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6. How many people will stand for election?

There is no limit to the number of election candidates each year.

Now that Council has completed the transition to the smaller number and different structure, either three or four members will retire each year depending at what stage the members joined RCVS Council in the transition cycle.

The new arrangements also introduce term limits (see below).

Over the last five elections, there has been an average of 11 candidates standing for Council.

Related FAQs

  • Those considering standing for election first need to secure nomination from two individuals who must be veterinary surgeons registered with the RCVS, but not current Council members.

    There is then paperwork for you to fill out, as well as paperwork for your nominees. Both can be found at www.rcvs.org.uk/rcvscouncil22, together with guidance notes.

    For you, there is a short form, which includes your name, qualifications, address, and other contact details.

    You are then asked to include a short (max 200 words) biography and (max 300 words) personal statement.

    You also need to send us a high-resolution digital image which will be used both on the RCVS website and on the secure voting website. Both of these will be made accessible to all voters.

    Meanwhile your proposers need to complete a form that asks for their name and Register information and you will also need to obtain electronic signatures from both.

    The paperwork needs to be submitted to Dawn Wiggins via email on d.wiggins@rcvs.org.uk at the RCVS by no later than 5pm on 31 January 2022.

    Please note that your nomination will require electronic signatures from you and your supporters. The best method would be to scan copies of the physical signatures and save them as electronic picture files (preferably Jpegs). These could then either be added in the relevant section of the nomination form or they could be attached to the email when you submit your paperwork. Either will be accepted.

  • No, you can be a non-practising or overseas-practising member, but you must be on the RCVS Register.

    1. Closing date for submission of nominations - 5pm, Monday, 31 January 2022
    2. Distribution of voting papers to members (approx.) - Week commencing Monday, 14 March 2022
    3. Closing date for receiving votes - 5pm, Friday, 22 April 2022
    4. Candidates informed of results - Monday, 25 April 2022
    5. New members join Council - Friday, 8 July 2022 (Royal College Day)

    *With the exception of the closing date for submission of nominations, dates are a guideline.

  • Following the introduction of the new governance arrangements RCVS Council, in the three years to July 2021, is transitioned to a size and structure comprising:

    • 13 elected veterinary surgeons
    • Three individuals appointed collectively by the eight UK veterinary schools
    • Six independently appointed lay persons
    • Two veterinary nurses elected or appointed by the Veterinary Nurses Council
  • Your statement needs to be legal, decent, honest and truthful.

    Links to websites etc. are not permitted in your biography or statement. (You may publish a link to a single campaigning website, for example a Facebook or Twitter account, in your contact details.)  Testimonials are not permitted in the biography section.

    We aim to publish exactly as submitted – which means that any typographical errors will also be included  - so do please double-check that you are happy with it before you send it to us.

    We ask that election statements do not include content that is defamatory or otherwise unlawful, or factually misleading. The Registrar may, in the absence of agreement with the candidate to amend the statement, either edit the election statement before circulating it or decide not to circulate it.

    The Code of Professional Conduct pertains to the publication of your statement, as much as any other element of your professional life.

    More detail about what to include in your statement is included in the ‘Information for candidates’.

  • Each term is a maximum of four years, although some Council members may retire early for personal reasons.

    The term of office remains at four years, but a maximum limit of three consecutive terms has been introduced. A mandatory two-year break is required before a person may stand again.

    Under the Code of Conduct for Council and Committee Members a mechanism is in place so that Council members may be investigated and potentially removed for issues relating to poor conduct/behaviour. 

  • This depends on the committees and working parties on which you are asked to sit. RCVS committees generally sit four times a year.

    The new smaller Council meets more frequently (usually six, but up to eight, times per year) allowing it to communicate more effectively with the profession and to make decisions in a more timely fashion.

    You may also be asked to join a working party on a particular issue, and there may be other College events and activities that you can attend on a voluntary basis.

    On average, therefore, successful candidates might expect to spend around 12-to-15 days a year on Council business in terms of formal meetings during their first year on Council. Additional time will be required to keep on top of emails, read paperwork etc.

    As your Council career develops, you may be required to take a more active role meaning that you may be expected to spend more than the average days a year on Council business, for example, if you become a Committee Chair or member of the Officer Team.

  • As the RCVS is currently in the process of moving out of its offices at Belgravia House, 62 – 64 Horseferry Road, Westminster we cannot guarantee at present where future meetings of RCVS Council will take place, although we are aiming to hold around 50% of these meetings virtually. However, more information about where the RCVS will be holding its committee and council meetings will be published in due course. 

    (Note: during the Covid-19 pandemic, the majority of meetings have been held virtually.)

  • Under the new governance arrangements the new smaller Council meets more frequently (likely six, but up to eight, times per year).

    In 2022, Council meetings are scheduled in January, March, June, July (RCVS Day), September and November. Committee meetings are four times per year in February, May, September, and November.

    Subcommittees and working parties meet on a more ad hoc basis, and it is sometimes possible to join by conference call/video conference.

  • We certainly try to be, both for staff and Council members. Council and Committee meetings are planned at least a year in advance, although additional meetings may be added at shorter notice. Generally, there are fewer meetings during the holiday periods because we follow an academic calendar. We also have baby-changing facilities on the premises.

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