Disrupt Eugene, with your help, will work to create a safer space for strengthening affinity groups, sharing projects and discussing the topics we care to organize around, promote collaboration, solidarity and build our collective potential as an organizing force.
Eugene has many different organizing projects and people who care about pressing issues, with many of these projects focusing on very particular areas of expertise, and rightfully so. But, we believe to effectively confront the growing threat of the extreme right and Trumpism, which seeks to destroy countless people, natural spaces and resources, etc, a united front is needed.
Rather than create a new hierarchical centralized organization to perpetuate this work we seek to generate an inclusive framework that allows for a multiplicity of political perspectives and forms of organizations to take autonomous actions while having access to one another to better coordinate and gain needed resources so as to engender the formulation of the various projects and programs that must be created to continue the fight against Trumpism.
Furthermore, we hope to create a space that is inclusive to both seasoned activists and people new to the movement who are eager to get involved. To use this structure as an incubator for organizing, and to assist the already developing and ongoing groups, meeting and actions that seek to defend us and our communities.
We believe that together we have the power to influence what happens next for our communities and our planet. Another world is possible if we come together and organize relentlessly, compassionately, and fiercely.
Introduction of consensus model
- How consensus works
- Consensus is based on the idea that in order to represent the values of the group and achieve community buy-in, a harmony of ideas must be established. It is more about views aligning and working together than it is about agreeing or being the same.
- You can vote “yes” or “no,” but you can also “block” or “step aside.” Blocks should be reserved for cases in which you feel that it is absolutely necessary for the group to reject a proposal. They are different from voting “no” because blocks cannot be outweighed by anything else -- they block the proposal regardless of others’ votes. You may want to “step aside” if you personally disagree with or don’t want to endorse the proposal, but you also don’t want to get in the way of others passing it.
- Spokes Council
- A Spokes Council is a direct democracy framework that consists of stakeholder groups coming together and practicing consensus. Each stakeholder group has a space at the spokes council to help with consensus, bring forth proposals, and voice concerns about proposals. The purpose of a Spokes Council is to allow for a multi-tiered consensus process to help guide a movement, while keeping within its core values. A Spokes Council does not limit the voices of individuals, as space is provided for individuals to voice concerns, and all voices, concerns and proposals will be heard within the sub groups.
- Some history:
A spokes council is a structure that has been used widely by democratic movements since the Spanish Revolution and draws inspiration from many indigenous struggles, such as the Zapatistas in Chiapas, Mexico (1990s). In the US, it also draws from anarchist and Quaker decision-making models and was used effectively in the Women’s Movement (1960s), the Anti-Nuclear Movement (1970s-80s), the Global Justice Movement (i.e. WTO, 1999), and Occupy Wall Street (2011-12). It was also used effectively for years in China in the movement that grew out of Tiananmen Square (1989). (This paragraph modeled from Occupy Wall Street Spokes Council proposal, 2011.)
- Focal Groups and Logic Groups
- Focal groups are subgroups of the general assembly that work on topical issues, e.g. Immigrant Rights Focal Group. Formed and approved groups have a spoke on the spokes council. Focal Groups should have a rotating point person to bring proposals, give report backs, and vote on issues of the larger GA.
- Logic Groups are subgroups similar to focal groups, but they focus on logistical issues, e.g. Legal Logic Group, Tech Logic Group, etc. Logic groups will have the same space at the larger General Assembly as Focal Groups.
- Clarifying Groups:
- A Group must meet a quorum of three(3) members per Spokes Council and must meet at least once every other week to be recognized as an Active Group.
- Each group must have one point person to voice concern, make consensus and bring proposals.
- This point person should ideally rotate weekly to allow space for everyone to speak at the spokes council.
- Groups must respect the consensus model when making decisions and must uphold the core values decided upon by the GA. All voices within a group should be heard before coming back to the General Assembly with decisions, concerns, or proposals.
- Creating a Group
- A Group can be created by any person active in at least one(1) Focal or Logic group.
- New Groups require the sponsorship of a previously-existing Focus or Logic Group.
- A Group must have a mission statement explaining what its purpose and goals are.
- When a Group meets all of these requirements, a proposal can be made to the General Assembly.
- If the General Assembly approves the Group then that Group is now an official Focal or Logic Group of Disrupt Eugene and will be given a spoke at the following Spokes Council.
- Creating and passing proposals
- Read proposal aloud.
- Time for clarifying questions about the proposal.
- These questions are not to challenge the proposal but just to understand it better.
- Break into Groups and discuss as appropriate.
- Come back to Spokes and voice concerns if needed.
- If concerns are too significant to pass proposal, proposal can go back to the Group that proposed it for revision.
- If no unresolvable concerns, verify with a visible indication that everyone agrees to move forward with the proposal as written.
- Groups can submit proposals via an online form or in person prior to a GA.
- Proposals are heard by the Spokes Council with the following steps:
- Consensus ratio
- Within the larger GA all Spokes should be in consensus before approving proposals.
- Within a Focal or Logic group consensus is reached with a ¾ majority
- Everything we do should come from a place of anti-oppression.
- Nothing is worth doing if it’s not intersectional.
- Our movement is egalitarian and we do not designate any leaders.
- We define violence as injuring a life.
Overarching Action Agreement
- What is a Green action vs. a Red Action
- Green: A permitted rally or march, arrests will not be made
- Yellow: Marching in the streets without a permit, arrest unlikely
- Orange: Forcefully blocking a target, arrest likely
- Red: Purposefully locking down a target, arrest imminent
- Actions should be rated on a Green to Red scale as to help clarify the likelihood of arrest during an action and help people of varying abilities decide if an action is right for them. Below are examples of action colors:
- We support autonomous actions of individuals and groups that fall in line with the core values of our movement.
- Disrupt Eugene is a safe area for all, and actions organized officially by Disrupt Eugene should respect this.