GA Minutes – Thursday, May 31, 2012

(un)Occupy GA – Thursday May 31, 2012
Demetria -facilitator; Lisa Christopherson-note taker
Present: Santhosh, Demetria, Lisa, Hershe, Maria, Amalia, Heron, Cecelia, Ilse, Sean, Henry, John, Summer

Announcements
Ilse – Grad employee get-together 1st week of school (end of Aug 2012); Teach-Ins re: working conditions @ UNM and elsewhere; (un)OCCUPY have a presence?
Amalia – Congrats to Santhosh successful with his comps
Henry – contacted Winter re: 3-day street medic training in July
Hershe – we’re responding to the call from the Lakota people on Pine Ridge to support their June 9 action against the predatory Whiteclay liquor merchants/beer companies who are making a killing off of native people. Deep Green Resistance CO/Great Plains are helping organize the solidarity call. We have one car going up from ABQ; there is a need for fans & air conditioners to bring to the elders. Interested in more info: deepgreenresistance.org
Ilse has two fans to donate
Santhosh will post DGR website on Facebook (http://deepgreenresistance.org/)

Working Group Reports
August 6 Action Working Group
We had a great mtg. last Sunday and will be mtg. again Saturday, June 2 @ 1:00pm in Los Alamos. Contact Hershe (hershe310@gmail.com) if you need carpool info. Contact Ilse (biel@cybermesa.com) for the address of the mtg.
Amalia will contact Peter re: contacting James Anaya
Hershe will send out an Aug. 6 “Save the Date” email announcement
Suggested Idea: Have a “Welcome” or “Convergence Center” for people coming in from out of town

Medicine for the People Working Group
July 14; free health fair; Teach-In about health and safety

Convergence Working Group
Henry needs people to join his working grp; Convergence Grp is in charge of logistics, networking, support for grps leaving ABQ going to events out of town or state

Discussion Items
Occupy Caravan – in Albuquerque Thursday, June 14 enroute to Philly
Carment is talking it up in Sfe so we can work together to get a statewide convergence to meet them. What issues in NM need to be highlighted by national movement?
1. Los Alamos
2. Law firm supporting Bank of America, Wells Fargo foreclosures
3. Police brutality in ABQ
4. Immigration
5. Indigenous people/land
CONCERNS: The theme for the Occupy Caravan is, “This land is our land.” With NM issues re: indigenous people, will our message get lost? T-shirt “This Land is Native Land.”
Where to have caravan meet?
1. Roosevelt Park
2. Peace and Justice Center
Maria will contact Homes Underwater
CONSENSUS: An (un)OccupyABQ Caravan Working Group will take the lead on organizing a June 14 event. Magnet: Summer; Members: Ilse, Demetria, Celecia, John and Hershe.

Occupy National Gathering - Philadelphia, June 30- July 4
We are trying to raise $900 to send two people from (un)OccupyABQ – we have raised $49 thus far. Perhaps we could organize a fundraiser. We need to purchase the tickets asap – perhaps someone(s) would be able to front the money to be paid back once the money is raised.
Maria and Gina could sell silk-screened t-shirts as a fundraiser
CONSENSUS: Send Amalia and Maria to Nat’l Gathering

Endorsement for National Gathering

CONCERNS: National Occupy movement priorities are not necessarily (un)OccupyABQ priorities; NM issues be lost on national stage; how to get NM issues on national stage?
Summer and Santhosh will work on a brief statement to accompany our “endorsement” of the gathering – “from the perspective of decolonization, we support you…”

Support for maligned Rio Rancho Public Schools (RRPS) teachers/ security guards

Lisa Christopherson came to the GA to ask (un)OccupyABQ to show up at the June 11 board mtg to protest; RRPS school board mtg is held in Board Rm of District Office located on Laser and Quantum in Rio Rancho. Mtg begins at 5:30pm.

A call out to all (un)Occupyers – Meet at Yale Park on Monday, June 11 at 4pm to car pool to Rio Rancho. Wear red in solidarity with the teachers/security guards. Lisa will send an email to Hershe re: the mtg

Here are the issues Lisa conveyed:
She teaches at poorest middle school in RRRPS, Eagle Ridge Middle School; ERMS boundaries drawn so that poorer students go to ERMS; ERMS had poor air quality, mold problem; bldg. designated as “sick bldg.” by US Health Dept stemming from RRPS not taking care of bldg. as they did for exact same bldg. design (Mountain View Middle School) comprised of students from affluent neighborhoods in RR; 30 teachers stood up with parents, “blew the whistle” getting bldg. fixed last year and are being harassed and intimidated as a result

RRPS has acquired $9million in cash reserves at the expense of having large classroom sizes and larger teacher:student ratios; concerns about RRPS using public funds unjustly;

RRPS Security Guards are being harassed, long time employees with long hair, beards, some with tattoos; District wants to hire outside private security company; RRPS employees unable to contact media; recent protest brought out 40 employees

NOTE: RRSEU (Rio Rancho School Employee’s Union) is a joint local of AFT and NEA

Harass and Retreat
Henry is suggesting we utilize the strategy of camping and setting up barricades telling organization that we won’t leave unless demand(s) are met, prompting city officials to spend large amounts of monies and resources to evict us.

SUGGESTED IDEA: Have action strategies discussed for at least a half hour at next GC

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