February 2016 Trustee Minutes

Scottish Terrier Emergency Care Scheme

Held on 21st February 2016.

Chimney House Hotel, Congleton Road, Sandbach, Cheshire, CW11 4ST In attendance: Joy Gower, Karl Hahm, Linda Kennerley, Sheila Maw, Jennifer Rowland, Isla Reid, Nick Sanders, Gillian Simms.

Karl Hahm volunteered to take the minutes on behalf of Gillian Simms (co-opted secretary).

1. Apologies. Jim Clegg. Jim was unable to attend the meeting following an ankle injury.

2. Approval of the minutes from the previous meeting held on Sunday 18th October 2015.

Isla Reid raised an objection to the comments that had been included in the minutes. Isla asked for the comments to be removed from the minutes. Karl Hahm said that he was not prepared to remove the comments. His understanding of the Charity Commission guidelines (CC48) was that any trustee had the right to specifically request their opinion or facts supporting an agenda item, and which had been spoken in the meeting, to be minuted. Likewise Isla was entitled to add a postscript to the minutes if she was unhappy with any of the content. Any specific reference to a named individual would of course be redacted prior to the minutes being made available to the wider membership. After a brief discussion about the purpose of meeting minutes, Isla approved the minutes in her capacity as chairman, though she asked that the caveat that she was not happy with the comments be included. Sheila Maw said that, for the purpose of future meetings, she would look into the Charity Commission guidance and any other good practice for the recording of meeting minutes.

3. Chairman update and acknowledgement of resignation of Karen Clayton

Sheila Maw confirmed that she had received and acknowledged Karen Clayton’s formal resignation. Likewise Nick Sanders confirmed that he had received and acknowledged her formal resignation as the Welfare Co-ordinator for the Midlands.

Isla Reid wished to bring three matters to the attention of the trustees:

3.1 Member seriously ill

A long serving STECS member and benefactor was seriously ill with lung cancer and had also suffered a stroke. Isla had sent her a card on behalf of STECS.

3.2 Euthanasia of two dogs

Two young dogs had been handed in to Peter Duncan’s area (east Scotland). The two dogs were from the same litter and were seriously ill and disabled. Both the local veterinary practice and the STECS Officers had sadly agreed that the best thing for these poor dogs was to put them to sleep. This was not a decision taken lightly. There was no realistic possibility that their disabilities could be operated on and cured. Isla circulated the written report from a Veterinary Group. The dogs had been bred by a notorious puppy farm in Scotland. The breeder was not Kennel Club registered but was licensed by the Local Authority and is currently in business. After some discussion it was agreed that STECS should send a letter of concern to the Local Authority and copy in the SSPCA. Action: Isla Reid and Gillian Simms to write a letter of complaint/concern to the Local Authority cc the SSPCA.

3.3 Advice taken from the Charity Commission

Minutes from the last meeting (agenda item 4 refers):

“The Charity Commission had confirmed that it was within the powers of the remaining trustees to decide whether the rescindees should be allowed to retract their resignation”. Isla Reid asked on behalf of Jim Clegg whether the written advice received from the Charity Commission had been circulated to the trustees at the meeting on the 18th October 2015. This protocol had been agreed at a previous trustee meeting. Sheila Maw confirmed that the proper Charity Commission procedure had been followed and documented when requesting the advice. She had passed on the response to the meeting. However, the written response had not been circulated to the meeting. The previously agreed protocol for obtaining and using Charity Commission advice was noted by all.

4. Actions and matters arising from the previous meeting held on 18th October 2015

4.1 Anilog update: Roll out. (NS/GS) Inclusion of Membership details, SUSIE and Agria Insurance actions arising as previously agreed (JC)

Nick Sanders gave a general update on Anilog. Uptake by the welfare co-ordinators had not been successful for a variety of reasons – lack of compatible IT, lack of scanners, IT competency and a general reluctance to embrace new ways of working. These issues had not been foreseen when deciding to procure the system. Indeed Nick was the only person using the system. The SUSIE database (microchipping database) had been received from Shirley Evans. However, Nick had not copied it to Anilog as Shirley was not using Anilog. There was little point in adding the historical records if Shirley was not using the system. Karl Hahm wished to emphasise that he was not aware that an agreement had been made to include the members’ data base. He had specifically stated at the trustee meeting in January 2015 that there was no business case for adding the members’ database. The current database was linked to the cash book and Gift Aid schedules and if decoupled it would result in significant additional effort and/or duplication of keying. He certainly had neither the bandwith nor the inclination to take on additional work when it was unnecessary and added no value. A discussion took place to consider if Anilog should be abandoned. Nick Sanders wished to continue

