NYC GENERAL ASSEMBLY DAY 85
Date/Time: 12/10/11 / 7pm
Location: Liberty Plaza
Facilitators (F): Christina and Brett
85.1. Working Group Report Backs
85.2. Agenda Items (Emergency proposal, Visions and Goals Breakouts, POC budget proposal, Kitchen budget proposal, Medical budget proposal, Housing metrocard proposal, Clear Cocoons demo, Occupy Oakland solidarity proposal, WikiLeaks Truck proposal, Politics and Electoral Reform statement, Statement to End Congressional Insider Trading, Think Tank)
F: My name is Christine, and this is Brett, and with your consent would like to be your co-facilitators tonight.
Stack: My name is Danny, I would like to take stack for the fist hour or so. Is that cool?
Time (Bonna): I’ll be taking time, and possibly stack when Danny leaves
Booker: My name is Booker. And with your permission I’d like to start out with a quick grounding.
F: How do we feel about that?
Q: What is that?
[Aside about needing more info on the grounding exercise]
F: A grounding is a chance for us to take our energy from here and bring it down here so we can get stuff down. How do you feel about that?
We’d like to start with that, and then move into our agenda.
Booker: Can everyone hear me without mic-check?
[Booker lovely grounding exercise! As a group we take three breaths together.]
We’re here as a community! As a team!
B: So tonight we have a very full agenda. We’ll start with working group report-backs, and then proposals. We have thirteen. Several of these deal with urgent needs. We’ve set 20 minutes with each agenda item, as a guideline. Just so that we’re all aware and conscious of each other’s time and well-being. Because its very cold tonight. After the agenda items we’ll have general announcements. These are statements of fact about upcoming events, new working groups, actions, etc. They’re not time for opinions.
C: I’d like to now go over some hand signals…..[goes over hand signals: Point of Information, Point of Process, Uptwinkles, Midtwinkles, Downtwinkes Block.]
F: When we get to doing proposals, the consensus process that we follow, will allow the proposer to present the proposal, then we’ll open stack for questions, then concerns, then friendly amendments. The goal of this process is to build towards a proposal that everyone can feel comfortable with. You don’t have to love it, but you’re okay with it moving forward. If after that process you’re not okay with it, based on a moral, ethical, safety, or large concern that effects your feelings about the movement, then it would be appropriate to use this hand signal. Which is a block. There is a specific time when we will ask for blocks.
Danny: Our democracy here is radical. We do a couple things to ensure it stays radical. As the stack taker, ill be taking progressive stack. That means if you’re part of a traditionally marginalized group, or are someone who has not spoken much during the meeting, I will put you on stack first. Everyone will have the chance to speak, but we use to idea of step-up-step back. If you are a part of a population that is encouraged to speak, we encourage you to step back from speaking. And if you’re from a population that isn’t encouraged to speak, we encourage you to step up and speak more.
Let’s stay radical!
Working Group Report Backs
F: This is an opportunity for working groups to take 2 minutes to let us know what you’ve been up to, and things that are coming up.
First on Stack: Occupy Delaware.
OD: Occupy Delaware would to give a vote if solidarity and support to y’all, to everyone here, and let you guys know we appreciate everything you guys do for — I mean with!– us.
Next: Picture the Homeless
Marcus: Good evening everybody, my name is Marcus…We just had an action on December the 6th, and Picture the Homeless, will have an emergency housing meeting in the Bronx. We invite everybody…the information that will be given will be word to mouth. This is very important. The address 2427 Morris Ave. The meeting starts at 6pm do not be late. Because you won’t get a Metro card. It is Thursday. Very important.
Danny: I’d like to move to close stack on WG report-backs. Are there any other groups?
F: Up next: Structure!
Structure: Hi everybody we’re putting the gang back together to take a second look at our structure in light of a lot of changes that have happened…at the moment we’re just like you to get in touch with us if you’re interested in participating.
F: Up next: Political and Electoral Reform!
Political and Electoral Reform: Hi everyone, a quick report-back, a lot of stuff going on in our group, we have a proposal on the agenda tonight, we have a number of subgroups working on a bunch of stuff…A viral campaign for a constitutional convention…Another subgroup for developing constitutional amendments…Another subgroup is developing a scientific experiment, to test alternative voting methods. Another group which was begun from someone who came in from Oregon, and has since returned to Oregon, is brainstorming what it would for a someone to be a 99-percent candidate for elected office. We meet Thursdays at 8 and Sundays at 3 at 60 wall. Were also having an open forum tomorrow at noon here.
Jace: How you guys doin? I’m Jace from Constitution. Were working on a proposal that will be coming up tomorrow for signing petitions for constitutional violations. Were asking for support from the GA for Occupy Wall Street to support our petitions, getting out to all the other occupations, in order for it to be seen by Congress and the President we’re gonna need 10 million plus signatures. That’s a lot…we need everyone on this one. Were not asking for money were asking for your support. All the information is at occcupytheconstitution.org. Come see us tomorrow night. We’re also doing a teach-in from 1-5 tomorrow at 60 Wall Street. Read the proposal. Also on nycga.net. But, yeah, read it, bring your questions
F: Up next: Strong Women Rule.
Nan: Hey guys. How you doing? 3 things: One, somebody lost their journal. Second thing; strong women working group been working very hard on this building that is not far from here, it is a 7-story building, 2200 square feet each story. It has 2 kitchens. 1st kitchen is on the second floor. 2nds kitchen is on the 4th floor., We have a proposal tonight. Either tonight or tomorrow night. But we’re gonna postpone it; reason for that we have four sponsors that we are working on to try and see if they can help too so that way we don’t have to take money from finance, so that way when winter comes we can operate it without a headache for the people, for the occupiers, for everybody so come help us.
F: Last: LiveTV!
LiveTV: First of all I suggest we try to make all working group meetings in the park when it’s raining and snowing. Thanks you
F: So that was the end of WG report-back. We’re gonna start with our first prop which is an emergency proposal.
Razor: Hi we’re from Revolutionary Activist Homeless Kicking Ass. We’re people previously in the shelter system who occupied, who are still chronically homeless. We don’t want handouts. We want to work. We’ve turned down the 100 dollars a day for all working groups. You can find us in the McDonalds in the middle of the night sleeping on the tables. People that cant access the churches due to psychiatric disability, physical disability. People who are being assaulted in the churches, being marginalized, very old or very young, we have a lot of people of color, a lot of transgender. What we are asking is the money allocated for metro cards last week. We did not spend it. It is still in Finance. For a week. Because we want your permission to continue our McDonalds program of making sure people have coffee or food in front of them so the cops do not kick them out. This is a question of emergency safety. It is freezing outside. People are getting loitering tickets. They are getting peeing in public tickets. They are also getting assaulted on the street. This is a cheap program, 100 for over a hundred people. Per night. We have receipts. If you don’t want us to, we’re just going to give back the money to the movement. We are not looking for handouts. We have pregnant people, people with autoimmune diseases, and if you’re attacked in the church, you are evicted along with the perp. For calling the police. So we have the survivor and the perp in McDonalds with us. It’s pretty fucked up. We really need this McDonalds program. ROHKA only meets there. We were offered office space, because 50 Broadway is only accessible to certain people right now, we turned it down. Unless we can all come to 50 Broadway, we aint coming. We don’t participate in exclusivity. Please support us using this money for McDonalds. I think that is….We have someone who wants to speak .
Michael Morgan: Hi. Michael Morgan . I run the program. Also feel the same thing that she feels as well. My main concern is the individuals of Occupy Wall Street we are the same people. We stand on the front lines. When it’s necessary to protest the money that was donated to Occupy…that means, not just to me, not just to you, to all. Whatever your sex, color, or creed, it fits the gander. When down it comes to protesting . when the message we’re sending down to the people is understood by our community. What I mean by that is the message that we send. To these people is for the best. In the interest of everybody. When I say that I’m speaking for everybody. ….our reasons are being neglected by the churches, and the shelters, for whatever reason. I’m not saying they’re viable or unviable but we love you all.
Ok– just to finish up, the exact number is $1250. We don’t want the Metro cards. We want not to freeze at night. These two people who occupied from day 1, they are pregnant. They are our occupation. They do not get fed at park slope. This is unacceptable. We need this community house at McDonalds.
Facilitation: So now we’ll open up stack for CQ. To be clear, they’ve already been allocated funds. But in the interest of transparency they’re asking that they use it to support people at McDonalds instead of Metro cards.
CQ: You said that you were offered the space at 50 Broadway. But people were excluded. Can you tell us why?
A: I actually can’t because I get twenty different stories. I think it’s fucked up that we get donated office space that clearly the same people are using and others don’t. The most privileged people use it often. The more marginalized don’t get in sometimes. As a movement we need to step back when offered exclusive stuff so it can’t go on at all.
