NYC OPERATIONAL SPOKES COUNCIL DAY 56
Date / Time: Thursday 11/11/2011 / 7:00pm EST
Location: Trinity Church Parish Hall
Facilitators (F): Ethan, Marissa
56.1. Consensing on Operational Groups
56.2. Discussion on Process
56.3. Disagreement Proposal
F: We’re going to try to do this without people’s mic. We decided not to use a microphone because we thought it created a weird power dynamic.
F: My name is Ethan. I’m Marissa. We’d like to try and facilitate and we want to make sure that’s ok with everybody. [SPIRIT FINGERS] Before we get started, I’d like to welcome Anne from trinity church. [APPLAUSE]
Anne: I just wanted to say welcome. Some of you have been to our back porch, Charlotte’s place. [APPLAUSE]
F: Everyone seems in good spirits tonight, but I just want to take a moment to take a deep breath. It’s amazing how many working groups we have here. This is the most incredible community and there’s so many inspiring people and so much love and respect here, and this room has such incredible energy already, I have a good feeling that this meeting will go smoother than the last one. Let’s take a big deep breath together. And let’s have fun! [APPLAUSE]
F: So this is the third SC. Monday and Wednesday we had our inaugural spokes. We thought we could get to proposals at this time. We have so many groups. We’re taking applications so we can move on as a council.
F: Anyone know how many groups have we reviewed so far? 18, 20
F: I want to take this time to acknowledge that there was a breakdown of process at our last SC. I want to apologize and say that we’re human. We’re really grateful for everyone who has called it out. This is what it’s about. Accountability. Acknowledging the breakdown of process: there’s a box labeled at the back of the room for any questions, concerns, or criticisms of facilitation. We encourage everyone to come to training; we meet every day at 4:00 pm. We also realize that there are a lot of people who are skilled facilitators but cannot make the meetings. That’s why we’re making a roster of folks who can’t attend and that is open to everyone. Sully’s going to take that list. Find him if you’re interested in facilitating.
F: Acknowledging breakdown of process: We, as facilitators, are only empowered to do what the GA says. We passed a proposal that mandated that spokes rotate in each meeting. Based on what GA mandated, spokes must rotate. So if you were a spoke at the last meeting, you cannot be a spoke at this meeting. Are there any clarifying questions?
Q: What if you were a spoke in a different group?
F: That’s fine. You just have to rotate spokes within groups.
Q: [TEXT MISSING]
F: We’re not asking everyone to lead. The idea behind it was to rotate so that there are not hierarchical structures.
Q; I imagine that a spoke will eventually come back around so is it just that you can’t be a spoke if you were in the last meeting?
F: Right. But ideally everyone would be a spoke at some point.
Q: [TEXT MISSING]
F: We’re suggesting that if people can’t rotate… [TEXT MISSING]
F: There have been questions about the rotation. What the proposal states is that spokes have to rotate. We want to enable people to be spokes.
Q: What is to prevent two people from switching back and forth?
F: At the moment, the proposal states that we rotate every meeting. If we want to modify that process, we can do that in the future. I don’t think we should do that tonight, we should move on.
Q: The last time we had a meeting, we only voted that one person [TEXT MISSING] I’m confused.
F: What happened is that there was an inappropriate move by a facilitator that broke the process. [TEXT MISSING] We made a mistake!
Q: Because of a vote we had last time, there was an understanding among some people that we would be able to continue as spokes for the rest of the week. So for example, I am the only one who could come tonight so we decided that for today, we wouldn’t rotate.
F: Just so we can move forward, we want to take…People have questions, so we’re going to allow time for questions.
Q: I thought we made it really clear amongst the group that ….my question is that if you are the only spoke for that group, and we’re deciding…[TEXT MISSING]
[SPIRIT FINGERS AND LOTS OF COMMOTION]
Outside of process….“You can’t exclude people tonight because of miscommunications last time. You’re sticking to one rule but not to another!”