for now, and continue pursuing take up by other Welfare Co-ordinators. Karl Hahm also said that it was likely that they would have to pay penalties if the contract was terminated before the three year expiry date. He would need to check the contractual agreement. A very brief discussion took place on adopting Agria Insurance. It was decided to defer any further discussion as the long term use of Anilog was now somewhat uncertain. Action: Progress update on the take up and delivered benefits of Anilog to be added to the agenda of the Autumn 2016 trustee meeting (Nick Sanders).

4.2 Progress on updating Welfare booklets including the adoption of dogs by trustees and welfare co-ordinators.

Nick Sanders circulated a latest copy of the Guidelines for Welfare Co-ordinators booklet. A section had been added which read: “You may wish to adopt a Scottie yourself and we ask that you contact the Welfare Officer if you wish to adopt a Scottie. Complete an Adoption Application and send it to the Welfare Officer”. Nick Sanders emphasised that the guidelines did not need the approval of the trustees before being issued to the welfare co-ordinators. Trustee approval was not a prerequisite as responsibility for drafting and issuing guidelines had already been delegated to the Welfare Officer by the trustees. Action closed.

4.3 Letter advising that her services are no longer needed and thank you gift to be sent to Karen Evans. Nick Sanders confirmed that a letter had been sent to Karen Evans. Likewise, Joy Gower confirmed that she had followed up Nick’s letter with a thank you present from the STECS merchandise stock. There has been no response from Karen Evans. Action closed.

4.4 Update on re-homing of Irish dogs. Confirmation of appointment of Northern Ireland Welfare Co-ordinator. Nick Sanders confirmed that Ian Hall-Keens had been appointed as welfare co-ordinator for Northern Ireland. His contact details had been added to the forthcoming Spring Newsletter and Nick would also get him added to the STECS website. Isla Reid advised the meeting that Bee Duffy (the Newsletter editor based in Northern Ireland) had recently been involved in a rehoming and may be interested in becoming a rehomer. She also considered that if Bee Duffy became more involved it may help aid her Newsletter editorial role, as she is both geographically and communication-wise separated from the main body of STECS. Action (1): Isla Reid to approach Bee Duffy and invite her to become a member of STECS.

Action (2): If she becomes a member Nick Sanders will invite her to become a rehomer.

4.5 Rehoming of dogs rescued from Scotland. Establish facts and lessons learned. Karl Hahm had requested that this item be included on the agenda. He explained why he felt it necessary to raise this matter. Action: Isla Reid to write to the person involved to confirm that the matter had been raised at the trustee meeting and to provide a written explanation of events.

4.6 Motion for removal of two members from STECS membership.

Karl Hahm clarified that the action he had been given at the previous meeting was to formulate a motion which specifically avoided naming the members involved. However, the Governing Document states that any Notices of Motion must include the full text of the motion to be moved. It was, therefore, in his opinion, not possible to do anything other than name them on the Agenda which would be included with the Newsletter. After some debate it was eventually agreed a motion to permanently exclude the members should be lodged at the next AGM. In particular, Isla Reid stressed that an expectation had been set last year at the AGM and she did not feel that STECS could back down. Action: Isla Reid to raise the motion on behalf of the Governing Body to exclude the members in two separate motions and lodge them with Sheila Maw before midnight on Saturday 26th March 2016. It was not discussed who would second these motions.

4.7 Review and agree content to be included in the Spring 2016 Newsletter.

Isla stated that in celebration of the 40th year of STECS she was proposing to invite readers to send in regional recipes (for both human and canine consumption) with the intent of producing a STECS cook book. She was hoping to arrange these recipes on a regional basis similar to the re-homing areas. She invited all Trustees and Welfare Co-ordinators to submit recipes from their own area. She would put an article in the forthcoming newsletter. The potential articles for the Newsletter had been circulated to the attendees in advance of the meeting to give them sufficient time to read beforehand. Each trustee then voted for the six articles they thought most appropriate. Karl Hahm would send these to Bee Duffy, the editor, and request that she includes as many as she could, working down the ranking list. Karl would now pass back responsibility for overseeing the Newsletter to Isla Reid (see item 13 in the minutes). It was agreed that Isla Reid would produce an advert for Northern Scots and Joy Gower would produce an advert for the Somerset Fun Day and send these direct to Bee Duffy. No decision was made as to who would write the advert for the Garden Party. Printed copies of the Newsletter would need to be delivered to Karl Hahm by Thursday 24th March to enable sufficient time to envelope and despatch over the Easter weekend. Joy Gower agreed to organise the printing via Stuart Platt. There are approximately 800 subscribing households. Therefore, the print run should be restricted to 1,000 copies.

