Minutes from meeting, November 7

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Meeting started at 5:15

Andrew: facilitators

Jay: takes stack

Susan: minutes


Eric Discussion about the proposal and going to the working groups for next week, getting working group endorsements

Cecily: rather than getting formal endorsements from WG, let them come to GA on Wednesday.

We need to figure out what we’re doing tonight.

Jake: What is going on after the break out groups.

Eric: Wants to put outreach on the agenda

Cecily: tonight, Derrick will read F. Douglass quote, Andrew preamble, I will read the demand.  I will then announce, we will all be strategically placed within the crowd, with a stack of 25 Q&A documents, I will then announce that we will like to use our time to conduct breakout sessions in order to discuss concerns, special amendments, and strengths of the proposal.  Everyone who is a breakout group leader will hold up their stacks of paper and I will say please direct yourself to a person holding up the white sheets of paper, about 25 people per facilitator.  I think we’re gonna have 20 minutes.  10 minutes, lead by saying, “In regards to the proposal in your hands, what might be some friendly amendments that people might want to make to the JFA demand,” which will help keep the discussion towards the demands.  Special amendments, concerns, changes.  You keep a running list of those,  you keep a tally of how many people feel a certain way about the certain amendments  Then 10 minutes on the strengths of the demand itself.  Get what ppl like, think is a good thing.  At end of the 20 minutes, come back together and each have 30 seconds to report back.  15 seconds on 2 friendly amendments and following 15 sec- 2 really positive strengths of the demand.  After that we will thank everyone for helping us amend our proposal and that we  will working on this demand for the rest of the week and we will bring back to the GA.

Eric: With people’s mic, i think 30 seconds is too short.  I think the best thing is to say if the body is agreeable, that we should have any additional friendly amendments from the GA from a whole.

Cecily, by doing this methods and allowing everyone to have friendly amendments , we are validating all groups, through the breakout groups.

Eric: procedure, my understanding is that we have to go through friendly amendments from the floor, concerns, anyway.

Cecily, no we don’t

Eric: but before we get to a vote, at some point in the process, we will have to go through friendly amendments and concerns  I think since we have to consider the friendly amendments at our meetings, it makes sense to get all of these things out.

Cecily: but people will have a chance to express them and keep it on a positive note.

Jay: but we will eventually have to go through these hoops.  Why not do it today.  You say it raises a can of worms.  Let it out now so the smell dissipates in time for a vote.

Cecily: no matter what, in the next meeting, we still have to go through concerns, clarifying questions, amendments.

Jay: even more reason to do amendments now.

Cecily: the same hoops will come up tonight.  Might as well have control and have a positive experience, if we’re going to have to do it again anyway.

Jake: If we are going to take breakout groups seriously, to formulate a friendly amendment, it’s going to take longer.

Jay: That’s ever more reason.  We’ll take the friendly amendments from the breakout groups and the GA.

Cecily: after everyone breaks out, then they want to allow additional friendly amendments.  But everyone in the GA will already have had a chance to speak in these small groups so we should have already heard the friendly amendments.

Eric: what about the meeting?

Cecily: can we agree to end our session at the end of the break out groups.

But we need to come to a conclusion.

Eric: we should adopt an agenda for the meeting.

Cecily: Who would like to facilitate?

Andrew volunteers.

Jay will take stack.

Andrew: We will open stack for the agenda.  Go to Jay and tell him your name.

Xxx: can we get briefed on what happened yesterday.

Cecily: we planned break out groups for yesterday but a big march happened.  So we tabled as we knew that we wouldn’t be able to go up to the GA for both Saturday and Sunday

Connie: I’m from the jobless working group, started by the 99ers.  I was contacted by Jay to come because we want to add something about the WPA, we want 99ers to be included in whatever actions that the action committees plans to do.  We’re not heard and we’re not part of anything.

Eric: I want on the agenda tonight- after discussing what we’ll do at the GA a point about introducing this current demand to other working groups for discussion and endorsement

Cecily: i want to make sure we have a clear process for the working groups tonight.  We do need to get to Walter’s proposal for process eventually, to become an organization group for the Spokes-council

Barbra: pass

Gabriel: is this the group that is trying to formulate demands for OWS

Cecily: p-o-i- we’re not just making one demand, but we’re moving forward and the process would allow for multiple demands to be put forward.

Andrew: couple proposed agenda items.  We’ll run down and do a quick temperature check.

=== what are 99ers?

Connie: millions of Americans who have exhausted their employment benefits.  The current jobs plan doesn’t include extension.

Cecily: clarifying question- please have your group meetings to committee to join.

Connie: unfortunately, some of the group members have been arrested.

Eric: after discussing what’s happening tonight, we should discuss proposing this demand to other working groups.

Andrew: temp check: positive.

Jay: the first one is how we are going to organize the breakout sessions at the GA today.

