Minutes of the 72nd OCCUPY DETROIT GENERAL ASSEMBLY Saturday June 9th
Welcome – Patrick & Lisa from Occupy Phoenix and people from OccuTour
Jim first time visitor to 5900 took GA minutes!!!
Use more time for breakout group — Jennifer
Breakout Groups – 15 Min (or more, per Jennifer’s proposal/block which was resolved by putting discussion before close)
What are we doing?
Where are we going?
$$$ for 5900 – Hans
Prison Solidarity Direct Action – Diara
Saturday June 16 Community GA at This Hood of Ours campsite – Jasahn’s — Rakiba
- Saturday GA’s for now on
- OccupiedDetroitFreePress blog created – Terry Hall
Looking for writers
- Gary Wagman, moved to Chicago, solidarity march with Quebec student movement – charged with felonious battery of police officer – police stories changing – camera confiscated, video camera confiscated – memory & film erased – Gary being held $50,000 bond – fund raiser? to get bail – Stu is attorney, contact Graham – Graham will contact attorney for more info.
Graham – 734-765-4253
John Royal could help? National Lawyers Guild – meet Thursday @7PM – or Sarah Coffey
- Summer Fest — Numerous groups to join event, June23 after GA (Saturday) until 10-11PM — $10 suggested donation – (1/2 to kid who pulled fire alarm, ½ to OccupyDetroit); tie in Quebec student activists (via Skype) – Hans
- Sunday June 10 – 3PM – Activist Choir – Jennifer
- Eviction Defense for Jennifer Britt – 4PM Saturday June 9, 2012
- 8AM Monday City Council Meeting for Emergency Manager — Coleman Young
- DetroitSoup — 2051 Rosa Parks – 6:30PM – Sunday, June 10, 2012
- 6PM @ 5900 – June 9, 2012 – Nuclear Opposition Meeting – Speakers Michael Leonard Christina Consulo, etc. — & Musical performance, BYOB, bring food, etc.
- Jerome Jackson won a stay, mortgage will be renegotiated, better assistance – Graham
- Fundraiser for picnics — $$ money from finance – Joe will handle – Graham
- Nasty fruit packing plant in Livonia – hires undocumented workers – Rally Sunday June 10 – Rally, Clark Park – Jennifer
- Slumber Party – Appoline & W. Chicago (2 blocks west of Meyers) – everyone come camp and try to gain momentum for OccupyDetroit – more camps, in two neighborhoods – get residents involved – Saturday June 16, 2012 – Jasahn – Rakiba proposes Saturday Community GA be held there @ 8:30 pm
- Ice Cream Social – Palmer Park – Sunday June 24, 1PM – Eric
- Restoration Project – Dance Party all night – come during the day first to join projects – w/Golden Gate – every Friday — 18700 Woodward — @Golden Gate café –
- Re Chicago, to document events, people should bring cameras – Graham – good example is Eric’s work for May Day
- 99% Spring Training guidebooks available — Jennifer
- Marney volunteered to event translation — Rakiba
- Sunday, June 24, 6PM – Legal Workshop @5900 – Rakiba
- No further calls for Jerome Jackson – give ‘em time to do modification – Rakiba & Joe
- Medical Supplies / Clinic – non-medic training – Wednesday, June 13, 4PM – Diara
- Help in garden every Sunday afternoon — @ 5900 — Jennifer
Outreach meets @5900, Fridays, 5:30PM – attendance dwindling – groups asks: we are we working so hard? We need more discussions about what/where – Outreach successful, but people show up once, and then disappear – if you an idea, bring it to Outreach meetings – sign the sign up sheet that was passed around – join email list (google it), open to changing meeting times – Jennifer
Facilitation Working group – everyone in OD should be a facilitator – no gathering you can’t facilitate – go to YouTube and see ows facilitation training – we too having problems with attendance, dwindling interest – attendance does not indicate lack of interest – people just don’t come to meetings – gather them at their events – Facilitation meets on Mondays, 6PM @ 5900 – join mailing list for facilitation if you can’t get to meetings – Hans will put e-mail for group on the board – Rakiba
Finance – we have $8200 ($3500 from Buck Dinner) – 600-700 people, donations from Gray Panthers, etc – meeting Sunday, 12PM at Phoenix Café, Hazel Park – Hans
Direct Action – more concerned with evictions, lawyer meetings after DA meetings – get trained by lawyers, do home repairs to facilitate abatement, etc. 7:30PM 5900 Thursdays after Direct Action — Graham
Break The Dependence – no formal meetings, working to threaten and upset the 1% by taking houses, grow food, alternate transportation – no money used – put people in two bank-owned houses in last couple of weeks – support squatters in high numbers over last month – Jasahn
