Glossary | Organizations | RFSL Ungdom
Glossary | Organizations
Last updated 2023-06-02

What does plenary meeting mean? What differs acclimation from voting? Non-profit associations such as RFSL Ungdom have developed many rules and techniques to make annual meetings and congresses as democratic as possible. Here are some keywords that are good to know! Each word has a short definition and the Swedish term.


Abstain to vote | Avstå
When you decide not to vote during voting.

Acclamation | Acklamation
Voting by stating “Yes.” The meeting’s chairperson reads out the proposals and listens for which suggestion receives the most votes. If you think the chairperson misheard, you should request another type of voting before the meeting moves on.

Addition | Tilläggsyrkande
Amendment to add a that-clause to a suggestion.

Adjourn, to | Ajournera
The meeting decides to take a break and continue negotiations at a later time.

Adjust | Ändringsyrkande
Amendment to adjust a that-clause in a suggestion.

Adjust the electoral roll | Justera röstlängden 
To update the electoral roll so it includes everyone with voting rights who is attending the meeting. The electoral roll is adjusted when the meeting begins, when negotiations resume, and upon request.

Agenda | Dagordning
List of points that we will process during the meeting. The statutes determine which points the annual meeting and congress will discuss.

Annual meeting | Årsmöte
Highest decision-making body of a district. All members gather on the annual meeting to discuss and make decisions regarding the coming operational year.

Annual report | Verksamhetsberättelse
A report of what the organization did during the previous operational year.

Approve, to | Bifall
To vote yes to a suggestion. Opposite to reject.

Attester | Justerare
A person elected to read the protocol in advance to ensure that it is correct. Attesters at annual meetings are usually elected to be tellers as well.

Auditor | Revisor
A person who is elected to examine the board’s work and the organizations economy during the operational year.

Audit report | Revisionsberättelse
A report of the auditor’s examination and a recommendation to the annual meeting if the board should be granted discharge from liability. Sometimes called the auditors’ report or the auditor’s statement.


Balance sheet | Balansräkning
A summary that shows the organization’s assets and debts.

Board | Styrelse
A group of representatives that are responsible for the districts operations and economy, but also represent the district outwards. The board is the districts highest decision-making body between annual meetings.

Board member | Ledamot
A person who is elected to the board. The term is sometimes used to refer to board members who are not chair persons, treasurer, or secretary.

Bring up suggestion | Lyfta förslag
In some meetings, you need to bring up suggestions for the voting. You may bring up your suggestions and withdrawn suggestions.

Budget | Budget
Plan for estimated earnings and expenses during the upcoming financial year. Budgets are often used for events and projects as well.


Close the debate | Streck i debatten
If you think a debate is idling without any new arguments, you may request to close the debate. If the request is granted, everyone with the right to speak may request the word one last time. You cannot add yourself to the speaker’s list once the debate has been closed. The meeting will go to vote when the speaker’s list is empty.

Co-opt, to | Adjungera
The annual meeting decides if non-members shall have the right to attend, to speak and to propose at the meeting.

Conflict of interests | Jäv
When a person has a personal interest in a particular issue that may affect their judgment. A person with a personal interest shall abstain from voting in the specific question.

Congress | Kongress
The highest decision-making body in RFSL Ungdom. The district’s representatives gather during the congress to review the work we did last year and decide what we will do this year. The congress discuss and vote on suggestions that has been sent in. It will also elect people for the national board, auditors, and nominating committee.

Counter-proposition voting | Kontrapropositionsvotering
A voting method when the meeting need to rule out one suggestion from several opposed ones. The suggestions are pitted against each other in pairs until one remains.


Decision procedure | Beslutsordning
In which order the meeting will vote on suggestions.

Decision protocol | Beslutsprotokoll
A protocol that only records the decisions of the meeting.

Deputy | Ersättare
Someone who is elected to replace another representative in case the latter must leave their position. For example, a representative that cannot attend the congress may have their position taken by a deputy.

Discharge of liability | Ansvarsfrihet
The meeting decides to approve the board’s work last financial year based on annual reports, financial statements, and the auditors’ report. The meeting may choose to refuse discharge if the board has violated Swedish law or RFSL Ungdom’s statutes, or otherwise seriously damaged the federation’s interests. No one in the board may be re-elected at the meeting if the discharge of liability is refused.

Discussion protocol | Diskussionsprotokoll
A protocol that records both discussions and decisions.