4.8 International 2017 Breed Conference

Further details of the Breed Conference had been received from Anne Dauncey. Sheila Maw read out the proposed programme. The conference would take place over three days from Saturday 4th March 2017 to Monday 6th March 2017. The venue is the Royal Court Hotel in Coventry. Anne had left a space on the Monday for STECS to present a talk about their charitable work. The trustees agreed

that Sheila Maw should contact Anne Dauncey direct to firm up the participation from STECS. Action: Sheila Maw to contact Anne Dauncey and agree the involvement and contribution from STECS.

5. Clarification regarding the role and authority of the Welfare Officer

Jim Clegg had asked for this matter to be added to agenda. Nick Sanders believed that part of the background to this to be from a recent email exchange with Jim Clegg. Nick Sanders circulated a document summarising his job description and responsibilities. This had also been circulated at the previous trustee meeting and no issues or comments had been raised. The document encapsulated the responsibilities and authority of the Welfare Officer that had been agreed by the trustees in 2009, when the role of the Welfare Officer had been created. A discussion took place as to whether Nick Sanders had the authority to dismiss a Welfare Co-ordinator. To conclude the discussion Nick stated that he was more than happy for the trustees to review the responsibilities and authority of the Welfare Officer and the role of the Welfare Committee. Action: Review of the Welfare Officer and Welfare Committee roles to be added to the Autumn 2016 trustee meeting agenda (Nick Sanders).

6. Breed Award

The full Agenda item read “Breed Award – This item as originally raised by Jim Clegg not Jennifer Rowland and, therefore, is returned to the agenda as unresolved”. This matter was raised by Jennifer Rowland (following an offer of funding by Jim Clegg) in a communication sent to Isla Reid. It had first been discussed at the January 2015 trustee meeting. Jennifer confirmed that she no longer wished to pursue it as the breed clubs had recently benefited from a large legacy. Matter closed and no further action.

7. Welfare Officer Update – Governing Body to be updated regarding the current position of STECS re-homers.

This matter had been largely covered in agenda item 5. It was, however, agreed that some Welfare Co-ordinator’s areas were geographically very large. It would be helpful if some areas could be reduced by having more Welfare Co-ordinators. It was agreed to include an article in the Autumn 2016 Newsletter to invite more volunteers to become Welfare Co-ordinators. Action: Linda Kennerley and Nick Sanders to produce an article/advert for the Autumn 2016 Newsletter.

8. Co-option of trustees

Isla Reid reminded the trustees that the Governing Document stated that the number of trustees and officers shall be 12. Following the resignation of Karen Clayton a vacancy had arisen which needed to be filled by the trustees co-opting another person to join the Governing Body. She suggested that (assuming at least five people apply to become a trustee at the next AGM) that the fifth placed candidate be co-opted. If there is no application for the Secretary position this will be discussed at the trustee meeting immediately prior to the AGM on 24th April 2016. This was agreed unanimously.

9. Scottish rescue dogs. A final review

Nick Sanders asked why this item had been added to the agenda. It had been discussed and closed at the previous meeting. He did not want to discuss it again. Notwithstanding Isla Reid went on to state that it remained her opinion that mistakes were made and compounded by the later registration of the Scottie with the Kennel Club. After a lengthy discussion the trustees agreed that the Welfare community should ensure that pedigree records are never passed on to new owners and that STECS dogs are never registered with the Kennel Club breed register.

10. Confidentiality

Gillian Simms had been asked by Cath Marchbank to raise this issue. STECS had agreed to take in a number of dogs from a breeder. The details of which were then revealed to a member of STECS. This leak of confidentiality is believed to have been from a Re-homing Officer. Nick Sanders had subsequently dealt with this and spoken to the Re-homer involved. It was agreed that trustees, welfare co-ordinators and re-homers should remain professional and not discuss sensitive matters. Nick Sanders and Linda Kennerley should stress this to the welfare community. Sheila Maw raised another example of a breach of confidentiality. Another Re-homer had apparently passed on the details of the original breeder to a member who had adopted a dog. Nick and Linda were, therefore, asked to reiterate to the Welfare Co-ordinators that the original owners should not be told who the new owner is and vice versa.

