Tag: General Assembly

General Assembly: January 24, 2012

Facilitator: Christian
Stack: Lynn
Notes: Dave

Announcements

  • Christine made CD’s with plans for building solar window heaters. They are in the front room.
  • Bookshop Events: Connor is staging a play in the back room as part of the Fringe Festival. The GA on January 29th and 31st needs to be in the front room while they work on technical details. The show will be playing Thursday, February 2nd to Saturday, February 4th and on February 10th and 11th.
  • Occupy UNCG is planning to take part in a march against tuition hikes being organized by Occupy Chapel Hill. This is on February 10th. See Juan for more information.
  • Andrew is bottom-lining another discussion group around the 99% vs. 1% topic Sunday, January 29th, 2:30-4pm.
  • Jobs With Justice and Occupy Atlanta are organizing a march in Atlanta around foreclosures on February 14th.
  • The Foreclosure Working Group will meet Thursday, January 26th, 8:30am at the Fund for Democratic Communities office for a pre-screening of the short film they are producing. See Todd for information.
  • The Media/Art Working Group will meet on Thursday, January 26th, 6:30pm at the bookstore.
  • The Postal Service Campaign is working on a creative theater event at a postal branch. Anyone interested contact Sandra K.
  • The Push Back organization out of Durham is planning some mobilization efforts around foreclosure. Contact Sandra K. for more information.

Discussion

  • The Progress NC presentation at the last GA.
  • Occupy May Day actions around the country.
  • Finances related to the bookshop.
  • Charlotte solidarity related to the DNC.
  • Ways to track other Occupy efforts around the country and bring that information to more OGSO participants.

Reflection

General Assembly: January 22, 2012

Facilitator: Mo
Stack: Tiffany
Whiteboard: Andrew
Notes taken by Jo I.

Approximately 45 participants.

ANNOUNCEMENTS/REPORT BACKS

  • Left Forum Group: Working on writing proposals. Email Cindy for more information.
  • Civil Liberties Group: Thurs. 5:30 PM at Glenwood. Know your rights seminars. They have put on hold the legal defense fund work for right now.
  • Foreclosure Group: Thurs. 8:30 AM, 620 S. Elm Street. Movie release is coming up possibly at Carousel or Carolina Theater. Hoping for a large group discussion after movie possibly with Jeff Thigpen, Register of Deeds, joining in possibly March 1. Kick Starter Campaign.
  • Nonviolent Direct Action Group: Tues. 5:30 PM at Glenwood before GA. Planning nonviolent workshop on how nonviolence is being used in Occupy.
  • Energy Group: Wed. 7:00 PM at Glenwood. Debriefing on canvassing. Canvassing 2:00-3:00 PM Sunday.
  • Unemployment Group: Sat. 9:00 AM at Glenwood. Teach-in upcoming with E&E. Working on “Service Action” to work on a project that will utilize people (such as Food Not Bombs or Meals on Wheels).
  • Education & Enrichment Group: Wed. 5:30 PM at Glenwood. Survey in development. 15 minute survey of the skills we have or would like to learn.
  • CAAO Group: Friday 5:30-7:00 PM. Foreclosure & E&E collaboration discussions of actions in preparation for Amendment One.
  • 99% vs. 1% Discussion Group: Sun. 2:30-4:00 PM Glenwood. Open Discussion to continue next Sunday at same time.
  • Media Group: Thurs. 6:30 PM at Glenwood. Open invitation to all to come and discuss future of website and updating calendar and information on Facebook.
  • Transition Greensboro: Kathe Latham gave out an open invitation to join this group which is working on “Transitioning to a More Resilient Community” in the age of peak oil, climate change and economic devastation.
  • John K. is working on a play titled “Second Class” about the anti-marriage Amendment One legislation. All LGBTQ are asked to submit any Amendment One stories they may have. Privacy and anonymity will be protected. Contact John K. for more information.
  • ISO: Film screening at UNCG, Wed. January 25, 7:30 PM, Graham 307, DEFAULT: the student loan documentary. Sponsored by the International Socialist Organization.
  • Financial Working Group: Money report, $1024.24 in the bank. Also anyone who gave an extra donation for the bus trip could get a refund as there may be extra money, see Terl or Jim. Terl also passed around the rapid response list.
  • Progress North Carolina: They are here at the GA as a visitor would like to show a presentation during the GA. They were given fifteen minutes for their presentation.

