Key Membership Considerations

1. What are the advantages of joining the Association? Why form an Association?

The reason for joining an Association is to:

  • Provide an identity for SAHs as we interact with and work with government, other organizations and the Canadian public
  • Enhance cohesion within the SAH community
  • Develop a common national perspective and voice that can advocate for the interests and concerns of the SAH Community (strengthened negotiating position)

2. What will the Association do?

The Association will:

  • Represent the SAH community to IRCC, UNHCR, CCR, Canadian public and other stakeholders
  • Provide a forum for sharing of ideas
  • Establish a means of communication and consultation with the members
  • Provide support for, and build cohesion among, members
  • Foster solidarity – working together strengthens identification with, and accountability to, each other
  • Coordinate meetings and consultations

3. What does the Association seek to accomplish? What are the goals?

The Association will:

  • Give a collective voice to the SAHs in communicating and influencing government, as well as national and international organizations, with the goal of increasing the PSR capacity and resolving system problems
  • Create an effective communication process with government, CIC, and other interested groups, based upon our values of dignity, respect and integrity, for the purpose of building national capacity for sponsoring refugees into Canada

4. What are the obligations of membership?

  • Members are obliged to work respectfully with colleagues and for the common good of the SAH Community
  • See Members Rights and Responsibilities in the “Charter”

5. How will the Executive be chosen?

  • The Association will operate as any association: membership gives one the right to vote for or stand for the executive. Membership in the Association is open to any SAH who agrees to abide by the Charter.

6. How will decisions be made?

Principles of Decision Making of the SAH Association:

  • The fundamental operating principle of the Council will be that the Council will, with the support of the SAH Secretariat, consult with the broader SAH community on an ongoing basis through activities such as monthly Council activity updates, surveys and telephone contact and the SAH web based discussion forum
  • On key issues the Council will consult with the SAH community prior to making decisions with CIC or other stakeholders. Feedback will be collated and presented
  • On other issues the Council will act on the trust and confidence given to them by the membership as elected Council representatives
  • It is possible that the Council as a representative body of the SAH community may make decisions that one particular SAH does not agree with. In those cases the particular SAH has a right to express opinions that differ from those of the SAH Association or the SAH Council. It is also the responsibility of the particular SAH to inform the SAH Council when such declarations are expressed
  • If decisions that a particular SAH does not agree with are made by the Association, there is no binding or regulatory authority by the Council that requires compliance with the decision
  • A fundamental value informing decision making is the recognition of the importance of accountability of one Association member to another. It is understood that decisions and actions will affect others and thus the impact on others must be considered in all actions and decisions taken
  • Decision making that is informed by the importance of accountability to others, that builds and acts on consultation with Association members and that allows for the presentation of a more cohesive voice will contribute to the credibility of the SAH Association with its membership, IRCC, CCR, the Canadian public and others
  • Decision-making will be guided by respect for colleague(s) and relationship(s). The values that will inform the Association’s actions are to “approach every aspect of the work with integrity” and “treat each other with dignity and respect”. By adhering to these agreed upon values, both as individuals and a collective, we agree to hold ourselves accountable to one other and to the community or common good