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Kent and Sussex Branch

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gnome
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Kent and Sussex Branch

Very pleased with the branch turn out yesterday (8). Welcomed a new visitor. Dealt with lots of party business and started planning for propaganda events. This was the first meeting of the year, and was very relaxed. Lots of interesting discussion around the table. This is a new branch, so we are all getting to grips with planning and organising.

Branch Secretary. Paul Hope

<paulvhope@blueyonder.co.uk>

07783 235792

gnome
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Branch meets this coming Sunday (12th) at 3.00pm.   Same time and place.

http://www.worldsocialism.org/spgb/event/kent-and-sussex-regional-branch...

All welcome

gnome
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Minutes of the 4th Meeting of the Kent & Sussex Regional branch of The Socialist Party of Great Britain held on 12th February 2012 

The meeting started at 15.00 and was held at the Muggleton Inn, High Street, Maidstone, Kent 

Present: - Paul Hope (Branch Secretary/Organiser). Rob Cox (Treasurer and Chairman), Dave Chesham (Literature Secretary), Marie Chesham, Ed Mann, Hannah Dutton (Visitor) Apologies from Dave Humphries and Glenn Morris 

1. Minutes of the 3rd Meeting dated 8th January 2012 read out 

MOTION 1. D. Chesham & M. Chesham “That these minutes are a correct record and that they be adopted” AGREED 

2. Matters arising from the branch minutes (numbered below) 

3. Re Item 1. Visitor. It was reported that Martin Russell will come to a future meeting. 

4. Re Item 4. Identity and Questions & Answers leaflets. The branch ordered 200, but we managed to obtain 50 of each, and these are inside the display case for the stall. 

5. Re item 14. Business Cards for the branch. We have a small collection of cards that advertise the DVD 'Capitalism and other kids stuff', and these have been placed in the case. The ‘rail card’ design has run out, and we are uncertain if they will be reprinted. 

6. Re item 15. Socialist Standard order. All the copies are inside the display case, we have not had opportunities to sell or give these away. We should try to buy these as members, and pass them on to interested people. NOTED 

7. Matters arising from the EC Minutes of the 1st Meeting held on the 7th January 2012 

Refer to Motion 16 on the EC minutes. The new Head Office router wasn't working properly, a replacement was obtained but isn't functioning properly either. Therefore the network inside the office isn't working as necessary and is hindering members' work. 

MOTION 2. M. Chesham and P. Hope “The branch is concerned that the problems surrounding the Head Office router have not been resolved, as we have had no follow up in the February EC minutes”

Carried (4 for, 0 against, 1 abstained) 

8. Matter arising from the EC Minutes of the 2nd Meeting held on the4th February 2012 

Text taken from the EC minutes – "The EC received the following nominations were received for Head Office Organiser – 

Dave Chesham (one day a week), Jacqueline Shodeke (one or two days a week) Oliver Bond (Actively looking for full-time employment and may not be able to commit to working as Head Office Organiser for a year. He is willing to be flexible and share this position with other nominees). 

Motion 2 – Deutz and Field moved that Oliver Bond be appointed as Head Office Organiser. 

Amendment to Motion 2 – Deutz and Field moved that the following be added to the beginning of Motion 2 – “In view of the fact that only one person can be Head Office Organiser and that the other two nominees declare that they could only work for less than 3 days”.Carried (5 for, 1 against. 2 abstentions) 

Motion 2 as amended –“In view of the fact that only one person can be Head Office Organiser and that the other two nominees declare that they could only work for less than 3 days that Oliver Bond be appointed as Head Office Organiser”. Carried (6 for 0 against, 2 abstentions)" 

The EC's decision stems from the Head Office Organiser terms of reference that states that only one person can hold the post. This has meant that the two nominees the branch put forward have been rejected. 

MOTION 3. Ed Mann and Paul Hope “The branch is dismayed that the EC has missed an opportunity by not appointing the other two nominees as joint Head Office Organisers. We contest the assertion that only one person can be Head Office Organiser” AGREED 

9. Nominations List from the EC Minutes dated 4th February - a call was made for - 

2 further nominations for the Advertising Department.