DISCUSSION

  • Progress NC Action
  • Website function and functionality and Calendar
  • Latino Community Outreach
  • Service Action

It was decided that Progress NC could have fifteen minutes for their presentation.

It was decided that the other three items on the discussion board would be broken down into small break-out discussion groups with a report back to the whole group.

DISCUSSION REPORTS
LATINO OUTREACH GROUP: Discussion about what is best way to reach Latino communities. Possible panel of Latino’s from other organizations to join with OGSO for this discussion. Discussion of organizing a working group within OGSO. Questions of how to build authentic relations, get a coalition and solidarity for this group.

SERVICE ACTION GROUP: Due to limited resources the need to keep it small. Considering using the word solidarity rather than service. Work to build community. Possibly work with the UNCG students who have an action group already.

MEDIA: Plan as of today. Events, please email all events to the webmaster@occupygreensboro.org and to glenwoodcoffeeandbooks@gmail.com. Dave and Julia will update calendar and website, Valerie will message the Facebook site. Discussion about the need to change to a Google calendar and make changes to the website so that people can get better information about events and working group times. Please come to the Media Group meeting, Thurs, 6:30 PM at Glenwood where an in-depth discussion about all this will be had.

PROGRESS NC ACTION: A slide show presentation was made by Derek discussing their progressive agenda. They did explain that they were not lobbyist and did not do legislative agendas, but did work on: 1. Moving public opinion. 2. Keeping issues in the news. 3. Driving news coverage. 4. Building stronger ties with progressive groups (like Occupy). 5. Town hall demonstrations. Unfortunately the time ran out and they were not able to finish presentation and there was not time for discussion. They were invited back for further discussion.

REFLECTIONS

Meeting ended at 6:15 approximately.

General Assembly: Tuesday, January 24 at 6:30 PM.
Facilitator: Christian
Stack: John
Notes: Dave

General Assembly, Sunday, January 29 at 4:00 PM
Facilitator: Mack
Stack: Maria
Notes: Lori

Open Discussion: G.A. Process

Description: An open discussion was held on Sunday, December 4, 2011 from 3pm – 4pm just prior to the regularly scheduled General Assembly to discuss the open, democratic decision-making process OGSO has developed. This was intended to be the first of many discussions aimed at crafting a stronger, more accessible and scalable democratic process in Greensboro capable of creating sustainable change.

Discussion facilitator/note taker: Dave R.

Agenda

  • Introduction go around: names, experience with consensus decision-making.
  • OGSO’s process: strengths and weaknesses/things to be improved

Discussion
Purpose of General Assembly?
– Organize people who want to join efforts.
– People can find places to fit in.
– Grow the movement.

Strengths (+)
– spontaneity
– ability to draw in new people
– good for people to learn about Working Groups and what they are doing

Weaknesses (Things to be improved)
– Communication between GA and WGs.
– No advanced agendas; people can’t prepare for future meetings.
– Step Up, Step Up needs to be improved.
– WG’s need to send people consistently.
– We should have space in GAs for WGs.
– Need a clear process for making a proposal so new people know how to bring stuff to the GA.
– WGs need to be more open and accessible.

 

Addendum (12/12/11) by Alex Justis:

Notes regarding the Hub and Spoke Model ideas are missing. I’ve tried to capture the essence of that from the 12/4 GA process discussion in this document. Please let me know if it needs to be modified. It’s publicly available:
.
HERE (Google Doc) – https://docs.google.com/open?id=0B3eEpUTB10N8OWY5M2U2YTItZGQwNi00OTZmLTllY2QtMWQwMWFiZTlmZDE0
.
AND HERE (PDF Download 65kb) – http://www.mediafire.com/?8xjx9144h3zdr2s

General Assembly: December 2, 2011

General Assembly Friday 12/2/2011
Glenwood Coffee and Books
6:30-8:30 pm (Approximately–started and ended a little late)

Facilitator: Tiffany Holland
Whiteboard notes: Andrew
Stack taker: Jeremy
Timekeeper: Mark Spitzer
No childcare provided