F: We’re going to move forward with this process. As facilitators, we’re not empowered to make exceptions. So based on the proposal passed in the GA, we’re going to go with what the proposal says. One more thing: from what we observed last meeting, there are a lot of grievances that exist in this movement. [SPIRIT FINGERS] Some of those issues will be addressed by SC, but there is not right now a process for dealing with personal grievances. So hopefully to mitigate that showing up here, can we get a show of hands for people who are passionate about grievances? Should we start an ad hoc group to deal with that? We are not a judiciary body, we’re not putting anyone on trial, But we want to enlist everyone to help with that. Can we get a show of hands of people who want to help with that?
Outside of process….”Does anyone have a problem with the fact that this became a closed meeting? That only a couple people from groups can come here? Facilitation just decided that we didn’t need to hear that.
F: That’s outside of process. I totally appreciate you saying that. I told people to wait and then we invited people in, and then I asked people to self-select. I have been working for a month trying to find spaces and the church has been welcoming, but we are having difficulties finding spaces. Could anyone help with this?
Outside of process…”The answer to every critique can’t be
F: I just want to acknowledge that we did have a smaller space tonight, that’s why we asked people to lower people in their op groups. Ideally we’d have as big a space as possible. AND we didn’t turn anyone away in the end.
[LOTS OF FRUSTRATED NOISES]
F: Is Community Alliance here? Awesome.
F: I’m hearing a lot of side conversations. Could please keep side conversations to a minimum?
Q: Could you explain where we are in this process?
F: We’re addressing possible groups and caucuses for SC. In previous meetings, we sorted out what groups would be most easily passed. Those who have the least concerns we’re going through first so we can get to everybody. Community Alliance is next.
[TEXT MISSING; A QUESTION AND ANSWER THAT WAS MISSED]
56.1. Consensing on Operational Groups
[FACILITATION READS A LIST OF ALL GROUPS]
F: If you have a question about process, raise your hand and someone will help you.
F: Community Alliance will read descriptions, then we’ll open up stack for five minutes for clarifying questions and concerns. The question we need to answer collectively for every group is if this group is an operations group. Just a clarification: the purpose of this process is to judge how well a group does their work. We are creating a space within the SC to hold each other accountable. If a group isn’t doing their job in the best way, maybe it’s not an issue to bring up here…we’re going to get started.
56.1.1. Community Alliance
Community Alliance: After several complaints over the way security was being run, we responded to requests to change…we are not a security working group. There is no longer a security working group. We decided to form a new group called Community Alliance. Though our group does include some former members of security, they agreed to work according to our methods. [TEXT MISSING]
F: Now we’re taking stack for questions about Community Alliance.
F: Are there any other questions or concerns about Community Alliance?
22.214.171.124. Questions and Concerns
126.96.36.199.1. Q: We have two: first is if there are a lot of people in Community Alliance who have been in the Security working group together? Also whether or not they’ve communicated with non-violent community…[TEXT MISSING]
A: First answer to that question: yes, there are several people in Community Alliance who were in Security.
[TEXT MISSING] From association for inmates rights (?), who are trained in nonviolence. Second answer: yes we have talked to MBC, which is the safety cluster. (?!)
F: I’m hearing we’re having a lot of trouble hearing each other. We don’t have amplification unfortunately. Come to the middle of the floor!
A: First answer to your question: yes association for inmates rights…they have been trained by the AVP…[TEXT MISSING SORRY] And second: yes we have communicated with MBC.
F: Next on stack?
[A member of a group who was spoke at the last SC tries to speak]
F: You’ve been a spoke before. Are you switching out spokes?
188.8.131.52.2. Q: Do you violate GA principles as a working group doing violence and aggression against members in the camp? Like this individual and two others in the camp? …Especially when you say you use nonviolence.
A: We have a lot of people that impersonate the Community Alliance by saying they are Security. No one in Community Alliance would ever say they’re security. Usually we’re in two’s as well. We’re working on jackets to represent the alliance so we can decrease the number of people impersonating us.
