General Assembly Minutes Nov. 29th

Facilitator: Jenika

  • meet and greet
  • overview of procedures (hand out)


Process overview



  • reimbursing expenses
  • 165$ current stat, more info on Saturday.
  • Low finances
  • OWS will match/refund funds upon personal contribution
  • Wepay account still inaccessible.
  • Notebook seized by police
  • Keep in mind when proposing actions that finances are mega low!
  • We hope to be as independent as poss from the OWS funds.
  • Q: ppl still re-imbursed, but keep in mind there is low dollah! Concern about winter blankets/sleeping bags
  • Q: Electricity money?
    Issues with Mandel
    Ppl on city council willing to give back $
    (PROP: everyone stand when speaking)
    – talk about amplifying voices


  • mic check on LRT
  • good reception (public)
  • daily routine, targeting rush hour 4/5 pm.
  • Potluck: weekly potluck + movie screening @downtown library

Sound + Music

  • PROP: 600-1000$ throwing fundraising concert
    • 2-3 weeks: occupy yule-tide party
    • venues- artery, bohemia (size and cost questionable)
    • wants interested ppl to join in conversation/planning
    • Need: volunteers, decorating, door, floaters, postering, radio ad, kitchen, communications, graphic design,
    • Inviting local talent to get involved, ppl involved with oc.ed can show talent

(update: raised $70 from table fundraising during GA by passing a hat around)


  • Bill and Nigel picked up lots of stuff from police. Its at the greenpeace warehouse- volunteers needed to clear out the warehouse, salvage and recycle accordingly.
  • Ppl need to pick up their own tents
  • Sunday: truck available, need LOTS of ppl to help out.
  • 10407 64th avenue 1pm Sunday, 4th.
  • Group ride available? 1 car offered, will be sorted out over emails/fb
  • $3000 tent was damaged, the flaps were cut, not untied.
  • Industrial sewing machine? Possible to repair
  • Post to fb group to sort out rideshares for Sunday
  • Thursday: greenpeace warehouse (?? Anna)


  • wg for newspaper no longer needed

Human rights commission

  • Jack-jack: complaint in process for two years: On Monday—occupy lobby of ex-employer.
  • Organization: OSP, across from park on north end of high level
  • Q: put the occupy movement behind ppl who are being screwed over by over-arching systems.
    Occupy squats: get behind ppl for support

Homeless initiative

  • After last GA, wg met up: actions being planned, ppl homeless because of their involvement with occupy.
  • Ppl on AISH— missing meetings because of involvement
  • Writing letters to agencies who deal with homeless related issues
  • More help needed in this initiative
    • Q: what does help entail?
      - writing letters to agencies (homeless initiative) to urge them to help those who were homeless and having meetings with them.

March update?

  • The march and rally : 80 ppl showed up to do the rally, gave speeches, banner drop (CBC coverage online, metro paper), march towards u of a, led onto the bridge proper, not the lanes, consensus made that it was the best decision. Mic check on far end of bridge, first GA held at U of A
  • Mic check at police hq, all on tape- available online.

‘occupy co-op’

  • amy and marty bottom lining

Q: new member at GA, following the movement…. Concerned that ppl are losing interest, the talk is dying off, proposal on how to bring back the hype?

-discussion on this topic

- online discussions: fb, twitter, etc

off topic, Jenika tries to reel it in!

  • more discussion

Q: show respect for new comers and their in-put. Explanation that things off agenda items aren’t fully discussed… ways of getting things on agenda.

Email communication

  • Email overload is overwhelming
  • PROP: email postings go to appropriate group-serves, not used as chat-room, forum on the website needs to be used, NOT google groups.
  • Other ways of communicating off of email (ie: camper group)— wondering if the camper group should stay online or off
  • PROP: mic checks everyday at 4:30, central LRT: re-camping ppl can meet at the same time to discuss. (info going on fb)
  • Carolyn: need as many edmo’s as possible!
    -Need a GA that WELCOMES ppl who’ve had no previous involvement
    -Media release: it’s not a movement of leaders, but of bottom liners
    - Individual commitment, accountability- a forum for others to get involved
    - ex: sign on windows
    - wants a starter GA specifically for B-L’rs to get this structure in place.
    - Space to hold this GA?
    - one before x-mas, next one in the new year
    - (PROP to have banner making sesh to raise funds for movement. Signs for windows of supporters)
    - GA @ wem. (use mic check? Could also draw more ppl in) (sound stage @hmv- could be a good location- may have to book the stage, but should be free)
    - against mall because: centralize at uni’s- convenient for students who we want on board, great ideas from students.
    - GA: alternate between uni’s
    - PROP: steady time/space for GA, too much changing can make it difficult to get ppl to come all the time.
    - Grant mac students can book auditoriums for GA’s
    - carolyn available over email for future discussion
    - Q: are we talking about one GA or multiple?
  • Time to wrap up conversation
  • WEM: ppl busy consuming—better place for an action, not a discussion.


  • break?
  • Time limit on discussions? Yes. 5 minutes per proposal.

PROP: derbin climate agreements upcoming- Canada threatening to block them. Day of action based on this- Saturday or Monday?

  • Monday- enbridge office: funding ppl to block these agreements
  • Saturday- more people available
  • Anna or mike hudema bottom lining
  • Help appreciated
  • Action?- not worked out yet.
  • Q: consensus not needed to design actions- “build it and they will come” mentality
  • Posters are expensive
  • PROP: action committee comes up with action and come back with a full proposal.