Facilitation: As a reminder, thank you for bringing that up, it is a very important topic. In the interest of time and our general well-being let’s try to keep questions to the issue of the proposal
Stack: I have three on stack and I’d like to close stack. Anyone want to get on before we close?
CQ: Now I understand this money is already allocated. Obviously $1250 is not a bottomless amount. How long do you expect your program to operate based on these funds?
A: After that money is gone we will come back again and talk to you fresh. This is not ongoing. We want complete financial transparency. We want people to stop by McDonalds, sit and talk and see twenty occupiers sleeping with their heads on the tables in McDonalds. Because it’s fucking heart breaking. Please come by.
CQ: What is your party doing about researching facilities that will house those that you feel are marginalized and other facilities will not accept?
A: We are researching motels. Because motels accept liability for people that access their services that gets around our 501-c limits. The problem is we haven’t found a motel with enough rooms available. Were looking in Staten Island and Brooklyn. When we find one you guys will be the first to know.
CQ: Does providing you the money for McDonalds create an exclusive situation where you’re getting money for food and so forth that the rest of the GA is not receiving?
A: It is completely non-exclusive, because every occupier is included. It’s 2 bucks a person, if you’re there all night, you get that 2 bucks twice. Stay all night you get it too, dude
CQ: What’s the name of the group?
A: Revolutionary Activist Homeless Kicking Ass. It means “warrior” in Cherokee.
RAHKA: I support marginalized occupiers. And I wanna include the occupiers who still occupy. Just so you know all the occupiers in the park that are freezing holding down the fort go to McDonalds to warm up, get a coffee, pee , ands then go back out, and hold down the fort at Zuccotti. Christmas is in McDonalds, dude. Everybody is there.
F: We’d now like to open stack for concerns about this proposal.
C: I want to say I’m in complete support. You’re not asking for a lot and if you occupied here you deserve it. I am concerned about money going to McDonalds, though for now I understand it’s what has to happen…..Is there anybody taking about creating a more long-term community living space that doesn’t give money to the man?
A: Ok. We don’t even want necessarily McDonalds. Mickey D’s is a homeless halfway house and we’d love to have it in an organic food co-p, or whatever people want.
[Guy mi checks, disrupts… there’s a question over whether he should go on stack.]
Lex: Mic check: ….I just got out yesterday. My name is Lex. I just got out yesterday. OWS paid my bail. This is not my first time and it may not be my last. Let me explain something. I’m not sitting here playing games with you. Question; why are you here?
Facilitation: Mic Check! We were in the middle of discussing an emergency proposal. I’d like to get back to it.
C: My names Florinda, I like giving money to RAHKA, are they gonna come back with receipts….or what’s the accounting procedure?
A: We have receipts and we’re doing an open Google Doc that anybody can see. We’re also creating a website that anyone can see. We have no secrets.
Stack: I’d like to close stack on concerns. Anyone else?
C: I completely support the proposal, however like you said it’s not a permanent solution. Would you guys be willing, if we could work out people to get into the office space, to get into the office space?
A: If the office space is rotated for all members of our movement. This is a big undertaking. If that was up and running, which we’re willing to help out with, we’ll use the office space. We’re tired of working at McDonalds.
C: My question is…I’m wondering, you said that, the office space, they offered you the office space…who offered it to you, and did you try to explain your concern to them before you turned them down?
A: Yes, they know why. We’re not naming names, because the people who offered it don’t control the office. We’re a leaderless movement so at some point we have to make a stand for no one to participate in exclusivity.
C: My second questing will that money that you currently have– will it be enough to buy things for the homeless, for those people who are occupying McDonalds? Would you ask for more money, if its not enough for them?
A: We’re not trying to buy anything for the homeless. We’re just trying to buy the right to be in McDonalds while it’s cold. We want to work. We want to do job co-ops. If the program runs out we’re gonna come to you again and give you an update.
Stack: Last on stack, Michael.
C: I am concerned that you have made the assumption that McDonalds will be there for you indefinitely. At what point will you have decided to occupy your own space?
A: We are not against getting rid of McDonalds…this is just right now. I have been talking nonstop with the managers of McDonalds and the police. They are for this program, but it’s not a long-term solution. It’s just for right now, because we don’t have anything else.
CQ: How hard are you working on finding your own space?
A: We are working very hard to find our own space. You should know because you’re in McDonalds every night with us. Thank you!
F: Let’s try to limit back and forth. Juts so we all know we’ve reached a little over 20 minutes. We’re doing great, how do we feel about extending this 10 more minutes?
[Takes temp check.]
Doesn’t look good. How about 5?
POI: They are also working side-by-side with strong women about the building.
A: ROCA is working along, POI. We’re not aligning with any other working group until finance releases figures and we can see what’s up with this movement. It’s called self-protection. Thank you.
F: I understand that we want to move forward. But just to make sure that no one questions the process later. I do need to ask if there are friendly amendments.
FA: My friendly amendment is why can’t ROCA put the proposal in for the money for McDonalds only, not for the Metro card.
A: Because the money already has been allocated for ROCA. We were told this is the process if you want to do it for something else, in the name of transparency.
F: So just to clarify, they’ve chosen not to use the money from what it was originally allocated for. And they wanted to run it by the general assembly before using it for something else, which is McDonalds to support the people who stay there overnight. We will now take a temp check on this proposal.
F: That looks very good. Are there any blocks?
[There is a block.]
F: Can you explain your block please?
A: I am questioning the obligation of the movement to provide any support for folks who hang out in McDonalds.
ROHKA: People who are currently homeless aren’t hanging out…They are seeking shelter. There is a difference. Also, we are spending 400 a night at the churches. That’s 12 grand a month, plus 7-day unlimited metros. That’s another 7 grand–I don’t know if you know that.
F: Is there an amendment you could offer the proposer that would leave you to drop your block?
A: Honestly I didn’t get that far.
FA: I would like to propose that ROHKA get confirmation from housing that your 20 occupiers are not able to stay in the churches.
ROHKA: Just so you know people aren’t rejected. People can’t get there for personal reasons, including psych disorders, sexual assault survivors. Inside the churches no one’s getting rejected. People are saving themselves
F: So he’s maintaining his block. Which means we’ll move to modified consensus.
POI: One of the people blocking right now eats from the McDonalds program every night. Just so you know.
F: We have one more block who would like to address the assembly.
Blocker: I feel the money that was given was supposed to be for metro cards…For people to go back and forth…if ROHKA wants to use money for McDonalds they should bring a proposal to the GA. The money for metro cards its supposed to be for the metro.
ROHKA: The problem is that when people get money they spend money just to spend it. 100 dollars a day here, 100 dollars a day there. We need to be efficient. We need to only take wheat we need. We need to get consensus for how this money should be spent. That’s what we’re doing.
F: So right now, we’re gonna get a count for people who are not in agreement with this proposal. So if you are not in agreement please raise one hand.
[6 Raise Hands]
F: So the next thing is that we need to get a count of everyone who is participating right now.
F: Ok, so what we’re gonna ask is, put a hand in the air, keep it up, until one of the facilitators points at you and says a number.
[Counting of Hands]
F: So we stopped the count because we got to 61…because there were 6 against. There were people who we didn’t count because we reached the threshold for a 9/10ths consensus. So the proposal is passed!
F: Wed like to move fwd with the agenda. Next up is Visions and Goals who have requested a 10-minute breakout discussion group.
Visions and Goals: Hello Everybody! My name is Rich. I would like to begin by saying that I feel awkward talking about visions for generations into the future at a time when many of our supporters are sleeping in McDonalds. But…we have to keep looking ahead. So we’ve been coming here regularly to solicit feedback on our drafted vision statement. On Wednesday and Thursday night our group met and we incorporated as much of the feedback as we could work with into our document. So we would like to ask for your opinion on how we’re doing and how you feel about our revised document. So do we want to read it? Okay we’re gonna read our working statement:
“From the General Assembly of the Occupy Wall Street movement, to the People of the World, we offer a Declaration of our Vision.
Mic Check: We are the 99%.
System Check: The system is broken.
Fact Check: The environment is collapsing.
Reality Check: There must be change.
We envision a truly free, democratic, and just society, built on the following principles:
Liberty: whereby we secure the full spectrum of human rights –economic, political, civil, economic, social, cultural, and environmental – against violation or infringement, particularly by unchecked corporate power and unjust governments;
People Power: whereby government, in every form and at every level, exists by the will of those governed, and where neither wealth nor history alone will justify power;
Solidarity: whereby all people come together to make decisions through consensus; a process by which everyone’s voice is heard, and no one is marginalized, [and where the currently marginalized members of our society are afforded the dignity and right of having their voices count with our own];
Accountability: whereby all who reap society’s benefits accept a fair share of society’s responsibilities;
Fairness: whereby economic, social, political, economic, and environmental systems work to benefit all, not just a privileged few; these systems should be restructured or replaced when they fail to do so;
Peace: whereby we learn to live in harmony and embrace principles of compassion, appreciation, and respect for diversity and the differing views of others;
Equality: whereby we reject all forms of institutionalized discrimination and oppression, on any basis, including race, sex, gender identity, sexual orientation, or religion;
Non-violence: whereby non-violence is embraced as a way of life, and we resolve to always carry a good message as we work out our differences;
People Before Profit: whereby we value human dignity and needs over monetary gain, because when people lack security or a standard of living adequate for their well-being, effective democracy is impossible;
Meeting Human Needs: whereby human needs are elevated to a place of primary importance: among these are the right to meaningful and fairly rewarded work, decent housing, comprehensive healthcare, and education;
Environmental Stewardship: whereby we work together to protect the global environment and preserve all species to ensure that life is sustainable, and that future generations will have safe and clean air, water, and food supplies.
