How A General Assembly Works
Notes on how a General Assembly works (this is a work in progress and may change)
- The facilitator introduces themselves and any co-faciltator, minute taker, time keeper and other members of facilitation team.
- The agenda and an approximate allocation of time for each agenda item will be given.
- A clarification is properly described as asking a question about anything in a proposal you don’t understand.
- A direct point is a factual correction to what has been said, and will, now, be called a factual correction
- A point is raising your hand to contribute to the discussion of the proposal. (Points will be heard in the order in which hands were raised) and with consideration to time limits. The facilitator can prioritise those who have not already spoken as the meeting goes on.
Not all GA’s involve proposals but some do, in these cases:
- Once the proposal has been read, clarifying questions are usually asked for.
- A discussion/temperature check may follow.
- A point might form the basis of an objection.
- An objection might be looking for an amendment or alteration to the proposal.
- After the discussion of the proposal the facilitator may ask for a temperature check.
- If there is no enthusiasm for the proposal the facilitator may suggest the proposer withdraws it.
- If there is a warm temperature check the facilitator asks if there are any objections.
- An opportunity will be given to see if the objections can be folded into the proposal.
- If there are no objections the facilitator will test for consensus.
- If there are objections the facilitator will ask the assembly to hear them.
- After they are heard the facilitator will again ask for a temperature check and, subsequently, objections.
- The facilitator will ask if any of the objectors are willing to stand aside.
- A stand aside is similar to abstaining. Your stand aside will be minuted.
- If they are willing to stand aside the facilitator will test for consensus.
- If anyone is not willing to stand aside they will be asked if they are willing to work with the proposer to achieve a proposal they can agree with.
- If they are not willing to do this they will be asked if they intend to block the proposal.
- A block is a serious matter and implies that you feel that the proposal is against the basic values of the Occupy movement to the extent you would be inclined to leave the movement.
- If the ‘blocker’ will not stand aside the proposal will not reach consensus.According to the current practices of OLSX, a blocker undertakes to explain their block to the meeting and furthermore to work with the proposer or relevant working group to try to resolve the block. In the event that the blocker does not make this attempt at resolution, the block falls.