Action prop:

  • December 17th, Saturday, 4pm.
  • Adbusters idea
  • 20 santa’s, walk from east side of wem to west side of wem- as a march- have a mic check in main food court.
  • Santa suits are expensive- how can we make cheap costumes?
  • Burning man: santa-con… ask these ppl for costumes, also could do elf costumes.
  • Public attention!

BREAK 20:05



  • camp working group: proposal to give them a deadline to come up with a plan, then propose at GA. Two week deadline.

PROP: spot camps, pop-up camps, write a letter to edmo’s: communicating, starting conversations, offer services for action (what do the ppl want?)

  • set up camp in random places for one night stands, have security for people who are willing to camp.
  • Empower whomever wants to to occupy spaces in the community, randomly.
  • Q: we should try not to attract police/eviction. Concern about tickets, damaged gear etc. PROP: occupy legal spaces where we avoid police

Gordon: notes from edmo’s to other occupy Canada cities between here and Windsor (Winnipeg, London, Windsor). Will be at next GA, indicate on your note which camp you want to address.
- Found teepee pegs left over- wants to symbolically give the pegs to other occupies

  • PROP: pegs should be smudged with sweet grass or sage before being passed on


  • Input on it?
  • Suggestions?
  • Extra resources?
  • Online copy, + printed copies
  • Contact: Jennifer roach
  • Keep camping info on the pamphlet?

Patrick: strategic planning group

  • community values and intentions: incorporate a code of ethics/ codex.
  • Copies passed around to look at
  • Can be looked at again in future GA, give ppl a chance to go over it.
  • Clarifying processes and foster more unity amongst group
  • Friends and neighbours policy + possible commune rules.
  • Prop this to be on the next GA as first point. Doc will go up online.

Occupy news

  • newspaper/pamphlet? Pamphlet is cheaper and more easily made.
  • Media concerns: in-adequate or biased coverage. Generates bad publicity.
  • Sign up for this working group: we don’t need one- as a select group of ppl writing risks losing the voices of the many.
  • Wikipedia: open source, open edit, user generated
  • PROP: Sunday-Friday, open the article so anyone can edit. On Saturday, there is a 24 hr frozen period. Everyone can look over the draft of (all) the articles. Vote on articles that are incomplete/need more work. Articles that are ready can go into final edit and then finalized to go online, printable as ppl see fit, etc.
  • Q: ppl without internet?
  • Q: what does ‘article’ mean?: media responses, explanations of what we are doing, basically- it’s a wiki page.
  • Q: pamphlets available for ppl doing the mic checks in LRT stations, can handbill
  • Q: “you can’t evict an idea”: PR specialists who are experts on evicting ideas. Reading of article: “not that most of the occupiers are worried about libraries and pensions, they don’t read”
  • Q: can’t trust mainstream media- rarely properly represented.
  • Q: occupy chat rooms, proper/more effective methods of communication. PROP: wg to occupy chat rooms.
  • Q: who is bottom lining websites? How to manage trolls?
  • VUE, CJSR… they do respectfully report.
  • US over Canadian law: make your own version of newspaper and distro. Canada does not have supportive laws regarding this.
  • Q: how can we add to media without propaganda-ing?
  • Q: alt media, represent!
  • Move this subject on to working group. Email list going out
  • PROP: always stay anonymous, never give your real or full name.

PROP: more comm. Via letters to the editor.

PROP: discussion happen AFTER GA (via wg)


  • several members experiencing homelessness
  • Amy is bottom lining this
  • Need homes for ppl in rough times

Co-op//commune: homelessness & social work

  • policies
  • homeless intake
  • laundry/washing schedule
  • party rules
  • power/water
  • groceries
  • noise
  • furniture
  • property ownership
  • join wg to add to discussions
  • re-state mo’s point about writing letters to city officials regarding homeless issues
  • need volunteers to liason with social workers etc.
  • “the organice box”-
  • rep couchsurfing.org!

CSA Edmonton- groceries.

Community Greenhouse/garden

Q: occupy movement is not a homeless shelter: it’s not a free ride, ppl should be contributing in some way for the return. In-ability to manage those risks and situations.

New camp: major meeting to hash out everything, issues must be dealt with, concerns with homeless involvement can be precedented.

FB admins/occupy website

Meeting @ 1 on Sunday via skype: organize articles, pages, limit watery info and have solid resources

This wg want to run meeting via skype

Those without skype can be conferenced in

Q: greenpeace warehouse is at same time, can we change the time?

  • 5pm on Sunday?

Solidarity with Calgary

  • last GA: visit from Calgary
  • The camp from yyc needs help with winterization. PROP: can we send items to help them out?
  • What can we send out in the meantime?
  • Q: Someppl going down to Calgary on the weekend to help out—re: tents: we don’t know the state of our own equipment, we don’t know what we have to feasibly offer. We can’t commit to anything until our end is dealt with.
  • POP: do they have ppl able to repair our damaged equip?
  • How would we get the stuff down? Send down on greyhound.
  • How helpful is ‘stuff’?
  • PROP: can we put this decision off until we’ve assessed our material, and visited yyc to see exactly what they need help with and whether we can help them.


  • PROP: next ga should give a full dicussion on re-formatting GA
  • Q: action on the weekend- GA should happen after
  • Thursday @ 6:30 at grant mac cafeteria.

Permanent link to this article: http://occupyedmonton.org/2011/11/general-assembly-minutes-nov-29th/

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