Point of processs (PoP): You were a spoke last time.
F: I want to reduce the amount of back and forth…We’re having a back and forth and it’s not productive. There was a very important question raised about…
WE HAVE A MICROPHONE!
F; An important concern was raised about the actions of folks from Community Alliance or impersonators. So then there was a response and now I’m wondering are there any other questions?
“She didn’t finish her question!”
F: I’m hearing that this is a situation where there are interpersonal…
[LOTS OF COMMOTION]
[OUTSIDE OF PROCESS, AN ATTEMPT IS MADE TO RAISE THE ISSUE OF THE ROOM’S CAPACITY AND MEMBERS OF GROUPS BEING EXCLUDED]
Community Alliance: Can everyone hear me? Once again, there are people that go around and say they’re CA. Sparkle (?) is not a member of Community Alliance. People do know who we are so instead of just saying stuff, why don’t you come to us? But St— (?!) is not part of Comm. Alliance.
[COMMUNITY ALLIANCE SPOKE TRIES TO SPEAK AGAIN…LOTS OF SHUSHING]
F: Ok we may still need inter-group mediation. Part of this process is to get groups into the SC. Right now we don’t have a process to deal with inter-group grievances. We’re getting there. Are there any other questions about Community Alliance?
184.108.40.206.3. Q: We have one more question: What is the difference in tactics in more detail about how you would deal with a situation compared to how security dealt with it?
F: The question was how do their tactics differ from security?
A: The difference is we are not policing. [TEXT MISSING]
F: Next on stack? Is anyone else on stack?
220.127.116.11.4. Q: Hi I just wanted to say that if you’re Community Alliance, you should make your presence known and step to the middle of floor. If people don’t know who you are, how are we supposed to tell the difference?
F: Great idea. Come up.
[NO NO’S. POINT OF PROCESS]
Q: Hey I’m Jason with press. As a point of process: if we could try and limit our comments to the questions of operations and functions of working groups, I know we have issues with working groups, but we cannot use this space now to do that because then we won’t get anywhere and we won’t be able to address it. Please let’s have comments only on the functions of what the group does.
F: So we now will give you the opportunity to confer with your groups about whether community alliance is an operations group or not.
F: Now I’d like to see the sign from anyone who doesn’t think that Community Alliance is an operations group.
PoP: You can’t vote if you’re not the spoke. Can someone who is the spoke sit in front please?
F: Looks like there’s only one sign…there’s a question? We have an outstanding concern.
18.104.22.168.5. Q: Our outstanding concern is we don’t know the difference between Community Alliance and Security. How do you in detail handle situations differently? Say if there was a fight, if there’s a perpetrator who’s not supposed to be in the park…how do you handle that situation?
F: I’m getting a lot of PoP’s. Does one person want to say what it’s about? Our point is that we’re passed this point in the process.
F: So yes we did already do questions and concerns, but since there are still outstanding concerns, we thought we’d try to resolves them first.
F: Please raise your sign if you do not think that Community Alliance is an operations group. I’m seeing one…two…I believe we have consensus. Modified consensus.
22.214.171.124. Modified Consensus
[Someone else takes mic] This is a point of process. So earlier tonight, a number of people were told that we were approaching capacity and that their groups had a lot of representation here and they were asked to nominate three representatives. We are not a representative democracy. We also must hold open meetings. If anyone is turned away, this meeting is not valid. In actuality what happened is that people were told they would elect representatives and would have to wait outside. This meeting is not valid, I’m sorry.
F: We’re going to take a minute to respond. I’m so sorry that that happened.
[“It’s not facilitation’s place to respond!”]
[“I am not facilitation and I am responding!”]
[A MAN APPROACHES ANOTHER MAN IN A VIOLENT MANNER]
F: There’s been a concern about the capacity of this space and the process of letting people in.
Christine/Vibes: I think this is a really good time for a ten second dance party.
