Clarify the Operating Procedures of Green Party of Canada



Proposal Type


Submitter Name

Bruce Hyer


WHEREAS the President of Council tends to be renewed every two years;

WHEREAS various people act as Chair for the Biennial General Meeting;

WHEREAS the current Green rules are not widely known and unevenly followed;

WHEREAS a set of rules for meetings which ensures that the traditional principles of equality, harmony and efficiency are kept;

WHEREAS Robert's Rules of Order is the best-known description of standard parliamentary procedure and is used by many different organizations as their rule book for conducting effective meetings;

WHEREAS clarity in procedure tends to lead to better governance practices;



Article 8 of the Green Party of Canada Constitution (General Meetings of the Entire Membership of the Party) be amended to include:

8.3.1 General Meetings shall be conducted via Robert's Rules of Order.


Bylaw 2 (Federal Council) be amended to include: Federal Council meetings shall be conducted via Robert’s Rules of Order.


Simon McMillan, Christine Cantin, Kate Storey, Irene Novaczek, Olivier Adam, Janice Harvey, Becky Smit, David Coon, Elizabeth Berman, Lynne Quarmby, Erich Jacoby-Hawkins, Patricia Farnese, Kyle Tate, Lucy Baril


Robert’s Rules is a very common set of standard procedures for running meetings. It is used by many governments, organizations, and nonprofits.

There is an official website:, a full book, an abridged book, and even a Robert’s Rules for Dummies book. The benefit in all of these resources is that any question of procedure can be quickly answered without need for argument. While the Green Rules ( are laudable, they are not comprehensive and have led to procedural wrangling that distracts us from the real work at hand. There are also other procedural systems such as Kerr and King but these are less accessible, with much less information and resources available.

As Tom Atlee writes (, “Robert's Rules is efficient at getting through an agenda. It offers order and predictability. People can understand how to operate the system by studying the rules, and a group can revise its procedures by discussing them. It's many checks and balances can provide an enormous degree of protection against demagoguery, impulsivity and laziness. Robert's Rules gives people shared language, and shared points of reference with which to communicate thoughtfully and systematically about their process.”