Mic Check: We are the 99%.
Our occupation will continue.
We will make this vision a reality.”
Visions & Goals: What we need you to do is look over the paper you were given and please give your feedback. If you think that something needs to be worded in a better way or you feel there’s something we missed that’s really important to the movement please put that on the paper and please try to be concise because there’s a lot of papers and not that many of us to process all the information. So be nice! We are coming back tomorrow. Hopefully it will be ready for consensus. Help us to make that happen.
If that doesn’t leave much time, we’re having our working group meeting at 12 noon at 60 wall Street so if you can’t give us back a paper tonight, please leave your comments on nycga.net or come to our meeting tomorrow
Visions & Goals: Also, if you need a pen just ask!
F: So what we’re gonna do is, we’ll take a couple minutes now, if you want to write feedback and give it to them tonight, and then well move on. There’s a lot to do.
[Break for five minutes while people add their comments]
F: Ok so we’d like to move on with the agenda if people would come back and join the assembly. The next agenda item is from the People of Color Caucus
POC Caucus: Hi! On Wednesday December 14th, This coming Wednesday, we’re going to be holding a racial justice workshop for Occupy Wall Street in the place of Spokescouncil. Everyone is welcome. So the proposal is for 400 dollars to rent a space for 4 hours. The space is in Unity Hall..It’s $100 an hour, including a security guard.
F; So we’d not like to open stack for clarifying questions on the proposal.
Q: My question is, where is unity hall
POC Caucus: It’s at 235 west 23rd street, between 7th and 8th.
Q: My question is, is everybody, I mean, all the working groups, will be partaking, that class would it be like a mandatory thing for people to do, or anybody could go and do it?
POC Caucus: It’s not mandatory but all working groups and anyone involved in OWS, in any way, and even those who aren’t are welcome to attend.
Stack: Next: Dustin
Q: My only question is, have you tried raising the money elsewhere?
POC Caucus: No we have not because usually facilitation covers to cost of renting the locations for spokescouncil. Facilitation is not covering this cost, and the POC caucus is. We feel that it’s for the GA to cover this cost, as they were covering it, for spokescouncil anyways, which this is replacing.
Chip: is this a planned replacement of spokescouncil?
POC Caucus: On Friday December 2 at spokes the POC caucus brought to prop about the workshop replacing the spokescouncil on the 14th. We reached unanimous consensus that it would.
F: Real quick before we move on there’s food being served but only for a little while longer. So if you wanted food you should maybe get it now.
F: Are there any other clarifying questions?
Nan: What are the hours?
A: We are renting from 6-10:30. From 7 – 7:30 there will be time for working groups to meet. The workshop will start at 8 and end at 10.
F: We’d like to raise concerns, please raise your hand to get on stack.
[There are no concerns]
F: Are there any friendly amendments?
F: Ok, we’d like to see if there are any blocks for this proposal.
F: Okay lets take a temp check.
F: That looks positive, and since there are no blocks there is consensus!!
F: Before we move on to our proposal from Medical, Visions and Goals is up there to take your papers.
Vision and Goals: If you don’t have your papers ready, tomorrow, 60 wall, 12 o’clock.
F: Just so we know, the few things coming up: we have Medical, then a budget for housing, and then 6 more things.
F: Now were gonna have 20 minutes for the next proposal.
Medical: Hi; I’m from medical we’re gonna propose a budget….cause I’m horrible at these things, so bear with me.
So one thing I need to clarify- is that there’s no longer medical as a whole. Were now separate working groups that consist of the medical clinic, the street medics, and support. Support being mental health and things of that nature.
On Thursday December 3rd 2011 there was official a split between medical and street medics. The split happened to protect the licenses of our physicians and nurses and other medical healthcare professionals who have their own accountability for their actions in this movement. Due to the split the budget that we had needs to be proposed again under the new working groups. The Medic team had a budget of 500 a week in addition to 100 a day. We also had a pretty generous amount of donations coming in from the public during our occupation of the park. They put things in the bucket and we would say thank you.
So now we are re-proposing a budget to get supplies needed for care for the health and well-being of OWS attendees and occupiers, including preventative measures to operate many of the housing initiatives, or get scripts filled for patients who have no insurance or income. To help with transportation, meaning fare for bus car subway, to visit locations that transport patients to hospitals or ER or clinics throughout NYC to keep communications open between the doctors, nurses, medics and the community. Sometimes helping with hospital fees and clinics, most that are not affordable for our patients
Due to the raid of the park our supplies are limited, we don’t have donations. We are looking to stock four mobile clinics for the time being, and eventually start a free healthcare clinic that will be open not just to Occupy Wall Street but for 100 percent of the people. Including the NYPD. We are asking for a budget of $1,050 a week instead of 500, plus quick additional funding in case of emergencies. So we can start building up our supplies again, which would include 1st aid supplies, preventative med supplies, emergency lifesaving equipment, and scripts. To build better mobile clinics we’ve had since the raid, for food since we don’t have access to the kitchen and are a 24-hour operation without a centralized location at this time. To have transportation for doctors, nurses, and our support staff to do rounds at housing and all the other locations day and night. Slowly start sep by step forming a licensed free nonprofit health care clinic. The fund for teams of medial observers made up of trained doctors nurses and other staff, support demonstrators and other occupiers, with documentation, and medial aid, if there was ever a need.
I can describe that a little bit better. The teams will basically be just like the NLG, the lawyers that wander around with the green hats. And there will be doctors and nurses that are specially trained on how to document and support people who have been brutalized and injured during any of our events, to help create civil suites if needed.
F: So we’ll now open stack for clarifying questions. We’re about 8 minutes into our 20.
CQ: My question is, will you be doing rounds, at the churches as well as in Zuccotti? And will there be rotating teams, or just one team for each venue?
Medical: The answer to that question is that we will do rounds anywhere that involves the OWS movement in NYC. Anywhere that is within our limitations. Sending doctors to McDonalds might tread upon the FDNY’s territory.
CQ: My question is, have you tried, to work with kitchen, about budgeting for the food that’s my only question, you gout my vote, I’m getting a coffee.
Medical: Our teams, are very spread out, and are consistently in motion. They don’t really have a lot of time to connect with kitchen and other groups.
Nan: Kitchen, and certain areas, like the churches, Yonkers and so forth, give allowance, to those people, maybe you can talk to kitchen to get an allowance for medical. That’s what I’m saying.
CQ: Hi. My question is about the equipment. Can you generalize about the equipment that you have to buy and say what institution you’re requested donations of equipment from?
A: We provide general health care, which consists of, some pretty expensive equipment. The average AED — automatic electronic defibulator — the thing that shocks you when you have a heart attack, costs for one unit nearly $1,300. We had some donated to us before the raid and they were taken. We were only able to get one back. We still need three more. We also want to supply them to the churches if they don’t have them. Or at least ask them to purchase their own. We’ll figure it out.
Institutions meaning like hospitals? We work with some of the local university hospitals, and even out-of-state hospitals, the best we can. But asking for a device that costs $2,000 is not always the easiest thing to ask for. But if we do get them we’re very grateful and if you know anybody please tell me.
Q: Is there a possibility of getting those defibulators back…..
A: I’ll answer that question…we can’t actually really talk about it at the moment, due to the fact that we’re taking apart the legal situation….were trying to figure out the legalities about it, and be appropriate about it with hands in the air screaming. And it will take time, and we’ll win. No worries.
F: We’d like to close stack. If you still have a clarifying question please raise your hand now
Medical: One thing I’d like to add about that…the minute we start doing anything, we’ll hold a public meeting ,and address everybody. The fact is that we have a focused route we’re gonna take through legal.
Stack: Next: Scott
Q: 2- part question: what % of your weekly budget is prescriptions, and who are the doctors that are prescribing these?
A: We don’t actually have a percentage because it goes up and down. I imagine that once we’re fully running as a clinic that’ll be like 70 percept of our budget, and we’ll probably ask for more money. This is low dollar for us. But it’s for everybody.
The doctors are volunteers from all over. Most of them work at Columbia, Mt. Sainai, and many of the other medical institutions in New York. They’ve been very supportive with everything that we do and have given us a very clear path on how to do this the right way.
