(as revised October 2011)
The mission of the American Psychological Association is defined as “advancing psychology as a science, profession, and as a means of promoting human welfare.” The mission of the Society for the Psychological Study of Ethnic Minority Issues reflects that of the American Psychological Association. Specifically, the Society serves as a means to promote: the development of knowledge and understanding of ethnic minority psychology; the application of psychological principals specific to ethnic minorities; consideration of how social concerns impact ethnic minority populations; and incorporation of the importance of diversity in society. In the spirit of promoting diversity of the human experience, the Society, in its policies and practices, will attend to the concerns of ethnic minorities with special sensitivity to gender, sexual orientation, the physically challenged, class, age, and religion. In this Society, Ethnic Minority groups include American Indian/Alaskan Natives, Asian Americans/Pacific Islanders, Black/African Americans, and Latina/Latino/Hispanics within the United States. In consideration of the reality that nomenclature evolves and changes, these bylaws will use the terms ethnic minority and people of color interchangeably.
Article I Name and Purpose
- The name of this organization shall be Society for the Psychological Study of Ethnic Minority Issues: A Division of the American Psychological Association (SPSEMI).
- The purpose of this organization shall be:
- to advance the contributions of psychology as a discipline in the understanding of issues related to people of color through research, including the development of appropriate research paradigms;
- to promote the education and training of psychologists in matters regarding people of color, including the special issues relevant to the service delivery issues relevant to ethnic minority populations; and
- to inform the general public of research, education and training, and service delivery issues relevant to ethnic minority populations.
Article II Membership
- There shall be four classes of members in the Division: Fellows, Members, Associate Members, and Affiliates. The requirements of these classes shall be provided by the Bylaws of the American Psychological Association except as noted below. All applicants for admission shall demonstrate, in a manner satisfactory to the Division membership, participation or sustaining interest in furthering the goals of the Division. To maintain good standing, a member must be current in payment of dues as outlined in Article V.
- Professional Affiliates shall be persons who are not members of the American Psychological Association but who are professionals from disciplines bearing on the central interests of the Division.
- Student Affiliates shall be persons who have been accepted by the American Psychological Association as Student Associates or who are otherwise eligible for such membership. Student Affiliates shall receive the Division newsletter and will be encouraged to participate in the activities of the Division.
- Members and Associate members of the American Psychological Association, who apply for Division membership in the same status held in the American Psychological Association, may be admitted to the Division by vote of the Membership Committee subject to approval of the Division at its annual business meeting.
- Members nominated for Fellow status in the Division must provide evidence of unusual and outstanding contributions in the area of psychology related to ethnic minority issues. All candidates for Fellow status must be endorsed by at least one Fellow of the Division.
- Voting in the Division shall follow the criteria established in the Bylaws of the American Psychological Association. Only members in good standing in the Division will be eligible to vote.
Article III Officers
- The officers of the Division shall consist of President; President-Elect; Past President; Secretary, Secretary-Elect, Treasurer, Treasurer-Elect, five Members-at-Large, Divisional Representative(s), Graduate Student Representative, and Editor of Cultural Diversity and Ethnic Minority Psychology. Each shall perform the duties of the respective office and specific duties provided elsewhere in these Bylaws or assigned by the Executive Committee. The President, Past-President, and President-Elect shall serve for a one-year period and the Members-at-Large, Secretary and Treasurer for three-year periods. A Secretary-Elect shall be elected in the second year of the prior three-year term to serve one year concurrently with the Secretary. A Treasurer-Elect shall be elected in the second year of the prior three-year term to serve one year concurrently with the Treasurer. The Graduate Student Representative shall be elected to serve a two-year term.
- There shall be Divisional Representation to the Council of Representatives of the American Psychological Association in numbers permitted by the Bylaws of the American Psychological Association. Representatives shall be elected for a three-year term of office.
- The five Members-at-Large will be elected and represent each of the four ethnic groups identified in the Preamble. The fifth is a specially-designated Member-at-Large representing a constituency as determined by the Executive Committee prior to the conclusion of the three-year term and call for nominations to the position.
- Candidates for office in the Division shall be Fellows or Members of the Division, with the exception of one graduate student representative seat with a vote who is a student affiliate of the Division in good standing. Officers and Divisional Representatives to the American Psychological Association Council of Representatives shall be elected by the voting members according to the procedure accepted by the APA at the time of the election.
- All elected Officers of the Division have a vote. The appointed Editor of Cultural Diversity and Ethnic Minority Psychology does not have a vote.
Article IV Committees
- The Committees of the Division shall consist of, in addition to the Executive Committee, such standing Committees as may be provided by these Bylaws and such special Committees as may be established by the Executive Committee. The President shall appoint Committee Chairs and Committee members. Committee members shall be ratified by the Executive Committee. The appointment of at least one graduate student to each committee, work group, and task force of the Division is encouraged, except where prevented by the nature and operating procedures of a specific committee as determined by the President/Executive Committee.