Andrew: consensus on this?  Are people OK with doing this first?  (no dissent). Let’s open stack about the discussion of Breakout groups.  Eric and Cecily will present first

Cecily:  what we decided to try yesterday was to get up read, demand, anyone who wants to be a breakout group facilitators, we would announce that the facilitators will have these white sheets and they will sand up this.  Direct ppl , about 25 per facilitator, first 10 minutes- possible amendments to JFA, and second 10 minute, ask what’s strong about JFA.  Afterwards we come back together, each facilitator does a report back (1/2-1 minute) spend that time discussing 2 widely supported amendments from the group, and 2 things that the group found to be strong about the demand.  And then we thank everyone for the feedback and end.  We keep it positive and constructive, not petty.  Then we can work after this GA in meetings to figure out what sort of amendments would be good to positive.

Eric: we should make clear when we break out into break out groups that all the friendly amendments proposed will be taken to the committee, because if we get 6 amendments from one group and repeat only 2, we should make clear that every amendment will be taken back to our group.

Cecily: i think when we announce we should say “two major things, and two major strengths.”  Liaisons introducing will say that.

Andrew: anyone else on stack?

Jake: I understand what you want to do 10 minutes on positives and amendments, but some of the facilitators will face people who want to have a discussion about why demands?

Cecily: what I understand, they are supposed to gather information about specific proposals, that question may come up and you’re at liberty to discuss that.  But the process as it stands at the GA doesn’t allow for support or discourse with ease.  There are people who support this demand and will like to propose amendments, and this lets them speak.

Gabriel: is this not a forum for this?

Cecily: someone could make the amendment that we wait to make demands.

Marty: how much time will the breakout committees have to prepare a report on the items assigned.

Cecily: I understand it as about 20 minutes.  As a facilitator, you will try to keep track.  Take notes as you’re going.  It will be a brief succinct call back.

Jay: we should emphasize that the facilitator’s role is not to get into a big debate and exchange.  If someone wants to have ideological debates about the demands, we should not let this be about defending it.

Jake: There are ideological problems about demands.

Gwen: super basic question, the break out groups are where.  How does this happen?

Cecily: what will happen is that people, us, will stand strategically within the crowd, away from each other and hold up these, and they’ll have to take place in the space where the GA is being held.  People will gather in the groups at the GA.  It will be messy.

Jake: your question is basic.  We have an agenda item on the GA tonight which this group has decided to dedicate to break out groups.

Andrew: do we have volunteers for facilitators?  We have 12.

Eric: We may pick up a couple people from yesterday.

Cecily: we thought it would also be nice if each facilitator had a stack taker, it’s supposed to be informal, but we’ll be on site and it might be hectic.  Whoever’s not leading, if people could volunteer.  If you’re needed to help to say “I hear your concerns”, just so it doesn’t get rough.

Jay: everyone gets a buddy.

Andrew; Next on the agenda- the 99ers.  Do you have a proposal about working with them.

=—- we’ve had 3 meetings, the jobless working group, we want to have more people besides 99ers, underemployed, people who are felons looking for work, and our proposal says that we OWS to have the 99ers to be include in the JFA, as it stands for now, we’re not even recognized in OWS’s Declaration.  My group is protesting right now.

Jay: Point of Information

xxx: so you’re saying that someone always from your groups, will always be present.

-====: yes, our group is growing.

Jay: POI: Our group addresses this concerns, 25 million jobs, it implictly affects the 99ers.

Xxx: I agree a jobs program addresses this.

Cecily: we are committed to addressing new demands.

Andrew: Since this may be a future demand, could you bring a proposal back next week.

Craig: if we were to add a clause that would clause discrimination against long term unemployed people, b/c that is a thing that’s going on right now.

Andrew: that’s something you can bring out in the break out groups.

Cecily: did any of the facilitator’s not getting a stack of papers.

Andrew: where did Eric go?  What was the next thing on the agenda?
Cecily: people willing to take stack with a facilitator could stand by someone with a stack of papers, that would be good.

Andrew: so then, the next agenda item is the future schedule for the group, not just when we are holding our meeting but what next meetings will be focused on.  Let’s open stack for this.  We’ll go for proposal for schedules now. Get on stack with Jay.

Cecily: I think moving forward, a lot people are very patient with JFA, who don’t think its the most important to them.  I think we should create a JFA subcommittee can continue moving forward with actions.  Next we should discuss a proposal by which we hear many demands.  We should start collecting data on possible next demands.

Eric: based on Walter’s framework , we can discuss this on our next meeting on Tuesday, to authorize the subgroup on jobs, and to continue moving forward, and to take amendments on the framework and get some passing.

Eric (L): i hope at this meeting we could come to a consensus that we are going to propose, or volunteer to propose JFA to other working groups.

Alvin: it can be a real difference of how well meetings flow and run when there are qualified facilitators, if we could have some consistency in that, who run, the last meeting didn’t flow as well, they were volunteers, but I don’t know if we could do anything about that- qualified facilitators.

Jay: I’m in agreement about a subgroup, but I wouldn’t want it on the back burner, but we should follow it through.  We can have the committee, but the whole group needs to work to get it through.

Xxx: QA: would the subgroup meetings would be apart or with larger meetings.

Jay: I think we should be talking as a whole.

Jake: I think that’s something that unclear in Walter’s proposal- where the subgroups work, this is a debate we should be having when we discuss the proposal.

