EC Minutes Jan 2020

February 2023 Forums World Socialist Movement EC Minutes Jan 2020

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    Bijou Drains

    Present: S.Kennedy, M.Foster, M.Browne, J.Cohen , P.Shannon, T.Hart, J.Shodeke
    Chair: M.Foster
    Meeting opened at 1:08pm
    1. Election of Chair: M.Foster
    Shannon/Browne – Agreed
    2. Amendment and adoption of the previous meeting minutes
    RESOLUTION: Browne/Shannon – “That the minutes be adopted.”
    3. Amendment and adoption of the Standing Orders of the Executive Committee
    RESOLUTION: Shannon/Hart – “The the Treasurers report be promoted to item d on the standing orders, and all other items after be rearranged.”
    (Carried 6-0-0)
    RESOLUTION: Shannon/ Browne- “That the January EC shall appoint an EC member to liaison with each active sub committee. To be numbered point 34.”
    (Carried 7-0-0)
    RESOLUTION: Kennedy/Shannon – “That the Standing Orders of the EC be adopted with amendments.”
    (Carried 7-0-0)
    4. Matters arising from the Standing Orders of the Executive Committee
    (a) Renewal of our registration as a political party (Standing Order 29)
    RESOLUTION: Browne/Kennedy – “That the EC agrees to re register as a political party.”
    (Carried 7-0-0)
    (b) Review and updating of the register of trustees and bank signatories (Standing Order 29)
    i. Report of the Treasurer on bank signatories
    RESOLUTION: Browne/Hart- “That Comrade Cibele be removed from the Santander, Nationwide and HSBC bank signatories list.”
    (Carried 5-0-2)
    RESOLUTION: Browne/Shannon – “That Comrades Johathan Cohen and Mark Hutton be made bank signatories for Santander and HSBC.”
    (Carried 6-0-1)
    (c) Appointment of two members (an elected officer and an EC member) to jointly manage the provision of access codes to Head Office information systems (manual and computerised) in accordance with EC decisions and to monitor off-site arrangements for secure data-backup (Standing Order 30)
    RESOLUTION: Shannon/Browne – “That The Treasurer, Robert Cox, and EC member, Shannon Kennedy, be appointed.”
    (Carried 5-0-2)
    5. Matters arising from previous minutes
    (a) Matters arising from the March 2019 meeting minutes
    i. Re §2(c)vi (“That the EC clearly redefines the terms of reference of each committee and appoints an EC member to each committee to encourage and assist each in progressing their mission. And that the EC investigates a reformatting of EC agendas so as to encourage committees to take on more matters pertaining to their own remit, so that the EC can focus on more pressing issues.”), the General Secretary draws attention to the necessity of dealing with the first part of this resolution.
    RESOLUTION: Browne/Shannon – “That T.Hart be appointed to liaise with the Campaigns and Media,
    Education Committees. P.Shannon to liaise with the Internet, Publications, Socialist Standard Production, and Editorial Committees. M.Browne to liaise with the Standing Orders Committee. J.Cohen to liaise with the
    Library and Archives Committee. And that Comrade Miller be asked to create an EC liaison side bar to the List of Party Officers, Appointees, and Committee Members.”
    (Carried 7-0-0)
    Item to be deferred until committee members have been appointed.
    (b) Matters arising from the October 2019 meeting minutes
    i. Re §4(s) (“That Cde. Shannon approach the Membership Applications Committee on its views concerning the merits of producing a FAQ leaflet. (in hard copy and soft copy format)”), no report received
    To report next month.
    (c) Matters arising from the December 2019 meeting minutes
    i. Re §3(a) (“That no action be taken on the mass deletion of the [Party’s] emails for 4 months unless or until the IC has been able to transfer the emails to a secure archive.”)
    Comrade Shannon volunteers to search through emails to see what needs to be deleted on party files, and to get access from Comrades Cox and Miller. To report when there are further details.
    ii. Re §4(i)i (“The EC asks the CO to ask North East branch if they wish to disband and which branches they wish to join.”, no report received
    6. Reports of and new matters relating to Party Officers, Party Appointees, and Subcommittees
    (a) Advertising and Enquiries
    i. E-mail from Cde Tenner (3 January) via Standing Orders Committee: Adam asked me to forward the below information on inserts in the New Statesman. Contact: Arthur Jones 020 3096 2270 or Progressive
    Media on 020 7936 6800 Bound-in Inserts Subs Run: 19,000 Rate Card: £35.00 CPM Special rate: £28.00 CPM Total cost: £532.00 NOT DONE 2/2017 10,000 inserts UK subs 11/17 @ 25 per K 19,000 total UK subs
