36th General Assembly

Welcome and acknowledgements. We meet on aboriginal land, and sovereignty has never been ceded.

Invite to the public to join our process.

Explanation of consensus building process.

Proposed Agenda:

–       Working Group Report Backs

–       Working Group Proposals

–       Individual Proposals

–       Announcements

Proposed agenda passed.

Working Group Report Backs:

First Aid & Care: Chay

With recent decentralization, First Aid asks that they be advised of any autonomous direct actions being organized so they can try arrange cover. First Aid and Care Bears will be available at Occupy Fridays.

Over the next couple of Occupy Fridays, there will be therapeutic workshops on varying subjects. Check Calendar for details.

The Melbourne Aikido Dojo has created a workshop especially for OM. “The Peaceful Warrior” will be held Saturday 4 February, 3 – 5pm. Check Calendar for RSVP details.

Info Desk: Scott

Procedural motion passed to use the People’s Mic for the rest of the GA.

Still need more people to assist with Info Desk on Occupy Fridays. Ideally would like to arrange a roster of 4 people ‘on shift’ for 2 hours each, and rotate.

Info Desk Workshop will be held 1pm on Occupy Friday at City Square. This will include a People’s Mic workshop.

Suggested to bring a small piece of paper with the reason why you occupy written on it. This will remind you why you are here, and enable you to engage the public more concisely and confidently.

Irene’s Warehouse: Kat

Warehouse is being set up for OM use. Suggested that utilization of the space should be spread by word of mouth only – if you think someone could make positive use of the space, you bring them along yourself. Kat can arrange a time to give an orientation ‘tour’ and help discuss how best to use the space.

Requested that we treat the space with respect, as if it were our own home.  Keys will be held by Kat, Jase/Cobina, and Nick.

Planning an informal dinner to welcome people to the space and discuss how we can best make use of it. Details will be advised shortly.

Education: Maryanne

Organizing workshop to present at Rainbow Serpent about the Occupy movement.

Will be making submission at Education Conference regarding consensus building workshops at secondary schools.

Arranging film screenings for Occupy Fridays.

Working Group Meetings held Thursday and Saturdays. Check Calendar for times.

Occupy Friday: Jase C

#3 is going to be awesome. Many workshops and meetings arranged during the day, check Facebook / Calendar for Agenda.

International hacktivist Jacob Applebaum will be guest speaker.

Encouraged all to come and contribute.

Overnight @ City Square: Indy

6 people stayed overnight at City Square on a Wednesday with no problems. Encouraged people to not be scared and to carry out their own actions.

Point of Information from Kevin – Suggests not overnight occupying on Friday or Saturdays, as weekend occupiers have been attacked previously. Ensure safety in numbers.

Indigenous: Michael

Invation / Survival / Australia Day is 26January. It is the 40th anniversary of the Canberra tent embassy. Michael Anderson was 1 of 4 people who started the tent embassy in 1972, and is quoted in the paper as expecting support from OMEL and OSYD.

Vivian Moore is organizing a bus to transport OM to Canberra. Needs 16 people. Approximate cost $140 per person (compared to $180 to take the train). Leave 25 Jan, return approx 30 Jan. Contact Vivienne for RSVP.

Kitchen: Jasmine

Please bring refillable water bottles to OccupyFri, Kitchen has organized a water dispenser and snacks during the day, with a light evening meal (all vegetarian).

Callout for people with cars to assist in transporting food, please see Jazz after the GA.

Huge thankyou to Connie for all her hard work, for supplying sandwiches and constantly supporting the movement.

Permaculture Festival: Diane

Permaculture and Food Empowerment Festival set to occur on 22 January. Location will be publicized closer to the date to minimize interference.

0930 – stall setup

1030 – festival opens

2100 – festival closes

Need any and all support you can think of. Please visit website at http://permaculturefoodempowermentfest.weebly.com/ for more information, or contact Diane Hunt on Facebook.

Can not run this festival on volunteer power alone. Monetary contributions are most welcome and needed, and can be given through the website or directly to Diane.

Working Group Report Backs: 

Occupy Friday: Scott

Proposal: That the official time of Occupy Friday changes from 12pm – 12am, to 10am to 10pm.

This is due to safety concerns with inebriated individuals in the city after 10pm, and also a decrease in ability to engage the public in a constructive manner as fewer people are in the city late at night.

Clarifications and Points of Information discussed.

Concerns with safety later in the night, as first aid presence would be minimal (or zero).

Counter points that safety is up to the individual, and if people do not feel safe they can leave, but should not hinder those who feel comfortable enough to stay.

Vote taken.

Consensus not achieved. Speakers for / against.

Against: Feels constricted by time limit. Why not do both (start at 10pm, but stay until 12am).

For: Feels the ‘official’ time being 10am – 10pm does not restrict individuals staying after this time at their own risk.

Against: Suggested to start at 10am, finish at 12am, but leave when your common sense tells you. Also concerned with diminished numbers as night continues means we can not man info desk sufficiently.

For: Feels that after 10pm we are not able to get our message across to public as many of them are inebriated or not interested in our message. Concerned with possibility of OM becoming caught up in violent altercations (not of our own fault) which will reflect poorly on the movement.