Stack: Next: Whitehead
Q: Are you able to raise donations directly online?
Medical: At the moment we have not gone outside of OWS due to legal reasons, and accountability reasons, for fundraising. Does that answer yr question?
Q: But you were taking donations before.
Medical: When we had a bucket outside the tent. Which was an OWS thing.
That was unsolicited donations. Which keeps it legal for medical. Medical unfortunately has….We’re not allowed to take payment for anything, legally. If any of our doctors ever asked for payment you need to tell us, because it’s illegal. We’re not a registered state clinic and we have to follow those guidelines. Because we are licensed professionals we have to protect our licences to continue to give you free volunteer health care.
Stack: Next: Hermez
Q: My question is do you envision in the long term to have a car?
Medical: I would love a car! If I didn’t live in New York.
Q: I was thinking about a vehicle for transportation for the medical
Medical: There are legalities about doing a transport service that could bite us in the ass. So that’s not an option unfortunately. We actually tried to do that when we had the occupation, but FDNY was on top of it before we even knew what hit us.
F: So that was the end of stack, which timed out perfectly with the ends of our 20 minutes. How do we feel about another 10 to try to feel this out?
F: Okay that’s pretty bad. Another 5?
F: That’s better. We’ll now open stack for concerns.
Stack: First on stack: John.
C: Are there existing free clinics in NYC? And if so what are you doing differently?
Medical: Good question. The vision of the free clinic is not to judge based on your income, even if you’re completely poor, or very rich, we feel that 100 percent of people deserve the ability to receive free healthcare. And that’s one thing that separates us from other free clinics which judge you based on income. If you have too much money you can’t get free health care, which is funny, but true.
Stack: Next: Josh
C: My concern is that..How is your medical group structured to be horizontal so that there’s not a power being placed on one shoulder but not others?
Medical: That’s a great question. It’s not. Medicine is a very important team-building situation. In order to provide health care, quality healthcare, and not put patients lives at risk people have to accept and know where they stand on that team. If a doctor gives us an order, or a nurse, you listen to the doctor…unless we know for a fact we can prove they’re wrong. Medicine is, as [unclear] calls it, a primitive process.
The medical clinic would love to be a part of OWS principles. We’ve attempted it and that is why we had to split from the street medics who want to be a part of that, but we unfortunately have to protect our accountability and in order to do that we have to be a little bit different than the principles of OWS. Doctors and nurse and other professionals who work with the medical clinic come from a institutional background and that’s how they know how to work and get the job done.. If we did that we’d spend all day debating if we should give them Tylenol or candy.
C: My concern is..what if we allow this to go through and the money is not enough? Would you come back to us and ask for more money on top of what you already have?
Medical: You were getting coffee but as I said, this is low-dollar, we’re starting from the bottom to see what we need. We know this is expensive but we’re gonnna do our best to not take everybody’s money. If we have to we we’ll come back and ask for more with proof that we need it.
C: It sounds like medical and everybody in medical and you’re my friends…you save my ass.
C: So how is his money going to be combined with the other medics?
Medical: Let me say this again. And ill probably say this 1000 more times, please spread the word. Three medics are now their own working group and will be here in a couple of days and will ask for their own budget. We’re the medical clinic. The type of medical we do is very different than what street medics do. We provide patient services that include doctors, nurses, physician assistants. Nurse practitioners and paramedics. The people that work in this group are licensed. In order to protect ourselves we have to have our own accountability.
The street medics medical clinic supports holistic. We’ll all be working together to coordinate patient care. But they all hold their own accountability and if one makes a mistake it doesn’t fall on all the medical people that are associated with OWS.
[Question about who medical serves, and who can come to the clinic.]
Medical: We serve everybody, and everybody outside OWS. Everyone who’s in need.
F: So we’ve reached the end of stack and we’ve reached the end of our time. But we’re doing great! How do we feel about 10 more minutes to finish this out.
[Temp check looks good]
F: Let me ask if we have friendly amendments.
F: Are there friendly amendments?
FA: Its’ more of a concern….the concern is about …..The amount of money being used for prescriptions. This is not a moral question, but more of one with the medical healthcare industry overcharging for scripts. And us participating in that.
Medical: Actually, we get discounts for most of the prescriptions we get for our patients. We get sometimes as much as half off. We’re awesome like that.
F: So at this point I’m gonna ask the proposer to briefly restate their proposal.
Medical: So, we’re asking for $1,050 a week. I believe that’s $250 a day. That is gonna go to the medical clinic that provides medications, exams, nurses, transportation, we’ll talk about the food with kitchen, but until we reach consensus with kitchen, we need to eat too. For supplies, because we have nothing. And also for the medical observation team. We need to supply uniforms for them so you can recognize them.
F: We’re like to take a temp check to see how people are feeling.
F: We see a lot of uptwinkles
F: Are there any blocks?
F: That’s consensus! !
Medical: Thank you very much, remember to take your vitamins, and brush your teeth, because we don’t want to se you.
F: Next is kitchen. After that is housing.
Kitchen: Mic Check! Hi, I’m ice. I’m a glorified dishwasher. I’m repping kitchen. We lost our Liberty Square kitchen but we didn’t lose our appetites. Who’s hungry can I get a temp check? What I’m proposing on behalf of kitchen is that we eat three times a day. Yes and to reach that magic number we will need a large sum of money. Not any more or any less than we were receiving when we were an all our glory. So they took our kitchen but did they take our movement? This is a people’s kitchen. I kitchened all day for you today with the lovely Latisha. I hope everybody enjoyed. And I wanna continue to kitchen three times a day. We lost half of our volunteers, not everybody’s built for this. I take pride and honor rocking and rolling in that motherfucking kitchen. When you eat we get stronger. And we must be strong for action. Food is action. The people are action. I must feed you and you must eat. So let’s approve this.
The magic number– and let’s not break process- the total amount that were asking for week is 10,501 dollars. That breaks down to 12,000 meals, by seven days it equals 8,400 meals a week. Which only equals 1.25 per meal. Can we get back to glory? Can we take back the peoples kitchen? We already got the park, they can steal the little kitchen, but they can never steal the peoples kitchen.
F: We’d now like to open stack for clarifying questions, please raise your hand.
Stack: First on stack, Deborah.
CQ: I support what you’re doing. But when you’re talking about lots of money, just to protect yourself,…Are you going to clarify with receipts exactly where that money is going, just so everybody is clear where that money is going or upsets in the future. Because when it comes to money people will lose their ever-loving mind. So you want to make sure you’re using transparency so we know where everything is going.
Samantha (Kitchen): We’re gonna start every week to place an itemized list of where all the money…Yes, we’re gonna post all receipts and money spent online with full transparency. This is an example of what we’re spending this week. However, it will get more and more detailed as we get better.
Stack: Next: Nan
CQ: My question is as I’m reading this that you guys passed I do not see any money for the true occupiers who occupied this park at night day and night…What’s going on?
A: Actually there is money. $210 per week for coffee and snacks every night at Zuccotti Park and Jordan is our point person on that ….They serve every Saturday and Sunday at Zuccotti park currently we have such a small amount of volunteers that we’ve only been able to serve in two locations because we don’t have enough volunteers.
CQ: My 2nd question for kitchen, I heard rumors that at 86 church somebody was in charge at that time…Is that person still in charge? People are eating at 86th street.
A: That person is not in charge. That money is now going to Judd. And mistakes are gonna happen.
F: We’d now like to close stack.
CQ: I just wanted to say. There should be a problem that comes to when it comes to feeding us. Any amount of money is worth when you feed the people. I’ve been talking to Ice about Jonny and they stepped up to the plate no strikeouts. No striking out why we having stack about that?
Kitchen: This budget for food is actually less than their daily total they have been receiving since nearly the start of the movement. We’re actually asking for less money than we got in Zuccotti.
Stack: Next: Kenneth.
CQ: Last night I stayed out here to see if they was gonna bring the coffee and the tea and nothing happened.
Kitchen: I can answer that question. Yesterday was the day that our budget was held. So until we approve this we won’t be able to give you coffee at night. If we approve it today we’ll go back to having coffee and snacks at night.
F: So that’s the end of stack on Clarifying Questions, we’ll now open it up for concerns. Any concerns?
C: My concern is what are we spending $28,000 on events when we have goods and other things at the warehouse, SIS.
Kitchen: SIS food stock is very low. So. This $28,00 0 is available for all of you and on the second page there is a requirement…helpful hints on how to request kitchen food for a kitchen budget. So if you have a new occupation or an event and you need food it explains here how to get that. And that’s where the $28,000 comes in.
F: Are there any other concerns about this proposal?
C: Does Yonkers receive back from the food?
Kitchen: We have a one-strike policy. And on the second page: all proposals passed will require handing in receipts. Failure to do so will lead to not being able to withdraw funds from kitchen budget. One strike, you’re out. Without receipts you’re out.
