GA/Minutes/26

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Note: Held at South Station and Encuentro5

Proposal passed by GA, brought by Safety Working Group

The document is a "living document," this is part of the proposal that we passed at GA. A living document is an evolving thing; Safety intends for its team to continue to evolve its practices according to the needs of the camp. If you would like to offer revisions or suggestions, that's cool; this author thinks that Safety Working Group might be the best place to direct your suggestions. There are discussion pages on here and lots of other places to put your ideas. Please DO NOT edit the above file that contains the proposal that was passed at GA; we need it up here for our records of what GA actually passed!

SUMMARY: (in reflection not live):
Began at 7:15 underground next to red line entrance at South Station with about 60 people in attendance.  Working group announcements, explanation of procedure, took place in South Station.  Around 7:45 we were asked by BPD to leave.  We had a short discussion about whether we should leave and decided to move to encuentro5.org(thank you, encuentro5, for hosting us so often!)  Proposal was brought by Safety for major revisions to Safety procedures.  This proposal enjoyed much discussion and emendation and was passed.


Edited to add:
DISCLAIMER from your friendly transcriber: I know there were many important and nuanced things said at this meeting, and I tried really hard to report everyone’s words exactly.  I know I missed things; people talk faster than my fingers move, and I was positioned in a way that made it hard for me to see and hear people--I need to do better with that!  This represents a good faith attempt at a transcript, but it’s not an exact transcript.  Where I knew I was summarizing as I was typing, I tried to use parentheses.  Where I knew I was omitting something, I tried to use ellipsis or spaces.  

If you have questions you can find me @profpoole on Twitter.

A few abbreviations I’m using, apart from standard abbreviations (i.e. ppl for people, Sat for Saturday)
CQ--clarifying question
POI--point of information.
POP--point of process
WG--working group
OB--Occupy Boston
temp check--temperature check
GA--general assembly.
“Floor,” “Participant,” and “Person” are used to reference people whose names/roles I did not hear, or who did not identify themselves by name or role.  Most people so noted were located in the assembled crowd, not on the stage.

This is a live transcript, done in real-time, not from memory.


Notes on GA, October 29, 2011

GA is taking place in South Station.  We’re working hard to not disrupt the flow of traffic.

David Facilitator: Welcome to GA!  Anastasia and I will be facilitating tonight.  

Anastasia:  GA is a meeting in which we of occupyboston share announcements as well as exercise horizontal democracy.

David and I’s job is not to enforce process, we’re here to facilitate what happens.  So it’s everyone’s responsibility.  If it’s a moment to share questions, we should share questions.  If it’s a moment to share excitement, we share excitement.  If someone is getting violent, please surround them and do not talk to them; please do this if you are comfortable.

David: explains signs. Happy fingers, middle fingers, sad fingers, wrap it up, speak louder, clarifying questions, point of information, strong objections or concerns, point of process, friendly amendment.  

(Notes are not listening right now because we are trying to figure out tethering this thing so YOU CAN ALL WATCH AT HOME!)

Tim from Nonviolence WG: We've noticed a fair share of conflict in camp over last week.  I've witnessed threatening verbal arguments and heard about physical assaults.  This is not outside individuals causing trouble but interpersional issues in camp.  We encourage everyone to join our trainings, esp. Safety…also come to our weekly meetings.  Temp check on whether we should dedicate a GA to conflict resolution? This is a paraphrase not a real transript.

Brad from Legal: legal can start reimbursing people for court fees and bail.  So if you need that come see Legal in the next four days.

Bill from Medical: We have worked all day with people from the city and if anybody is staying in the camp needs to get a break and go take a hot shower we do have contacts with several homeless shelters and if anybody needs medical attention, has ??? issues, come see us, we have contacts and assistance for anyone that needs it.  For people that are staying here you need to watch your neighbors in this weather.  If you notice someone in distress come get us and we will get them the help they need.  

Brian: POC working group is meeting tomorrow at encuentro5.  We’re working on a statement.  “The POC working group has come together because we believe that Occupy represents a unique opportunity for social transformation, esp Occupy the Hood.  We have a longstanding history with injustice and because the top 1% has oppressed us--they’ve stoken our land and committed genocide against us, caged us like animals in a prison industrial complex resembling slavery, declared us illegal to cheapen our labor, and terrorized us with the threat and reality of deportation, perpetuated imperialisim, and murdered many dark skinned peoples in order to dominate our natiural resources and labor.  Subjected us to forced sterilization and denied us HIV treatment and prenatal care.  Unifying the 99% will not be possible if people of color and other oppressed communities cannot first affirm our agency and collective power.  This is important to defeating racism which will limit our power; for this reason we must project the needs and voices of POCs into the forefront of this collective struggle.  Meeting 3pm at Encuentro5.org in Chinatown.  