F: The general consensus: if someone is being disruptive, we can vote to ask the person to leave. I would like us all to keep this in mind so we can keep this process moving forwards.
[“Our process also states that this is horizontal and anyone is allowed in. There is a contradiction here that we need to discuss.”]
F: I would love to have this conversation but I can’t have it unless we’re all sitting down.
F: We’re going to have some clarification about what happened tonight because I think people have a different idea of how things went down.
F: I want to acknowledge the validity of what’s being stated. I truly believe that what you’re stating is important. I know that I’ve already stated how difficult it was to find a space and that that was not the point. What was agreed upon in the GA…my intention was to ask groups to select some members in case we came to full capacity. We were just afraid that we would have crowds of people. The church said whether we could be here depended on how many people showed up…I do know that when I said that, there were 40 people who came from Boston, I told them would they mind if we got working groups in first. I asked that they wait and some of them left. We do need help finding bigger spaces. Apologies.
F: Can we ask if it’s alright if we can move forward with process?
F: If you need a moment to confer with your group, do so. It’s just that individuals can’t stand up and speak, you have to speak through your spoke. Clarification: if you could confer with your group, whether or not we can allow this process to move forward?
F: Let’s come back. Can I see the sign of any group that does not want to move the process forward? I’m seeing four signs…wait is Media raising their sign? So that’s five. How many groups are we? So as a reminder, we use modified consensus. If we get 9/10ths, we’ll proceed. That’s what we agreed on in the proposal. [TALKING]
[LOTS OF TALKING]
F: Please hold up your sign if you’re here! We forgot how many groups are here.
F: Can I see one more time the sign of any group who does not want this to move forward?
PoP: These groups are being disruptive and holding up SC. [TEXT MISSING] I want all of us to feel guilty about not finding a big space.
[LOT OF ARGUMENT AND COMMOTION]
F: Luke I love you but we can’t do this right now. Could you talk amongst yourselves and then have your spoke speak?
[LOTS OF ARGUING]
F: Just so everyone knows where we are: we tried to reach consensus and it didn’t pass. So right now we’re having a conversation since people want to have that conversation. [TEXT MISSING]. We’re opening up stack for folks who want to discuss this issue.
[LOTS OF TALKING]
56.2. Discussion on Process
F: Just a reminder: Spokes get on stack, not individuals in SC. Also a reminder on process: since we don’t have a set SC yet, since we’re in the process of developing our process, everyone who’s here with a group has a spoke and they get to participate in the decision making process. So even if they haven’t been voted in yet, they get to participate in the process.
F: There’s way too much talking for us all to hear each other. We’re opening up stack. [Women Occupying Wall Street] is on stack. So please listen and be respectful.
56.2.1. Q: Hey everyone. MIC CHECK. So just a couple points of observation: we had our spoke from Women Occupying Wall Street introducing our group to be considered for inclusion into the SC. This process, which we agreed upon, was derailed by a loud interrupting voice, which was then met with another voice, and then a violent confrontation. This turned into loud, angry conversations. It’s not a coincidence that all of these came from men. So we feel our voices have been steam rolled by everyone…[“That’s sexist!”] You can call it a sexist comment, we can discuss that. The point is we were respecting process, I’m not saying your concern isn’t valid, but our desire to be on the SC is also valid and we’ve been working really hard. I don’t see why that should be derailed by this…it’s a problem of the most marginalized voices being pushed aside.
[LOTS OF APPLAUSE]
Next on stack: Wellness.
56.2.2. Wellness: Hi I’m Karen. I wish we were all well right now, but we’re not. It’s my understanding that people who wanted to come to the meeting were told to wait and eventually people were allowed in. So I’m a little confused: were people told they could not come and were then turned away? If that was not the case, I think we should continue with the process.
Next on stack: Outreach.
56.2.3. Hi. People were told to self-select and I do think selfish that we’ve been derailed by something that’s unrealistic…to think that everyone can fit in this space. We’re deciding, ok? Alright whatever if you don’t agree with me, the majority does. LOTS OF COMMOTION. We ‘re here to figure out what are operations groups, not to dispute on the space or anything.
