November 28, 2011 in GA resolutions
GA schedule change proposal - Passed on Sunday, Nov. 17th GA
At this Sunday’s 7pm General Assembly (GA), Occupy Denver decided on a big change in the way that daily GAs operate. The GA Procedures committee brought forth and received the GAs support for a proposal for introducing a new format for Tuesday, Thursday, and Sunday GAs. This proposal was aimed facilitating greater outside group, community, and committee involvement in Occupy Denver GAs and at giving Occupy Denver space to grow as a movement. The proposal, which you can read in full length on the Denver GA tab, maintains the standard procedure for holding GAs and voting on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays, but changes Tuesday and Thursday GAs into “Get Involved Nights” and changes Sunday GAs into “Open Forum/Recap” GAs.
Get Involved Nights are intended to be meetings that are particularly accessible for people who aren’t familiar with the movement or who have been looking for a way to get involved. These new Tuesday and Thursday GAs will still convene at 7pm, beginning with time for announcements and, if necessary, voting on emergency proposals. There will also be time for “proposal feedback forums” – times when individuals or committees can have discussion and get constructive criticism and feedback on proposals they may be thinking of bringing to the Monday, Wednesday, or Friday GAs without the pressure of having to hold a vote. After this introductory time, the GA will adjourn and divide into smaller break out sessions which can be hosted by committees, working groups, outside organizations, or individuals. These break out sessions can be used to plan events, hold open discussions on hot topics in the movement, educate each other on important issues, conduct trainings, and much more. We are looking to introduce more creativity into the movement, so this new format is open-ended – the Get Involved Nights will be different every week. By making this change, Occupy Denver hopes to make Get Involved Nights a time for building community among the supporters of Occupy Denver, welcoming new members, and taking real action to advance the movement.
The new Sunday GAs will also be more accessible for those interested in helping the movement. These Open Forum/Recap GAs will also begin with time for announcements and, if necessary, emergency proposals, with time to help catch people up on what happened at the past week’s Get Involved Nights, update everyone on what committees are doing or important developments that may have taken place in the previous week, and to discuss and vote on the coming week’s Get Involved Night activities. After those discussions, the remaining time will be used to hold an open forum where we can all discuss the direction of Occupy Denver and the broader movement, share ideas, and voice our concerns.
We see these changes as another exciting step in the evolution of the social movement we are engaged in here in Colorado, and we hope that you will join Occupy Denver in pioneering this new format. If you, your organization, or your committee want to host a break out session on a future Get Involved Night, you can submit your ideas to GAprocedures@occupydenver.org or speak directly to a member of the GA Procedures committee in person. Please continue joining us every day in Civic Center Park, and help us keep up the fight!
The first Get Involved Night will be this Tuesday! We will meet at 7pm for an open forum on how Occupy Denver can use these nights in the future and general discussion of the movement. This Thursday, we will use the Get Involved Night to have a potluck! All are invited and we will invite committee members to give a general update on their committee’s work and let people know how they can get involved. We hope to see you there!
Why we are proposing this:
GA Procedures is making the following proposal in order to facilitate greater outside group, community, and committee involvement in Occupy Denver, and to give Occupy Denver space to grow as a movement.
What we are proposing:
We are proposing that we change the schedule structure of our daily General Assembly meetings. We proposed that we reduce official voting to just 2pm GAs on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday. We propose that we then use the remaining days in the following ways:
Tuesday and Thursday - “Get Involved Nights”
We will have an initial gathering with where there will be announcements and, when needed, voting on emergency proposals. It will also be a time where participants can get feedback on proposals they are planning on bringing to the GA in the future (these feedback sessions should last no more than 20 minutes and will not include actual voting). After this introductory time, the GA will then break out into smaller sessions. The criteria for these sessions will be simply that they must be (1) related to advancing the Occupy movement, (2) increasing broader involvement in the movement, or (3) for planning, organizing, or coordinating future Occupy Denver activities.
Possible suggestions for activites that could take place in this time:
Fish bowl caucuses
Event planning/organizing sessions
Flash mob practices
Pot lucks, etc.
We are open to other suggestions for how to use this time
If there are no activities planned by the beginning of Get Involved Nights, then the fallback will be to do announcements, then have an open forum discussion on Occupy Denver in general, followed by an hour of committee break outs starting at 8pm.
Groups will be invited to share updates from what happened in their working time at the following GAs and/or to send their notes to firstname.lastname@example.org. Committees will be required to include the updates from these meetings in weekly committee digests. Non-committee groups will not be required to announce the proceedings of their meetings, but will be welcome to do so in the announcements section of following GAs.
Sundays - Open Forum/Recap General Assemblies
We will have an initial gathering with where there will be announcements and, when needed, voting on emergency proposals, followed by an open forum, with room for voting on schedules for Get Involved Nights.
How we propose to implement this:
- Anyone can submit a proposals for Get Involved Night activities either by contacting a GA Procedures member in person or by emailing us at GAprocedures@occupydenver.org We will work with the proposers to schedule what day their activity should take place
- We will bring a proposed schedule for Get Involved Nights on Sundays to be discussed and voted on by the GA
- These schedule decisions will be posted to the website after Sunday’s GA
- If nothing is decided upon on Sunday, then we will use the default plan for Get Involved Nights
- GA Procedures will be keeping a calendar of topics and activities for Get Involved Nights that is eventually going to be on the website