Sage from Winterization:  

Police are here and want to know how long we will be here.  Philip proposes that we say we’ll be here for 1 hour.  Can we move, asks officer?  

We are discussing with the officers.  

And we’re moving.  No, we’re not.

Alison: Our facilitators are facilitating our meeting if we were going to move they would be the ones to tell us.  We’re in public space, and we’re not blocking anything that’s in use this evening.

Sage from Winterization:  Just like medical said we want to be careful, everyone look out for others and if you want to learn to set up a tent properly so it doesn’t get a puzzle inside come to tent training; we want to do one soon, maybe tonight.  Also we had a 1500$ expenditure authorized two days ago, we spent much of that on tarps and other supplies; we’re going to spend more on gloves, boots, etc.  We’re also looking for indoor places to hold GA (other than S Station).  Also, hot water bottles: save the bags inside coffee boxes and fill them!

John from Winterization: every tent has a footprint.  If we can keep our eyes out for tents where the tarp underneath is larger than the tent, it’s well intentioned but it’s wrong.  When the rain rolls down it needs to hit the mud, not a tarp.  Keep your eyes open; come see me in the library.  This is important because it prevents pools under tentswhich cause freezing.  

Kevin from info: tent switchover tomorow, late morning, if you can help please do.  Training for volunteers at info at 7pm on Monday, please spread the word.  

Anastasia invites people to create more space and feel more welcome.  

Dan from food: Somebody gave me this cup. We’re finding cups and bowls scattered all over tent and we’re short, we don’t have enough in the tent.  Also if you are taking food take only what you need, don’t waste; only take what you can eat.  We’re always looking for volunteers to wash dishes, make salads, etc.  If you’re outside, keep telling restaurants to donate!

Maureen from Social: We now have a SOCIAL WG so we can have fun at camp!  We’re planning an event tomorrow, a birthday party for OB, 12-2 in camp tomorrow!  But if around 10 it looks like the rain won’t stop we’ll postpone it.  But if not, come down tomorrow, bring hats, balloons, etc. and party!

Maureen from Antioppression: AO is meeting tomorrow, 5-8, at Community Change, please help us get work done.  If you need to leave early for GA you can.

Noah from Facilitation: Facilitation WG met and decided on South Station for otnight’s meeting, but this can’t be permanent.  We need to locate spaces we can use on a provisional or permanent basis for GAs, we want this discussion somehow to get to the Facilitation WG.  Tomorrow, we’re meeting at 4.  If it’s nice out in front of the fed if not in South Station.  We want updates from you guys so we can create a plan to tell people where GA will happen.  Also facilitation always needs more volunteers.

Noah from Ideas: Ideas has been holding public discussions on non-GA nights; first one was on Friday, we talked about tactical stuff in small groups, how to maintain our momentum going forward.  We’re having a WG meeting tomorow at 9:30 after GA, and also Wednesday at 6pm.  We scheduled a meeting specifically around the Move your Money event, 7pm after the Ideas meeting on Wednesday.  Also I’m setting up a place online for you to vote on the topic for our next open discussion, Friday at 7, so you can vote on what you want the discussion to be on.  

Bill and John for outreach:  We are doing two things in particular, we’re going out to non-occupy boston sites and talking to colleges, etc.  If you’re good at speaking let us know; if you want someone to come to your class or whatever let me know.  If you don’t hae buttons we have gobs and gobs of buttons--

Anastasia: emergency announcement: police want us to move at 7:45, which is in three minutes.  I’m not sure if it’s the two officers in here.  We need to make a decision about what we’re going to do.  Because it’s very urgent let’s hear from people.

POI: We have an offsite location we can go to, it takes 7 minutes.

Floor: If we’re going to say we’re occupying, we sould go outside and occupy Dewey Square, put tarps over us, rather than occupying South Station.

Brian (floor): I believe that this is public space and we have a right to freedom of assembly and freedom of speech and the first amendment is our permit for these things.  If we’re occupying we should make a decision for occupying this space.  And if we are arrested for peaceably assembling here then that will look bad on the police.  

Floor: could we renegotiate more time we need?

Robin: I have maybe one arrest if I’m lucky and I don’t know I want to waste it now.  

POI: This is a privately owned building, not city property; they have every right to ask us to not be here.

Anastasia: So it sounds like we have three options.  We can stay, we can move to encuentro5, or we can do the tarp thing in Dewey.  If you support staying here please raise one hand.  If you support going to encuentro5, please raise your hand.  And third is going to Dewey and covering outselves with tarps, please raise your hand.  And if you didn’t vote, please raise your hand so I know you abstain.  There were many more votes to go to encuentro5.  So can you vote on whether we’re going there.  

(Odds are we’re going so I’m going to stop typing and pack up.)


Now we’re at encuentro5.

