Article V: Membership
Preliminary Statement: Given that the UFOP is composed by and for the members, it is herein stated the composition and behavior of said membership is of the HIGHEST CONCERN to the UFOP and that concerns so related are of primary importance. It is SPECIFICALLY desired that at no time shall the membership act in a way which avoids, nullifies or offends this CONSTITUTION or any part of it.
It is also SPECIFICALLY noted that, left unchecked, clandestine operation of multiple identities may allow artificial collection and use of power to affect the UFOP and its members, and, to the extent possible given considerations of due process and fairness, such practices are to be strictly proscribed by this article and relevant articles.
- The UFOP shall be open to membership by any person of any race, color, national origin, form of birth, genetic heritage or native language, culture, religion, creed, sex, gender identity (including gender expression), sexual orientation, age, disability or health status, marital status, family/parental status, or educational level, provided that they meet and satisfy, and continue to satisfy, the criteria of admission and performance herein related and otherwise established in documents not inconsistent with this CONSTITUTION, such as by-laws or administrative regulations.
- Membership shall formally begin after a candidate shall have completed a training period conducted by a designated training officer and obtained the rank of ensign. Whatever the source of the contact with the UFOP, the member candidate must complete whatever application forms are applicable and complete the training to be deemed an active member in good standing and to avail themselves of the rights, privileges and responsibilities of membership.
- All UFOP members shall have a rank at all times, though they may serve in capacities other than officers on vessels or installations, or may perform administrative tasks of various types. Such officers shall be, regardless of rank or station, members in good standing. If for whatever reason a member desires an identity regarded as “civilian” that person shall still carry an unused but official rank as they continue to participate. (i.e.- a civilian engineer character may be a Lt. or a Commander for purposes of determining their rights, disciplinary issues, etc.)
- Such a member may petition the EC for status as an inactive member in good standing or as a non-stationed member in good standing, in which case said member shall be entitled to all the rights, benefits and privileges of membership until their status changes.
- An inactive member in good standing is one for whom various conditions are present which prevent active participation in the UFOP at certain times. Such an inactive period may extend for up to one standard year from the date it begins; before such a time period lapses, the member shall inform his commanding officer (and through said officer the EC) of whether he wishes for the period to continue, alter or end. If no such contact is so initiated by the expiration of one standard year from the official start date of the inactive period, the member shall be deemed to have resigned from the UFOP and re-admission shall proceed in accord with article V, section 12. If the contact is made, the member’s wishes shall be honored without impairment absent good cause for otherwise, at the discretion of the commanding officer and with due regard to this CONSTITUTION. However, the only thing preserved by inactive status in good standing is rank and placement on a vessel, not a particular position on any said vessel.
- A non-stationed member in good standing is one for whom various conditions are present which prevent full participation in the UFOP as either a member of a vessel or installation or as an active administrative member (ie, a nonassigned Lt who assists the Admiral in charge of training but does not also serve on a crew). Such status may begin, alter and end as described in section 5, above.
- Nothing in this article shall be deemed to preempt those portions of this CONSTITUTION which shall apply to dealing with the real people attached to character and officer ranks.
- No real person who maintains a member identity within the UFOP shall maintain an active character on more than two ships at any given time, under any circumstances whatsoever. If such a condition is discovered the primary character identity of the member shall be disciplined in accord with relevant articles of this CONSTITUTION. No person shall have more than one active character of the rank of captain or higher at any given time. No real person may ever have more than one character of “flag” rank, irrespective of active or not active status. The only exception to this section is related in section 9.
- From time to time, vessel command needs or administrative needs or simulation conditions may require the “creation” of a character identity of whatever rank is necessary to deal with said condition. If the member so creating already maintains two active character identities on two ships, the third shall be made known to all full captains and flag officers immediately. The character so created shall specifically be deemed temporary and shall cease operation as soon as is practicable given the needs which created it. In no event shall it ever be passed to another player or inherited. The matter of secondary civilian or familial characters on a ship shall be left to the sound discretion of the captain or acting captain, which discretion shall neither be abused nor be exercised in a manner inconsistent with this CONSTITUTION.
- In no event shall a character identity be passed from one real person to another real person of lesser rank other than a temporary basis, such as where a real person is retiring from service and wishes another real person to assume the character. Such transfers must meet with the approval of the captain or acting captain. Said new real person may create a related character and in all ways call attention to that relationship between the new and old characters if so desired. The intent of this section is to prevent a real person from inheriting a rank beyond that currently attained or held by his highest ranking character.
