GA Minutes – 7pm Wednesday 28th December 2011

 

SUMMARY/MINUTES WED 28 DEC GA

Minutes: Em

REACHED CONSENSUS ON:

Re Green & Black Cross Legal Cards being inaccurate:

  • We’ll contact GBC, explain the issue and invite them to communicate with our legal team

    (Michelle offered to contact them)

  • Our legal team will discuss their concerns

  • Our legal team will begin preparing new legal advice cards which will give us informed options; a draft will be brought to GA for approval before printing

  • The GBC cards will be kept out of view at least until the issue has been cleared up

  • Steve will be responsible for making posters that explain the problems with the GBC cards in case a) people are carrying them and relying on them and b) people wonder why they’ve been removed.

WG FEEDBACK/COMMENTS:

  • INFO – WGs need to drop info of meetings and events at Info Tent daily.

    - Mark offers to open Info at 10am and stay until around noon each day (unless someone else is available)

    - Em suggests starting to use the rota book again.

  • NEW YEAR’S EVE WG – planning meeting Thu afternoon, place & time will be in Info Tent

  • SANITATION – portaloo costs have been reduced from c.£630/week to £345/week by closing some of them at less busy times.

  • WELFARE & WELL-BEING: Welfare Tent open daily 4-8pm.

    - Every Monday, “Evict your Stress” workshop in TCU, 4-6pm

    - Welfare want feedback on how they can help us best

  • FINANCE – Some people are concerned…

    - Anon – people begging in camp, collecting money for themselves and saying it’s camp funds

    - John (legal) – we should be issuing receipts for donations

    - should donations only be given to Info Tent?

    - Let’s have a Finance WG meeting on these issues… discussion… Thu 11am, in geo-dome.

PROPOSAL 1: Father Dennis: Fr Dennis read out “A Way Forward [for Occupy] – A Personal View”.

In summary, this said:

  • New initiative is needed; focus has been lost; some people are being selfish; camp takes too many resources; the message is still not getting out…

  • We should focus on banks and financial institutions

  • We could do fast, temporary occupations outside banks

  • We need more banners around camp

  • We could have an Occupy Bus…

  • We need to outreach more and network with more people

  • We need new strategies whether we’re evicted or not

  • Personally, don’t like the name ‘Occupy’, reminiscent of war and invasion.

Small discussion groups came up with the following:

  • Like the name Occupy; it has assumed new meaning from this movement

  • Banners – yes; banners should rally people to cause; slightly over half liked the ‘Capitalism is Crisis’ banner…; could have a meeting to discuss banner messages; these could then be brought to GA for consensus; should have lots of banner-making workshops.

  • Yes to focus on banks etc; but also, people should be able to express themselves freely

  • We should use statistics re how much company directors make compared with…

  • We should do more outreach, more marches, connecting with students etc

  • Work with local groups, have GAs everywhere, get people together

  • Look to Occupy Wall St – they’re reaching out to and working with families who’ve had homes repossessed etc

  • Regular General Discussions – once a day? Once a week? – to discuss Occupy direction

  • Accept that splinter groups happen naturally and go off in a variety of directions

  • Criminal Investigation Unit is a new direction…

PROPOSAL 2: Steve (Legal): Get rid of Green & Black Cross Legal Cards

In summary, Steve said:

  • These cards are inaccurate and potentially harmful.

  • The info on them is wrong, it recommends saying only ‘no comment’ to police when, in the case of a Section 60, this will put people in cells.

  • Also, it recommends if you are arrested, to phone Bindmans who will charge a lot.

Much discussion… A selection of the points made:

  • Some people have good experience of Green & Black Cross

  • It’s not right to throw away others’ literature

  • We don’t know enough about the situation where someone was charged a lot by Bindmans and they’re not here to explain it first hand

  • Some people would rather say ‘no comment’ and spend the night in a cell than give police their details

  • We need advice that will help us make informed choices

  • It’s probably just that these cards are out of date – Section 60s haven’t been in use long

  • We should discuss this with GBC before making a decision

  • We could suggest that they update their cards

  • Our legal team could make up alternative cards

After Amendments, the following was agreed by Consensus:

  • We’ll contact GBC, explain the issue and invite them to communicate with our legal team

    (Michelle offered to contact them)

  • Our legal team will discuss their concerns

  • Our legal team will begin preparing new legal advice cards which will give us informed options; a draft will be brought to GA for approval before printing

  • The GBC cards will be kept out of view at least until the issue has been cleared up

  • Steve will be responsible for making posters that explain the problems with the GBC cards in case a) people are carrying them and relying on them and b) people wonder why they’ve been removed.

 
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