Anthony/Rhino for Safety: I’m going to be starting a self-defense class; still trying to decide when.  We’ll be teaching self-defense techniques and you can eliminate the situation if things get violent.    In a self-defense process I’ll be able to teach each and everyone of you to defuse a situation in one move.  

Individual announcements:  

The friendly transcriber made the first one.  Will catch up more--OccupyPhilosophy.  Philosophy class meeting at BHCC, also possible independent studies offered for Bunker Hill C.C. students in consultation with Monica.  If you want to be part of OccupyPhilosophy, meet by the stage/library at 8pm on Monday and pick up the “assigned readings” (a quarter-page, that’s all!) from Monica tonight at GA!

Faith and Spirituality WG: (sorry, missed it, resetting after announcing)  Also Free Market is only open during the day, please don’t go there during the night.  Give some love to Free Market folks bc it’s a hard thing, also please take advantage of the dry clothes in there.

Dougie Bennet from Dorchester: Single father, thanks for letting me be here tonight.  Must remember one vote, one person, one dollar, must get corporate $$ out of politics.  Must focus on auditing the federal reserve.  They are printing more moeny than what exists out there and this is a problem.  Must bring back glass-steagall because previously we had no recessions, no panics, etc. thanks for giving me the opportunity to speak tonight.  

David: Occupy el barrio in East Boston!  We’d appreciate individual activists and orgs to come down.  Everybody is welcome, 19 Meridian Street, close to blue line, great movement to get these people involved because they are part of the 99%.  6pm 19 Meridian Street on Friday, Suite 4 on the Second Floor, November 4.  

John (not library John) We met last night and formed an expansion WG; we nee more space, a place to go, a place to grow.  We are going to create a task force to find places that are privately owned and open 24/7 and commercial sites for occupation; we want places to congregate an assemble for the city of Boston.  We’re going to meet in the BPL main lobby and do library research and try to find sites to give to facilitation team to help.  Find out in the next two weeks.  Thursday, 5pm at BPL.  

Anastasia: Now I want to read the instructions of how we’re going to respect the space because encuentro5 is so gracious to let people use it.  Rules include no smoking, limit of 6 people on elevator, return chairs/tables, don’t clog the toilets, please respect our neighbors, please leave the place as you found it or better.  Thanks to encuentro for helping us out.  

Dan adds: stay out of the cubicles, stay in the central space.

Anastasia: Reminder; individual announcements generally are about meetings, with times and dates.  If you want to say other things that don’t have times and dates please get on individual stack (which happens later in GA).

We’re now going to move to proposals.  

Anastasia explains how we do consensus here at Occupy Boston.  We have FOUR Working Group proposals tonight. Encuentro asked us to be done by 10pm.  We’re going to be limited by time more than what we care to discuss; whatever we don’t get discussed tonight will be moved to tomorrow at the top of the stack.  We’ll hear a proposal, then we talk to neighbors, then we go through--CQs, POIs, support, objections, amendments, blocks, etc.  (For more information see the doc on the Facilitators wiki.  The transcriber is taking a quick break right now.)  

Marty from Safety: Just to preface this proposal, I joined the safety team about five days ago--did anyone help to write the proposal?  I wasn’t sure who wrote it but I was happy when I heard it.  Going to read the proposal as it is
We propose that the safety WG hold public meetings at least once a week.  This group includes the active Safety team, Safety members off rotation, and community members.
We propose that a large portion of OB community should rotate in shifts because we’re all active.
Community members must be active for at least 4 days over a two week period before doing a safety shift.
Rotations will (be organized in what sounds like a good, layered process--group 1 trains group 2, group 2 trains group 3, and so on--overlaps.  too fast to transcribe, but this will probably be on the wiki!)
Guidelines for behavior: be respectful, no verbal assaults, assess don’t assume, deescalate violence in self and others, bring conflicts of interest over tents to GA, don’t drink or do drugs on duty, if you’re not sober on duty pls step down for the day or night; if you’re asked to step down don’t create a conflict, we can deal with it the next day.  If a person on Safety has not behaved according to guidelines they are subject to review mediated by community wellness group.

There are other things that can be accepted on a piecemeal basis.  Safety recommends urban planning, creation of a safe space for venting, training of Safety in mediation by Community Wellness, recs that everyone in OB receive mediation esp people on Safety Rotation, and Safety needs waterproof gloves and boots, vests (to be worn only while on duty), and walkie talkies.  

Now we’re speaking to our neighbors and discussing the proposal for three minutes.

David: are we ready to move on the proposal process?

CQ from Alison: We already established when we did the schedule process last week that every WG needs to have a public meeting; why does this need to be in the proposal?

Marty (Safety): Are you thinking it’s redundant?

CQ: Has safety been resistant to this?

Dan: I think the idea is to make a new safety, because there really wasn’t an old one, just people doing this stuff.  

POP: Let’s go on to CQs.
CQ: Are we going to go through the proposal point by point?

