1987-88 Annual General Meeting

The seventh Annual General Meeting took place in the Combination Room of Trinity College, University of Toronto, on Saturday afternoon 7 May 1988. The meeting opened with the President’s report which is reproduced above.

The Executive Vice-President, John Dove, stated his belief that the past year will prove to have been a turning point in the development of Science for Peace, with possible significant influence on the whole peace movement in Canada. He cited in particular the changes designed to make Science for Peace a more truly national organization. He also stressed the importance of expanding work on scientific issues related to peace through activities such as the nuclear winter workshop and study of plutonium overflights on satellite monitoring and verification. Dr. Dove then reviewed several organizational changes that had taken place, in particular the increased use of electronic mail (encouraged by Phil Ehrensaft), and the computerization of the Bulletin, membership lists and financial information. He paid tribute to the many people who had contributed to the work of the organization, and expressed special appreciation of his association with his colleagues on the Executive, George Ignatieff, John Valleau and Lynn Trainor.

As Conference Co-ordinator, John Dove then spoke about the Arctic Conference to be held in Toronto on 26-28 October 1988, sponsored jointly with CIIPS. This will bring together experts from countries bordering the Arctic, with special emphasis on the participation of native peoples, to discuss ways of replacing military confrontation with international cooperation on scientific and technical projects.

The Treasurer’s report (John Valleau) was not final because not all Chapters had yet sent in their year end statements. (The final report will be available later from the National Office.) The financial margin is narrow, a balance of $2,000 on a total cash flow of $80,000. Because of increasing needs and higher costs a new fee structure has been recommended. Dr. Valleau emphasized that an increase in membership is desirable in any case. He also paid tribute to the work of his Executive colleagues and to the Assistant Treasurer, Maureen Kapral.

In his report as Research Director, Paul LeBlond reviewed the wide range of activities engaged in by members of Science for Peace. He mentioned particularly the meeting of regional Directors held jointly with the Education Directors in Toronto last September. Requests approved for sponsorship during the year included one from Walter Dorn entitled “Canada and Space-based International Verification and Monitoring” and one from Stephen Salaff entitled, “Article of Appreciation on Hans Blumenfeld.” Dr. LeBlond announced that pressures of work were forcing him to relinquish the position of Director of Research.

The essential content of the Publications Director’s report appears elsewhere in this issue.

A revised version of the by-laws (available from the National Office) was adopted. John Valleau stated that the intent was to reflect previous changes and current practice which had been approved but not formally incorporated. Six changes could be considered substantive:

  1. Maximum number of Board Members increased from 50 to 60.
  2. Executive increased from 3 to 4 by adding an Executive Vice-President
  3. Setting out explicit limits to the actions of the Executive
  4. Recognition of establishment of the Advisory Council
  5. Explicit recognition of Chapters
  6. Removal of possibility of corporate membership

A Nominating Committee consisting of Brian Turrell (Chair), John Dove and Janet Wood was elected for 1988-89 and was directed to try to redress the imbalances between male and female, and anglophone and francophone, on the Board.

Janet Wood drew attention to the May 24 evening meeting in Guelph of members from the south-central Ontario chapters. This is expected to be the first of a series which will continue next autumn. Eric Fawcett drew attention to the meetings of the World Council on Peace, 27-31 May 1988, which he will attend. Also discussed were: the relationship of Science for Peace to the various professional societies; and a new UN initiative: “Global Cooperation for a Better World”.

The AGM concluded with the suggestion by Derek Paul that if each member of Science for Peace were to agree to try to bring in one additional member, our membership would be substantially increased and our finances much improved.

Lynn Trainor