Updated 5/8/2018



Section 1 – Name: 

Commission on Disabilities

Section 2 – Mission: 

The mission of the UMD Commission on Disabilities is to advocate for meaningful access and inclusiveness across campus for all people; to promote educational awareness of both visible and invisible disabilities;  and to assure legal compliance with all regulations in the area of equity for individuals with disabilities. 



Section 1 – Membership: 

The Commission on Disabilities is composed of self-selected and/or appointed UMD staff and faculty members, students, and community members who are committed to promoting equal opportunity for any individuals with disabilities, and who agree to actively participate in the activities of the commission and their own intercultural development work, subject to approval by the Chancellor. A typical term of service is three years; one year for students and community members. Membership will be reviewed annually by the Co-Chairs. Community members will be considered non-voting members. At the start of every academic year, the Co-Chairs or an ad hoc committee will send out a call to membership to campus constituents.


Section 2 – New Members: 

New members are welcome to join the commission on a rolling basis. New members are welcomed by the Co-Chairs and offered an educational “on-boarding” process to learn about the history, philosophy, mission and activities of the commission.


Section 3 – Active Members: 

To be considered an active member with voting rights the following requirements must be met:

  • Must attend a minimum of one meeting per semester and/or volunteer at one Commission on Disabilities event per semester during the academic year. Summer semester is not considered to be part of the academic year.

  • Must regularly check both Commission on Disabilities website, emails, and documents shared with members, such as meeting agendas, minutes, and any other pertinent Commission on Disabilities documents.

  • If an active member takes a leave of absence from their position at UMD, or if they are unable to attend meetings or events due to their class or work schedule, they will be considered inactive until they are able to attend meetings or events.


Section 4 – Selection of Officers: 

Current officers consist of two Co-Chairs and a Notetaker. The Co-Chairs will also take on the role of Financial Chair. Officers can be volunteered appointments, or the Commission can seek to elect these positions (subject to the membership review.) Officer terms will rotate every-other year. Elections will take place at the end of the spring semester or as necessary. Members seeking to serve as an officer will indicate their interest publicly. Members may also be nominated by other members publicly. Voting will be by secret paper ballot. A current officer or commission member who is not running for election will preside over the election process.

  • The Co-Chairs will call and preside over meetings; ensure that inclusive discussion / dialogue practices are followed at meetings; represent the Commission on the Campus Change Team; act as a representative of the Commission in other public forums; write year-end reports; appoint any committees, as needed; provide overall leadership to the Commission.

  • The Co-Chairs will keep an accurate accounting of the Commission’s funds and expenditures; will provide regular updates at meetings; will handle all financial transactions as required for the business of the Commission including creating a yearly budget (subject to the membership review.) 

  • The Notetaker is responsible for accurate reporting of meetings and for archiving of meeting notes; the Note Taker will oversee the Commission’s website content.



Section 1 – Regular Meetings: 

Meetings will be called at the discretion of the Co-Chairs, and in consultation with the membership. Regular meetings shall be held once per month during the academic year and as needed during the summer, unless voted on by the membership. The commission may meet more frequently, as needed.

Section 2 – Quorum: 

Quorum shall consist of a simple majority (51% or more) of currently active commission membership.

Section 3 – Open Meetings: 

All commission meetings are open to all students, staff, faculty, and administration members,as well as community members. Should a visitor wish to contribute information, announcements or concerns, they may indicate their interest to a co-chair, who will use discretion regarding inviting the visitor to speak. Visitors may not participate in the decision-making process.

Section 4 – Voting: 

All decisions of the Commission will be made by simple majority as long as the meeting has a quorum. Active members may vote by email if a quorum cannot be met at a meeting. The chair or co-chair will send the item(s) out to all active members and document the responses. In the event of no quorum, decisions must be postponed.




Section 1 – Committees: 

Much of the work of the Commission may be accomplished through ad hoc committees composed of volunteers with particular interest in a given task. These committees are appointed, as needed, at regular meetings of the Commission. While the Commission can delegate responsibilities to a committee, no committee or individual member of the Commission can purport to represent the Commission without the Commission’s approval.



Section 1 – Budget: 

The Co-Chairs will draw up a budget for the forthcoming academic year and recommend it to the Commission at the subsequent regular meeting. Approval of the budget, as well as any subsequent changes will be by simple majority of the members present. It will be the Co-Chair’s responsibility to process any expenditures through official University channels and in compliance with set University policies and procedures.

Section 2 – Annual Report: 

An Annual Report will be provided to the membership by the Officers during the following year. The report will include a summary of the year’s accomplishments, committee reports, itemized budget (showing receipts and disbursements for the past year), plans for the future, and any other pertinent information. A committee may be established to assist the Officers in preparation of the report. The Annual Report may be distributed electronically. A paper copy of the report will be kept on file and a copy will be sent to the Chair of the Campus Change Leadership Team. An electronic version of the Annual Report will be posted on the Commission on Disabilities website.



Section 1 – Amendments: 

The Bylaws can be amended through simple majority. Two consecutive meetings will be required. The proposed changes can be introduced at the first meeting. If approved by a simple majority of the members present, the proposed changes will be sent to the entire membership prior to the subsequent meeting. Final approval must occur by simple majority at that subsequent meeting.