David Facilitator: This is the time for questions.

CQ: How long will the shifts be?

Safety: 12 hours, but we can change that.

CQ: Not sure if this is a CQ or an amendment, but point 3.5, regarding tent issues being brought before GA--as someone who has had tent issues for DA, we should be able to deal with it on the spot--

Crowd: that’s an amendment, that’s a concern

Facilitator: OK, we’ll do that later.  Any more CQs?  Any POIs?

POI: Winterization bought suits and boots for Safety so this will help.  

Facilitator: Any more POIs?  Concerns?

Concern (John): THis might be an amendment-

POP Alison: If there is a concern you can state it now though

John Concern: Safety needs a clearly demarcated tool of eviction from the place when necessary.  Right now it’s being exercised autcratically and safety is being forced to act against their conscience but in the interest of logic to keep camp safe.  This is a peculiarity of Occupy.  Some alcoholic or substance abuser will get their property stolen and threaten the camp until they get it back.  I cannot sit around any longer and watch this.  

Floor: I had a problem with this today and someone punched me in the face; we need to be able to take immediate action if someone is posing a threat.

Concern: Being DA and having to deal with that, we need to have that power, it sucks but we need it.

Facilitator: We’re on strong concerns and objections.

Concern: Two weeks is a hard time to commit, we’ve only been here a month after all.

Concern: It’s more of an objection.  Me being part of the safety team, it is difficult for us here sometimes to deal with these situations, that’s why I brought that point up about the self-defense classes (this is Rhino/Anthony).  We do try our best to eliminate and defuse a situation before something out of line does happen.  Specifically about what he just said, I know what he was talking about, there are people who act the fool when they are intoxicated, I will talk to my supervisors.

Concern: As someone who doesn’t camp at the site, I feel like my voice isn’t as important as someone who lives there.  I don’t know how we can deal with that fairly but--I’m there whenever I’m not at work or home, but...

Concern: I feel like they [troublemakers, not non campers!] should be asked to leave the camp

Process: That’s an amendment

Concern (Alex): I’m concerned there is no safety net; what if a group does a poor job and then teaches the next group to do a poor job!  (well received by crowd, good murmurs)

Statements of support?

Support: This is great, we’re coming into winter and we’re talking about reducing burnout--we really need to do that, we need to celebrate too, I think this is a good committee and proposal to protect that group.

Support: If the movement can survive winter we will have a real revolution.  The idea of having peopel take two shifts a week, 8am-8pm, over a two week cycle, is fair and would work.  

Support: I think this will be great for teaching more and more people in and outside of camp how to do all these things we’re talking about--conflict deescalation, mediation, etc. so I think this is great.

Support: I think that is a great first step in terms of addressing the long term committment we need to make to making the camp a safe place.  I think the concerns are valid and perhaps should be the seeds of new proposals,  Let’s consider this for waht it is and address other issues at a later date.  

Amendments?

Amendments: I would like to amend that we have a clear tool of eviction.  If someone is threatening violence or has engaged in violence or habitual substance abuse, we can offer a tent, we can offer bedding, and we can bring food to the line--BUT they need to be exclued from our society.  But first we need the inreach program to facilitate their participation in the movement, like a detox.  This is for substance abusers--not immediate threats.  But for immediate threats, boom, take your tent, take your bedding, take some food, and goodbye.  Because “Oh, they’re just blowing off steam, threatening to kill people,” no, that doesn’t work!

Amendment: I want to reduce shift length to three days.

Amendment: Eight days.

Amendments: As far as guidelines re safety shift, there are some people who are disrespectful to safety team members and sometimes we do lash back out.  THat’s a flaw but we can work on it.  There are some tings that are good that we need to follow more often, and seeing as we have 8, 9 things together to follow as guidelines, I think we should have a practice team together for this.

Amendment: This is just a slap on the wrist, that’s not OK.  I want them to be off safety for an offense like that.  I don’t want to trash Safety, but they’re always drunk on duty.  

Amendment: I would second that anemdnemt because if you’re drunk on duty you’re endangering the safety of camp.  You can’t ask them to keep us safe if we don’t feel safe.

Amendment: Eight hour shifts rather than 12 hours.

(missed about four statements, two or three minutes, sorry)

Discussion over whether an amendment is an amendment or not.

Amendment: something about sexual assault--training in counseling folks who survived sexual assault.

Marty from Safety: If you helped author this please come help me respond to the amendments.  

Anastasia Facilitator: So we’re going to start individual stack while they’re revising the proposal; if you want to get on stack please come to Bill the stack person.

Person: BARCC (Boston Area Rape Crisis Center) is interested in having someone on site at all times or in some kind of offficial capacity both to prevent sexual assault on site and to be a resource for people who are sexually assaultd.  It’s very problematic to me to try to directly respond to that.  As someone who’s been threatened with rape at camp and there’s no place in the process for me.  