Discussion square | Påverkanstorg
A form of pre-discussion where the representatives visit different stations to discuss motions and propositions. Every station has people who can answer questions and help write amendments. The purpose with discussion squares is the ease discussions in plenary meetings and combine similar proposals that have the strongest support from the representatives.


Elected position | Förtroendeuppdrag
A task or role within the organization.

Elected representative | Förtroendevald
A collective name for everyone who has been elected to a position in the organization.

Electoral roll | Röstlängd
List of all participants at the meeting who have the right to vote. Sometimes called a vote roll.


Federation | Förbund
The national assembly of members, districts, and activist groups.

Financial statement | Bokslut
A summary of the previous financial year includes an income statement and balance sheet.

Formalities | Formalia
The first points of the agenda that the meeting processes before the reports from the previous years.

Fund | Fond
Money that we allocated for a specific purpose


Inaugural meeting | Konstituerande möte
The board’s first meeting of the operational year after the annual or general meeting. At the inaugural meeting, the board agrees on how they should work together and who is responsible for what. It is common to have a handover and/or kick-off in connection with the meeting.

Income statement | Resultaträkning
Summary of all profits and losses during a financial year.


Meeting chairperson | Mötesordförande
Someone who is elected to lead the meeting, ensures everyone gets to speak, and answer questions. There are usually two chairpersons who help each other at the congress.

Meeting secretary | Mötessekreterare
Someone who is elected to record the meeting in a protocol. There are usually two secretaries who help each other at the congress.

Membership list | Medlemsregister
Record over all members in an organization. The member registry shows contact information and how the members wish to be contacted. Handling of our list is regulated by EU:s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) and our policy of integrity.

Minority report | Reservation
A note in the protocol where you may reject a decision the meeting made and what you believe the meeting should have decided. Several people can write a joint minority report.

Motion | Motion
Written suggestions from members that the annual meeting or congress will process. Motions can focus on what the organization should do, our political opinions, and updates in steering documents. The board must always include the motions in the papers. Several people can write a joint motion.


Nominate, to | Nominera
To propose someone else for an elected position to the nomination committee. If you nominate yourself, one can say that you run for office.

Nomination committee | Valberedning
A group of people who are elected to prepare a proposal of candidates for the next annual ordinary meeting.

Nomination committee’s report | Valberedningens berättelse
A report of the nomination committee’s work during the previous operational year. Sometimes the report also contains an analysis of the organization’s current state, challenges, and needs.

Nomination committee’s proposal | Valberedningens förslag
A list of candidates running for positions of trust.

Non-profit organization | Ideell förening
An organization that is not driven by profit interest. The organization’s members are instead motivated by helping others, making a difference, and creating a better world. 


Observer | Observatör
Non-representative members who attends the congress. Observers have the right to attend, to speak and to propose, but not the right to vote.

Operational plan | Verksamhetsplan
A plan for what the board will do until the next ordinary annual meeting. Sometimes called a work plan.


Papers | Handlingar
A document that the board sends out to all members before the annual meeting. The papers contain the annual report, financial statements, the auditors’ report, suggestions on an action plan and budget, propositions, motions, and the nomination committee’s proposal.

Plenary meeting | Plenum
When all participants have gathered for debate and votings. Sometimes called whole group gathering.

Point of information | Sakupplysning
You may request a point of information to inform the meeting of a relevant fact or point out an error in a debate. Point of information breaks the speaker’s list: the chairperson decides if the request for factual information should be granted. The information must be concise and not contain any arguments.

Point of order | Ordningsfråga
Point of order is questions regarding the meeting format, such as decision procedure, asking for clarification, or requests. Point of order is prioritized to the speakers’ list.

Praxis | Praxis
How an organization usually handles situations that are not covered by regulatory documents. We sometimes use the term common practice.

Preparation committee | Beredningsutskott
The annual meeting chose a group of people to work on specific issues. The committee can write a press release, prepare elections or propose adjustments. The meeting decides to either approve or reject the committee’s proposal.

Presidium | Presidium
A formal word for the meeting chairperson, meeting secretary, attester and teller. The presidiums role is to lead the meeting, answer questions and ensure that everyone follows rules of procedure. The presidium have no right to vote.

Proposal | Yrkande
Suggestions that participants submit during discussions. You can propose to add, adjust or reject a that-clause.

Proposition | Proposition
Suggestions that the board send in to the annual meeting.

Protocol | Protokoll
Written records that compile a meeting.

Postpone, to | Bordlägga
To delay an item on the agenda to later or to a future meeting.