Next on stack: Press.
56.2.4. Press: Alright first off, come on people, stop disrespecting other people when they’re speaking. This has nothing to do with what I have to say, but the past three people that were talking were met with “no this is wrong.” We have to create a culture of respect. APPLAUSE. My group believes we shouldn’t continue with this process for a number of reasons. One reason is this idea of having an open meeting and seeing people turned away. This is a big deal because this is the establishment of our SC and if we don’t stick to our process, then what are we creating? That is part of what we create. I know that it’s difficult to be in these meetings for a long time but we believe our ends will reflect our means. We can hope the ends will justify the means and we can get through this quick. I think that we really need to focus on creating it in the right way and we shouldn’t have to be worried about how long it takes.
F: Stack is now closed. [COMMOTION]
56.2.5. Hi I was thinking that this is an imperfect process. I was thinking how it does set a precedent. I experienced being asked if there were a lot of people in my group and if I could consider staying away. I didn’t experience being turned away, that’s why I was leaning towards thinking we should go forward. I also wanted to bring up a topic: if we could see this as …if we do stop, if we could do some special mediations with different groups so we don’t end the night saying “we didn’t accomplish anything.”
Next on stack: Occupiers.
56.2.6. Occupiers: Hey I’m bobby. I just want to say no one was turned away, so I don’t see what the problem is. I want people to have compassion for the hard work people are doing. As an anarchist, if I see a problem, I want to help solve it and not whine about it. Let’s do the best we can.
Next on stack: Mediation
56.2.7. Mediation: My name is Batabi (?). I’m bringing forward a suggestion that was brought to my attention by a colleague in Community Relations who can’t speak, who’s voice is gone. Is this meeting being livestreamed? [“No”] So it’s possible for the meetings to be livestreamed? I was thinking about the possibility of finding space…perhaps we can modify our process so that people who aren’t in the room can participate? So if people can’t be physically in the room, maybe they could also speak? That way we’re not putting pressure on people to find space. As a movement, to be hung up here right now, I think is kind of sad. We have important things to do so we need to get together…
Next on stack :Music.
Next on stack : Earth Summit
56.2.8. Earth Summit: I just wanted to say that this process is important and time is being abused. A lot of this stuff is real basic and if we’re really here because we believe the world needs to change, we need to get through this basic stuff so we can have an operational body. I see Luke’s point. You can’t go over process. I was disappointed with the facilitation’s job, but at the same time, to have another week go by [TEXT MISSING]…you’re talking about…there are people dying in certain places I would say to anyone who has objections, make sure it’s worth holding up the meeting. I think as a matter of fact, not many people were turned away. Btu we got to move forward.
F: As a reminder: we have hand signals for a reason. Someone said that when people were talking, others were badmouthing. Let’s use hand signals!
Next on stack: Safer Spaces.
56.2.9. Safer Spaces: I’m Alexander. This is really complicated and I think coming up and respecting process is important, and we do need to go on, and our means do create our ends. But I was also concerned about the process coming on here and it felt definitely felt like a silencing. That’s what WOW said they felt and we have to acknowledge that. Also, the initial compliant was that we were moving too quickly towards legislative things. I did not hear anyone on the table saying we are now changing to a legislative body. I DID hear there were issues of capacity, please wait. If there were any spokes that couldn’t participate, I’d feel that would be a bigger block to process. But I don’t know.
Next on stack: Comfort
56.2.10. Comfort: I think that this meeting was fundamentally based on a miscommunication that was exclusionary. I was told that I would be part of library, but only three members of library were allowed in, so now I’m on comfort. …This needs to be transparent and open. I think it can still be constructive but in terms of coming to conclusions about working groups and other things,, I don’t think this meeting can do that at this point. And so it can’t continue as an SC today.
Next on stack: Support.