11. AGM 2016

The closing date for nominations and motions to be included on the AGM Agenda is Saturday 26th March. Karl Hahm said he would, therefore, arrange a telephone conference on the Sunday with Sheila Maw, Gillian Simms and Isla Reid. The purpose of the call would be to check the membership status of the trustee applicants, together with their proposers and seconders. Karl wanted to finalise the agenda as quickly as possible so that he could start printing it and despatching the Newsletters. A discussion took place regarding the possible exclusion of the two STECS members. Action: Isla Reid to prepare the case regarding the proposed exclusion.

12. Events

Joy Gower confirmed that the Somerset Fun Day and Christmas Party had been booked. Isla Reid confirmed that Northern Scots had been booked. Cath Marchbank had offered two dates for the Garden Party – either 13th August or 20th August. Those trustees who expressed a preference preferred the 13th. Gillian Simms would advise Cath accordingly. It was agreed that Joy Gower would issue the tickets and receive the draw money for the Garden Party. Karl Hahm would issue the tickets

for Northern Scots. Karl Hahm had received a letter from a member enquiring if an event could be held in East Anglia. It was agreed that he should reply and invite them to find a location and contact Joy Gower. Joy Gower asked if the trustees thought Karen Clayton would be prepared to organise the Christmas Party. Linda Kennerley advised that Karen had already been asked and had declined. Nevertheless Joy would still ask her. Action: Karl Hahm to write to member in East Anglia (Mrs Ives) and ask her to contact Joy Gower and use her local knowledge to find a potential venue. Action: Joy Gower to write to Karen Clayton to ask if she would be prepared to host the Christmas Party.

13. Distribution of specific trustee responsibilities

There was insufficient time left to discuss this matter. It was, therefore, agreed to carry forward to the Autumn 2016 meeting. Isla Reid had raised the agenda item and she wished to revisit and update the trustee duties that had been agreed at the September 2014 meeting. These were:

Jim Clegg: Health and Safety and Risk Management

Event planning, training of volunteers, use of equipment, and training for using equipment. Written guidelines for STECS helpers at events, first aid planning at events, general animal welfare at events, and exit strategies in the event of emergencies at events.

Nick Sanders: Risk Management

Insurance, vehicle and domestic, appropriate equipment when transporting dogs, written guidance for home checks, and re-homing procedures.

Isla Reid: Communications

All Media Communications. Communications with other volunteers and re-homers within STECS and other rescue organisations, liaison with other dog charities, kennels, and rescue organisations, pet owners, and breed clubs. Co-ordination of the newsletter, the website and Facebook.

Joy Gower: Marketing

Sheila Maw: Advertising.

It was agreed that STECS would not permit any ‘outside’ advertising of any kind, subject to a regular review by the Trustees. It was also agreed that members may be permitted to advertise using STECS media outlets, subject to approval by the Trustee responsible for advertising. Any possible conflict of interest would be referred to the Governing Body for consideration and approval.

14. STECS eBay charity account

Joy Gower gave an overview of the eBay Charity account. The seller decides exactly what percentage of the final selling price they would like to give to the charity and what percentage they would like to keep for themselves. The seller also decides what charity they would like to support. An eBay Charity listing is the same as any other eBay listing, except for the blue and yellow eBay for Charity ribbon in the search results. The chosen charity’s mission statement and logo is also shown in the listing. This means the listing can be seen by everyone who searches through eBay.co.uk. It’ll also get extra visibility through the eBay for Charity pages. Every time an item is listed for charity, the seller will get a fee credit on their basic insertion and final value fees equal to the percentage they donate. So if they donate 50% of the selling price to a charity, eBay will waive 50% of the fees. The trustees agreed that it would be beneficial if STECS subscribed to an eBay charity account. Action: Joy Gower to follow up and set up a STECS eBay charity account.

15. 2015 Financial Accounts

The treasurer, Karl Hahm, had distributed the draft accounts for 2015 prior to the meeting. There were no questions.

16. Any Other Business

Nick Sanders stated that he would like to include a review of the financial spending limits currently delegated to the Welfare Committee as part of the review of the Welfare Officer’s role and authority. This to be added to the Autumn 2016 agenda.


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