Golden Gate – 9 houses, rainwater collection, solar panels – need regulator – bike coop 31 bicycles – earn a bike? Fireweed University – Mars came from CA on a bike, it was falling apart – guy ended live/work and charged rent – Mars objected – moved in, fixed bikes, created bike coop – put equity/work into shop – Mars recreated Fireweed Univ. via November GA – housing shortage mentioned – Mars invited folks to come – they did from all over – city owned properties. OD fixed properties at camp, people did not come – then Fireweed & folks rushed in – folks are fixing roofs, windows – dropped camp into the garden – come, join build houses, help with bikes, sustainability, water – title searches done – in contact with some owners – create non-profit to buy the houses – OD headquarters house owned by woman in OR via internet, saw house, moved back to OR – owner wants to return – she is not encouraged to – 4 blocks south of 7 mile on Golden gate – some houses are bank owned – should be owned collectively – do drugs, no violence – need plywood, paint, bikes, shingles, etc – need regulator for solar panels – contact Mars – approve $80 to finance? — Eric
Joe McGuire reported that Jerome Jackson was victorious against Community living services – Wayne County Board of Commissioners signed resolution pending investigation – went to hearing in Inkster – delay for 60 days. Focusing on Jennifer Britt, 15701 Warwick in Rosedale Park – bank is foreclosing – see info on Facebook – bank refuses modification because husband’s name on mortgage – could be evicted in next few weeks – bank will show up with dumpster day before eviction crew – rally at her house Saturday June 9, 2012 – get flagstar to buy back mortgate from Fannie Mae – they got payout – they could afford to do this, Jennifer has two jobs, could make payments – tell friends to call bank – Protest @Flagstar next Saturday, Ford & Inkster Roads – Joe is encourage from enthusiasm for direct Action – no one organized around has ever been evicted – block dumpster, be prepared to get arrested at that one – meet Thursday 6PM – Direct Action – contact DetroitEvictionDefense@gmail.com for info
Are all DA’s foreclosures? No. Consent agreement & budget cuts, too, which in turn drive foreclosures via lack of property tax revenue losses – foreclosures are about banks getting their money. Got an idea? Come to DA meetings. Joe was arrested at tuition increase protest at Wayne, no bail, let out in an hour, sworn as lawyer next day – they let him go because DA showed up and protested. We need a bail fund – money earmarked for it? Be prepared for arrests, create lawn signs – eviction free zone etc – been spending their own money. It’s running out…. Thanks.
Facilitating Proposals — Christine
OD has used 5900 since December – Mark Hess has allowed use, rent & utility free, willing to until Election in November – proposal: use some of $8200 for 5900 – pending discussion of amount – we responsibility to give something back on financial level – would like to propose $1000 for bills, upkeep, events, supplies – Hans
Clarifying questions: (Hans gave answers… mostly)
$$ for now? – Yes, for repairs, util bills — Judy
Who is responsible for where money goes? Building comm? Yes. –Diara
Have events to raise funds: choir, yard sale, etc.? Event June 23 – Summerfest (see above) — Graham
Union allocated $1500 in the past specifically for building materials – Tony
Could other groups kick in $250 each? Don’t just give $$ to landlord? Not our responsibility to be nice. Others are not here regularly – can’t really ask them – OD uses property most – summerfest will raise money – Mark
Who uses $$? – Diara – Building Committee – open meeting on Sunday – Joe says we should use the $$ — we need to support the space to keep it and bring people in. Need to get place up to code, otherwise we could be kicked out.
Appreciates Mark’s toughness – We are the backbone – should maintain the space, even if other groups use it – Jasahn
Utilities are how much? – Jennifer — $1000 / month on average
Let’s get it in writing what money is for, and whether or not we can keep the space – Uneasy about handing over money if we don’t know how it will be used. – Jeremy – Building committee will oversee spending – there are open and closed meetings – idea: to create formalize structure for building financial responsibility – group needs high level of reciprocal trust – closed group is not exclusive, but merit based
Maintenance of building has been cluster f**k since day one, but it’s been a great space – who cares if money is not well used – we should make the gesture – Joe
We’ve had a free ride so far. $1000 is not much. – Jim
Other options for less than $1000 / month – this is supposed to be a free space – consider other options – Jeremy – this is one time donation, not per month.