56.2.11. Support: Hey I’m Lucius. I just wanted to say of the people who initially were raising points of process…I saw a lot of people shouting down people make PoP’s. So I’d ask that even if this process does not conform to what they’re idea of process is, I’d ask they acknowledge that there is an agreed upon process.
Next on stack: Facilitation
56.2.12. Facilitation: Hi I’m Brian. I got to the door tonight and it was explained to me that there was limited room for people. We were asked to come upstairs and see if we could select amongst ourselves and try to fit the room. Two members who were part of the facilitation group left at that time. When this issue was brought up by people over here, [POINTS TO ONE PART OF THE ROOM], I knew they were correct. When I discovered that the room was limited, something in my mind went off: this isn’t good because we’re committed to an open process. So facilitation is compounding its errors. I don’t know what our batting average is, but it ain’t good. I also know that our intent is to serve this process. These things are in conflict so what do we do? The answer is to hear the voices and settle on a decision about whether or not this is an operative body tonight. I would encourage people to vote their conscience on that and try to respect that the facilitators are struggling and trying to improves their skills.
Next on stack: Direct democracy.
56.2.13. Direct Democracy: First of all, I want to acknowledge the hard work Facilitation did and how hard it must be to find a space to hold all these people. But the fact remains that if the space is not big enough, then the meeting cannot happen. It’s built into what the SC was empowered to do by the GA. People have acknowledged that people who were supposed to be here are not. And it’s a problem that we want to overlook how people were turned away in order to move forward; that’s scary to me. The inconsistency on the spoke problem is also something that needs to be addressed and not overpassed. On the issue of disruption and the disrespectful nature of disruption: I have to acknowledge that that was problematic, but people who were concerned were dealing with the process that facilitation put in place and that was to speak with them one on one. It’s clear that the priority is to protect the meeting. It comes down to why are you here and what is the most important part of being here. Are you here to protect people and to empower people and make sure that everyone who wants to be involved is involved? Because the decisions you make about that can go against why we think we’re all here.
F: First to address Mediation: if we want to try to get technology to have people present at meetings… email at nyc.ga.net. I think that we…this is a message from me personally: this is an SC, not the SC. Structure and facilitation explained how there could be a movement SC, there could be a standing on one foot SC even! Instead of focusing on problems, let’s try new things to come up with solutions. I think people want to be in the operations SC because it’s the SC. It’s very difficult to have consensus-based meetings with hundreds of people. We can try technology, but it may not work. We should try the cluster approach too! Let’s keep trying! The last thing I a proposal to move forward: What if in the minutes for this meeting, the people who want the process to not go forward could give a statement and if they want to leave, they can leave. And the next time, we can come up with a different solution to this. The proposal is that people who object, write an objection that can be incorporated into the minutes and then they can leave if they want.
[SOUNDS OF DISAGREEMENT]
[“There was a proposal and I have a question about it!”]
F: We’re going to close stack and then open it about that proposal.
56.2.14. Hi I’m Jose, we’re wondering what the capacity is at the school? Maybe those of us interested in finding spaces form a group? Thank you.
?: I can answer that question. The capacity of the cafeteria is 598. At our first meeting we only hit a count of 280 and the second meeting was similar. The problem is it’s Veterans day and we needed a new permit for future booking of that space. I spent all week stalking the school for another permit…. They freaked out about us being there and took out requests out of the custodian’s office…[TEXT MISSING] When I finally got a request from the Department of Education and tried to submit it, I was told the principal was sick and out of his office…So they’ve been giving us the run around. We need a space that is 400 capacity and it can’t be an auditorium. It also must be in walking distance from the park. I’ve been to seven schools that didn’t have a space this large. That school’s capacity was 598. So we need a lot of help finding space.
Next on stack: Sustainability
56.2.14. Sustainability: Our concerns were addressed
Last on stack: Occupy Dignity
56.2.15. Occupy Dignity: Let me apologize to everybody here. Your time is very important to me. As a feminist, I lament the coincidence that I had to interrupt the speech here, however, it had to happen. This meeting had to be interrupted to discuss this.