POP: He called for individual stack; this comment is not the process.  

Facilitator: We’re not judging what happened to her, we’re going to go through the process.

POP: I want her to be heard; when people go out of process it’s hard for people to be heard because they get on edge.

Individual stack:

John: This is important.  This is a list of things I can help with winterization.  An evacuation route needs to be planned for the park; it should be often reinforced and newcomers need to learn it.  We need more fire extinguishers.  All smoking needs to be kept out of camp.  All the hay MUST go.  It was a serious fire safety concern; it’s now a biological safety concern.  Current tents need to be broken down, it’s fetid and gross under them.  They need to be erected in some sort of solution for winterization; I’ll let winterization do that.  The sign tent needs to be better; all the signs need to be bound and brought in; one person could take it down and hurt a lot of people.  We need a sanitation WG, sanitation meeting should be at every GA, all newcomers and passersby need to pick up trash and internalize what it means to leave a place better than you found it.  It’s just something that comes with being outdoors in a beautiful surrounding; Dewey isn’t beautiful right now but it needs to be.  An inreach group needs to be formed to reduce idleness and substance abuse among participants; personal investment and involvement in the movement.  Persons who are helpless should be directed outside.  All persons in camp should be strongly encouraged to attend WGs and GAs.  A universal call to witness word has been chosen, that word is rainbow.  It’s used when safety or property of individuals is being threatened [basically it’s a safeword].  I suggest another group, PA, public awareness; this group would follow along after marches with a terse pamphlet explaing who we are and what we stand for.  This is a way of engaging with media and police; hello, good afternoon, if we don’t engage people and let them discover their own ideas about us we will be doomed.  (Repeats explanation of Rainbow as a safeword.)

Bea: One thing I noticed about this proposal that’s happening tonight, a lot of people I typically see in Safety, are not here, so I’m just very aware that we are a group of people that is, in a sense, passing a new Safety group, and a lot of people are really invested in the new group, and I want us to be mindful about the relationship we’re starting to form between the old Safety group who is not present and the people who see themselves as the new safety group.  

Jeff: I’m not at the camp all as much as I would like to be; I’m temping right now at the Fed at a law firm.  I follow stuff in the news and not just in the mainstream press; my father in law is a serious conservative and comes at me all the time with questions about what the Occupy Movement here is all about; the latest meme is that everyone here apparently is a student that has some arcane major apparently you’re all alchemists or wizards or something (much friendly laughter)  In the Phoenix there was an article that mentioned that there was going to be some kind of internal census about the age of people here, profession, degrees, etc in a general sense, and I’d like to take part in that--a big part actually.  So if there’s any kind of sensitivity to individual information it can be left out, but this information needs to be put together so it can go out against the Boston Heralds out there and try to give them--ok you want to ask dumb questions, here’s some information.  So that’s the thing, I want to help with this interior census.  

Brianna: If we obviously we’re not all students--different ages, different backgrounds--we all have different forms of media and we can write from our perspectives.  So just--write it down.  But my original reason for standing up here is to ask if you can shovel for hay removal; I would be willing to shovel, it’s just...is that kosher?  If I brought a shovel and moved some hay would that be OK?

POI: I brought five rakes yesterday, use them.

Brianna: OK, but...will that be OK?  Where should I shovel hay to?

James: This is a draft proposal, I’m just going to skip to the thesis.  I’m giving this in solidarity with our call for international democracy.  I am proposing that we should be democratically represented in the UN; today, we have no say on who is voting for us in the UN on questions of international law; I propose that citizens of every nation should get a vote in the UN; we are the 99% and we should not let a handful of people decide on international law for us; I’m going to leave that open for now, I don’t have a clear concept of what that should be--but I know no laws should be written without representation.

Alison: I wanted to speak about the role of calling point of process.  I feel personally attacked when I do it and actually I’m trying to protect the person who’s speaking, I’m not trying to silence the person, I’m trying to point the person to the best place to speak to be heard.  If we want to change the process we can make proposals to amend the process; right now we’ve created a safe space for people to be heard; I feel protective of that process because when we break it we breach people’s boundaries and it triggers a lot of anxiety for me and feels unsafe for me.  So if there’s something in the process you think could be done better, then I suggest you come to Facilitation WG and propose changing the process and say, This doesn’t work for me, but you’re setting yourself up for disrespect and disrespecting others if you disrespect the process.  I feel personally assaulted sometimes when I am protecting the process.

Martin: I have an issue about respecting other people’s space around camp.  I feel sometimes we get carried away with a protest, I get to do whatever the hell I want mentality.  There are some things we’re fighting for and some things that are, like, Yes sir, officer.  Like going to the bathroom, the mezzanine at South Station--I want to remind people to respect other people’s stuff and take care of the camp; if you’re here, do something, rake some hay, get involved in an WG, otherwise...yeah.