F: If there are no more concerns…we have one more concern.
C: I have a friendly amendment. If you guys put medic on this budget I will step aside. Fairness.
F: So what Nan says is that medics food budget comes through kitchen budget so that would require them taking their food budget off the proposal and placing it onto ours. Can we get a temp check on that…?
F: Medic budget already passed.
Nan: But medic said they were gonna talk to you guys about that.
Kitchen: I promise to talk to paulie and maria to make sure medic is getting adequate food.
[Point of Process]
F: I saw a couple points of process. Lets move on. We’re already moved into friendly amendments so we’ll ask if there are any others and we’ll move to a temp check. Are there any other friendly amendments?
Kitchen: My friendly amendment is on here but ill read it…is that even if we get the money we don’t have the volunteers we cannot feed you guys. So I ask at least 2 people from each working group to donate at least 3 hours each week to help with kitchen. Because we are 50 percept down on volunteers.
Johnny: I just want to say one thing I help coordinate the volunteers for the kitchen Monday through Friday. If you have trouble volunteering find me here or at 60 Wall. We pay for metro cards also at the kitchen ….
F: Before we move on we’ll ask the proposers to restate briefly their proposal.
Kitchen: I’m hungry. Every day. I wanna eat three times a day. That’s the proposal. Lets get the money.
F: Temp check….That looks very good. Are there any blocks?
[There are no blocks]
F: Next we have a budge proposal from housing. Thanks for bearing with us. This is really important.
Housing: The housing working group continues to face the challenge of not only providing immediate housing for our occupiers but also a safe way to get them there and back to the central hub for participating in this movement. Unfortunately the housing options currently available are not within walking distance of 60 wall and Liberty Plaza. We have to be mobile as an occupation. Being there to participate in meetings, actions and marches and volunteering in working groups is vital to keep this movement alive. Our proposal is to continue to help our occupiers help themselves and each other. Housing is requesting $5,757 for weekly unlimited metro cards that breaks down as 29 dollars per 175 metro cards. To once again help the housing group transport occupiers staying at the current housing locations as well as other occupiers in working groups and in other housing situations who are having difficulty traveling and participating in daily events, meetings, and groups as a result. The metro cards will be distributed as follows: 60 will be given out via point person at the SPSA church: that’s 86th and Broadway. 20 will be given out via point person at the united Methodist church, 20 will be given out via Kelly at the housing site in Yonkers. The remaining 75 will be distributed at 60 wall via me, Lauren. Finance, now known as Accounting, is making their office available tomorrow–They’re usually closed–to withdraw funds in the event that this proposal passes. These metro cards will then be given out immediately.
F: We’ll now open stack with Clarifying Questions.
CQ: Lauren, him, my names is Chris .I just want to clarify one thing. Are you personally responsible for the working groups and not only for the individuals that are staying at the churches?
Housing: As the proposal maps out, there is a portion of these metro cards that are gonna be available at the churches. It’s their responsibility to give them out. But security goes between churches. That’s why I’m being given 75 metro cards. We’re still trying to work out the system in which we are going to make sure that there isn’t a double counting. So everyone gets one. We will have that list, hopefully tomorrow, when all these point people come together and we will have one list.
F: If you have a clarifying question please let us know.
CQ: I have two clarifying questions. My first is, those people, the point people at those churches, are you going to have their names down that you’re going to give them metro cards too, and are you going to sign next to their names, to make sure that they do not sell the metro cards?
If you would like I would propose that that could be a friendly amendment to add to the proposition I think it’s a great idea to have all the point people held personally accountable.
My second question– is there are occupiers who come to me, to my working group, for my metro card to be swiped. There was one individual who had a lot and did not use those metro cards but sold them. So I need to make sure that if I’m gonna have this passed that the metro cards will actually be used, not to make somebody else’s pocket rich. My group is holding you accountable, and every group I’m a partner with is holding you accountable, to show those people, who have those metro cars because those are people who haven t’ had anything …
Point of Information [housing]: I handled the metro card distribution from the proposal last week. The system that we used…we took down their name, their initials, the card number, and they had to sign, and they were agreeing to be personally accountable and to return that card on its expiration. What you see here are check marks for all the people who have been responsible and returned their cards. If they do not return…they will not be trusted again. I can assure that these people will not have metro cards again. They should come to me and be held accountable .
CQ: are you the only one in charge of metro cards?
Housing: I am not.
CQ: How many are there?
Housing: For this specific proposal there are four point people. There’s myself, there’s Kelly, and there are two from the other churches.
CQ: Who are the other two?
Jeff: I’m Jeff! I’m the point person! At SPSA at 86th.
Michael: I’ Michael, I’m the point person for the ‘slope.
CQ: I know where I get my metro. I get mind from sparrow and there’s another young lady I don’t quite know her name but anytime I need she gives me a metro card.
Housing: And I would suggest that you take advantage of people offering those metro cards. However the occupiers group…offer other cards, which are great if you’re taking the PATH.
CQ: Quick question , are you guys look at the possibility of engaging some kind of shuttle service to move people around the city.
Housing: We have some other possibilities, Ben and Jerry’s has offered to donate a bus. But originally it was a bus for kitchen. I am looking into the possibility of having a bus to shuttle people. It may cost a lot of money and gas and maintenance. I also encourage if you want to get a hand on a bike and want to bike in the cold, buy all means….Again this is a quick and sure option.
CQ: How do you determine who receives the 75?
Housing: From my personal experience giving out these metro cards last week it’s not always easy to determine who deserves it and who doesn’t. A lot of what we do in this movement is ask on good faith. However I lived in this park for 6 week and I know most of you so I tryst that you wouldn’t take advantage of my generosity. And I also have the names of everyone who’s come to me before. So I do a light screening process of everyone who comes to me.
CQ: My concern….my question is this: is your proposal also going to be with Sparrow, in other words, are you going to give a metro card to Sparrow?
Housing: At this point I have voiced to Sparrow that because she was not willing to give me information about her metro card distribution which I asked for in our last prop, I have problems, giving her a metro card. She was very hostile towards me and she has been receiving metro cards. There are other working groups such as sanitation that don’t get any. I’m trying to help those as well.
CQ: I appreciate that. I know for a fact that sparrow has $360 worth of metro cards in her possession. She only gave out nine, my working group has zero….It all came out of our pocket. She has metro cards, and that’s unfair.
F: We saw lots of POP because we should stay focused on this proposal and not the behavior of individuals or working groups.
Stack: We’d now like to open stack for concerns.
Stack: Anybody else?
C: Is there any risk that people who should get metro cards aren’t getting on the list?
Housing: The churches in Yonkers have their own lists of people who have been coming consistently to stay there. I have my own list as well. And we are going to compare lists so that there are no crossover issues. But let me state that we have more occupiers than 175. The reason we like unlimited is that it gives people the opportunity to swipe others.
C: My question is…I’m not gonna block you.
F: If there aren’t any other concerns we’ll ask for friendly amendments and then we’ll move onto a temperature check.
F: Are there any friendly amendments?
FA: I know this might be a little controversial, but I’d like to suggest that we make some monthly unlimited cards, that’s much cheaper. And a second thing: have a library card system for metro cards.
F: So now the proposer gets to decided whether or not to adopt this amendment. They’re discussing it.
Housing: Monthly metro cards which may seem economical are still very expensive and also leaves a question of who gets one. So it’s not something I can add to the proposal
Stack: Next on stack: Nan
FA: My friendly amendment is: what if the amount of cards you get is not enough for you to be able to give your system leeways from the money to finance….can you [ask for more money if its not enough?].
Housing: The way accounting works in case you guys aren’t aware is that they simply give our money based on the minutes. It would be hard to say if they would give leeway about proposals, they try to be specific so they can keep their books accurate.
Stack: Next: Dallas.
FA: Actually I just want to revisit the second part of what the first gentleman said. I didn’t hear you respond to an idea of a library system.
Housing: What I pointed out earlier was a system in which we logged and showed accountability for all the cards. So this is what we did. At this point we know all the people that got metro cards.
Dallas: I believe the idea is , if you’re asleep someone else an be using yr metro card. So how could we arrange for that and would you be open to doing so?
Housing: The only thing I could suggest is that the cards that are given to the churches and to Yonkers are kept there. And swipe people through as necessary at stations through those churches. I’d have to talk to them if they’d be willing to do that. They are in charge.
F: Any other friendly amendments?
POI: I would like to point out there’s a difference between having a person swipe cards which is illegal and can get people arrested and having a general library system where a person while they’re sleeping or even a non-sleeping occupier who uses metro cards to travel around to events…I’m not saying we should replace the whole system, just a small segment.
FA: Just like earlier, you keep a count of who took the card out, and when they return it. And id also suggest you only do this with people you trust and have a good record.
Housing: We cannot accept this friendly amendment at this time.
