Melbourne’s 15th General Assembly – Minutes

Sunday 6 November 2011, Treasury Gardens

 Working group report-backs:


  • Our ‘Evict Robert Doyle’ action is on Thursday 17 November 2011, meet at City Square at 12.30pm
  • We’re also planning a project where people can come and put their handprint and write something they’ve gained from being part of Occupy Melbourne (OM)

Union & Community Outreach

  • Let’s remember the unity and achievements of OM – we’re still here!
  • The Laverton poultry workers’ strike continues


  • We met today and are planning to start actively promoting education, for example by creating Q&A cards to distribute with images and text
  • The Melbourne Free University talk and discussion on Free Education at Treasury Gardens today was well attended
  • Next meeting: Tuesday 4pm, Treasury Gardens


  • We met today and will start covering and broadcasting General Assemblies (GAs) from tomorrow. There may be a few glitches as we get it going.
  • Next meting: after tomorrow’s GA


  • We met on Thursday night and delegated a smaller group to work on the Declaration draft then bring it back to the whole group
  • Next meeting: Tuesday night, time and place to be confirmed


  • Rain is predicted so we’re organising waterproof sleeping for tonight

Overnight occupiers

  • This is a new working group. First meeting: tonight after the GA


  • This working group keeps a lookout for people occupying overnight. Insomniacs please come and join us!

First Aid

  • Thanks to Nightwatch for looking out and helping us keep each other safe
  • We invite people with ‘wellbeing’ skills, eg. social work, counselling to join us
  • Next meeting: 6pm today


  • We have clarified our structure. We have two parts: (1) legal observers and (2) legal supports. (However, remember everyone is a legal observer: everyone witnesses things and many people have cameras.)
  • We’re planning a workshop for Thursday, time and place to be confirmed
  • We’re still taking statements from people who were injured or lost property on eviction day, please contact us at occupymelbournelegal@riseup.net or 0434 126 515
  • On Friday night, we sent a letter to Victoria Police and Robert Doyle asking them not to enforce the Council’s Notice to Comply over the weekend. Victoria Police responded that they wouldn’t over the weekend. Tomorrow we’re proposing to issue an injunction to stop Melbourne City Council using local bylaws to prevent certain activities through Fitzroy Legal Service. An application for a permit for Occupy Melbourne to be at Treasury Gardens has also been lodged.
  • The bylaw about not having signs in Treasury Gardens is very broad so it’s difficult to provide advice, but for now to avoid breaching it, try to keep signs on you as much as possible as people have been doing.
  • It’s positive that we have a strategy to care for the land.

Proposals from working groups:

 The Facilitation Working Group proposed:

  • That General Assemblies be held just two days per week: Wednesday 6pm at City Square and Saturday 4pm at Treasury Gardens (or wherever the occupation is).
  • That Emergency/Special Assemblies relating to specific issues can be called as matter of urgency on other days


Note that the Overnight Occupiers Working Group will meet every evening at Treasury Gardens. The People’s Soapbox can also continue every night: it just requires people who want to do it to come and set it up.

There was also a recommendation that delegates from all the working groups meet daily to share information and liaise.

The Indigenous Working Group  proposed that those who want to start erecting structures and tents. The GA was split on this so we got into small groups to discuss and report back. After discussion and clarifications, the following proposals were passed:

  • That we do not start erecting structures and tents tonight.
  • That we look to setting up structures and tents again in the future.

A proposal was put to call a Special Assembly on Monday night to continue the conversation once we have more information from the Legal Working Group, however this was not passed.

Next General Assembly: Wednesday 7 November, 6pm at City Square

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