[SOME NEGATIVE FINGERS]
I tried saying it at the beginning, and facilitation didn’t let it happen. I tried to say it downstairs and was told what I was saying was not important. I didn’t know there were issues with space. I’m sorry. If I had known, I might have helped to try and find a different space. But no one can be here blamed for not knowing…we’re not getting a lot done in this meeting anyway…[TEXT MISSING]
[SOUNDS OF DISSENT]
56.3. Disagreement Proposal
F: Stack is closed and there was a proposal. Do you want to restate it?
F: The proposal is that we admit the mistake that took place, we document the mistake that took place, we post minutes on website, then we proceed.
F: Are there any clarifying questions? I apologize…[GROUP NAME MISSING] is last on stack.
56.3.1. Clarifying Questions
F: Good evening. I appreciate the concerns brought forward by groups who would like to stop the meeting. We are an open movement. I also understand that there needs to be some sense of balance. Every effort was made to include everyone. In the big picture, I’d like to think that thousands of people would like to be involved in the SC. But the truth is that many people can’t come to the SC. So we need to keep in mind the balance between ideology and practicality.
[“I would just like to acknowledge that people are leaving this space because we’ve spent an hour on this.”]
F: We have half an hour, so everyone knows. There’s a PoP.
PoP: Spokes can be recalled at any time so that if there’s a situation that comes up and the spoke does not adequately reflect what is being said, another person from the group can talk.
F: So there was a proposal that Jack (?) would like to restate.
Proposal: That we thoroughly document the objection that took place and publish it in the minutes on the website.
F: We’re going to allow you to discuss in your group, open up clarifying questions, and then open up stack on this proposal.
F: If you’d like to get on stack…MIC CHECK. MIC CHECK. We’re going to take a stack. If you’d like to get on stack with clarifying questions or concerns, please do!
126.96.36.199. Direct Action: I have a question: if we can get past this and return to the process which we initially came here for, will this still be a legitimate decision-making body?
A: Jack: That seems like a rhetorical question.
A: Jack: The word legitimate is, I don’t know, like, is it legitimate? I don’t know.
Direct action: Will we still be able to make decisions in this group?
A: Functionally we only have half an hour left so I don’t know, I have no idea.
F: It seems to me the proposal isn’t clear.
The prop is to acknowledge the mistake and move forward as a meeting. As a decision making body? Yes.
Next on stack: Community Alliance
188.8.131.52. We were saying that our group was not told that we could not stay. We were told to go upstairs and that we might have to self-select. We were not told to leave, to go anywhere.
F: Ok we’re on stack for clarifying questions and concerns about this proposal.
Next on stack: minutes
184.108.40.206. Direct action asked our question.
Next on stack: OWS en Español.
220.127.116.11. Hi everyone I’m Sofia. My group asked me to say that we’re deeply frustrated with the way the SC has gone on today, we think that this SC has already disintegrated because of the amount of people who have left. It’s futile to continue to carry on this debate, especially since it keeps getting tangled up. We have made the decision to leave the SC for today.
Next on stack: Training
18.104.22.168. I’m CJ, I’m with…
[“PoP you’re excluding people from stack! I was on stack!”]
F: Facilitation forgot to clarify that we’re taking stack to make this shorter. We had five people on stack. We’ve been doing progressive stack so if you’ve noticed, it’s been mostly women. If the groups are not ok we can make a proposal to extend this stack for longer. That’s what the facilitation’s decided.
F: Everyone who is on stack will have the chance to speak. So right now…MIC CHECK. I’m sorry that there was confusion. Just to clarify: we have the process that we’ve been during SC, when reviewing a proposal, we open up stack for 4 people and use progressive stack. [TEXT MISSING HERE]
Translation has left the SC.
