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Thursday, 15 December 2011

Torrevieja U3A Grants 'Right to Reply' !

On the 2nd October 2011 I published an article entitled 'Will the Torrevieja U3A Newsletter change to a Democratic Format?' in which I questioned the fact that the association did not offer the facility of the 'Right to Reply' to articles published in the quarterly newsletter.

I included extracts of my correspondence with the Chairman of the Torrevieja U3A in the article and made the suggestion that “the committee being responsible for the editorial policy of the newsletter give consideration to a democratic format which allows for third person comments”.

I also made the point that having received a reply of “the matter will be discussed at the next Committee meeting. I will inform you of the Committee's decision in due course”, I would wait with hope; but not too much! Would the Committee be prepared to provide a facility for the readership to comment on the words of the inner clique of the newsletter columnists? I said then that I believed it would be an obvious yes for complimentary comments, but for questions and criticisms, that's another matter. I asked the questions “It can't be one without the other; or can it?” and “Or will the decision be to continue to offer neither?”

Since that time the management committee of the U3A have discussed this matter during two meetings and on the 28th November 2011 I received the following email from the Chairman of the Association.

In my last letter to you I indicated that the matter of a ‘Right to Reply’ was being considered by the U3A Association’s committee; and that you would be informed of our decision.

On Saturday 12/11/11 (our last committee meeting) a draft policy of a Complaints Procedure and a Right to Reply procedure were examined. I am pleased to be able to report that, after considerable discussion, both policies were accepted by the committee and will now form part of our Association’s structures and procedures as from 1st January 2012.

A copy of these procedures is now available to members and from today, can be accessed via the link at the foot of the About Page on the U3Awebsite. The original Aims of the Association and the Terms and Conditions of Membership are also posted there. Hard copies of these policies and procedures will also be available from the Chair at the monthly meetings. The Association continues to grow and as we do so new procedures will inevitably be required.

As a further result of your comments we have also formed a sub committee to examine the future of the Newsletter, and how it can be changed to improve communication within the Association. The results of the sub committee’s deliberations will be promulgated to the members in due course.

Once again I thank you for your original request that has resulted in improving the Association’s procedures and structures. It is only with the help and support of members like yourself that we can improve for the benefit of all.

It is very pleasing to receive such a positive decision from the Committee in the knowledge that I have perhaps assisted in the improvement of the Association to the benefit of the members including myself.

I compliment the members of the Torrevieja U3A Committee for their positive forward looking decision.

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