How Are GA’s Facilitated and Organized?

The General Assembly is a gathering of people exercising direct democracy through consensus. This is possible in an environment that cultivates collaboration. In other words, the General Assembly works together to improve ideas and proposals with constructive input, rather than outright dismiss or vote them away.

The process and format of General Assembly gatherings are maintained by volunteer facilitators. During an assembly, facilitators function as neutral parties that organize a working agenda consisting of proposals and announcements presented by the people of the Assembly. To learn more about the various facilitation roles, click here.

Before the General Assembly begins, please let the facilitators know if you would like present your committee’s proposal. Facilitators will keep track of speakers and coordinate the meeting as it transpires. Additionally, any committees in attendance should be prepared to give an update on their activities and needs during Committee Report-Backs.

During General Assemblies, anyone can call a “point of process” if a speaker goes off-topic or uses agenda/announcements time as a personal soapbox. It is important to reserve your comments and passionate speech for the People’s Soapbox time.

Following in the footsteps of our brothers and sisters of Occupy Wall Street in Zuccotti Park, our General Assemblies are organized as follows:

I. Process Review/Opening Comments/Review of Hand Signals

II. Agenda Items

A. AGENDA ITEM #1 (Presenter)

1. Discussion
2. Explanation/details of proposal
3. Clarifying Questions from Assembly?
4. Consensus Test- Assembly does not express blocks yet
(Outcomes: A= Achieved, B= Enough to Address Concerns,C= Tabled). If B, then address concerns:

a. Address Concerns/Friendly Amendments (Take stack)
b. Modified Proposal
c. Consensus Test
d. Blocks? If yes:
– Modified Proposal
– Final Consensus Test

5. Action Item

B. AGENDA ITEM #2 (Presenter)

same consensus process as above

C. AGENDA ITEM #3 (Presenter)

same consensus process as above

….(and so on)

III. Committee Report-Backs

IV. Announcements

V. People’s Soapbox