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Guidance to Members

The Transition Network (TTN)
Advocacy, Activism and
Participation in Political Activities
 
December 3, 2016

 
The Transition Network encourages its members to have an impact.  Nothing in this Guidance is intended to restrict individuals from personal involvement in causes they feel are important.
The purpose of this Guidance is to delineate the boundaries between individual engagement in political and partisan activities, and engagement as a member or representative of TTN.
 

Political Activism

As a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization, TTN is specifically prohibited from making contributions of resources such as money, goods or services to political candidates or parties. Additionally, TTN may not make statements or take actions that appear to support or oppose candidates or parties.  This policy applies equally in all states where TTN exists.
 
TTN encourages its members to participate in political activity in their individual communities, as individuals.  They are specifically not permitted to act as representatives of TTN.
 

Permissible Lobbying and Advocacy Activities by TTN, the organization.

As a 501(c)(3), The Transition Network is permitted to engage in lobbying and advocacy activities.  There are strict guidelines and reporting responsibilities associated with these activities.  The Board of Directors will determine if, when, and how the organization will participate in these types of activities.
 
The only individuals authorized to speak on behalf of The Transition Network are the President of the Board of Directors and the Executive Director.
 

Permissible Lobbying and Advocacy Activities by TTN members.

TTN members may convene Special Interest Groups (SIGs) focused on political discussion.  TTN encourages the sharing of ideas and dialogue between members. 
 
TTN members may attend political or advocacy events as individuals, but may not represent TTN at those events.
 
TTN has many special interest groups that engage with local charities (no political affiliation) as TTN groups.  This is a fundamental impact activity and highly encouraged.
 
Some organizations have both a charitable function and a political function (PAC).  TTN groups may engage with the charitable, but not the political, activities of these organizations.
 

Communications and Finance

TTN members who are writers or editors of TTN publications, website, social media or any other communications may not post comments or articles that may be deemed as advocating a particular political point of view as a representative of TTN.  An example of this is Facebook where TTN editors post as TTN.  Individuals may post only as themselves in this instance.
 
No funds in chapter bank accounts, which are TTN funds regardless of where they reside, shall be used to support engagement in political, partisan or activist activities.
 

In Conclusion

We encourage our members to use common sense when considering their participation in activities that could be construed as partisan.  We encourage our members to follow their interests and passions and to do so as individuals, not as representatives of The Transition Network.