1 further nomination for the Ballot Committee

1 further nomination for the Blog Department

2 further nominations for the Campaigns Department

further nominations for the Enquiries Department

further nominations for the Media Department

2 further nomination for the Membership Application Department

1 further nomination for the Publication Department

nominations for the Production for Use Committee 

To reach Head Office by the next EC meeting on 3rd March 2012 

The branch has no nominations – NOTED 

10. Minutes of the 2011 Autumn Delegate Meeting held on the 1st and 2nd October 2011 – NOTED 

11. Preliminary Agenda for Conference 

The branch read and discussed the Motions 1 to 8, Amendment to Rule 14 and Items for Discussion 1 and 2 – NOTED 

12. Treasurer and Finance 

Form ‘C’ arrived from Head Office for the Treasurer Rob Cox to complete and return before Conference. 

Report from the Treasurer regarding dues. He wrote to members on the 2nd Feb (except those with waived dues) and requested that they make payment to the new branch account. We have had three members transfer from North London (formerly Central London) branch, four transferred from Central branch, and one new member. The Treasurer recommends that the one member paying directly to HO, should be allowed to continue. We should also note that three members have yet to reply concerning their dues to the branch. The treasurer has created a membership register. R. Cox will check the status regarding Glenn Morris and his dues. 

Branch Financial Statement – Balance at bank as at 31st January 2012 is £110.00, cash £13.50, less current liabilities to head Office £12.00 – total £110.50 

Motion 4. D Chesham and P. Hope “That Ed Mann’s dues be waived” AGREED 

13. Propaganda – Mail out to Libraries of the Socialist Standard 

Letter received from Cde Bond of Head Office dated 10th Feb 2012. “I’m afraid that I have been very busy with the General Secretary and the HOO work. I have made no further progress on this issue. I’m off next week, but I will look at this issue the week after. YFS Oliver Bond HOO”   NOTED 

14. Notice of Business to discuss at the next branch meeting setting up a branch discussion group after the business meeting.  NOTED 

15. Kent & Sussex branch Stall – Gillingham High Street 

The dates now proposed are Saturday 17th March and Saturday 24th March, from 12.00 – 3.00pm near to where the market is held. The stall will consist of one table and the display stand. We now have a good selection of literature and pamphlets to give away or sell. The stall will be advertised on the website. We have three members and one supporter to help us. Further discussion will take place at the next branch meeting. 

16. Next branch meeting will be Sunday 11th March at 3pm at the Muggleton Inn. AGREED 

Meeting adjourned at 18:10

gnome
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The future of the SPGB's latest branch is in jeopardy.   The meeting this coming Sunday, 11th March will, amongst other things, discuss the present parlous situation.

Please come if you're in the area and have nothing better to do   sad

http://www.worldsocialism.org/spgb/event/kent-and-sussex-regional-branch...

SussexSocialist (not verified)

gnome wrote:

The future of the SPGB's latest branch is in jeopardy.   The meeting this coming Sunday, 11th March will, amongst other things, discuss the present parlous situation.

Please come if you're in the area and have nothing better to do   sad

http://www.worldsocialism.org/spgb/event/kent-and-sussex-regional-branch...

 

I don't think it's that serious, although there are things to discuss I grant you. 'Parlous' and 'jeopardy' are not words I would use to describe the situation and is more likley to put people off attending than encourage them.

And whilst I welcome open and honesty within the Party, is there a need or tradition to publish full Party internal meeting minutes online in such a fashion?

I am acutely aware that many people would be less than encouraged to attend and contribute to discussions and meetings if they knwo that thier names are to be minuted and then published in such a fashion. This is not an argument for clandestine operation or paranoid secrecy, but I sometimes wonder at the lack of decorum and discretion in the conduct of Party activities.....

ALB
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Personally I've always been against putting branch Minutes on the internet for precisely the reasons you give. I'm sure there must be quite a few members who, for various reasons, don't want their names and political opinions splashed all over the internet, and for ever. Maybe this should be the subject for a future Conference discussion and decision. You could also raise it in your branch and get the practice dropped unless all branch members agree to it. Most branches don't do it.

gnome
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SussexSocialist wrote:

I don't think it's that serious, although there are things to discuss I grant you. 'Parlous' and 'jeopardy' are not words I would use to describe the situation and is more likley to put people off attending than encourage them.

Not "that serious" when, in the forseeable future, K&SRB can probably only guarantee two regular attendees when the required quorum is three?   Out of eight members, one has never been, one is often in Wales, one is going to Spain, one is in hospital for an indeterminate period, one has a possible prison sentence in the offing and the sixth you know about.

SussexSocialist wrote:

And whilst I welcome open and honesty within the Party, is there a need or tradition to publish full Party internal meeting minutes online in such a fashion?

