Draft Proposal for Tuesday 11/29 General Assembly: Gilbert and Chris

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Work and Housing Proposal
for the General Assembly of OWS

Presented by Gilbert, from Liberation of the People
And Chris, from Security

In light of the serious displacement of occupiers caused by the attack
on Liberty Park by Bloomberg and the 1%, the OWS is forced to
take on a next step in its development. This is not an all-inclusive
reparation to that attack; it is in relation to housing and work.

Along with occupying in tents, public meetings and all that rightfully
belongs to the 99%, we propose that there are occupiers who need
the dignity of having their own places of community style residence
(community style is more economical and facilitates working
together) and such residents to provide the means to financially
support it.

We propose that those who would live in such a residence would
do so agreeing to the requirement to service their fellow man, that
is, to work with dignity, to not exploit anyone and not be exploited
by anyone, but to work for oneself in small groups, doing whatever
services the residents choose to do in benefit to their community
or society at large, and do so earning according to the value of
one’s work, and not according to capital that may be invested in the
service.

The particular residence of this proposal is owned by relatives
of Chris, our security coordinator, who are in sympathy with our
movement. I’ve gone out to see the building. It is a three-story (with
basement area) Brownstone apartment building one block away from
the projects in Brooklyn on 398 East 98th street and is therefore
considered a “distress building.” For these reasons it is also being
made very affordable. (This area has been in an improving upswing in
recent years). It can be purchased by OWS for $60,000 with needed
repairs of an estimated $25,000 for plumbing, sheeting rocking and
painting. With $85,000 the residence can be ready in one months’
time.

We feel that this living and working condition will establish two
things:

1/ A more solid economic base for the occupiers (not having to go

to the Finance Working Group for everything) and the dignity that
comes with having living quarters as a basis so that we can become
the activists we are meant to be, and not activists limited to the daily
police intrusions by the 1%.
2/ Having one or more such work residences up and operating,
this would act as a model for other occupied cities to do the same.
In this way, given the great numbers of people resonating with our
movement, we can begin to build the society of truth, beauty and
goodness that we insist on living here on our Earth. And with time
we can then boycott those who exploit humanity in favor of those
services provided by the 99%.

I, Gilbert, have 30 years practical experience in six different
countries, New York, Stockholm, London, Lisbon, Paris and São Paulo,
with orienting small groups of people in getting started with running
their own self-employed business. I have the same experience
working with the problems that arise in groups of people living
together, and am willing to see to the success of this proposal.

7 Responses to “Draft Proposal for Tuesday 11/29 General Assembly: Gilbert and Chris”

  1. Anne

    I think this is a good idea, as long as you get legal advice to make sure it’s in compliance with zoning. Also remember that contractors always end up charging more than they initially estimate…Also, the residence will have to have rules such as no drugs–then who’s going to enforce this? Perhaps the people who are going to live there will have to be vetted. As soothsayer said some money will have to be budgeted for taxes. This will end up costing more than you imagine. However it would be worth it if it will be a permanent residence of workers for the movement. Also, the facility should house working group meetings or sub-group meetings; make it a workspace not just a living space. It could also host community group meetings, the way the old settlement houses used to be. The residents should have to perform community service in the neighborhood so that they become part of the neighborhood. For living expenses the residents could get part-time jobs and apply for food stamps. I don’t think the occupation should support all their living expenses.

  2. K

    Will propose this tonight, but would it be possible to have representitives from the occupiers visit the location and prepare a report as to the conditions, location, facilities, etc?

    It just seems a large purchase should be made carefully (though of course balanced against the approach of winter and needs of the occupiers.) I would prefer to not end up with a lemon of a building that we can’t use, that’s all. Overall, I like the proposal, and look forward to hearing you tonight.