Occupy Melbourne 17th General Assembly – Minutes
Treasury Gardens, 12 November 2011

Acknowledgement of country

The Indigenous working group is offered passports, available at the ‘Aboriginal customs house’ (embassy) at Treasury Gardens. They are a legal basis and justification for this Occupation as sovereignty has never been ceded.
The Moderators read out the following possible revised GA agenda to prioritise the discussion about structures, as had been requested.

  1. Working group report-backs relevant to structures
  2. Working group proposals relevant to structures
  3. Individual proposals relevant to structures
  4. Other working group report backs
  5. Other working group proposals
  6. Other individual proposals
  7. Announcements

Then Soap Box

Approval sought from the GA via two thirds majority vote: passed.

Working group report-backs relevant to structures


  • The Robert Doyle eviction action went well
  • People are taking up passports


Direct Action

  • We met this morning and believe non-violent civil disobedience is a legitimate action, however we do not have a recommendation about whether we should or should not have structures at Treasury Gardens.



  • Goals of the legal action against Melbourne City Council:

–       Long-term: to have the court rule that the notices given to OM are invalid & help set precedent that occupations (like OM) are a legitimate form of political communication and should be allowed to take place with structures.

–       Short-term: to have an interim injunction allowing OM to put up structures while the legal proceedings are underway.

  • The interim injunction was not granted by the court on the hearing on 11 Nov, however the judge did take the matter seriously and it is being treated as urgent. The case is likely to be decided within a day with the hearing likely to take place not next week but the week after.

Police liaison

  • People from the Council arrived earlier and said they would give the Indigenous embassy a notice to comply by 4.30pm
  • The indigenous working group have decided to not to take it down

Straw poll show of support: positive


  • We have had a structureless camp and would have wanted structures not to be put up without it being passed by the GA. We were asked to create a layout for the site and we have found that difficult to put into action with people putting up structures today.

At this point, police and Council officers arrived and tried to take down the Indigenous embassy by force. A 10 min break proposed by facilitators, approved. The Council issued a notice to comply to take down the structures.

GA resumed. Took speakers on what had just happened.

Individual proposal: That the Moderators do not moderate any more. The Co-ordinator took the mic and asked for a vote. There was little support for the proposal so the Moderators resumed.

Individual proposal: That Occupy Melbourne defends the Indigenous embassy, by linking arms around it, if police try to take It down.

Passed: over 90%

Individual proposal:  That Occupy Melbourne puts up structures at Treasury Gardens

Had speakers, broke into small groups, reported back, had more speakers.

Took shows of hands as to how many people would be staying that night.

Clarification that we are talking about what we do as Occupy Melbourne.

Passed: over 90%

Individual proposal:  That we put up the structures/tents around the Indigenous embassy

Passed: over 90%

Individual proposal: That we set up four amenities tents in addition to the Indigenous embassy: information, kitchen, first aid and a communal sleeping tent, and cover tents with political things/signs/flags. Personal sleeping tents are people’s individual risk.
Passed: over 90%

Individual proposal: That we start a fund to replace people’s tents if they’re confiscated or destroyed by police.

Deferred to a future meeting.

Announcements and WG report-backs

First-Aid working group
– Look after each other!

Education working group
– A fact sheet (about asylum seekers?) has been prepared, feedback welcome
– Plans to prepare a questionnaire about OM & then hit the streets & ask people the questions! Will help give some idea what people are thinking about OM.

Media working group
– Federal Court hearing did not get as much publicity as wanted but did still get some coverage.
– Social media – we’re getting better at this.

Direct Action working group

– A ‘backward march’ happening tomorrow at 1pm in response to Ted Baillieu’s Government’s environmental policies. The march will finish at Treasury Gardens.

Overnight Occupiers working group
– Come & join!


– Workshop on non-violent resistant @ 2pm tomorrow (Sun 13 Nov) @ Treasury Gardens


One comment

  1. This makes no sense whatsoever….just a hint, it is usual that when taking minutes of a meeting, you usually record the discussion first and then go back and write it…you don’t write it as the discussion happens..

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