Alex: I’ve been talking with the Greenway folks for a whle and we need to be supportive of their environemnt.  That means staying off the shrubbery, and helping people to do the same.  Not tying your bikes to trees would be great too; it’s really tearing up the trees.  We don’t realize that many of the trees are so young that it will be their first winter; keep up a nice relationsip with the place.  Also, talk to somebody, get to know people personally, talk to new people.  We sometimes view this in a larger scope rather than on the individual level.  Many of the people here live off camp; so you don’t ncessarily understand how people are when they’re there 24/7.  I’m not saying it’s closed, but if you can avoid the Media Tent after, like 1am, unless it’s really important, that would be great.

Eli: Alison, I appreciate what you said because I’m piggybacking on that.  I want to encourage everyone to be nice to one another.  Sometimes at these meetings a pervasive feeling of anger comes over me and I’ve gotta hold it down.  I want to encourage people to smile and be kind.  In points of process-- This motion (wrap it up) is the most offensive fucking motion, it’s basically (flipping the bird).  But I just think--what you said, Alison, needs to be said; process isn’t to shut people up, it’s so people’s voices are heard, so at the next Facilitator meeting, I want to build that into the opening speech.  That’s all, be kind everybody.

Katie: About where we can go when it’s cold.  I’m on outreach, and we are currently in contact with a number of community organizations who are actively interested in helping us find space; we also want to expedite outside-inside connections.  So if you’re heere and can help, please ID yourselves and let me know!

Frank: I noticed people are concerned about losing camp and who’s there for 24 hours.  I worked 10 hours in the rain today, that doesn’t make me better than anyone but it DOES make it harder to maintain my level of calm.  It’s sometimes easier to come from a house and stay calm.  I need rides, Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday, around 4:00, from the Arlington/Boylston Unitarian Church there; we have the kitchen now, so I need a ride so I can bring in 40 lbs of food from there to give us hot food.  Also, does anyone notice that we don’t actually live in a field, we live in a roof; it’s the roof to the big dig.  As far as setting a fire in Dewey Square, I’d like to see someone try.  

Sage; NO OPEN FLAME!


Frank: It’s a joke.  

(Transcriber: yes, seriously, don’t freaking set fires.)

Dan: When the kitchen is closed, the kitchen is closed.  If people go into the kitchen after that, please tell safety.  We’re really looking for people in the mornings to volunteer with Food.  Kitchen closes at 12 and opens at 8am; between then don’t go there unless you are a volunteer who has been there more than once.

Eric: This announcement is about the weather.  I know the weather is bad, but if Oakland and Denver can survive tear gas and rubber bullets to fight for change we can survive the weather.

Brian: just to respond to the process discussion: the comment I heard, I wished it had been included in the official process because the people making the proposal really should include it.  I’m worried that the comment made in the mic check--it was really important, and I don’t want ot to be not heard.  I’ve heard a lot about Oakland--and I’m putting a proposal before GA about that tomorrow.  They were using tear gas, grenades, a veteran was really badly injured.  There’s a nationwide crackdown happening and that’s because they don’t want us to grow and succeed.  It’s also important to understand the way in whcih the Democratic party has a 2 part a strategy of containment for us.  We should note that it was a Democratic mayor in Boston, Chicago, Oakland, Atlanta who cracked down on us.  One strategy is repression.  Another is cooptation.  We can assume and see that Obama 2012 and other statements will want to coopt us and claim to be on ourside; if you read the statements, they speak like they are with us and on our side but meanwhile they are cracking down on us and repressing our right to free assembly--and almost killing a veteran.  So we should just be conscius of that as we enter 2012.  (This was vastly more coherent than my transcript; Brian speaks fast and in coherent sentences which are surprisingly, harder to transcribe because I can’t condense things!)

SAFETY PROPOSAL IS BACK!

Safety: We’re taking into consideration an eviction protocol; we did include a proposal to reduce the time served; we included the idea of barring someone on safety not sober from the eight day rotation; we also included that we’d strive to have eight hour shifts f we can; also gender and diversity; also training on sexual assault response and self-defense.

So, new proposal:
1. Public meetings for Safety once a week.
2. Lg number of OB community rotate into Safety shifts lasting no more than 8 days.
3. Members of comm need to be part of community for four days?  

(stuff happened)

The relief of a given rotation of safety team members is based on whether there are people to replace them.  

(stuff happened; this will go onto the wiki in written form)

Everyone on Safety--stays sober.  If drunk/on drugs on duty, Safety members wil be asked to step down.  These members will need to attend two CW WG meetings and before rejoinign the individual will need to be approved by Safety before rejoining.  Three strikes and you’re out.  If you’re asked to step down you will avoid conflict.  Review process mediated by CW group.  