We should look for other options in November – we should give him the money in spirit of good will – we’ve used – should look for ways in future to partner with community – occupy a space – Jasahn. Space is not free – Mark has paid utilities – we should help (Hans)
We moved here from a park, not a “free space” — Hans is not proposing monthly fee, we do not staff and provide security – Mark does – we should pay something — $1000 is nothing — Rakiba
(what percentage represents consensus: 70%; block requires 90% — Christine)
Everyone (mostly) agreed to move to consensus
No blocks. 2 Neutral.
Occupy Detroit should help bottomline or support: OccupyDMV phone lines – contact Diara: 313-903-0435 – firstname.lastname@example.org — DMV uses prisoner to staff call center, prison privatization resulted in 700x increase in prison population – prisoners paid $0.34 – do a call-in and talk to prisoners who staff phone lines – do it nationally, on same day – do inter-occupy conference call two weeks later – what do you (prisoners) want us to do? Do you do mic check at prison? Etc. Will OD take this initiative on? Help Diara bottom line it?
– Is this just Michigan or other states – but should be resisted everywhere – use of prison labor in private prisons. Noted that prisoner’s families charged $3 /minute to call prisoners — Judi. Jasahn noted that people on outside are exploited because work is moved to prisons at sub standard wages. Ask prisoners what are the issues? And e-mails are $0/.50 cents – another ripoff. Jim noted we are using prisoners as profit centers – end private prisons. Joe noted prisoners should be paid minimum wage. Petty criminals do less damage to society – we should bring attention to white collar crime – Judi.
Prisoners may not be able to talk openly – Jasahn. Prisoners rights group? – Don. Contact such groups? – Jennifer
W. Chicago betw. Appoline & Steel – Next Saturday – 8:30PM – June 16 – Slumber Party GA – work collectively on entertainment to fill time — Rakiba
Can we put maps up to this? — Judi– It will be posted on OD General Assembly Discussion Group face book page by Caroline A says Rakiba – Jeremy said he would update pages.
Will this replace the standard GA? Yes this will replace the Saturday NOON GA for June 16th ONLY.
Makes it difficult to find everyone? Not helping people who try to find meetings on line. – Patrick. All you have to is post question on Occupy Detroit General Assembly Discussion Group. If every GA is in same place, not enough attendance – we need outreach, if community reaches out and invites – can’t just be same group of white people all the time – Rakiba We’re gonna try to put on the OD website right at the top – Pat. Point is valid. Not everyone has internet access; Outreach group has phone numbers – Jennifer.
Jasahn thinks we should do it later. How about 8:30PM? How about Sunday to respect religious practices? – Jennifer
Alternative – could we get slam poets, entertainment, etc? — Jeremy
No stand asides, no blocks
Consensus – Proposal passed.
Point of information: no more Tuesday GA’s – consensed on in the park GA last Tuesday.
Proposal #4 –
Joe McGuire – Get money for direct action – appraisers, signs, bail fund – earmark, not spend, some money now – keep it aside for reimbursing expenses, and for emergencies — $2500 — Shortfall of Summer fest proceeds will be used for firealarm kids.
Can we earmark AFLCIO donations, other donations? –Pat Donator can note on check which working group money should go to. – Joe
Jennifer suggested use 30% — Jennifer Keep it simple, stick with $2000. – Joe Only way to get people out jail is to have the money on hand – Mark. Make it $2500 earmark to embolden committee to go hard – Jasahn.
Supports proposal, nervous about upping it. Report back on spending. – Hans It will be accounted for – Pat, Joe.
Will this be only for OD people? How to define who gets bailed out? – Jennifer We are thinking OD exclusively – we will come back if different. – Joe
Could we document the plan – Jennifer Yes – Joe.
Proposal for Buck dinner specified use of money. Need to adhere to their expectations. – Diara We will account, but we are not obligated to use it for specific purposes. – Hans. Could money be used for firealarm kid? Next June 23 Summerfest will raise money for that – Hans. Joe supports using $500 for firealarm kid, but can’t bottom line it. Joe & Hans will figure out how to get the money to the kid. Shortfall of Summer fest proceeds will be used for firealarm kids. What if people “go off the reservation”? We will probably cover it, open to vote if big money. – Joe.
Joe accepts a friendly amendment: whatever money of the $500 is not raised for the fire alarm kid from the June 23rd event, Direct Action will cover the rest of the $500.
$2,000 earmarked for direct action committee, plus up to $500 more (for a total of $2,500) for whatever is not raised of the Western high school student’s $500 ticket out of the June 23rd event.
Proposal from Erik Shelley: hold the GA scheduled for noon, Saturday 6/30 at the “White House”: 142 W. Goldengate ( part of the Goldengate Restoration Project)
In the interests of time and other events coming up today, Jen proposes we adjourn the meeting rather than have the extended small group breakout discussion.