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Rotary and Politics


The issues of politics and public policy can easily find their way into Rotary as most Rotarians by their nature are involved and engaged in the business and political lives of their communities both across the street and around the globe.  While encouraged to be involved personally, as Rotarians and within Rotary clubs, we put aside our differences and focus on those things that bind us together - Service Above Self

To help guide us, Rotary International has provided a framework in the Manual of Procedure, through policy and by placing clear guidance in the Standard Rotary Club Constitution that governs all Rotary clubs around the globe.  Excerpts are included here for your review:


From The 2007 Rotary International Manual of Procedure - Part 1 - The Rotary Club page 24



Rotary and Politics 
RI and its member clubs must refrain from issuing partisan political statements. Rotarians are prohibited from adopting statements with a view to exerting any corporate pressure on governments or political authorities. However, it is the duty of Rotarians

1) In their clubs, to keep under review political developments in their own communities and throughout the world insofar as they affect service to their vocations and communities as well as the pursuit of the Rotary objective of world understanding and peace. They are expected to seek reliable information through balanced programs and discussions so that members can reach their own conclusions after a fair, collective examination of the issues.

2) Outside their clubs, to be active as individuals in as many legally constituted groups and organizations as possible to promote, not only in words but through exemplary dedication, the awareness of the dignity of all people and the respect of the consequent human rights of the individual.
(89-134; RCP 2.100.)


From the Standard Rotary Club Constitution



Article 13 Community, National, and International Affairs

Section 1 — Proper Subjects. The merits of any public question involving the general welfare of the community, the nation, and the world are of concern to the members of this club and shall be proper subjects of fair and informed study and discussion at a club meeting for the enlightenment of its members in forming their individual opinions. However, this club shall not express an opinion on any pending controversial public measure.

Section 2 — No Endorsements. This club shall not endorse or recommend any candidate for public office and shall not discuss at any club meeting the merits or demerits of any such candidate.

Section 3 — Non-Political.

(a) Resolutions and Opinions. This club shall neither adopt nor circulate resolutions or opinions, and shall not take action dealing with world affairs or international policies of a political nature.

(b) Appeals. This club shall not direct appeals to clubs, peoples, or governments, or circulate letters, speeches, or proposed plans for the solution of specific international problems of a political nature.