Amendment: To start Occupy Friday at 10am, and at 10pm start packing down and removing items such as PA equipment, info desk, but with people remaining until 12am.

Procedural motion passed to adopt this as the proposal.

Amendment: As per previous, however to take down all OM related signs / banners / items at 10pm.

Procedural motion not passed, amendment not accepted.

Amendment: As per previous, however incorporating radical self-reliance after 10pm, with individuals free to remain at own risk. Communal OM property will be removed at 10pm and coordinated by Logistics Work Group, with individuals free to bring / make their own OM signs.

Procedural motion passed to adopt this as the proposal.

Amended Proposal: That the official time of Occupy Friday will be 10am until 10pm, with individuals free to remain until 12am at own risk.  Communal OM property will be removed at 10pm and coordinated by Logistics Work Group, with individuals free to bring / make their own OM signs.

Vote taken. Consensus achieved.

Kitchen: Moustafa

Proposal: That the Kitchen Working Group takes control and responsibility of all donations to the Kitchen. Moustafa would be personally responsible for the book keeping of the Working Group, with any discrepancies replaced out of Moustafa’s own pocket. All balance sheets would be available for review by any in the community. Excess funds not required by Kitchen could be applied for use by other Work Group’s through the GA.

Clarifications and Points of Information discussed.

Concerns regarding having one person responsible for donations on behalf of work group. Prior difficulties in Kitchen Work Group referenced.

Counter point that personal differences were not relevant to GA discussion, or to the Work Group internal functioning.

Additional concerns that members of Working Group may change leaving others responsible for reconciliation of moneys.

Vote taken. Consensus not achieved.

Restated Proposal: That the Kitchen Working group take collective control and responsibility for all donations to the Kitchen, as an interim measure until a more reliable / transparent / secure method of managing donations is achieved (e.g. online donation system).

Vote taken. Consensus achieved.

Procedural motion: Time Check. Motion to continue GA until 8.30 passed.

Commonwealth of OM Working Groups: (Kirrily)

Brief explanation of newly formed Work Group – to create processes / structures to ensure the transparency, security and reliability of resourcing across all Working Groups within the movement. Meeting will be held 2.30pm at Occupy Friday.

Proposal: To open the donation box and count all the money immediately, in front of the GA.

Vote taken. Consensus achieved.

Procedural motion passed to continue GA while several members counted money to ensure time check was maintained, with counting occurring at the front of the GA crowd and reported back to GA once complete.

Result of donation box count:

Education: $237.50                    Kitchen: $166.45

First Aid / Care: $68.90              Direct Action: $13.60

Internet: $2.75                           Legal: $22.20

Sustainability: $57.20                 Logistics: $24.20

Proposal: That at every GA, there is a report back about the amount of money any of us currently are holding on behalf of Occupy Melbourne.

Vote taken. Consensus achieved.

Proposal: That we ask collectively that any person who is aware of any information regarding any records pertaining to OM donations or the donation box, please declare them now.

Vote taken. Consensus achieved.

Many people indicated knowledge of a black “accounts book” seen at Father Bob’s, though were unsure of its whereabouts or if it is still in circulation or being kept anywhere.

It was suggested that the book was packed away with other papers / documents and may be in Kev’s car. This could not be confirmed at the GA.

Proposal: That as there is no concrete evidence or knowledge of the accounts book’s whereabouts, that any records or expenses dating prior to this GA be declared null and void, and that ongoing donations past this point be consolidated into a single resource pool.

Clarifications and Points of Information taken.

Concerns regarding pooling all money into one pool instead of splitting into Work Groups.

Vote taken. Consensus not achieved. Proposal tabled until Saturday’s GA, with the proviso that the accounts book should be produced by this time.

Proposal: That until Saturday’s GA, we collectively elect one person to hold the current counted donation box money in trust, to be bought back to Saturday’s GA to continue resource pooling discussion.

Clarifications and Points of Information taken.

Concerns regarding any donations that may be received in the interim, especially considering call out for donations for Permaculture Festival.

Suggested that autonomous actions be excepted from this proposal. Concerns raised then about the transparency of receipt – it would then be counterproductive to hold the current balance of the donation box in trust.

Vote taken. Consensus not achieved.

Procedural motion: Time Check. Agreed to table further discussion until Saturday’s GA.


Meeting of the Commonwealth of OM Work Group to be held at Occupy Friday at 2.30pm.

Testing of equipment for movie night tonight, all are welcome to stay. Occupy Friday there will be another movie night approximately 8.30pm, all are welcome, potential for staying overnight.

Permaculture festival needs volunteers and donations. Please review wishlist on the festival website and contribute if you can.

Currently there is a hunger strike being held at Broadmeadows Refugee Detention Centre, they are currently 8 days in. They are living in inhumane conditions. There is a candlelight vigil tonight outside the centre, with more action to be planned. Please visit and get involved if you can.

Jase Emgee has new code to the donations box.

General Assembly closed at 8.48pm.


Tabled Proposals to be presented at next GA:

Jase Emgee: That we use current balance in donations box to invest in a secure safe.

Kat: That we extend the speaking time limit at GA’s to increase from the current 2 minute time limit.


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