Qualified majority | Kvalificerad majoritet
When a suggestion receives two-thirds or more of the votes.


Reconcile, to | Jämka sig
When one withdraws or change their suggestion so it coincide with another suggestion.

Refusal | Avslagsyrkande
An amendment to reject a that-clause in a suggestion.

Reject, to | Avslag
To vote against a suggestion. Opposite to approval.

Relative majority | Relativ majoritet
When most vote on the same suggestion. Commonly used when there are three or more suggestions that stand against each other.

Reply | Replik
If someone misunderstands you, asks you a question, or mentions you in a debate, you may request a reply to answer the person. A reply breaks the speaker’s list: the chairperson decides if they should grant your request.

Representative | Ombud
Members who have been elected to represent their district at the congress. Representatives have the right to attend, to speak, to propose and to vote. Representatives are expected to represent their district, read the papers and be active participants during the proceedings.

Request to speak | Begära ordet
When you ask to speak in a debate. Sometimes called add yourself to the speaker’s list.

Respond to a motion | Motionssvar
A written comment in the papers where the board comments the motion. The response often include a suggestion for the meeting to approve or reject the motion. The board may also suggest additional amendments, or consider the motion to be answered.

Revision | Revidering
When the secretary corrects or otherwise changes a text afterward. The meeting decides whether a revision should be approved or rejected.

Right to attend | Närvarorätt
The right to attend a meeting. All members have the right to attend the congress and the districts annual meetings.

Right to propose | Förslagsrätt
The right to submit motions before and make amendments during a meeting. Members have the right to propose on the districts annual meetings, while representatives have the right to propose on the congress.

Right to speak | Yttranderätt
The right to participate in discussions during a meeting. All members have the right to speak at congresses and the district‘s annual meetings.

Right to vote | Rösträtt
The right to vote during elections. All members have the right to vote at their district’s annual meeting. At the congress, only representatives, the national board, and the national nomination committee have the right to vote. The board may not vote on discharge from liability or election of auditors.

Rostrum | Talarstol
The place where members debate in the plenary meeting. it may be a standing desk, a podium or a small stage.

Rules of procedure | Procedurregler
Common rules for the meeting proceedings. The rules often states who has the right to attend, to speak, to propose and to vote, as well as rules for discussions and votings.

Run for election, to | Kandidera
When a person runs for an elected position. You may also say that you nominate yourself for the position.


Secret ballot | Sluten omröstning
An election where all votes are anonymous. Secret ballots often use apps, online services, or special ballot papers. The tellers are responsible to control the ballot papers. Secret ballots are most commonly used when there are several candidates to one elected position.

Simple majority | Enkel majoritet
When a suggestion receives more than half of the votes. Commonly used when there are one or two suggestions at a voting.

Speakers’ list | Talarlista
List of everyone who request to speak in a debate. The presidium is responsible for creating and following the list. Sometimes called list of speakers.

An abbreviation for sexual and reproductive health and rights.

Statutes | Stadga
The rules of an organization that explain our purpose, structure, and working methods. RFSL Ungdom has a federal statute for the national level: all districts have their statutes for the local level.

Suggestion | Förslag
A collective term for motions, propositions, and proposals. A suggestion may contain one or more that-clause.


Take yourself off | Stryka sig
When someone wish to withdraw from the speakers’ list. When the meeting’s chairperson read your name, you signal your withdrawal by shaking your head or slide your index finger across your throat.

Teller | Rösträknare
A person who is elected to count votes at votings during the meeting. Tellers at annual meetings are usually elected to be attesters as well. Sometimes called vote tellers.

Term of office | Mandatperiod
The length of time a representative serves in an elected position. A term usually lasts between two ordinary annual meetings or until the person leaves his elected position.

That-Clause | Att-sats
The core demand in an amendment, motion, or proposition. It is the that-clauses that are in focus during all votings.

Time limit | Tidsbegränsning
You can request a time limit if the meeting is running short on time. If the meeting approves the suggestion, the presidium will take time on all speakers and have the right to interrupt when their time runs out.


Unanimous | Enhälligt
When a suggestion receives all votes.


Voting card | Röstkort
Personal card which is distributed to all participants who have the right to vote at the congress. The card is used during votings and to ask a point of order.


Withdraw suggestion | Dra tillbaka förslag
If you regret your suggestion, you may withdraw it. The meeting will not vote on a withdrawn suggestion. However, someone else might lift the suggestion for voting if they wishes to.