GA Minutes 3/10/12 Hartford Public Library
- What constitutes an emergency? OccupyNewHaven may be removed. City gave a proposal to leave in a month and come back for a week at a time to protest a specific issue. Previously the city of New Haven proposed moving to another park. The Homeless on site is interested in this idea. Activists prefer standing their ground.They are requesting solidarity with OccupyHartford and may need assistance if they are forced to move with no or little notice. The site has much more “stuff”, from tents to their things. Please pay attention and if it goes down please volunteer your time if possible.
- Jonathan Budd from Trinity College will bring three students to the Monday Gathering, who is working on a school project about the Occupy movement.
- Kingswood Oxford workers struggle. Tomorrow at 6:00pm there will be a fund raiser pot luck dinner at the Unity Church located at 50 Bloomfield Ave in Hartford.
- There have been weekly protests at the school each Thursday. KOS is also replacing ServiceMaster with a new sub-contractor, but is not rehiring the fired employees. Workers and supporter are demanded that the new sub-contractor be a union one and rehire the former workers of be hired directly by the school.
- Minimum wage bill is currently gaining steam at the State House. The new one is watered down from original proposal but would raise the minimum wage by $1 to $9.25.
- Transitions town. Is community building for when a community runs out of fossil fuels. A film will be shown at the Monday gathering at on 3/26 illustrating what is happening in England about this issue.
- Monday night, 3/12, is the next open mic night for musicians and singers at Kaballah House.
- There is a new local newsletter from Hartford resident Joanna Ivoino called The Hart Monitor. It discusses race relations in Hartford. It can be found here http://thehartmonitor.com/
- There is a big United National Antiwar Coalition will be occurring in Stamford, CT the weekend of 3/23-25/2012 It will feature many distinguished speakers and more info can be found here.
- There is grant money available if you would like to attend. Please speak with Dan Piper or ask when you register.
- There is a new web site on facebook called OccupyNew England. This came out of the Pfizer action last month where many other occupiers from various cities and towns, Hartford, Willimantic, Worcester, Boston, New Hampshire, networked and decided it would be beneficial to share resources and information. If you are on FB please like them.
- Alice shared that the Existent group in New Haven wants support form OccupyHartford. They want a new location in New Haven and are meeting with City officials this weekend.
- Johnny created some ideas from where to go from here. This included more specifics actions. Focusing on labor, debts, health, war, education, forgiveness of student loan debt. It is just getting started so he will have more details moving forward.
- This Thursday is the court date for the 8 who were arrested at Pfizer in Groton on 2/29. They will be in New London Superior Court on Wednesday 3/14. If you can come for support they would appreciate it. They are charged with criminal trespassing for their acts of civil disobedience against ALEC.
Working committee structure. This came out of Occupythefuture meetings. This would be an internal working group/Being tabled
Occupy caravan is a group traveling from Los Angeles to Washington D.C between April 2th to the 9th. They would like an endorsement from Occupy Hartford. /Passed
More info can be found here http://interoccupy.org/occupy-caravan/
Proposal to create a working group in April to focus on the foreclosure crisis and unemployment benefits in Connecticut. /Passed
Group will have Dan, JoAnne, Rebecca, Debra and Ted.
Check out OccupyOurHomes who are already having great success out west.
Amending human suffering platform item #5/Passed
New language “We are for adequately funded, compassionate, empowering, culturally and situationally appropriate rehabilitation and outreach services for victims of human suffering, such as human trafficking, homelessness, sexual exploitation, prostitution, drug addiction, domestic violence, and child abuse.”
National call to action for support and awareness around the new health care law and exploring the non-profit health care option. This would include education and advocacy. A working group will be created to explore this subject.
OccupyNewEngland seeks official endorsement/membership from OccupyHartford. /Passed
Discussions before and after the meeting.
Diane, Rudi and Debra shared their positive experiences from the protest of Justice Scalia’s appearance in Middletown earlier in the week at Wesleyan University. Many students partook in protest. Several students dressing in Gitmo prison orange jump suits silently stood up when Justice Scalia appeared on stage. Hundreds other spontaneously joined in on chants being sung by the occupiers outside the event. There was excellent press coverage as well.
The Pfizer action on 2/29/2012 also garnered very good media coverage and helped get the word out on ALEC. See some of their dirty work in state legislatures can be found here.
We also discussed the signing into law of H.R. 347, it passed both Houses of Congress in less than a week and the President signed it into law on Thursday. Some call this the anti-occupy bill. It can do that so please take a moment to read this.
There were 18-19 people so the turnout was very good with many new faces and many familiar ones. It is clear we have to do some rebuilding and get the momentum going again. We all understand that everyone has various levels of commitment due to family, life, job, etc but all it takes is a little effort by many to build on the successes of last fall. We are open to ideas and suggestions so please take some time to think about that. We have to be ready for the spring folks.
Finally a big kudos to both Jay and Rebecca for their endless efforts as being Admins for both the fb pages and the http://occupyhartfordct.com/ site. Your work and dedication are greatly appreciated.