New election policies released for ASUS elections

Policy changes reflect accessibility for students, clarify election violations 

ASUS reworked its election policy last spring following the 2018 society election.
Credit: 
Journal File Photo
In the spring of 2018, ASUS made substantial changes to its policy to be implemented during this month’s society election season.
 
ASUS Governance Officer Mike Arnason said the changes—which saw the entire appendix for elections rewritten—were made to provide more accessible documentation for students to review. A shorter 11-page document has replaced the previous 37-page version.
 
“It’s a lot more concise, it’s a lot more clear,” Arnason told The Journal in an interview, adding ASUS also updated the specificity of election violation consequences. 
 
“Policy didn’t used to do that. It used to be a lot less specific,” Arnason said. The updated files outline infractions for violations such as campaigning outside of the pre-determined campaign period, otherwise not listed last winter election season. 
 
A table in the official policy also sets out the restrictions for potential volunteers or candidates who hold positions within ASUS. 
 
Arnason said it “break[s] it down for someone who’s the volunteer within ASUS, for someone who’s employed by ASUS, for someone who’s affiliated with an ASUS committee [...] it says the capacity that each of those types of individuals are allowed to help on a campaign.”
 
Additional policy has been established concerning the creation of volunteer coordination pages on social media websites like Facebook. These groups must adhere to rules restricting solicitation of votes and group titles. 
 
Last January, ASUS saw elections infractions after two of three teams running for the Society’s executive were disqualified and later reinstated. 
 
ASUS elections officers ruled two teams had campaigned outside the designated period; one of these teams was disqualified for establishing a volunteer coordination group on Facebook. 
 
This is the first year that volunteer coordination pages have been regulated under ASUS elections policy. In addition, the CEO can request to be added to a volunteer coordination group if an elections complaint has been made concerning the group. 
 
“We don’t monitor [volunteer coordination groups] unless someone says that they’re in violation of policy [...] because they’re not for the purpose of campaigning,” Arnason said.
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Corrections

January 15, 2019

This article incorrectly identified Mike Arnason's position as Chief Electoral Officer. His title is Governance Officer.

The Journal regrets the error.

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