- A member character or real person may be disciplined up to and including expulsion in accord with other articles of this CONSTITUTION. While acknowledging that the nature of the UFOP and the manner in which it functions day to day cannot effectively prevent such people from re-entering the group under a different identity, such practice is undesirable and considered dishonest in the extreme. If such is discovered and brought to the attention of the relevant arms of the UFOP, such SHALL be cause for immediate discipline irrespective of the conduct of said person otherwise. If the real person who, having been expelled or deemed “forced retired” for whatever reason, wishes to re-enter the UFOP, they must do so in accord with section 12, below, not by clandestine creation of an apparently unrelated identity.
- A member expelled for cause or deemed retired by operation of sections 5 and 6 above shall at all times have the opportunity to place before the EC either directly or indirectly, however practicable, a petition for re-entry, which shall contain in addition to any other information offered an explanation of why the reasons resulting in the earlier termination have either ceased or shall not repeat themselves. The EC shall act on the petition within 20 calendar days and resolve the matter by majority vote. In such vote, the commanding officer of the petitioner at the time of his leaving the UFOP shall also have a vote. If said commanding officer is not available, any commanding officer who wishes to do so may comment upon said petition but shall not take part in the vote. The EC must make every effort to identify and inform said officers of this opportunity. A majority of EC members (including the commanding officer) must vote for the vote to be binding, and a majority in favor will effect reinstatement of the petitioner. The petitioning member shall be notified of the decision in writing within five days of the issuance of same, either directly or by the most expedient method available. The reinstatement, if allowed, may be full reinstatement of the character at the departing rank, a lower rank, or as a new character identity, as the EC dictates in its discretion.
- When a real person properly maintains more than one character of differing ranks, the real person, for purposes of voting and in all other matters shall be deemed to have the higher of the several ranks.
- Nothing in this section shall limit the right of a captain to destroy or otherwise eliminate a second character on the same ship when discovered if heretofore concealed.
- A member in good standing may apply at any time for a transfer to a new ship by submitting the proper transfer form to the Fleet Placement Officer. The act itself of applying for transfer shall have no effect on a member's placement on his current ship or his standing and rights as enjoyed in UFOP and under the CONSTITUTION. The Fleet Placement Officer will process a transfer request through careful deliberation and consultation with the commanding officer of the requested ship.
- If the transfer request is approved, the member shall be transferred to the receiving ship.
- If the commanding officer of the requested ship denies the transfer request, the member may withdraw the request for transfer, apply for transfers to other ships, or ask that the Fleet Placement Officer attempt to find a placement for him on any ship in the fleet.
- If the commanding officers of the remaining ships in the fleet deny the transfer request or the Fleet Placement Officer is unable to find an option on another ship that satisfies the member's original request such as a particular duty post, the member shall reserve the right to withdraw the request and remain placed on his current ship.
- Any commanding officer retains the option of not allowing placement on his or her ship, which power is discretionary and absolute.
- When an inactive member in good standing or a non-stationed member in good standing as described in sections 4-6 wishes to return to active status, a good faith effort by the Fleet Placement Officer will be made to find a placement in the fleet. The Fleet Placement Officer will process the placement request through careful deliberation and, if necessary, consultation with the commanding officers of the fleet.
- If the member has requested specific ships, and those ships are not available or the commanding officers of the requested ships have denied the placement request, the member may withdraw the request for placement and remain on their original status, apply for transfers to other ships, or ask that the Fleet Placement Officer attempt to find a placement for him on any ship in the fleet.
- If the member is denied placement by every commanding officer in the fleet, the member shall be deemed to have resigned from the UFOP and re-admission shall proceed in accord with article V, section 12.
- If a member has been disciplined by expulsion from a vessel, or the member has been otherwise disciplined and voluntarily chosen to leave his vessel, a good faith effort will be made by the Fleet Placement Officer to find an alternative placement in the fleet. The Fleet Placement Officer will handle the matter through careful deliberation and consultation with the remaining commanding officers of the fleet.
- Such members may request placement on a particular ship. Upon no objection by the commanding officer of the requested ship, the member shall be placed.
- If the commanding officer of the requested ship denies the placement request, the member may request placement on another ship or ask that the Fleet Placement Officer attempt to find a placement for him on any ship in the fleet.
- If the member is denied placement by every commanding officer in the fleet or the member rejects offered placements, the Fleet Placement Officer shall inform both the member, and the Captains Council that the member shall be deemed no longer in good standing and be permanently expelled from the UFOP.