USSF Outreach Committee Meeting Notes – November 4th, 2013
Edgar - Facilitating Spencer – Taking notes
On the call: Edgar, David Cobb, Louis Gordon, Jerome Scott, Spencer Mann, Anna Lee-Popham, Walda Katz-Fishman
Brief report on ongoing outreach efforts
• Jerome - working with Occupy Homes in Atlanta and they have been briefed and brought up to speed on outreach and social forum process and they have been invited to be on the National Planning Committee or at least on the Outreach Committee. They are going through their internal process to decide how they will get involved. • Edgar – Pacific Northwest Social Forum, one of the members from Community to Community have moved into Seattle and they are going to start doing outreach. With their help we can start building a base in multiple areas in the Northwest. Got Green, Entre Hermanos, and El Comite Pro-Reforma Migratoria Y Justicia Social are 3 main groups that are being focused on to invite to come onto the National Planning Committee or get involved in some other role. • Edgar – New groups from the Portland area, Jericho Project and a Media Justice group as well – both groups are interested in getting involved in outreach.
• What we have agreed to do is keep outreach and PMA calls connected so that they will alternate calls every 2 weeks. First Monday of the month will be Outreach and the 3rd Monday of the month will be PMA at 4pm EST.
Tear Down the Walls
• Move to amend did a workshop on the last day and that was followed by a 2 part assembly on what is a PMA, what is the social forum, and how to get involved. Learned a lot about how to use a small amount of time to get the most out of a PMA. • Alliance for Global Justice has been invited to join the National Planning Committee and the indication was that they are going to do that. • SOA Watch, there will be a PMA at the SOA Watch at the end of the November. • 2 people from the Pacific Northwest who are interested in getting involved in the Pacific Northwest Social Forum - Heather Wolford and Tim – new to Portland and does media justice work. David is getting these folks in touch with Edgar and the Pacific Northwest Social Forum team. • Tom from the Sustainable Tucson and Tucson Peace and Justice Center contacted David after the event and was really interested in organizing a PMA in Tucson. David is encouraging Tom to get involved in the PMA phone calls. Several people may join the PMA calls from this effort in addition to Tom. • Pacific Northwest Social forum process is pulling together a series of planning meetings in 2014 – beginning with a first meeting in January • Portland folks and folks from Seattle will be having a meeting in early January to figure out how they can use PMA in local work. • Maybe having someone come in to work with their group on the ground to model the process be able to answer questions, etc… • Monica from the PNWSF process has worked out a draft for a possible PMA
Seventh Generation Fund Conference:
• Respecting the Rights of Mother Earth had the goal of bringing many people together to look at examples of from all around the world of legislative models and how that could be applied in the US. • 80 people attended and 50 on the live stream – average viewing time was just under 1 hour, many viewers from US, some from Canada, and one person from India. Overall the event was successful in terms of raising awareness about rights of mother earth. One theme was in cross-sectoral organizing - there are some old wounds between tribal people and enviro people that can cause some roadblocks. Saw some good forward steps around people working around those barriers. Louise will share a video link when it is ready. • Honour Tax – from Wiyot territory in Humboldt Bay, voluntary taxation or donation system – for individuals, groups, businesses, etc… who wish to acknowledge that they are on lands that have never been ceded. • Event happening at the end of this week at the UC Davis law school – commemorating the Lyng vs Northwestern decision which was a landmark decision against native religious freedoms. The decision set a negative precedent in relation to legal protections of native religions.
New members check-in:
• National Lawyers Guild Housing Committee – with the idea that we can try to help create community land trust – put up money towards community land trusts for billeting while people are visiting in town. • Chicago Anti-Eviction Campaign – people doing foreclosure defense but also take-overs as well. • Peaceful Uprising – trying to find out if Henia Delalia will still be involved in the work or if we should get someone new from the climate justice struggle involved. • Suggest that we identify fronts of struggle on the next call such as indigenous struggle, climate justice struggles, anti-incarceration struggles, etc… With the idea of assigning specific people to work on outreach to these specific fronts.
Facilitator and Note Taker for next meeting:
• Next call would be first Monday in December • Jerome Facilitator, Anna Note-Taker • Next outreach meeting will be opened by a political discussion on Henia’s piece on “professional activism” and the meeting after will be a reading from Louis.