of the Board of Governors Executive Committee may be ordered by a petition signed by twenty percent of the SBA members; removal
from office shall be affirmed by two-thirds majority of those members voting in an ensuing election
(b) A recall election for
removal of any class officer may be ordered by a petition signed by twenty percent of the members of
such officer’s class; removal from office
shall be affirmed by a two-thirds majority of those members voting as an ensuing election.
(c) Notice of an upcoming recall
election shall be posted no more than three school days following the submission of a petition meeting all of the above requirements. The recall election shall occur on a
Tuesday, no less than five school
days following posted notice of the election and no more than ten school days following
posted notice of the election.