Public Review Board

Section 1. For the purpose of ensuring a continuation of high moral and ethical standards in the administrative and operative practices of the International Union and its subordinate bodies, and to further strengthen the democratic processes and appeal procedures within the Union as they affect the rights and privileges of individual members or subordinate bodies, there shall be established a Public Review Board consisting of impartial persons of good public repute not working under the jurisdiction of the UAW or employed by the International Union or any of its subordinate bodies.

Section 2. The Public Review Board shall consist of four (4) members, including the Chairperson. In the event of death, retirement or resignation of any of the four (4) members, the International Executive Board shall have the authority to reduce the number of members from four (4) to three (3). Their terms shall be for the period between International Constitutional Conventions. At each regular International Constitutional Convention, the International President shall, subject to the approval of the International Executive Board, propose the names of the Chairperson and members of the Public Review Board for ratification by said International Constitutional Convention. Should any vacancy on the Public Review Board occur between International Constitutional Conventions, the vacancy shall be filled by appointment by the International President, subject to the approval of the International Executive Board, from a list of names submitted by the remaining members of the Public Review Board.

Section 3. (a) The Public Review Board shall have the authority and duty to make final and binding decisions on all cases appealed to it in accordance with Article 33 of the International Constitution, and to deal with matters related to alleged violation of any UAW Ethical Practices Codes that may be adopted by the International Union.

(b) The Public Review Board shall have the authority and duty to make final and binding decisions on all cases appealed to it in accordance with Article 16, Section 20 of the International Constitution.

Section 4. Any complaint filed under Section 5(a) or (b) of this Article alleging violation of any UAW Ethical Practices Codes that may be adopted by the International Union, must be filed within sixty (60) days of the time the charging member first becomes aware or reasonably should have become aware of the alleged violation.

Section 5. To facilitate the orderly handling of complaints related to alleged violations of any UAW Ethical Practices Codes, the following procedures shall apply:

(a) If a complaint is against the operation of a subordinate body or any officer or representative thereof, the complaint must be initiated by a member of that subordinate body who shall be obligated to first attempt to seek redress and correction of the matter complained of through appeal to the membership of the Local Union. Failing to get redress from the Local Union, the member shall submit her/his complaint to the International Executive Board through the International President who shall forward a copy of the complaint directly to the Chairperson of the Public Review Board. The International Executive Board shall have the initial responsibility for investigating the complaint. The Chairperson of the Public Review Board will be kept advised of the case by the International Executive Board. Upon completion of the International Executive Board’s investigation and action, the Chairperson of the Public Review Board and the complaining member will be informed as to the disposition made of the case by the International Executive Board. In the event the complaining member is dissatisfied with the decision and action of the International Executive Board, s/he may, within thirty (30) days, appeal such decision to the Public Review Board.

In the absence of such an appeal, the Public Review Board may act on the matter if it concludes that there is substance to the original complaint and that the action of the International Executive Board does not satisfactorily meet the problem.

(b) If a complaint is against the operation of the International Union or any officer or representative thereof, the complaint must be made by a member of a Local Union and approved by membership action of that Local Union. The complaint and a certification of the approval shall be submitted to the International President who shall forward a copy of the complaint directly to the Chairperson of the Public Review Board. The complaint shall be processed by the International Executive Board and the Public Review Board in the same manner as a complaint under (a) above.
(c) However, if any member files a complaint under either subsection (a) or (b) above but does not seek approval, redress or action from the member’s Local Union, s/he shall set forth the reasons for such failure to seek or obtain such approval, redress or action from the Local Union at the time s/he files the complaint with either the International Executive Board or the Public Review Board. When, in the judgment of the International Executive Board and/or the Public Review Board, there are valid and substantial reasons for the request to bypass the Local step, the matter may be processed without compliance with the Local step.

(d) Any matter within the coverage of this Section may be submitted to the Public Review Board by majority action of the International Executive Board. When a complaint is properly before the Public Review Board, the Public Review Board shall assume jurisdiction over the matter complained of and process the matter in accordance with the provisions of subsequent Sections of this Article.

Section 6. The Public Review Board shall formulate such rules of procedure and establish such practices as are necessary to facilitate its proper functioning. In order to minimize the time requirements and to expedite the disposition of cases, the Chairperson shall be authorized to create panels of not less than three (3) members of the Public Review Board to act for and in behalf of the Public Review Board. When, as a result of preliminary investigation, the Public Review Board or the panel thereof, concludes that the complaint fails to state allegations sufficiently serious and substantial to justify a hearing, or when it appears that there is no reasonable possibility that any substantial evidence in support of the allegations can be produced, the Board or the panel in its discretion may dismiss such matter without any hearing. The Public Review Board or the panel thereof, shall advise the complaining member, the International Union, and any subordinate body or bodies concerned of its decision or findings.

Section 7. In case the Public Review Board or the panel thereof finds that the accused is obviously innocent of any violation of the Ethical Codes, the Board or the panel thereof, may make judgment with respect to the lack of good faith of the accuser, and if the facts indicate that the accuser acted in bad faith or with malicious intent and in a willful effort to divide and disrupt the Union, the Public Review Board may assess a non-monetary penalty against the accuser; provided, however, that such penalty shall be limited to suspension from membership for a period of not less than three (3) months.

Section 8. The Public Review Board shall prepare and submit to the membership an Annual Report of its activities, in which report it shall draw the attention of the membership to any situation or action which it has investigated upon complaint and found to be improper, and shall comment upon the steps that have been taken by the Union to correct such a situation. The Public Review Board shall further include a summary of all appeals it has handled during the year. Copies of the Public Review Board’s Annual Report shall be mailed to all Local Unions and notice of this fact shall be published in the next edition of “Solidarity.” Copies shall be available to members upon request and during convention years copies shall be distributed to all delegates. The Annual Report shall be made available to the public press and all other media of public communication. The Public Review Board may, in its discretion, submit an Interim Report. Such an Interim Report shall also be made available to all members and the public in the same manner as the Annual Report.

Section 9. The International Executive Board is instructed and authorized to provide for an annual operating budget to ensure the proper functioning of the Public Review Board. The International Secretary-Treasurer is instructed and authorized to deposit quarterly, in a depository designated by the Public Review Board, to the account of the Public Review Board the necessary funds required by the budget submitted by them. The Public Review Board shall submit its proposed budget to the International Executive Board for review and approval at least three months prior to the expiration of its fiscal year. Such a budget shall cover all necessary expenses, including office, staff, travel and operating expenses, and shall provide for reasonable compensation to the members of the Public Review Board. The Public Review Board shall establish an office separate and apart from any Union building. The staff and office personnel essential to the proper functioning of the Public Review Board shall be selected by the members thereof and shall be compensated out of its operating budget. The Chairperson of the Public Review Board shall be required to have its books and financial records audited annually; such audits and the summary of the financial transactions shall be submitted to the International Secretary-Treasurer, who in turn shall make such information available to the delegates at each Constitutional Convention.