American Speech-Language-Hearing Association

Procedures for Revising or Dissolving a Special Interest Group

Revising a SIG | Dissolving a SIG

Revising a SIG

The process of revising a SIG or merging SIGs begins with submission of a formal proposal. The BSIGC reviews the proposal and makes a recommendation to the BOD, which makes the final determination.

The Submission Process

SIG(s)-Initiated Modification/Merger

A SIG proposal for modification to some component of the SIG or merger of two or more SIGs, includes

  • A review form for change of name and/or content
  • A resolution to the BSIGC for its review and recommendation to the BOD

The proposal must be approved by a majority of that SIG's responding affiliates or, for a merger, the majority/of responding affiliates all SIGs concerned.

A SIG may be merged with another SIG, if it can be demonstrated that affiliates' needs and interests can properly be met through such a merger. If two SIGs merge, the newly formed SIG will be subject to processes described in Candidate Status section.

The BOD will make final decisions regarding modification or merger proposals.

BSIGC- or BOD- Initiated Intervention

The BSIGC or BOD may intervene to propose modification or merger based on review of the SIG or other compelling information, including

  • Failure to meet minima criteria for a SIG as determined by annual review (2 consecutive years or 3/5 years)
  • Evidence of affiliate dissatisfaction, e.g., 25% decline in affiliation (per annual report) for 2 consecutive years or over 5 years and/or negative feedback from 2 consecutive affiliate satisfaction surveys
  • Inability of leadership to satisfy fiduciary and/or procedural responsibilities, including unprofessional conduct that undermines the intent and goals of the Association leadership and the collegial relationships among its members by SIG leadership or affiliates

The Proposal and Review Process

The detailed proposal to modify/merge must include

  • A cover letter
  • A petition
  • A plan for meeting minima criteria
  • A description of the leadership pool

For specific requirements, see "Content of Proposal" under "Proposing a New Special Interest Group."

The review process, including timelines, is the same as that prescribed for creating a new SIG. See "The Review Process" under "Proposing a New Special Interest Group." However, once a modification is initiated it must be ready for submission to the BSIGC and BOD within one calendar year.

The BOD may modify/merge SIG if such action (a) strengthens the existing SIG(s) in terms of meeting the minima criteria for SIG status, leadership, and finances; and (b) satisfies requirements related to its purpose, affiliation, and other factors (see details under "Review by the BOD" under "Proposing a New Special Interest Group").

ASHA members are informed of BOD action through announcements in The ASHA Leader, any appropriate SIG publications, and other Association communication vehicles, specifically including electronic and social networking formats.

Dissolving a SIG

SIGs that are not meeting requirements for SIG status are automatically put on probation and must demonstrate compliance within one calendar year. Failure to address deficiencies within a year following notice shall result in dissolution of the SIG.

The process of dissolving a SIG begins with submission of a proposal—specifically including a resolution reflecting the recommendation to dissolve—by the BOD, BSIGC, or a majority of that SIG's affiliates. The BSIGC reviews the proposal and submits the recommendation/resolution to the BOD, which makes the final determination.

The Review Process

The review process, including timelines, is the same as that prescribed for creating a new SIG. See "The Review Process" under "Proposing a New Special Interest Group."

Criteria for Dissolution

In evaluating a proposal to dissolve a SIG, the BOD considers performance factors, including

  • Failure to meet minima criteria for a SIG as determined by annual review (2 consecutive years or 3/5 years)
  • Evidence of affiliate dissatisfaction, e.g., 25% decline in affiliation (per annual report) for 2 consecutive years or over 5 years and/or negative feedback from 2 consecutive affiliate satisfaction surveys
  • Inability of leadership to satisfy fiduciary and/or procedural responsibilities, including unprofessional conduct that undermines the intent and goals of the Association leadership and the collegial relationships among its members by SIG leadership or affiliates
  • The SIG votes to recommend its own dissolution

The BOD also can take action to dissolve a SIG if

  • It is financially unsustainable.

Informing Leadership/Affiliates of Concerns and BOD Action

The BOD may dissolve a SIG for good and sufficient reason by a two-thirds vote of those present at a face-to-face meeting, provided that (a) the SIG has had a probationary period of one year during which time leadership has had the opportunity to address concerns, (b) the reason for dissolution is stated in writing by the BOD to the affiliation of the SIG, and (c) the SIG membership has been given full opportunity(i.e., three months) to appeal to the BOD, stating the reasons for the continued existence of the SIG.

The BOD shall inform SIGs of activities that appear to be out of compliance with policies of the Association. Continued failure or refusal to comply with these requirements may constitute good and sufficient reason for dissolution of a SIG by the BOD. The BSIGC and BOD shall seek to resolve issues of concern with SIGs on an informal basis before placing the issue on BOD's action agenda.

ASHA members are informed of BOD action within 30 days of its decision through announcements in The ASHA Leader, any appropriate SIG publications, and other Association communication vehicles, specifically including electronic and social networking formats. The SIG will be formally sunset at the end of the calendar year during which BOD action is taken.

The Right for Reconsideration

Reconsideration is the mechanism whereby the SIG appeals the decision of the BOD to dissolve the SIG. If the SIG chooses to request Reconsideration review, it must submit written documentation to justify why dissolution should be rescinded within 30 days from the date of notification. If the SIG does not exercise its Reconsideration option, the BOD's decision to dissolve is final and cannot be appealed.

At its next face-to-face meeting the BOD will review the SIG's Reconsideration request and documentation and make a decision consistent with the process for establishing or modifying a SIG. The BSIGC chair and monitoring vice presidents notify the coordinator of the BOD's decision within 30 days of the BOD's decision.

  • If the BOD again votes to overturn its earlier decision to dissolve the SIG, the SIG will operate under Candidate Status.
  • If the BOD again votes to uphold its earlier decision to dissolve the SIG, the decision is final. A proposal to establish a new SIG may be submitted after one full year.

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