Coordinators Meeting 11/5/2011 (report backs only)

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Report Backs

•           Chris Bentley, just an observer – nothing to report

•           Frankie, just observing

•           Michelle, Sustainability & OWS in Espanol – Battery stuff w/ pedal-power, harvesting rainwater, today is barter market; here to coordinate w/ kitchen about battery; 4-6 hrs to charge a battery. We have @ least 8 batteries. Media seems to be coming 2+ at a time. We need as many people on the bike as possible. If you know any electricians, send them our way.

•           Fix, media – working to make media mor organized. Moving forward w/ budget proposal

•           Jose, fr. kitchen, sanitation, etc. – yesterday, for the first time, kitchen opened at 7. Today, we have a new lady, Gail, taking inventory. She’s really good.

•           Gypsy, floater – have something in the works to get indoor shower & bath facility. We have porto-potties coming. Tentative to get us office locker room w/ toilets & showers in the back. Laundry left last night. We need to put our permanent facilities in permanent housing.

•           Ryan, PR – @ the end of the day yesterday, the same politicians were standing w/ Bloomberg, attacking the culture of the park, talked about something positive that we are doing to improve quality of life in the community.

•           Josh, fr. Comfort – there’s a strong authority structure @ Comfort these days; how can we change that structure?

•           Jill, organizing teach-in for squatting & part of open-source – open source is not recruiting people who would like to work & giving them credit. Trying to use software to allow people to contribute & get credit for it.

•           Andrew, alt banking – discussing things that could actually be done abt financial system; lots of interest; lots of people coming. Very concerned about the risk of our group not being integrated w/ the rest of OWS. We don’t want to come up w/ proposals & then sell them to others; we want the proposals to be collectively drafted.

•          Shen, fr. Organization – working w/ interior designers & builders on our off-site workspaces. We have a couple spaces, open 24/7, separately funded. We have created a pilot program to help get office space for those who need it. We have a google form for people to fill out to describe their office needs. We will soon put it up on the NYCGA website, and announce it at Spokes Council & GA.

•           Judy, fr. Library – great poetry assembly last night.

•           Dave, fr Occupy Toronto, Marshals, DA – having a lot of issues in Toronoto, here to

•           Lana, fr. Occupy Toronto, logistics, labor, outreach, finance, DA

•           Bryan – fr. Occupy Toronoty, media, facilitation

•           Sandra, Outreach – working on info list to revise it; trying to reach out to other organizations w/in New York. Sunday 2pm Organizers Meeting @ one of the union halls

 

Agenda

•           Hierarchy in groups – 4

•           Growing class divide & inequity in the park & how we can begin to deal with it – 9

•           Toronto report back – 7

•           Organization: laundry problem – 7

•           Resources online.

 

Hierarchy in Groups

•           Gypsy: hierarchy is a necessary part of life; people have to have roles or nothing gets done.

•           Jill: we have people running departments who don’t know how to communicate; people’s skills are ignored; advocates use of time-bank to give people credit for the time they work.

•           Jose: help me understand hierarchy. A little group of people who control everything but don’t listen to the needs of others.

•           Gypsy: everything needs chain of command, order.

•           Shen: point of info – the biggest strength of this movement is spontaneous order, but the idea is this: this of th is movement the way you think of the internet: no leader, no center. How do you have efficiency w/out leaders? Processes, procedures, chain of command. Think of Wikipedia: no leader, no expert; yet within less than a year, it became the largest, most comprehensive, most accurate encyclopedia in the world.

•           Jill: leadership does evolve naturally & we need leaders. Nothing’s black & white here. Internet’s great but it’s not accessible to the poor. Wikipedia is great, but that’s just facts, not functionality.

•           Functional def of hierarchy:

 

Growing Class Divide & Inequity in the Park

•           Gypsy: We need permanent structures for permanent facilities; we have given our permanent structures to our permanent population.

•           Jill: I am concerned about allocating resources to transients, but we can’t just reject our transient population. We’re getting ourselves into trouble. We have a vernacular problem. People w/ vernacular have a lot to say.

•           Fix: we need to prepare people in the park as best we can; the park is important. What we’ll probably see is a thinning; but we want to help people

•           I think we depend on our transients. Transience is a solution to a class problem.

•           Are transients people who come in to occupy people who come in & leave?

•           Gypsy: we have both occupiers & homeless people.

•           Winterization committee to look at larger structures & individual tents to make sure people are actually prepared.

•           Conflating two issues: class issues & winterization issue. Distinction btwn people who are trying to make things work in the park & real security issues. It’s not all oppression; it’s also real security issues.

•           Jose: in a couple days there will be a permanent transient tent.

 

Toronto Report Back

•           We’ve been around for 15 days.

•           First night: 50 people sleeping over.

•           Now, about 200 tents.

•           Park is about 3 times the size of Liberty Plaza

•           Large Gazebo for Gas

•           More spaces, so committee meetings have places to meet.

•           Got yurts a few days ago: library, workshops, _____.

•           A lot of committees:

o          Logistics: getting resources, tents, sleeping bags, etc.

o          Outreach: bringing in activists from the outside to talk about their permanent work on the ground

o          Finance: having trouble securing a bank account, so haven’t been able to take donations onlne. Credit Unions don’t want to give us an account, since we’re not an official charity.

o          Labor: unions are giving us stuff: canopies, tables, chairs, skids

•           Park was traditional crack, meth park. Difficult people in the park.

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