Eric: direct response- my sense sis that the framework provides multiple subgroup that meets independently, that has slightly different process. It would not be on the back burner with the subgroup.  Meanwhile as soon as possible, the whole group could consider another demand.

Cecily: in response to Jake, the subgroup would work on it, of course the group as a whole would support any efforts. Additionally, other groups, let’s say corporate person hood, they would meet outside, proposal language, engage in outreach, etc.

Barbara: two category need to be listed on the demands are the government process, um, for instance how the Senate is run, etc.  We need to change the way the gov’t is run in order to have a fair democracy.  That could coincide with the political group.  Personally i think it’s a good subcategory, there’ s another subgroup on monopolies.

Andrew: we want to talk about broad things to discuss, that’s more of a new demand

Jake: for a future meeting, we need some kind of online discussion group, and way to keep it on topic.  I have a suggestion to make when we get to that.

Xxx: is there a list of these demands already?

Andrew: This is the first one.  All the other demands would be brought up at the next GA (?)

Cecily: the idea is that there would be as many subgroups as necessary to discuss various people’s needs.

Eric: Somewhere there is a list of demands that have been proposed.

Jake: Walter’s demand has us going to to other WG, he doesn’t have proposal for subgroups for different demands.

Andrew: next meeting we want to discuss (new) demands, process, and whether we want to do subgroups for larger groups.

Jay: need to be discussion on the amendments coming from this meeting.

Andrew: with that, do people come comfortable with ending this discussion.  Let’s move to next agenda itme0 breaking this demand to other WGs.  Eric suggested this. You can go first.

Eric: before I start, can I take a picture, any objections?

Basically, derrick who is not present right now, and Jay, and Greg have been going to other WGs, People of Color, Labor outreach, jobless, and alternative banking.  We’re getting a very favorable respond about demands and JFA.  It would make our case much more powerful to the GA as a joint proposal from several working groups.  This might take some time because everyone has to consensus, i propose that we agree that this is something we want to do- take other WG for discussion, feedback, and endorsement.

Cecily: I think it’s a good idea and a way to allow to move fwd by hearing other people’s voices, but meaningful to those who want to devote their time to JFA, by allowing the creation of a subgroup, then that action could move forward with people who would like to help, but also allow other groups to move fwd.

Jake: I agree that we should go to other groups and see who would endorse JFA, but also say “If you have other demands you want us to debate.”

Connie: I have 2 questions: tonight specifically we’re supposed to do something about curfews, can someone elaborate?

Jay: not related- we are top on the agenda- there is supporter of our group who are ex offenders who need to be out by 9PM, that is something that we said to the facilitation committee.

Eric V: this kind of work and outreach is provided for in the proposal which should be considering shortly.  I hope we can discuss this at the next meeting, that we discuss a framework for outreach.

Michael: I was late, I agree with this idea of breaking up into subcommittees.

Patrick: hi everyone, i’m from vision and goals, Derrick was kind to visit us on Friday.  We were so delighted.  I want to express support for the proposal and we’d like to assist in bringing demands.

Jason: i agree that this is a good strategy, to see if they can get support or to see if it’s the appropriate time, good or bad.  I’ve been around here 3 1/2 weeks, I live in camp, and I’ve heard mixed feelings, some people think it’s premature, and I’m wondering what will happen if you get mixed reviews from working groups?

Andrew: I think the process going forward is that mixed reviews would be taken under advisement and then see what the GA has to say.

Jason: when it goes in front of the GA, it goes to the papers, to the world, and there’s some people, myself included, that worry that these demands could even marginalize OWS itself.

Eric: first to respond, this demand has been before the GA already, it’s already part of the discussion at the GA, so that’s not an issue, but it seems that there was generally favorable comment on my proposal.  If everyone is in agreement, it would be could if people here could, i know it’s hard to go to additional meetings, but it would be good if people here could go to different groups, and will be meting this week.

Cecily- so can we meet with you afterwards to discuss what groups we’re meeting.

Jake: there are lots of people who are part of different groups, maybe we could air that online?

Andrew: Anyone else on stack?

Eric: Is everyone in favor on going to other groups.  Before we march over to the GA, ppl could meet with me so we could coordinate.

Andrew: it’s 6:25 and we need to head out to GA.  Tuesday at 7PM, will be announced on NYCGA website, but it is 7PM, here, people should be more aggressive with chairs.


Patrick: could I read you our draft statement- 25 seconds: i’m here to hear from you- i’ll be around for a few minutes.  Our vision is that of a free democratic and just society…

Cecily: would it be possible for you attend the meeting next time so we can discuss and endorse a vision like this?

Jay: there are alot of new folks, if you want to get on our list serves- yahoo groups.com, demandsOWS.

Jesse: briefly- down at Occupy, a lot of people are saying demands, that goes against the letter of the movement that said the letter, “Demands will follow”- or they can change the living document

Cecily: a lot of us have been getting together as solidarity drinking, and its very helpful- I suggest we discuss that we have weekly solidarity drinking.

Andrew: With that, go meet with Eric for solidarity group coordination.


(Meeting ended at 6:30)

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