The General Assembly of October 10 convened beneath the redwoods adjacent the courthouse steps, sheltered from a moist sky.
This assembly was the first where we attempted a one-hour format. We wrapped in ninety minutes, and ended in high spirits. Chatter suggested that most people found the shorter assembly to be more enjoyable and more efficient.
A proposal to form a Location working group was consensed upon. This group will meet to discuss issues regarding the current location of our encampment, and to potentially propose a move to another location.
Someone asked how the Occupation should react to counter-protestors and side protests. He revealed that a vocal group of Ron Paul supporters had come to the courthouse earlier in the day to demonstrate for their candidate. No proposal was raised to this effect, but there seemed to be widespread agreement that individuals can engage counter-protesters as they see fit, but they will not be doing so in the name of Occupy Santa Cruz.
The lengthiest discussion of the evening was in response to the previous night’s visit by numerous sheriff’s deputies. The occupiers present at the time deemed it quite urgent that the Assembly decide how we wish to respond to police orders.
We consensed that individual occupiers will have the full backing of OSC, including materially and legally, should they choose either to comply with, or to peaceably resist police orders to dismantle or abandon the campsite. It seemed the full intention of the Assembly that we intend to hold a space continuously, be it here at the courthouse, or somewhere we deem more comfortable or strategic.
Working groups met after the assembly, several lasting late into the night. A new air of cohesion and enthusiasm seems to have arose from our more efficient assembly format.
Agenda items are written on a whiteboard before the meeting by those who wish to bring a topic to the general assembly