Minutes - 23rd September 2013

Bank Account: The treasurer sent apologies but all signatories have either sent or are sending the necessary paperwork to the bank.

Trades Council: Rebecca will follow up the CWU motion for the Trades Council to support the People's Assembly - Note from AS: Leeds TUC met on 25/9/13 and passed a motion supporting the West Yorks People's Assembly, pledging £50 donation.

Sub Groups The first meeting for a Calderdale People's Assembly took place on Thursday. Details on the website

Leafleting

  • Rebecca, Steve, Iain and others have been leafleting for the NHS demo at the Uni freshers fair
  • Mark has been leafleting to the medical students
  • Rebecca and Mark were present and said they received a good response
  • About 2,500-3,000 of the 5,000 leaflets have been distributed in total
  • The remaining leaflets need distributing - these can be collected from the Leeds Unison office

Transport to Manchester: Unison are still accepting coach bookings but are urging people to book quickly

Venue for 9 November

  • The Council Chambers were not certain to be available so it was agreed to book the Swarthmore Centre
  • Dick will contact Swarthmore and ask for the large room, the cafe and 4 meeting rooms - with disabled access

Speakers for 9 November

  • Debbie contacted Unite. Len McCluskey unavailable due to a clash of dates. However, Brian conveyed that Gail Cartmail (Assistant General Secretary of Unite) said if we can confirm a date, she will put it in her diary as a priority appointment. Everyone agreed that Gail would be a good speaker to have.
  • Elizabeth has phoned The Guardian and asked if a journalist such as Tim Dowling, Lucy Mangan, Zoe Williams or Suzanne Moore could speak.
  • Andy will email head office and see if Mark Steel or another 'name' speaker is available.
  • Andy will email Salma Yaqoob to ask her to speak.

Format for 9 November: The following format was agreed:

  • opening speeches
  • morning workshops - 4
  • break
  • afternoon workshops - 4
  • closing speeches

Workshops for 9 November

  • The group was in agreement that the workshops should focus more on coordinating action than listening to speeches about particular campaigns
  • Workshops should be broadly themed, be led by a facilitator, contain contributions from many sources and focus on local issues
  • The agreed workshops are as follows:
    • Environment
      e.g. Fracking in Yorkshire
    • Employment
      e.g. Trade unions, employment rights, zero hours contracts, blacklisting
    • Public Services
      e.g. Privatisation, NHS, Royal Mail, education (NCAFC)
    • Activism
      e.g. Community action, media, tactics, right to protest, civil liberties, countering propaganda
    • Welfare & Living Standards
      e.g. ATOS, bedroom tax (HOOH), Fuel Poverty Action, disability (DPAC), mental health
    • Economic Alternatives to Austerity
      e.g. Climate jobs, Unison Alternative Budget
    • Racism / Fascism
      e.g. UAF, EDL, community, refugees (PAFRAS)
    • People's Assembly
      It's direction and future
  • This week everyone should get in touch with their contacts and invite them to participate in the appropriate workshop. Making clear that this is about bringing their experience to the workshop rather than giving a speech

Following up from 9 November

  • As several workshops will happen simultaneously, the workshops will need to be captured somehow so those not in a workshop can find out what happened - film, audio recording, note takers are possibilities
  • We should produce a newsletter summarising what happened

Ideas for 5 November

  • Parading a giant guy around Leeds - Jeremy Hunt was mentioned
  • Something outside NHS headquarters at Quarry Hill before work
  • Evening bonfire social event with a guy

Other events

  • 25th Sept - Firefighters strike 12-4
  • 28th Sept - Andy will contact BPCAC to see if they want to arrange joint leafleting in Bradford this Saturday for NHS demo on Sunday
  • 28th Sept - Zero Hour protest outside Sports Direct, Leeds at 12 noon
  • 29th Sept - students going to the NHS demo are assembling on the Parkinson Steps at 8am to march to the Playhouse for 8:45
  • 1st Oct - Teachers strike
  • 2nd Oct - Public meeting about Fracking, Leeds Uni Business School, 6pm
  • 12th Oct - anti EDL in Bradford (Hope not Hate are marching in Bradford the previous weekend)
  • 12th Oct - next Justice for Sanaz demo at Leeds Uni 1-3pm
  • More details of events here: http://wnypeoplesassembly.org.uk/other-events.htm

Financing

  • Around £400 has been raised so far
  • However, with venue and speaker travel costs, we will need to appeal for funds soon
  • Helen mentioned a site where you can upload your own designs and use them to create products. There's no cost to us. When people make a purchase, the item is printed to order, sent directly to the customer and we get a cut of the sale. See here: http://wnypeoplesassembly.spreadshirt.co.uk/
  • If the group agrees this is a good idea, we can publicise this link on Facebook, Twitter and the website