F: I want to acknowledge that it’s gotten really tense. We need to remember that we’re trying to move this forward, and that if we have people who are not satisfied, we should figure out how to do it together. I’m sending out a notebook so that people can sign up to help figure out bigger spaces. At the beginning of the meeting, we offered to have a get together for those who are passionate about addressing grievances. That meeting will take place at 10 pm here.
22.214.171.124. (Continued) I am from training. As I understand it, this proposal is to register in the minutes that this event occurred. Can we also register that this event was kicked off when a male member of our group interrupted a spoke, and then the process continued to be male voices saying stuff without time keeping? Our group is also going to leave this meeting.
Next on stack: Legal
126.96.36.199. We really love all of you a lot. MIC CHECK. Some folks form my group wanted me to say…I’m being challenged as a spoke. The clarifying points would be that last time we had about 320 people, today we have 320 people, and that the folks in our group believe that nobody was told to go home but were instead told to wait and be patient, which isn’t the same thing as excluding people. [TEXT MISSING]
Ows en espanol, translation, and WOW have left the SC.
The process should move forward and if you choose to leave then it will be in the minutes. This conversation should not be viewed as negative. By addressing the issue we’re addressing now…we can’t exclude people. Regardless of whether this was a miscommunication, people were excluded. We can’t view the conversation that’s going on here as negative.
Next on stack: Women’s caucus
I’d like to point out that every single GA that we have ever had has been invalid because every single GA does not have enough space for every single person that might want to be a part of that GA. Ever. Not in the park, not here, not in the high school, not in central park. There is never going to be enough space for all the people who love this process and want to be a part of it.
[LOTS OF APPLAUSE]
F: We need to respect one another. You can voice disagreement with hands but there’s no need to call out and make people feel uncomfortable.
Next on stack: Direct Democracy
188.8.131.52. From 7 to 9 pm a GA was held in liberty park. It was a good one, we plowed through four agenda items: [TEXT MISSING], November17th general strike, physical space in the park, and dissolving the SC. These were just discussions. When I left, we were getting report backs from occupy groups in the country. Keep on doing what you’re doing!
F: I just have to say that I had hoped that this meeting would be productive and that we would get through 15-20 groups on stack, but we weren’t able to do that because the process was derailed. Not that this conversation isn’t important, but I just want to acknowledge that that happened. We are still here but we didn’t get through what we wanted to.
Last on stack: Facilitation
184.108.40.206. I’m going to do my best to speak as the spoke for facilitation. First: the proposal which we’re speaking on seems redundant. There are minutes, they will reflect what happened. The facilitation spoke feels this is not a valid meeting, we will join those who have left. But we will support the facilitation team that remains. We don’t have a process for talking about the breakdown of process DURING process. [LAUGHS] So we need one! But that means that a lot of grace towards all of us is needed. The last thought is that facilitation as a working group has been very inclusive, it’s been one of the most self-reflective group of people I’ve ever been around, questioning themselves and accepting criticism. We want to work in earnest with anyone who will cooperate with process. We recognize that process is the road to moving forward.
F: We have five minutes before this meeting has to end. There’s an emergency announcement that needs to be made.
Announcement: I’m not from New York, there a lot of buildings here…Occupy Portland is facing eviction, the Mayor has capitulated to businessmen and capitalists. They’re not going to leave but the police are going to come in at 12:01 am, so I want to ask for solidarity. Thanks.
F: We have five minutes guys, we’re not going to get through the rest of the agenda. What do you want to talk about?
[LOTS OF SHOUTING]
F: Do we want to talk about Portland?
[LOTS OF MOVEMENT]
F: So it seems that there are very important things that need to be discussed about Portland.
MICH CHECK Could those interested in dropping a statement of solidarity for Portland to be passed through the GA tomorrow potentially please meet over here at the conclusion of this meeting at 10, which is right now!
I want to thank you all for working with us. Our next SC will be Monday night at 7:30. We do not yet have a space, if you’d like to help us find a space, please put your name down on the list being passed around. We have to be out of here by 10:15 so we need to start cleaning up.