POI: As the point person at the church…I can say these people are all around at different times.
F: That was the last friendly amendment. We’ll ask the proposers to briefly restate their proposal.
Housing: The proposal is$ for 5,075 to provide 175 weekly unlimited metro cards to be dispersed at Park Slope, via 20 cars through Michael, 86th and Broadway, 60 cards via Jeffery, 20 cards to Yonkers via Kelly, and 75 cards via me at 60 wall, and all the people who are point people for these cards will sign and be held personally accountable for those cards and that they are distributed.
Chris: My name is Chris and the reason I’m asking about Michael is because I have questions, about integrity, integrity on his behalf. There is a document that has gone around and I q that document, and because of that document, I question his integrity.
[ Cross talk — Michael defends himself, there is some confusion about which Michael is being accused.]
F: We’re going to move on and take a temp check on this proposal. Temp check please.
F: That looks mostly good. Are there blocks on this proposal?
F: I see one- are there any others?
Block [Chris]: My block would be that Michael is not allowed to be a part of…Michael Booth never gets a metro card to pass out to anyone.
F: We’re gonna take a second to discuss with the proposers the possibilities of tabling…Or doing something else…It’s very cold, we’ve done a lot of work tonight, if we could just take a minute and take the energy down a minute. We appreciate your time.
[Facilitation and Housing take a moment to talk]
F: The proposers would now like to respond to the first block.
Housing: We’ve decided for the sake of the proposal, to have Michael step down. Michael, who has been to Park Slope several times, would be sufficient. Is the GA comfortable with this?
F: Please let us know what the response to the block is?
F: Could you please shortly give again the response to the block?
Housing: We have decided, if it will satisfy the blockers, to appoint Michael as a point person….I know it’s confusing, they’re both names Michael.
F: Please explain your block.
Block [Chris]: The reason why I have this block, it is morality and integrity against these two because I know him, I’ve been security, he’s been a problem. He’s new. And why would we allow metro cards meant for us to be distributed between one problem and someone that’s new. Think about it.
Response: I thought that there was supposed to be one male rep and one female rep. So this doesn’t make sense anyway.
FA: I have a suggestion. Once the money for the cards is acquired, the money and the cards can be given to any person who the community at Park Slope United Methodist chooses to be their point person for themselves.
F: The proposers would now like to respond to this man’s block.
F: The proposers would like to responds, and we would like everybody to hear. Can we please all stop talking and hear what the proposers have to say.
Housing: I like Jeffery’s idea…We also have another suggestion for a Park Slope point person. Salvatore here helps do security at Park Slope. We suggest he be their point person, and that seems to be getting some good response. So based on that is anyone still holding their block?
Response: I would not block if I had confirmation that Michael would never be a point person for metro cards. I’m talking about Michael Booth.
Housing: When it comes to metro cards, if we continue to bring proposals to the GA, Michael Booth, will not be a point person.
F: We have one block left.
Block [Nan]; Lauren, I’m not giving you a hard time, but I love this movement. Certain people in the movement I question. As a person people know who I am, to have new people try to come in a and take over, who have not proven themselves yet, I will remove my block with one condition: you said he’s gonna be point person, I wanna see his signature and see that he’s accountable
Housing: I already amended my prop to say every point person will be personally accountable for every metro card.
Facilitation: Consensus! Yay!
F: Is Occupy Oakland here?
Occupy Oakland: Hi everyone. My name is Alex and I live in Brooklyn. I’m presenting a proposal from Occupy Oakland. As you probably know on December 12th, two days from now, organizers are setting down a port shutdown in five west coast cities. Those cities are: San Diego, LA , Oakland, Portland, and Seattle. This movement needs some money. This proposal is asking for $4,500, sorry — let me take that back. Up to, $4,500 for each city. I will now read a draft budget for one of these port shutdowns.
15 portapotties for 21,000
10 busses for 1,000
A sound truck for 300
Water barrels for 200
2-way radios, 240
Printing fliers, 600
Posters and banners, 1,000
That is the draft budget. Now a couple of notes. This money wont be used for bailing people out, it’s also not going directly to individuals, but rather will be paid to people who can show receipts for what they bought. Also Oakland is asking that whatever money is sent is sent in equal amounts to each city. One more note. The finance committee of Occupy Wall Street has asked occupy Oakland to amend the proposal to [ensure that all the use of the funds are completely transparent and accountable]. Occupy Oakland has accepted that friendly amendment. Since I cant speak for Occupy Oakland when y’all have clarifying questions, etc, I’m gonna call an Occupy Oakland person so we can work it out. I think that’s it.
Q: What is 4,500 times 5?
A: The maximum amount would be 22,500. However given that the action is in two days it’s likely that they will not be able to spend that much money in the next two days.
F: so now we’d like to open stack for Clarifying Questions.
CQ: How much money is being contributed by Occupy Oakland to their own action? And what percentage are they asking us to contribute to their action?
A: My understanding is that since this money hasn’t been voted on until now, Occupy Oakland offered $1,000 to each city. However they still need a lot for money so that’s what this is about.
Stack: Next: Justin
CQ: The port shut down is more of a union thing. So why should we send money at all?
A: The people I’m communicating with are grassroots organizers. They are not affiliated with Unions. We understanding that they are working with rank and file union members to carry out this action.
[CQ from the other side of the park, not through the people’s mic. Unintelligible]
CQ: My understanding is this in not a strike. Part of this action is to support workers, but this action is about shutting down the ports. This is a different action than workers going on strike.
A: Each of the occupies thru their Gas have agreed to do this strike … Have a problem with this corporitization of the ports…. That’s why they all agreed to shut down the ports
CQ: A clarification on … why from my standpoint, as a technical person would somebody buy megaphone when they can buy for a few more dollars a system that you can put under your arm and can blast for 4 blocks or can be mounted inside cars and secretly act as sound … undetected by police?
A: I am not aware of that technology. This proposal which is about giving money to the West Coast port shutdown, I think we should support the autonomy of their actions and those organizers, some of whom shut down the port of Oakland not that long ago.
Q: Which cities?
A: San Francisco, Oakland, LA, Portland, Seattle, San Diego.
C: This seems like a lot of money and what will it keep them from doing if they don’t have money from us?
A: I read an example budget of what the money will be going toward. I don’t know what it will mean if they don’t get the money they are looking for. … They are looking for a mass mobilization, so things like busses take a lot of money.
Response: That doesn’t answer my question.
C [Nathan]: It seems like we are spending money to fund 80 percent of their action. … It seems like we are contributing 80 percent of costs for actions in other cities … I don’t know that it’s just that we should be spending that.
A: $4,500 dollars is the maximum that any of these cities will be asking for … and given the action is in two days I think it’s possible the actual amount of money will be far less.
PoI: According to the proposal posted on NYCGA.net, it’s only 600 dollars.
C [Chris]: As it was pointed out, 600 dollars was approved and which is in solidarity, we should stand by in occupation but 22,000 dollars coming out of our budget should be allocated between them and us. And not solely responsible from us.
Stack: Closing stack on concerns.
Proposer: I don’t know how much money Occupy Oakland has. I feel like 600 dollars might be a significant sum for them. It might seem small to us but they might not have that much money.
C: [Michael]: 280,000 dollars collected to date here, tonight we have allocated more than 65,000 per month. Do the numbers. We are spending a lot of money tonight. Which is good, but we have to understand we have limited resources as well. Also, an action to close down ports doesn’t cost anything. I don’t think this is the best utilization of funds.
Chris: We could use this money much better.
C [John]: It’s my understanding that there is a blockade there, the union workers will be paid by the company and will get a day off. Why can’t the union workers, if this money is needed, kick back some of that money instead of asking us for it. I know they have done these actions before without getting money from us in the past. Is this a case of, people say, oh they have this money in New York, why don’t we try to get it? I think they should try to do it without our money.
A: I hope the union workers who are able to contribute financially to the actions on the west coast will do so. The proposal still stands.
C [White hat]: I’d be very concerned about the idea of this proposal. It seems to me that if an autonomous occupation comes up with an idea on their own for an action it ought to be that it has sufficient local support among its own community to cover its own expenses, unless it’s an emergency that happens such as an eviction and they need money from other Occupies.
A: It would be great if Oakland had come two weeks ago … but they want more and they are hoping we can help.
Response: It’s my opinion it wouldn’t be right even if they had come two weeks ago.
PoI: My understanding is if you are not a working group of OWS you can’t get money from OWS…
F: To clarify: We have previously sent money to other occupations, including Edmonton, Oakland and Atlanta.
Nan: To clarify that, it was only for arrests, tents, or eviction.
C: Heather: I’m concerned that an action that’s supposed to be a big mobilization .. is only coming to us two days before so we don’t have much time to discuss it, because it seems like there’s a lot of issues with it for that much money.
A: I know the proposal was presented to finance a few days ago but I also recognize the problem with the timing of this.