- EXECUTIVE COMMITTEE. The Executive Committee of the Division shall consist of the President, the President-Elect, the immediate Past-President, the Secretary, the SecretaryElect, the Treasurer, the Treasurer-Elect, the Divisional Representative(s), five Members-atLarge, the Editor of Cultural Diversity and Ethnic Minority Psychology and the Graduate Student Representative. The Members-at-Large shall be elected by the Division membership and shall serve staggered terms of three years each. A Secretary-Elect shall be elected in the second year of the prior three-year term to serve one year concurrently with the Secretary. A Treasurer-Elect shall be elected in the second year of the prior three-year term to serve one year concurrently with the Treasurer. The Graduate Student Representative shall be elected by Student Affiliate members of the Division and serve a two-year term. To be eligible, candidates for the position of graduate student representative must have at least two remaining years in their graduate program. The Executive Committee shall have general supervision of the affairs of the Division, performing the duties and abiding by the limitations specified in these Bylaws. Actions of the Executive Committee that alter Division policy are subject to approval by majority vote of the members voting. The voting for such matters shall be conducted at an annual meeting or by special ballot, as decided by the Executive Committee.
- MEMBERSHIP COMMITTEE. The President shall appoint a Membership Committee. It shall be the responsibility of this Committee to secure and review evidence concerning the qualifications of all candidates for membership status in the Division.
- FELLOWS COMMITTEE. A Fellows Committee shall be appointed by the President and consist of five members who are Fellows of the Division. It shall be the duty of the Fellows Committee to receive all nominations for Fellowship, to collect and consider such supporting materials as are necessary, and to recommend nominees for Fellow status in the Division, in accordance with the Bylaws of the Division and the American Psychological Association.
- NOMINATIONS COMMITTEE. The Nominations Committee shall consist of the PastPresident as Chairperson and three other members appointed by the President. The Nominations Committee shall nominate at least two persons, if possible, for each office for which election is being held, taking care to assure broad representation in the administration of the Division. The Nominations Committee shall ascertain whether the nominees are qualified and willing to serve if elected. The list of nominees shall be reported to the American Psychological Association central office for inclusion in the election ballot issued by the Association by a date specified by the Association. The Nominations Committee shall prepare slates to ensure that there is always at least one representative on the Executive Committee from each of the following ethnic minority groups: American Indian/Alaskan Natives, Asian Americans/Pacific Islanders, Black/African Americans, and Latina/Latino/Hispanic Americans. The Committee shall also give consideration to gender representation.
- PROGRAM COMMITTEE. The President-Elect of the Division shall appoint the Program Chair-Designee and Committee members no later than the beginning of the annual business meeting of that current year. This Committee shall plan the convention program of the Division.
- PUBLICATIONS COMMITTEE. The Publications Committee will coordinate the publications (e.g., journal, newsletter, website, book series, etc.) and communication activities of the Division, in accordance with parameters set forth by the Executive Committee and operating policies of the publisher.
- STUDENT REPRESENTATIVES COMMITTEE. The Student Representatives Committee will coordinate efforts to identify and advance the agenda of the Division’s student membership. The committee is chaired by the graduate student representative to the Executive Committee, and the membership will include a Division 45 Executive Committee member who will serve as mentor and all student representatives appointed or elected to various other divisional committees, work groups, and taskforces.
- FINANCE AND FUND DEVELOPMENT COMMITTEE. The Finance and Fund Development Committee will coordinate building the financial infrastructure of the Division and provide policies and procedures related to the fiscal matters of the Division. The Division Treasurer will be a member of this Committee.
- COUNCIL OF PAST PRESIDENTS. The Council of Past Presidents shall be a standing committee of Division 45 composed of all past presidents of the Division with the charge to advise the Executive Committee on matters related to the Division. The Chair will be elected by the COPP for a term of 3 years.
- NEW COMMITTEES AND TASKFORCES. New special or continuing committees, taskforces, and workgroups shall be created at the discretion of the President and Executive Committee. The creation of a new standing committee requires an amendment to the bylaws by a two-thirds majority of those members voting.
Article V Dues
- The Executive Committee sets the minimum membership dues with the concurrence of the membership. Additional dues or assessments may be imposed by a vote of the Executive Committee.
- Dues will be collected annually and paid either to the American Psychological Association or the Division.
- The Membership Committee will maintain a current list of members and the status of dues payments.
Article VI Activities
- The annual business meeting of the Division shall take place during the annual convention of the American Psychological Association, and in the same locality, for the transaction of business. During this time, the Division program will consist of the presentation of scientific papers, and the discussion of professional matters in the field of Division’s interest. The Division shall coordinate its programs with, and participate in, the program of the Association. The Executive Committee shall meet at least twice a year annually (a Midwinter meeting and a meeting at the time of the annual convention of the Association) or as many times as it deems necessary.
Article VII Amendments
- Amendment to these Bylaws may be proposed by a majority of the Executive Committee or by a majority vote of the members present at any annual business meeting. Ratification of the amendment proposed requires a two-thirds majority of those members voting by postal or electronic mail ballot.