I am acutely aware that many people would be less than encouraged to attend and contribute to discussions and meetings if they knwo that thier names are to be minuted and then published in such a fashion. This is not an argument for clandestine operation or paranoid secrecy, but I sometimes wonder at the lack of decorum and discretion in the conduct of Party activities.....

Which fashion did you have in mind?  You can either have openness and "honesty within the Party" OR "clandestine operation or paranoid secrecy" which, whether you admit it or not, is precisely what is being suggested.  Any member who objects to their name being minuted is free to say so; up to now the silence has been deafening.  Does your perceived "lack of decorum and discretion" within the Party apply also to EC, Conference and ADM minutes then; should we cease to publish them online........?

SussexSocialist (not verified)

I think you are missing my points entirely. No-one suggested that people's names shouldn't appear in the minutes, but I am saying I for one, and I am sure others may agree, do NOT want the minutes published openly and freely for all too see on a forum. It is indiscrete and off-putting to potential members. Openess and access to information and not nessecarily the same as publishing EVERYTHING in the public domain. Much information is freely available upon request, but that is not the same as posting that information here there, and everywhere. I am sure if I asked nicely, you'd show me your living room, but I do not expect you to live in a house with no front door and open access for everyone who walks by. This does not equate to secrecy.

And as for the deafening silence, perhaps members don't spend their entire waking lives trawling the SPGB website to see if their names have been published and attendance at a meeting does not imply consent to publish this information. For the record I am NOT happy about such information being published and wasn't aware that it was unitl I came here today to catch up on news in the Party.

And regards the situation with the branch, this is for the branch to decide at the meeting and judge how serious it is - mellow dramatic descriptions about jeopardy and the like are neither factual nor helpful.

gnome
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SussexSocialist wrote:

I think you are missing my points entirely. No-one suggested that people's names shouldn't appear in the minutes, but I am saying I for one, and I am sure others may agree, do NOT want the minutes published openly and freely for all too see on a forum. It is indiscrete and off-putting to potential members. Openess and access to information and not nessecarily the same as publishing EVERYTHING in the public domain. Much information is freely available upon request, but that is not the same as posting that information here there, and everywhere. I am sure if I asked nicely, you'd show me your living room, but I do not expect you to live in a house with no front door and open access for everyone who walks by. This does not equate to secrecy.

Quite frankly I'm not sure what your points are but if you have some inexplicable reason for not wanting branch minutes "published openly and freely for all to see" I suggest that you attempt to persuade your branch to place a motion on the next Conference agenda.  Three branches now publish their minutes online; before very long this will hopefully be the rule rather than the exception.  'Secret' branch meetings, like secret ballots, will then be consigned to the dustbin of party history.  Yippee!

SussexSocialist wrote:

And as for the deafening silence, perhaps members don't spend their entire waking lives trawling the SPGB website to see if their names have been published and attendance at a meeting does not imply consent to publish this information. For the record I am NOT happy about such information being published and wasn't aware that it was unitl I came here today to catch up on news in the Party.

Then I suggest you lodge an official complaint with your branch.

SussexSocialist wrote:

And regards the situation with the branch, this is for the branch to decide at the meeting and judge how serious it is - mellow dramatic descriptions about jeopardy and the like are neither factual nor helpful.

Your thought processes must be very different to mine; if I saw that my branch was in obvious trouble, which Kent & Sussex incontrovertibly is, then I would want to do everything within my power to come to its assistance.

SussexSocialist (not verified)

Perhaps this is why nobody goes to meetings? Perhaps this is why this Party is shrinking not growing? Perhaps the fact that this forum is crammed full of posts by the same few posters is an indicator that an abrasive, oddball and out-of-step attitude wins no friends and alienates the very people you are trying to reach.....

I don't want my details sprawled everywhere - I have a job to maintain and a family to keep. And it annoys the hell out of me that whenever there is anything raised out of the ordinary or in contravention of the established beaucracy it is either met with indecision, outdated methodology or downright refusal.

I give up. I quit. Bollocks to it.

gnome
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Very congenial meeting yesterday which lasted almost four hours. Much time spent discussing the branch's future, Conference agenda and propaganda activities particularly the literature stall the branch is arranging in Gillingham High Street next Saturday March 17th from around midday. Depending on the outcome of the latter the intention is to have the stall the following Saturday (24th) as well.

http://www.worldsocialism.org/spgb/event/literature-stall-gillingham-hig...

Please note that K & SRB's next meeting will be held on the third Sunday of the month; that is April 15th.........

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