Safety will draft a protocol for eviction in cooperation with CW and nonviolence WGs; this will be proposed to GA on Nov 1 (Tuesday)
Safety recs an urban planning WG
Safety recs:
space for daily safety meetings for venting, working through issues
safety to receive training from CW to handle problems without escalation
in fact everyone in OB should get mediation training
Safety needs rain and weather gear, two way radios, reflective vests
Safety will work in conjunction with Women’s caucus, POC, et al to promote diversity within working group.

(It’s now 9:30)

CQ: What is the definition of an active member?

Safety; an active member is someone who is in rotation in the safety team.  Somebody who participates in all duties who are asked of him or her and does it respectfully.  

Safety: hold on, this is about who can be safety.  Safety members need to be active members for at least four days in a two week period so people can’t just show up and suddenly be on safety.  

CQ: Regarding the eviction between now and November 1...we’re going to get an intense weekend here, substances, visitors, what’s the plan between now and then?

Safety; we’re going to keep the tightest ship possible running and it would be helpful if you could reach out to us because we are a team, the 99%.  

CQ: That doesn’t solve anything in the next three days

Safety: that’s from now till the end of this time.

CQ: Is tehre a minimum number of people that need to be on duty on any given shift?  

Safety: 9 guys right now, it would be good to possibly organize a special group for the most serious issues that need instant action.

CQ: So your rec is that there should be 9 people?

Safety: 9 people and one female.

(Discussion)

Safety: 10 people.  We need women to join the women’s safety team so that we have equal time, same number of women as men so when there’s a women’s issue women are dealing with it.

Katie: just to take into account what an active member is, does that take into account whether ppl are onsite or offsite?

Safety: We’re leaving it open to interpretation.

CQ: He asked how many were on each shift, but...are you saying 10 on the whole team or 10 on the whole shift?  

Safety: We’d have to check; we need at least six people on shift at a time--3 intrances, Gandhi, main street, etc., all these need to be patrolled so we don’t have people arguing about whether to respond to a call.  So we need to figure that out so we’re not all there at the same time, it could be that people are creating an intentional distraction.

Safety to Safety: We need to develop a radio situation that is a bit more complex.  

Safety: Right, that’s a situation (discussion)

CQ: So, to be clear, you want 3 shifts of eight hours, 6 people per shift, so 18 people per day?

Safety: Yes.

CQ: When it the next safety WG meeting?

Safety: We need a new tent because our tent was occupied by occupiers.  Not sure when the next meeting is; we need a tent.

Floor: you can have the meeting in South Station.

Safety: We could do that.  We discussed meeting Monday night at 9 in South Station, upstairs, by McDonalds.  Ok, let’s do that.

CQ: This is an issue, this question arises from the fact that there will be a rotation which is nie.  But for those of us who work in sensitive areas prone to theft or violence but how will you work around the issue of familiarity with working groups, I feel a little iffy about calling because I don’t know who’s on shift; sometimes the guys who turn up aren’t the guys I really want to see.  How will you deal with the fact that those of us who work the late shifts will need to feel comfortable with the person on duty in order to call them.  Now it’s fine with you guys, but we’re talking about constantly rotating, constantly.

Safety: That was part of the intent of making sure they are part of the community before we move on.  (discussion did not hear)

Eric: On solution would be to have a the pictures of safety people posted around

POP: This is not a question, it’s a suggestion.  This belongs in Amendments.

Facilitator: We’re trying to keep the process moving.  Any more CQs?  

CQ: Back to numbers.  You currently have a Safety WG of 10 people and your current proposal suggests 18 people in one four day round...

Safety: We’re trying to create this world with the proposal; the first step is to have more people be part of safety before we can make this real.  

Safety: So we’re working on a rotational team; every 4 days we’d need 9 new people to join for this to work.

CQ: More on numbers; is the equipment going to be shared?

Safety: Yes, it will be shared.

Points of information?

POI; Each WG gets $100 per week so they can keep buying stuff if they need it.

POI: BARCC has offered to participate in the part of the proposal that deals with mitigating sexual violence.  BARCC came to Women’s Caucus; I want to encourage proposers to check in with women’s caucus and BARCC both to actively incorporate them into this new safety thing.

Strong concerns and objections.

Concern: I think what I heard was if someone on the Safety team has alcohol or drug issues while on safety you put in remedial action but that person is allowed back onto Safety in the near future; I wouldn’t feel safe in that case.  

Support?

Support: (happy fingers from at least 15 people in crowd)

Concern: We need more meetings.

CQ: Are thoe open to the public?

Safety: Yes.

Amendments?

Amendment: A board at INFO and MEDIA laminated with pictures of the Safety people so that everyone knows who the safety people are.

Amendment: alter the active members language to say “active members of a working group who can be vouched for at a meeting of that working group”.

Amendment: Or at least familiarity with GA as well.