Agenda:

  • Go over ground rules
  • Announcements
  • Working group report backs
  • Proposals:
    • NCAE boycott of Art Pope’s businesses
    • Working group against death penalty
    • Civil liberties day of action
    • Direct action “mini-series” (aka mini-conference)
  • Discussion points
    • Port solidarity
    • large physical calendar
    • agreeing to minutes at end of meeting

Announcements:

  • Cakalak Thunder coming on Sunday but late because of a gig.
  • Rapid communication: Jim D. (artteacher33@yahoo.com) handed out forms to get more contact information
  • GA process discussion on Sunday (12/4) at 3 pm at Glenwood Coffee and Books
  • Unemployment/underemployment march will be December 10th at 11:30 am. Will march from the downtown library to government plaza.  The march will include unions, immigrant justice activists, and will have both Spanish and Sign Language interpreters.  They are looking for people to provide rides for folks who don’t have transportation.  (Contact Amanda at ajhuber89@gmail.com)
  • Mo and Dave sat in on Charlotte’s General Assembly. They still have a camp, and probably won’t be evicted anytime soon. They have a good relationship with the recently elected city council. It was good to see other ways people run GAs.
  • Education and enrichment working group (which is not just teach-ins) is looking for ways to have meetings and sessions where people are as well as at Al’s. The next meeting of the working group is at 12:30 on Tuesday at Glenwood Coffee and Books.
  • Foreclosure working group is having a call-in on Tuesday, December 6th at 3 pm. Calling Roy Cooper’s office against agreement that would let banks mostly off the hook. Scripts will be available at Glenwood Coffee and Books. This will be combined with a robot-building party to protest robosigning. Will be fun.
  • Also Foreclosure Working Group meeting at Howard Coble’s office at 11 am on Thursday, December 8th.
  • Jean and Julia went to a rally in Charlotte for temporary protection from deportation for those who could have been eligible for the Dream Act if it had passed. The rally focused on telling stories to humanize what is going on. The rally was organized by El Cambio and United for the Dream. Very relevant to Occupy Greensboro, since immigrants are suffering a lot from unemployment.
  • The Democrazine wants submissions. They can be political, but don’t have to be. Not sure about color capability, so submit in black and white if possible. Next meeting at 4 pm on Tuesday, December 6 at Al’s.
  • Duke Energy working group meeting Saturday, December 3 at 5:30 pm. A group went to the public hearing, where Duke Power folks were jerks.
  • Mo will create a big physical calendar, which she hopes people will use at Al’s. Jean will donate a whiteboard.
  • There is an El Cambio congress in Yadkinville on December 17-18 at the Days Inn. It will include telling your story workshops. Contact Jean R or Julia K for information.
  • There is a benefit show at the Blind Tiger and sponsored by Natty Greene’s OGSO on Wednesday, December 7–big line up, will probably bring in a thousand dollars for OGSO. All ages show, lots of different cool bands (Max brought two flyers, and this information is posted on Facebook). $5 entry, $2 drinks. They need people to help cook hot dogs and veggie dogs. Art group offered to help. Dave offered to copy flyers and bottom-line an info table at the event. Ed is going to talk about the movement at the event. Contact Max S, maxwellasilver@gmail.com.

Proposals:

  • Dave R made a proposal for Occupy Greensboro to express solidarity with the NCAE boycott of Variety Wholesalers, Inc. businesses. These businesses are run by Art Pope, who spends a lot of money trying to undermine, among other things, public education. There was a lot of discussion, including about how to implement the boycott, and whether the press release should use the phrase “extreme right-wing candidates,” whether most people see vouchers as harmful or not, and how we can provide help and education to those who would shop at these stores otherwise. Someone noted that it is okay to start small sometimes. Others suggested that Occupy Greensboro is bigger than this boycott. Many noted that teachers are under attack and could use our support. Someone suggested that, beyond the effect of the boycott itself, we should think about the effect on the teachers of knowing that we are on their side. And that teachers have supported OWS. In the end, people agreed that, while the implementation ideas noted were good ideas, this particular boycott is a boycott organized by the NCAE (an affiliate of the National Education Association, and the closest thing North Carolina has to a labor union for teachers), not by Occupy Greensboro. We don’t know NCAE’s plans for implementation yet. So for now express support, and if people want to do more, they can.
  • Trish K proposed that we form a working group to organize a march against the death penalty. The Racial Justice Act is about to be repealed. The death penalty mainly punishes the poor. During the discussion, someone mentioned that People of Faith Against the Death Penalty is about to call for a complete moratorium of the death penalty, and that OGSO should reach out to them right away if this proposal passes. Someone also said that it is important to do this as Occupy, even though we need to work with other activists. The proposal passed.
  • Trish K also made a proposal to endorse the coordination of a national day of action to defend civil liberties. There was discussion about whether this needed endorsement. Many points were made about our ability to work with activists everywhere, and someone noted that we are as much Occupy Everywhere as Occupy Greensboro. Others suggested that the proposal made sense if the goal was to be able to tell this national group that they could count on support from people in Greensboro. After much discussion, came to consensus to pass the proposal.
  • Valerie W proposes what she called a “direct action mini-series.” This would have multiple steps, including a long teach-in (she estimated 4-8 hours) on the history of direct action and existing knowledge about direct action strategies, a self-evaluation of what OGSO has accomplished so far (about 4-8 hours), and strategizing about direct actions we can do based on visioning sessions we’ve had (4-8 hours). This would include prioritizing and analyzing our current plans for direct action. There were many voices of support. Someone mentioned that her friend from NY was coming down around Martin Luther King, Jr. weekend, and could do a mini teach-in on New York’s direct action training and planning. Suggestions were made to keep the mini-series accessible to newcomers and those who can’t devote the whole day. Maybe a conference on MLK weekend. Maybe a march that weekend, too.  Suggestion was raised for this to be a working group. Val said she would find a time for a working group to meet and would post it.

Proposals that reached consensus:

  • Occupy Greensboro will support the NCAE boycott of Variety Wholesalers, Inc. Dave read the relevant press release aloud at the meeting.
  • There will be a working group to organize a march to abolish the death penalty.

Notetaker contact info: Maria R rosmarster@gmail.com

Final announcements

  • There is a Bank of America shareholder meeting on May 6 in Charlotte.  People are already thinking about how to target this meeting. The first planning meeting will be December 8 from 11-12:30 in Charlotte. If you are interested, contact Elena E, 919-413-1276.
  • Trish and Jim are planning to work on a proposal to do something in solidarity with port closures. Trish has a list from Longview and Tacoma of things people who don’t live near a port can do, which can form a starting point for that discussion.
  • During reflection, much appreciation was offered for all the hard work everyone is doing.

Next Meeting:

In the parking lot of ideas were: 
–economic alternatives to discount stores
–education on economic dynamics of discount stores
–cooperatives
–“boycott everything”
–more clarity on GA process for endorsing going ahead with an idea before it is fully hashed out
–question of autonomy versus risk of degenerating into individualism

Next meeting:
–Trish will facilitate
–Mo will keep stack
–Andrew will take notes

G.A. Meeting Minutes 11/18/11

Occupy Greensboro General Assembly Minutes

11.18.11

Facilitated by Al, notes by Todd,  Andrew kept stack and Dave was timekeeper and posted the agenda on the whiteboard

I. Ground Rules

II. Announcements

  • Folks from Servant House are willing to help remodel the back room at Glenwood Coffee and Books. Cleaning materials and sheetrock tools needed. Todd will provide degreaser, a mop bucket and some sheetrock tools.
  • Foreclosure group meeting next Tuesday morning 8:30 am at Spring Garden Bakery. There will likely be a nat’l conference call on Monday 11.21.11; trying to get signed up for the call which will hopefully discuss building a national movement around foreclosure issues.
  • Val announced that anyone who wanted to discuss person to person the recent conversations about sexism that have been on Facebook could talk to her after the meeting.
  • Sunday 11.20.11 at 1 pm at the bookshop there will be a meeting for those interested in planning an action around the Utility Commission’s Evdientiary Hearing for Duke Power on Nov 28 in Raleigh.
  • Lynn brought tangerines to share 🙂
  • There was a meeting last week of the zine group that is working on producing an Occupy art and lit magazine. They will meet every Tuesday at 4 pm at Glenwood Coffee and Books. There is also an electronic “drop box” for submissions at the occupygreensboro.org site.
  • The Solidarity with OWS video that Mo and Connor made was posted and sent to OWS. Gotten a great and favorable response. Folks were very grateful. A reply video may be in the works.
  • Occupy UNCG did a 15 person mic check at an open forum regarding raises and tuition hikes. The script from the mic check was read aloud at tonight’s meeting. The next Occupy UNCG meeting is Monday, 11.21.11 at 6:30 pm on the 3rd floor of the Graham building Rm 307.

