RETHINKING AIDS (RA) BYLAWS: THE GROUP FOR THE SCIENTIFIC REAPPRAISAL OF THE HIV HYPOTHESIS.
Revised September, 2011
This organization is officially named “The Rethinking AIDS Group”. Alternatively it can be referred to as “Rethinking AIDS”, or “RA” for short.
The specific purpose of “Rethinking AIDS” (RA) is to develop, promote and publicize verifiable scientific discourse on the definition, causation, prevention and treatments of AIDS.
RA, the Group for the Scientific Reappraisal of the HIV/AIDS Hypothesis, consists of a collective of independent, international scholars, physicians, writers, activists and scientific researchers united in their conviction that the mainstream of the medical community has failed to prove HIV is the cause of an ever changing constellation of diseases currently known as AIDS.
RA advocates that students, academics, physicians, scientists, government officials and the general public be encouraged to think critically and speak openly about all subjects related to HIV and AIDS, and believes that such discussions should be freely undertaken without fear of professional, social, political, economic, or criminal intimidation or harassment.
RA will encourage appropriately trained scientists and laboratories to undertake AIDS related research projects such as those approved at the Johannesburg conference in July 2000.
RA will identify and make public scientific research on HIV/AIDS that has been suppressed, censored or prevented.
There shall be three categories of members:
- Signatories, past and future, of the initial 1991 RA statement shall automatically be considered as “Members of the RA Group”.
- Signatories who make a financial contribution in support of RA’s aims that is at least as large as a membership fee set by the Board shall be referred to as "Voting Members” until the end of the calendar year of the payment, or until the end of the following year if the payment is made on or between June 1st and December 31st of any year.
- Signatories who have been or will be appointed to membership of the RA Board of Directors (BD) will be referred to as “Board Members” or “Directors”.
The following voting privileges are extended only to Voting Members and Board Members:
- The right to vote on any changes to the RA bylaws
- The right to vote for members of the Board of Directors
- The right to vote on any other issues as defined by the Board of Directors
Votes may be submitted in person at a meeting of RA using a method defined by the Board of Directors (e.g. by show of hands or secret ballot) or submitted electronically using a method defined by the Board of Directors (e.g. by sending an email or accessing a page on the RA website).
RA Board of Directors
The Board of Directors will include three paid Officers elected by the Board, namely: one President, one Treasurer, and one Webmaster. These three officers are elected by a two-thirds majority of the entire board for a renewable three-year term.
New members can be nominated by two current members of the Board. They will be appointed by a two-thirds majority vote of the entire board. The minimum number of board members is five. The maximum number is twenty-one.
All members of the Board of Directors shall personally certify that they have absolutely no conflict of interest, particularly through affiliation with any of the manufacturers of ARV drugs and/or of “HIV” tests.
A board member can be removed by a two-thirds vote of the entire Board.
Responsibilities of the President
- Represent RA in international debates and meetings related to the purpose of RA;
- Provide continuous advice and guidance to the RA Webmaster and Treasurer;
- Convene and chair one annual Board of Directors meeting providing notice of at least forty-five days;
- Lead fund-raising campaigns;
- Provide an annual summary of accomplishments and goals for the next year.
Responsibilities of the Treasurer
- Bookkeeping of all income and of all expenditures, and maintain RA assets to comply with local State and Federal requirements;
- Prepare an annual budget and financial report for presentation and approval during the annual Board of Directors meeting;
- Maintain a database of contributors and contributions;
- Handle all tax filings and communications with local, state and federal governments on fiscal matters.
Responsibilities of the Webmaster
- Continuously update the RA website, publicizing scientific and verifiable AIDS related information;
- Maintain and continuously update a database of all signatories, contributors and directors, referred to as the “RA Directory”;
- Proceed with emailings to RA Members, after approval by two members of the Board;
- Coordinate content with the PR Task Force and the President.
The RA Public Relation Task force (PRTF)
The PRTF shall have a maximum of four members. Its function shall be to communicate efficiently, by press releases to the media, RA views and positions on current developments and events related to AIDS science and to AIDS public policies. All press releases shall require the speedy approval of the Board of Directors. The Task Force may include members who are not on the RA Board of Directors.
Responsibilities of the Entire Board
- Identify appropriate “Correspondents” and delegate to them specific responsibilities to communicate with the media worldwide, as well as to regularly submit AIDS related remarks and comments for posting on the RA website. These Correspondents (Members of RA, but not necessarily members of the Board of Directors) will be geographically distributed worldwide, insuring the international composition of RA;
- Comply with the conflict of interest policy (when defined);
- Be available to engage in Public Relations (PR) activities for RA;
- Annually, the non-officer board members will review the performance of the President, Treasurer and Webmaster. A detailed report will be provided to the person holding the position being reviewed.
- The Board will review and approve the budget annually.
The Board of Directors of RA may nominate rethinkers of the HIV/AIDS theory who are highly respected for their non-scientific contributions to a Support Committee that will provide support and guidance to RA. The Support Committee may be chosen with the following constraints:
- The Support Committee shall have between 5 and 20 members.
- A member may be appointed and withdrawn by a vote of the Board of Directors and Voting Members.
- Decisions of the Support Committee are not binding on the Board of Directors or RA as a whole.
- The names and credentials of members of the Support Committee may be published on the RA website and in other publications of the organization.
The Support Committee may do the following:
- Appoint its own chairperson;
- Arrange its own meetings;
- Provide advice to the Board of Directors at any time;
- Consider issues remanded to it by the Board of Directors or by any member of RA;
- Request funding for administrative expenses such as conference calls;
- Publish documents on a section of the RA website reserved for it.
Sources of Funds
1) All people and organizations who support the aims of RA should be encouraged to become contributors.
- RA funds should only be used to further the aims of RA. Publishing books, producing films, organizing AIDS related conferences, fostering all possible internet communications, etc. are main examples (non exhaustive) of possible RA expenditures.
- Expenditures over US$1000 require the approval of a two-thirds majority of the entire Board.
The by-laws can be amended by a two-thirds vote of all those eligible to vote (Voting Members and Board Members).