General Assembly, October 14: Getting the Hang of It

October 15, 2011 admin General AssemblyComments Off

A stream of honks from a passing 71 Watsonville aroused quite the cheer from this evening’s otherwise thankfully placid assembly. We had a medium turnout for this Friday night meeting, which wrapped in about two hours.

Working Group Reportbacks

Legal happily reported that no citations were issued at the camp this morning, despite the threats of authorities. We have also received $2500 towards a legal fund from an anonymous donor.

Food group is instituting a signup calendar for providing dinner. Philosophy/Strategy is seeking comment on a drafted core values statement. The Treasury collected $92 in donations today alone, for a total of around $560.

Homeless Outreach

An occupier intended to present a proposal for a Homeless Outreach working group. This agenda item was tabled, as the presenter was not present.

Credit Union Actions Proposal

The assembly consensed on a proposal for a series of actions to be performed in support of local credit unions, as presented by the Direct Action group. These included a campaign to encourage people to transfer funds from national banks to the unions, a march in support of Santa Cruz credit unions, an a collaboration with the credit unions to measure the effects of these actions.

An occupier reported, to much applause, word from several of the local credit unions that they were already nearly overwhelmed processing new accounts–likely in response to the nationwide air of changing sentiments towards large financial institutions.

How We Treat Each Other

In response to the highly-charged and hostile interruptions of yesterday’s GA, someone raised the issue of interpersonal conduct during our assemblies. A hazy and several-times-amended proposal was made towards encouraging compassionate conduct and avoiding engagement of disruptors. This proposal was rejected, with the understanding that the Process group was currently discussing how to best deal with disruptions.

Facilitator Transparency

Someone suggested instituting a more transparent facilitator selection process. The Process group responded that they were establishing more explicit criteria for facilitator selection: that the facilitator be experienced (having attended a facilitator training, and having served as co-facilitator previously) and that the facilitator role be performed by as many different people as possible.

New Working Group Model Proposed

An individual recited an involved multi-clause proposal regulating the operation of working groups, with the intention of increasing working group transparency and accountability to the GA. The proposal was contentious, and rejected by the GA, but the suggestions are being taken into consideration by the Process group.

City Council Reportback

An occupier autonomously spoke to an executive in the city government earlier in the day, and reported on his conversation. The executive encouraged us to establish a dialog with city council members and higher-ups in law enforcement. The occupier suggested that some of us attend a city council meeting, but no proposal was made to this effect.


Facilitator training on Sunday. Keep camp organized and tidy. Music begins at 12pm tomorrow, be there. Wall Street occupiers have held their occupation, despite threats. San Francisco occupation severely impacted, down to ~70 occupiers.

[This report was completed at 10:45pm atop the Water Street steps of the Santa Cruz County Superior Courthouse, amidst 25 occupiers, spirited conversation, spirited jams, warm lights, honks of passing cars, ambulances, unmarkeds. Others had already cozied up in the park camp.]