C: Jason: It has been my understanding that even though the money has been donated to OWS, many of those donations remain with the larger movement in mind. The money being requested is equivalent to two weeks of kitchen budget. I think it’s a very important action… I think we should show our support in solidarity.
F: We’ve reached 20 minutes. Temp check on another five minutes.
F: Looks good. Moving to Friendly Amendments.
FA [Nathan]: I propose in an effort to show solidarity we offer to match their own spending, up to a certain level.
A: I think I need to call Occupy Oakland to try to answer that, whether or not that’s friendly.
Chris: I think you need to get someone to speak to us from Occupy Oak.
F: Before he calls, let’s here all the Friendly Amendments so they can be run by the contact at one time.
FA [Patrick]: This gentleman said my Friendly Amendment already. I would suggest we offer 600 dollars per city.
FA [Chris]: I am with all occupations because we are one. We all have the same purpose. I’m not against anything…But the unions get paid union salaries and the union looks out for union workers. They get paid. We shouldn’t have to put out $22000 dollars to support the Occupations not only in Oakland but in the states or the cities that you cited. They get paid on their own so what are we paying for?
F: [Asks Chris to re-state amendment].
FA [Chris]: I ask that we match money that’s already coming up.
FA [Nan]: My friendly amendment is Occupy Wall Street, we have our own shit to deal with. While do we need to add more shit from other occupies? I propose 300. That’s my friendly amendment.
FA [Heather]: I still think in the spirit of solidarity because were involved in the action too that 2,000 per city would allow them to do a lot of what they want to do, the parts that wont be covered with in-kind donations from unions.
F: We’d now like to close stack on friendly amendments.
FA [Alex]: I like what Heather just said to a degree. The important thing to realize is that if we give an extreme amount of money then when Frankfort asks us for money, when Amsterdam asks us for money, we won’t have money for that shit. I do think it’s important to show solidarity, and understand that the original money was given to us from all over the country, because we were the people to give money to. We have a fair amount of money, so I think 2,000 is more realistic than 20 grand.
[Proposer makes phone call to Occupy Oakland]
F: The proposer is now calling Occupy Oakland for the matter of the friendly amendments. He will be back shortly.
Occupy Oakland: I want y’all to think about this, not just as solidarity but as a strategic moment in our movement. This action has the possibility to raise this to the next level. Please think of this proposal as having that potential. We don’t find the amendments to offer matching donations to be friendly. We do find the amendment offering up to 2,000 per city to be friendly. Let’s concence.
F: To be clear, the new grand total with the friendly amendments accepted are being told to be 10,000. We will now take a temp check on that amount.
F: OK, that looks mostly good but I am seeing some downtwinkles. If we commit to talking loud enough maybe we don’t have to use the mic?
F: There is one block– Chris.
Block [Chris]: I want everyone to understand, I am not against…everyone participates. We are one occupy. But to give 10,000 is astronomical when we have situations right here, right now. 600 is good, I think we should stick with that, if they got 1,000 we will match that….
F: So you guys are holding it at 600 per city.
Chris: The point isn’t to show solidarity, but the point is to show that we have things here.
[There are a couple different blocks. ]
F: The proposer decided that the suggested amendment is not friendly. Does yr block still hold?
F: To re-clarify, a block is a moral, ethical, or safety concern that typically we ask that you frame it in the sense of a larger movement and is not a concern with a personal issue.
F: So at this point because the blocks are holding and the amendments were considererd not to be friendly, we’ll move to modified consensus.
PoP: I saw more than one block, but there were more blocks. I’d like to hear them.
Block: I believe in the principle that actions like this should be self-supported by the community. I don’t think we should be funding actions that happen in other places, that they cant support by their own community.
Block: I think that this money is not necessary to shut down the ports…they’ve shut down the ports before, the transit system….they can do that in California. I think that’s selfish even.
F: Are there any blocks left?
Block: I think it’s a lot of money to spend, we’ve spent a lot of money tonight, and I don’t understand why it’s in the interest of the movement to block these ports.
F: Any more blocks left?
Block: My concern is this: Occupy Wall Street, we are not a running water. We have our own people here we want to feed. We’re only gonna match you to whatever you spend. If its 600, we’ll match it…If it’s 1,000; 1,000.
F: At this point we’d like to move forward with modified consensus. If you’re not in support of this proposal please raise you hand.
[There are six blocks]
F: We don’t have 61 people here, so this proposal will not go forward.
Chris: Don’t let Oakland think we don’t support them ….but because of the amount of money.
F: Next up is the Wikileaks Truck. We thank you for being patient. Please keep comments as concise as possible.
Wikileaks Truck: Hi everyone! I know it’s really cold. Thanks for being here. Saturday December 17th is a really important day. It marks one year since Mohammed Bouazizi set himself on fire. sparking the Tunision Revolution which led to the Arab Spring. It’s also the International Day of Solidarity, for Bradley manning, who…Occupy Wall Street owes a huge debt to Bradley Manning. He’s been in prison since May 2010 subjected to CIA no-touch torture techniques. Sleep deprivation, solitary confinement, and forced to strip naked for the illeged crime of standing up to truth and justice. His first hearing begins this Friday, the day before his 24th birthday and the three-month birthday of OWS. Solidarity actions are planned at occupations across the world, from Melbourne to Occupy LSX in London, to Windoson Ontario, to Tallahassee Florida. We want as many people as possible from OWS to stand in solidarity with Bradley at Ft. Meade, where he’ll be on trial. So we’re asking for $2,100 to charter a bus from NYC to Occupy DC and Fort Meade so we can all stand with Bradley.
Wikileaks Trusk: Le’ts break it down:
2300- for a chartered bus, tolls, and gratiuities
600 – for two breakfast, 2 lunch, 2 dinner
We received an 800 dollar donation from the Bradley manning support network if we make this pass. Removing that 800 brings us to a 2100 total. We are asking for a 5-dollar to 50-dollar donation which will promptly be recorded and reimbursed to the GA when we get back. Those donations would come from people riding the bus. We will leave NYC on the morning of Friday the 16th, camp that night, and return the evening of the 17th. We can take fifty people.
Anyone who wants to come is enocrouaged and only those who can afford it are expected to donate.
F: If you have a question about this proposal, raise your hand>
CQ [Nathan]: So I want to confirm that people who want to go will be donating 5-50 dollars, and that will be reimbursed to the GA.
CQ: Where is Fort Meade?
A: Halfway between Baltimore and DC.
CQ: When will the bus leave?
A: 9AM, from here, outside the park. To reserve e-mail OWS4BRadley@gmail.com
POI: Just so you now, Ft. meade is also NSA headquarters. I think we should occupy the NSA.
CQ: You’re going from New York to Fort Meade, are you going to DC afterwards?
A: We’re going to DC for the night to camp.
Response: But there is apparently an Occupy Ft. Meade set up…
A: But it isn’t set up yet.
Response: It might cost less money to camp at ft. meade
PoI [Heather]: I’ve been in touch with the Occupy Ft. Meade people, I’ve emailed everyone, but no one is camping there yet…..
CQ: Have there been considerations for tents, or camping out there?
A: That’s what we’re doing in DC. We’re also asking for people to bring their own tents
CQ [Nan]: Have you guys tried to have like a fundraiser to raise money besides the 800 dollars, do some kind of cooking thing?
PoP: That is kind of just distracting from the issue .
A: I mean, fundraising…..
Nan: I want you guys to raise the money some other way, that’s the question.
A: I think raising 1/3 of the money is pretty good, and having it reimbursed is great.
CQ: I still think it would be great if you went to Ft. Meade, you could pull into a truck stop and sleep there…you could get an action started….I don’t see the sense in going to DC.
F: Lets move onto concerns
PoI: There is actually a march from McPherson to Ft. Meade, Occupy DC is organizing that.
F: if you have a concern about this propposal please raise yr hand now.
C: I just want to know the arrestability of this event.
A: Most likely there will be a CD and people who want to get arrested can, but don’t have to.
F: Are there any other concerns?
Chris: No, actually, I’m for it. I’ve been down to Ft. Meade. I know what its like I used to live in Buoy Maralind. It’s kind of dangerous though. Be aware.
F: If there aren’t really any other concerns we’ll move to friendly amendments.
FA [Nan]: My question is- make sure you bring all the [?] back home.
FA: Could we get more than 50–could we get a bigger bus, another bus?
F: The proposers would like to address that friendly amendment.
Wikileaks Truck: In order to charter two busses we’d have to have a different proposal, and we want to get this passed tonight if we’re going to go forward.
FA: Maybe accept the amendment that once this is completed you will consider getting another bus?
A: If people like the idea of 100 people coming, basically we’d be considering renting another bus ….Therefore I’d assume that people with cars would help out…Could organize a caravan with the bus as well.