III. Working Group Reports

  • Facilitation working group needs copies made. Dave and Maria will help out.
  • The teach-in working group is now called Education and Enrichment. They are looking forward to hosting teach-ins, open space discussions, and skill building workshops. Next meeting is Thursday, 12.1.11, 6:30 pm at Glenwood Coffee and Books. Contacts are Rebecca and Isabell.
  • Media Group recently met and is welcoming new members. Contact through the occupygreensboro.org site. Submissions are welcome; go to the blog page.

IV. Proposals
There were 10 total proposals and/or discussions proposed. There was a discussion to try and order some of the proposal to get “less complex” proposals handled. Due to shortness of time and length of discussions not all agenda items were covered; those that remain will be on the GA Agenda for next Tuesday, 11.22.11, 6:30 pm at Glenwood Coffee and Books.

  1. November 30 Winston Action– proposed by Tony Ndege. Occupy Winston invites us to plan/participate in an action with them on Nov 30 at the Benton Convention Center. The WS Chamber of Commerce is holding conference and the Wells Fargo CEO will be the keynote speaker. They are thinking to have 2 rallies that day for the start and end of the Chamber event; probably one at 11:30 am and the other at 1:30 pm. Trish added that she has been talking with folks from Salem College about participating. Folks invited to discuss more after GA.  PASSED WITH CONSENSUS
  2. Rapid Communication Proposal– proposed by Jim. Would like to collect email addresses  and establish a contact group to reach as many people as possible as quickly as possible. For emergency actions, reminders, etc. Jim will bottom-line and talk with other folks about how to tie in phone and possibly use the existing website as a home-base for this project. WILL REDRAFT PROPOSAL AND RESUBMIT
  3. GA Process Proposal– proposed by Tiffany. Proposal is divided into 3 parts and deals with inter-movement processes. The proposal parts are:
    • Every GA have 15-20 minutes built in at the end to reflect on the process of the meeting- including, but not limited to: how many people attended, who talked (reflect on step up, step up now called move up, move up), is the space safe/unsafe, was our process democratic, what worked/ didn’t work PASSED WITH CONSENSUS
    • GA after every major action have a substantial chunk of time dedicated to reflection and assessment of the action. What worked and what didn’t? PASSED WITH CONSENSUS
    • Formation of an Anti-Oppression working group. This group would help with the above proposals in identifying tools to help our reflections/ next steps to reflect anti-oppression values. The original proposal included keeping data about our meetings to help identify potential trends of oppression; there was much discussion and concern around this point and Tiffany agreed that it wasn’t essential to the proposal itself, more a detail that could be further discussed/investigated. This discussion was definitely the longest of the evening. PASSED WITH CONSENSUS
  4. December 6 National Day of Action Against Foreclosures Proposal- proposed by Mo. Would like Occupy Greensboro to recognize this day in solidarity with other Occupy movements also participating. We don’t have specifics for an action yet but will soon. PASSED WITH CONSENSUS

V. Remaining Agenda Items– The following were on the agenda but we ran short of time and will be on the agenda for Tuesday’s GA.

  1. RUCO (Rental Unit Certificate of Occupancy) discussion- Contact is Royall Spence
  2. Facebook Proposal- Erin
  3. Meeting Minutes Proposal- Erin
  4. Discussion about Media Group- Dave
  5. Discussion about Language we use including on Facebook- Lynn

VI. GA on Tuesday, 11.22.11, 6:30 pm at Glenwood Coffee and Books
Val will facilitate, John K will keep stack, Carol will do childcare, Lynn will be timekeeper.

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