Amendment: if anyone n the safety team at all, on or off duty, if they’re found intoxicated, they just be removed from the Safety team for a long period of time until that person has proven their ability to be on the safety team.  

Amendment: While you guys consider you needs that you consider a minimum and maximum # of people on shift at any time.  That means if we pass your proposal we count on you to maintain a consistent minimum #.  Maximum # deals with the equipment quesiton and makes sure you have enough stuff.

Amendment: That sets a time limit of the exact number of hours a day someone can work so that we never have someone who tries to be a superhero and works too many hours (like Steve!)

Amendment: To piggyback on the minimum/maximum amendment, I propose that there is language that somehow you let us know how many mmembers you have so we know how many more you need, so we know what you need and when we’re short on safety people or when safety people are overstretched and working doubles.

Amendment: During the training period, let’s tour people around so people don’t feel like they don’t know the safety people and can’t call; let’s make trainings introduce Safety people around.  

Amendment: From now to Nov 1, due discretion is exercised by Safety, that they can axt as they deem appropriate for evictions to protect everyone’s safety.

Amendment: Stress autonomous action; if you feel like your life or someone else’s life is in danger take action.

Amendment: … this is a nonviolent camp, that’s it.

Amendment: one strike and you’re done thing with the violence.  

Safety: yes, you’re here until you get violent.

POI: Menino says we can stay as long as we’re peaceful.

Amendment: If someone is being asked to leave for substance abuse, let’s make sure CW and conflict mediation are part of that discussion.  

Facilitators: The fear is that we’re not going to pass this tonight and this will take forever.  

Amendment: what if we just call it a living document?

We are recessing the proposal for the composers of the proposal to modify it.  We’re now taking individual stack.

Martin: announcement re solidarity with Oakland.  

Carlos: I’m concerned about the witch hunts, witch hunts aren;t conducive to a collective community; allegations against an individual are serious and should not be taken lightly.  Instead of passing on thoughts or rumors that alienate people, that can damage their image--physical, emotional, or personal.  

Facilitators: E5 has given us a short extension so we can wait.

Eric: So about raking up the leaves around the food tent and I didn’t get a chance to respond; but that’s a good idea, let’s do it, logistics bought rakes and gloves so let’s chip in there.  We worked 4 hours and didn’t get nearly all of the hay cleaned up so if we can help it would be awesome.

Dan: This is a nonprofit space but the rent just went up so let’s pass the hat for encuentro5 (the space we’re in).  

Brian: Follow up to my earlier announcement; here’s the good news.  In Oakland they’ve called for a general strike for this Wednesday, November 2.  Part of the proposal tomorrow coming before Ga is to encourage all the 99% to take action in solidarity with the general strike in Oakland.  We’re not in a position right now in Boston for a general strike but we can plan for a march or something like that to show solidarity with oakland, maybe shutting down a bridge or street, but that will be part of tomorrow’s proposal as well, so we can give the whole moovement, which is facing police action everywhere, a boost.

Merph?: I’m one of the admins on the FB page.  Seattle has suggested a good idea.  If you have an extra tent put this on the lawn with a sign saying We are the 99%.  Also put up signs for trick or treaters; educate!  The cape is going to start occupying; this is important so check us out and keep the movement alive.  

Eric: So the process right now is that we can’t direct respond.  Most other cities are allowed to direct response during this part.  I’m going to bring a proposal about this soon.

Anastasia: This is our movement, this is your GAs, and I appreciate it and it’s a hard job and you don’t want to feel attacked.  Every time you want to break a process, please think about if it were you yourself up here.  We keep seeing the same faces up here, we want more people to facilitate soon; we need everyone to facilitate at least one GA; you can have an experienced facilitator up here with you, so we encourage you to come and bring your proposals.  Next meeting tomorrow in South Station in front of Au Bon Pain.  Also, gendered language; they are not all guys, please be mindful of your language.

Safety returns with proposal!  (Thank goodness!)

Safety; THIS IS A LIVING DOCUMENT.  “Active members”--part of WGs vouched for or at at least 3 GAs.  WG members will be introduced to Safety newbies during training.  Before rejoining, a person will have to be approved by fellow Safety members.  There is no third chance.  Safety will deliver regular GA announcements.  Until eviction protocol is ratified by GA Safety will act as deemed appropriate in violent situations.  In substance abuse situations CW will be included.

Facilitators: Are there any blocks?

Now we’re going to consent!  Facilitator: Can you LIVE WITH This proposal passing?  If you can live with it, hands up, if you can’t, hands down.

Floor: do we need to establish quorum?

Facilitator: No!


Consensus is taken.  WE SEE CONSENSUS! THIS PROPOSAL HAS BEEN CONSENTED TO!!!!

Safety: the proposal is available on Google Docs if you want to contribute!

And now we’re done.  GA is over, time to clean up e5!  Thanks, all!  Sorry for the typos!