REPRESENTATIVE ROLES AND RESPONSIBILITIES
As RIC is primarily a legislative body, the role of Representatives is the most crucial role in the organization. Although executives need to be dedicated and competent in their tasks, everything that arises from this organization comes from the Representatives that produce and pass bills. The purpose of this guide is to serve as a reminder of this fact. Included herein are some of the different roles that a senator must serve in order to be a good representative of their constituency.
A REPRESENTATIVES ROLE AS A MEMBER OF AN RSO
RIC is a Registered Student Organization, and as with any organization, RIC needs dedicated, active members in order to fulfill its purpose. A Representative needs to know the rules of RIC (constitution and applicable code), attend its meetings (with rudimentary knowledge of parliamentary procedure), and serve on its committees. Without such knowledge and dedication, RIC cannot adequately represent the on-campus student.
A REPRESENTATIVE’S ROLE AS A HALL REPRESENTATIVE
Representatives are elected by their hall and must be faithful to the special needs of that particular hall. If a Representative does not attend hall meetings and associate with residents of their hall, they cannot accurately represent the hall. If Representatives do not faithfully attend RIC, they cheat themselves and the residents of their hall out of just representation and even funds.
A REPRESENTATIVES ROLE AS A COMMITTEE MEMBER
Committees are an integral part of RIC. Committee membership is a requirement of the RIC Code. A committee either serves as an intimate working group between members of RIC, or it can be a powerful tool in protecting and expanding the rights and privileges of on-campus students. Representatives need to faithfully participate in the committee of their choice.
A REPRESENTATIVES ROLE AS AN ON-CAMPUS REPRESENTATIVE
All RIC decisions either spend the money of on-campus students, or, in some way, affect their lifestyle. For this reason, students must always be at the forefront of every Representative’s mind when acting in RIC. Representatives sometimes must put personal, hall-related, or committee-oriented feelings aside in order to best benefit the on-campus student.
A REPRESENTATIVES ROLE AS A REPRESENTATIVE OF RIC AND THEMSELVES
Senators must always vote the way they truly feel no matter what others want them to do. If a Representative truly feels that a committee’s decision will have a negative effect, they must vote their conscience. Representatives need to conduct themselves in a manner that encourages the sharing of opinions and possible disagreements without becoming personally abusive.
Expectations of an RIC Representative
- Attend all RIC Senate meetings or send a proxy
- Talk to your constituents. Give a weekly report at your Hall Senate meeting and get feedback.
- How can you represent your fellow students if you never talk to them?
- Read legislation before the meeting. Only vote to forgo the reading of legislation IF you have already read the legislation.
- Don’t let others take advantage of your power and voice. Know what you are voting on.
- When voting on legislation allocating funds, expect legislation to answer these questions:
- How much money is needed? – Who is spending the money? – What is the money for? – When and where will the money be spent? – Why is this a good way to spend student money?
- Question parts of legislation that are not understood.
- Expect people to write clear and concise legislation.
- Challenge legislation that wouldn’t be in the best interest of your constituents.
- The students of your hall need you to stand up and be their voice.
- Debate legislation and issues with civility.
- You deal with serious issues on occasion, but at the end of the day, don’t let RIC drama ruin a friendship.
- Participate on committees.
This is where the work of RIC is really done. Legislation is empty without action to back it up. Serving your constituents is more than coming to RIC once a week.