FA [Tim]: I think this is super-important, I really do, also, the day after, which is going to be during this trip, we have a major action to re-ocupy, we have massive support, we’re gonna need as many people as we can, so the idea of taking twice as many people is maybe detracting from that. It’s a big plan.
Response [unknown]: There would be no occupy without Bradley manning…he is being tortured, we have to stand with Bradley manning.
F: We’re now going to ask the pops to briefly re-state the prop
Wikileaks Truck: We will leave NYC right here–on the street — in a bus Friday the 16th, a camp will be determined the night of the 16th, we will return on the 17th, we’re asking for $2,100 total, which is $2,900 minus the 800 dollar donation. We’re spending that money on a chartered bus: tolls, gratuity, 600 in meals. It’ll be $2,100 total, we’re asking for donations from 5 – 50 dollars which will be reimbursed to the GA. With a friendly amendment that it would be a total of 5,000 if we have another 100 people who respond and want to come.
F: Are there any blocks?
Block [Tim]: I’m blocking because there are hundreds of people organizing to do a huge action here, also in solidarity with Bradley Manning….Having hundreds of people leave the city on the day that this is happening, this isn’t about how I feel about Bradley Manning…he’s a hero but it’s crazy to act in counter-action with people who are also working here.
Block [Tim]: So I want to keep it at one bus.
Wikileaks Truck: We’re fine with one bus.
F: We have two agenda items left. First is from the politics and electoral reform working group.
P&R Reform: I think we could probably do this without the human mic. This is a proposal from the Politics and Electoral reform group…..We had a report-back like four hours ago, we’ve got a lot of stuff going on in the group, we have a statement that’s the first document we’ve have full consensus on. It’s called people before parties, and it makes recommendations for thoroughgoing electoral reform in 12 areas. As we know the Democrats and Republican parties represent the 1 but they control 99 of the elected offices…..How can we get representative government through these parties? We think this could be done through free and fair elections…So we have this statement here for thorough-going electoral reform……It recommends alternative voting methods; independent, nonpartisan redistricting; smaller and more localized districts; proportional representation; expansion of franchise; term limits; ballot access reform; primary election reform; initiatives and referenda; vote counting; holiday voting; fusion voting, and combination and synthesis.
Hundreds of people gave input for this document, in near-daily meetings between December and November. So tonight we’re looking for consensus and we want feedback. So I’ll give you three or five minutes to look through, and then we’ll get feedback.
[Take three minutes to look over the documents]
P&E Reform: Does anyone have questions regarding this document?
CQ: As occupiers I know this is a non- party movement. So I think there needs to be an occupiers movement so there’s a balance.
A: Someone came to us from Ohio……And they’re working on third-party platform
and they’re actually using this document as the basis of their platform.
P&E Reform: Since there are no more questions or concerns, we’ll take a temp check. There weren’t any concerns…..Any written feedback will be considered .
C: Basically I wasn’t to emphasize this document will not endorse any politician, and even if a politician endorses this document they are not an ideal candidate…..This is a living document
Q: I think citizens giving campaign contributions is an important idea…
A: The group actually formed 2 subgroups to work on that document themselves…
POI: Theres something a called the occupied amendment….[rest is unintelligible]
F: So we want to take a temp check on this living document. Are there any blocks?
[Temp check– no blocks]
F: None! There is consensus
F: Okay, since that went so quickly we’re gonna do it again.
Chris: Okay! Take one pass it down. I want to get a mic check! My name is Chris and I’m not asking for money simply your support….if you are in congress you can deal with insider trading no problem…There’s already legistaltion that will pass in order to discuss legistlation making sure no member of congress will engage in insider trading…..Finally, we can go further we can demand that any member of congress will be penalized for engaging in insider trading….
[Someone asks for the proposal in laymen’s terms]
Chris: In laymen’s terms:
In laymen’s terms there is a law forbidding you from using your insider knowledge to trade. If you’re a member of congress, that law does not apply to you….that’s one set of rules for the elite, and another for the rest
F: So that’s the end of the three minutes, do we need more time?
POP [Tim]: A concern for the process used for the last proposal, that we haven’t endorsed anything that deals with reform because there are usually a million things that people aren’t into it.
There wasn’t time to voice concerns and the aim of concensus wasn’t clear.
F: While we completely hear what this person is saying and out of respect to the new proposal, we want to continue this.
C: If its necessary to visit the previous proposal I will wait.
PoI [P&E Working Group]: The way I would address this, I would restate the proper process, it’s a living document and it’s going to continue changing, and we, the GA, gave consensus to this document.
Tim: You could go home and change it tomorrow. This is compromising to the movement
PoI [P&E Working Group]: If the GA feels this is a problem they can always revoke this, none of the questions the GA makes are every permanent.
F: I would prefer if we didn’t have a back and forth.
POI [Nan]: You are right in one way, but in another the process has already been done. I think we should table it for the next GA, go over it, amend it, and then he can bring it back again, so everyone can be happy.
PoI [P&E Working Group]: The document has gone through months of consensus building with our working group.
F: It seems like we’re feeling the process went through, so we’re going to move on.
F: Are there more Clarifying Questions in this document?
CQ [Nan]: I feel like there aren’t that many people here, and if we could table this until the next meeting
A: Time is of the essence, they’re meeting about this for this next week, I came last week and couldn’t’ stay for the whole meeting to see my agenda item come up.
Q: Are you from a working group?
A: until tonight I couldn’t’ find anyone who might help me out. I wrote this up.
Q: The information that you disclosed kind of concerns me…I appreciate the work and that you tried to reach out, but there might be a lot of working groups who would like to see some input , it seems like there would be….I’m from occupy Burlington but we had a problem where the economics group brought us an anti-violence statement. So I think that with respect to the process and the people who are working very hard on issues like this that maybe this should go in front of a working group.
A: I’ve been talking to a lot people and other working groups and occupy the FCC, there seems to be positive feedback on it.
FA [Nan]: My thing is that not everybody has access to computers. It’s wonderful its online, but my friendly amendment is that any document that goes to the GA should be printed ,brought the to park, to 60 Wall, please make sure you do that.
PoP: It’s not tthis gentleman’s fault that we have the pprocess that we have, but I don’t see any reason to penalize him.
F: So if there aren’t any more questions I’ll close stack on that, we’ll open stack for concerns.
C [Nathan]: I’m concerned again, and I think some great points come about the support of other working groups, and I think if you’d had a lot of the wording might be different I think our end goal is good, but the working, the methedology, isn’t really in line with the values of the larger movement. And if you had gone and gotten feedback maybe it would have looked different
A: This isn’t something I just typed up one day…I’ve been speaking individually with people, and when this came through on Thursday, and I’d passed it around…and that’s why I withdrew my proposal today.
C: I think this document is a great start, I also commend you for bringing it to our attentions, and I think it doesn’t go far enough, and I think that rather….We should have a citizens grand jury and start inditing people.
A: If you want to help, I would love to get to know you. This could be part of a larger campaign.
P & E Working Group: if you want to you can bring this to our meeting and we can work on it together.
C: There seems to be an inherent endorsement with the stock act, and I’m not familiar with it, and I’d like to be, but I can’t. And I have some concerns about the ability and willingness to engage with the securities and exchange commission…
A: So the stock act, basically what it would do would allow private sector people using political information wherby politicians would actually sell insider information to the private sector. The SCC, other things like that…What we would ask for. Let’s say this all passes, everything that we love. Let’s say it doesn’t , in which case they have given us a whole weapon, even if it goes down in flames, we win.
CQ: How much time do we have left?
F: 1 minute. are there any more concerns?
FA: think we should change 1 year to three years.
FA: or 5
A: Lets say three or five years per term. So if they serve 5 terms that’s fifteen years they can’t do anything.
CQ: I have a little confusion…..I think it would either be 5-10 years or 3-5 years per term. I would personally say like 3-5 years they would need to be much longer than most peoples careers, 5 would be easier to stomach, how does everyone feel about that?
F: Just so we know, we’ve reached 20 minutes….
[Friendly Amendments: 3-5 years. Chris accepts.]
FA: Would you consider tabling this
A: regrettably we don’t have a week.
Someone: 2 days then?
F: Can I suggest that since you were invited to the P&E reform group, would you be willing to look at the language then?
A: In order to bring it on Sunday, as amended?….okay, what time do you meet…
P&E: 3 o’clock, 60 Wall.
Nan; Table for tomorrow night? Once they’re finished on it go to 60 wall, go to the park, let people know.
F: So just to be super-clear the prop accepted a friendly amendment so they would go to a working group and flesh it out some more and then go to the GA with it.
CQ: I understand we’ve tabled it, and I have a very very strong block and nothing would change that. I was hoping I could explain myself. So basically this is becoming very dangerous. OWS is not a campaign and it should not be proposing legislation. By offering reform to congress we’re engaging with congress. Many of the things he said here…are what Obama was for.
Chris: Id love to talk to you about that. If you have interest.