National Expulsion and Appeals Procedure

DEMOCRATIC SOCIALISTS OF AMERICA

NOTIFYING NATIONAL OF A CHAPTER LEVEL EXPULSION

REQUESTING AN EXPULSION FROM THE NATIONAL ORGANIZATION  

AND

APPEALS FROM CHAPTER EXPULSION

PROCESS

Introduction

Regarding the expulsion of members from the national organization, the DSA Constitution states in pertinent part:

Members may be expelled by either the National or Local organization.

For a member to be expelled nationally, a two-thirds vote of the National Political Committee shall be necessary. Criteria for expulsion are prescribed in the Bylaws.

Decisions on expulsion by either the Local or National Organization may be appealed to the National Convention.

The bylaws state in pertinent part:

Members can be expelled if they are found to be in substantial disagreement with the principles or policies of the organization or if they consistently engage in undemocratic, disruptive behavior or if they are under the discipline of any self-defined democratic-centralist organization.

Members facing expulsion must receive written notice of charges against them and must be given the opportunity to be heard before the NPC or a subcommittee thereof, appointed for the purpose of considering expulsion.

In the event that a member has been expelled from a Chapter for a non-Resolution 33 reason(s) and the chapter requests that the NPC similarly expel the member from the national organization, or in the event that a member wishes to appeal having been expelled from a chapter, the procedure shall be as follows:

  1. The national office shall create and post on the national website a form for the chapter to notify the national organization of the expulsion and to request that the person similarly be expelled from the national organization.  

    The office shall also create and post on the national website a form for a member expelled from a chapter to appeal to the national.  

    The forms shall be monitored by staff and kept confidential.  Once a form has been filed, staff should notify the National Director.  The National Director shall then appoint a staff member to administer the request and related appeal, if any.  The staff member appointed shall not be someone who is a member of the chapter involved or who personally knows the accused person.  No other staff member shall have access to the file. This procedure shall also be posted on the national website.

  2.  The forms shall provide that a document (no more than 15 pages) explaining the reason for the expulsion or appeal be attached to the form when submitted.  This document shall also be kept confidential. The form shall request contact information for someone in the chapter who is knowledgeable about the matter in case more information is needed as well as contact information for the person whom the chapter seeks to have expelled nationally, or in the case of a member seeking to appeal being expelled by a chapter, contact info for the Chapter Chair and/or Chapter Harassment and Grievance Officer, since the Chapter HGO may be familiar with the case even if it is not a Resolution 33 applicable case.
  3.  The National Director shall then contact the person whom the chapter is seeking to expel providing that person with a written explanation of the alleged wrongdoing and the reason(s) for the request, or contact the chapter with same in the case of an expelled member appealing that decision.  The National Director shall do this within one week of receiving the expulsion request or appeal. The staff member assigned to the matter may assist in this process in any way the National Director deems appropriate.
  4.  The person whom the chapter is seeking to expel nationally, or in the case of a chapter decision to expel being appealed, the chapter, shall have two weeks to respond in writing regarding the national expulsion request or appeal.  This document may not be more than 15 pages. This document shall be kept confidential.
  5.  The staff member administering this expulsion and appeal procedure shall select five members of the NPC using a random process to hear the appeal requested.  Any NPC member randomly selected who is a member of the chapter requesting the expulsion or who expelled the member, or if similarly conflicted in the matter shall be replaced using the same random selection method.
  6.  Once a response has been received from the person whom the chapter is seeking to nationally expel, or from the chapter in the case of a chapter expulsion being appealed, the staff member assigned to administer this appeal shall contact the parties to establish a date and time for a Zoom video conference call.  The hearing shall allow both sides to present their arguments on the same call, and/or witnesses, and shall allow the NPC members to ask questions.
  7.  The five-member NPC hearing sub-committee shall then make a report and recommendation to the full NPC.  A two-thirds vote of the NPC is required for expulsion.
  8.  In the case of a member expelled from the national as well as the chapter, the former member may appeal the expulsion to the convention through a procedure determined by the convention planning committee approved by the NPC.
  9.  All documents, hearing notes, position statements, emails, videos, decisions or any other documents or evidence presented during this process at the national level shall remain confidential unless the accused person chooses to make such information public, except the person accused and the chapter leadership shall be notified of the NPC decision.  If the accused person chooses to go public about the process and decision in some manner, the NPC may issue its own statement with supporting evidence if it so chooses.