    done 19k UK subs @ £28.00k 6/2017 done
    RESOLUTION: Browne/Shodeke – “The EC thanks Comrade Tenner for his report of 3/1/20 and asks if he would consider preparing a future insert for the New Statesman.”
    (b) Assistant Secretary
    (c) Audio Visual
    (d) Auditors
    (e) Ballot
    i. Report of the Ballot Committee (12 December; p. 29)
    RESOLUTION: Browne/Kennedy – “That the report be accepted, with thanks.”
    A discussion regarding EC vacancies, resulted in the decision to follow up on what the December EC had decided, in calling for the vacancies to be filled and appointed after the deadline.
    (f) Blog
    (g) Campaigns and Media
    (h) Central Branch Secretary
    (i) Central Organiser
    (j) Education
    (k) Election
    i. Electoral Commission returns
    ii. Report of the Election Committee (29 December):
    Noted with thanks.
    (l) General Secretary
    (m) Head Office Organiser
    (n) Internet
    (o) Investment
    (p) Library and Archives
    (q) Membership Applications
    i. Form A for David Kuratsu (via Membership Applications Committee)
    Accepted – 7-0-0
    ii. Form F for Dave Chesham, with coveringletter (19 December; p. 35)
    RESOLUTION: Browne/Foster- “That the form F be accepted.”
    (Carried 3-1-3 With request for division by Comrade Browne
    For: Browne/Shannon/Foster
    Against: Hart
    Abstentions: Kennedy/Cohen/Shodeke
    iii. Form F for Darrell Whitehead, with covering e-mail (2 December; p. 36)
    No For F received from Branch Secretary
    (r) Premises i. E-mail from the Treasurer re Head Office heating (6 December; p. 32)
    ii. Roof exit hatch and cracks in the library wall: no further updates received
    Comrade Kennedy to look into calling out a plumber.
    Meeting adjourned for break: 2:50pm
    Meeting resumed at: 3:15pm
    iii. Oral report from the Treasurer re key security arrangements
    iv. E-mail from Cde Browne (2 January): Dodgy door lock on inner door; URGENT
    Deferred until construction completed next door.
    (s) Publications
    i. Report of the Publications Committee (1 January)
    Comrade Shannon to discuss internally and come back with suggestions.
    RESOLUTION: Shannon/Hart – “That 200 copies of each be printed.”
    (Carried 6-0-1)
    (t) Socialist Standard
    (u) Standing Orders
    i. E-mail from the Standing Orders Committee (30 December)
    RESOLUTION: Shannon/Hart – “That any branch opposing statements go out by the 6th of March on a first come first serve basis.”
    (Carried 3-2-2 With a request for division by Comrade Browne
    For: Shodeke/Hart/Shannon
    Against: Cohen/Browne
    Abstentions: Kennedy/Foster)
    ii. E-mail from the Standing Orders Committee (4 January)
    (v) Treasurer/Assistant Treasurer
    i. Report of the Treasurer re 2018 Finalised Accounts (28 December)
    Received with thanks.
    ii. Report of the Treasurer re 2018 Corporation Tax return (CT600) (28 December)
    iii. Report of the Treasurer re Police Damage to 52 Clapham High Street (28 December)
    Some EC members will recall I had a locksmith attend on 2nd November (at a cost of £95) to replace the bolt on the inner front door lock (wear and tear). On 21st December, I had to get him back as the lock was jammed open. On attending he said (looking at the internal damage) that it was somehow forced open and had to (again at a cost of £95) replace the bolt. This arises from an incident overnight of 19/20th
    December. I received a call in the morning from Brixton Police (with no explanation given) seeking confirmation of the status of Cde Alvarenga. Early that afternoon she called me to say she had been arrested at No 52 after a suspected break-in was reported to the police and held over-night. She was not sure of the security of the building, but said she would contact the Head Office Organiser or if necessary, attend to it herself. Later I received a call and this email from Mark:
    From: Mark Hutton Sent: 20 December 2019 15:14 To: Shannon Kennedy; Rob Cox Subject: Arrested by Police Gents

    I had a call from Cibele at 2pm saying she had been arrested by the Police in HQ and the door was unlocked. I went to HQ the front door was locked the inner wasn’t i was unable to lock the inner door. The Police number is CAD 205/20Dec2019 i have the note its just a number no Police Station on it. I noticed glass in the window and a plant plus by the lit table a cabinet part of the door was broken hence the glass in the window. 11 I rang Oliver he left HQ at about 11,00 to 11.30pm so i don’t know the time it occurred. . . After consulting the General Secretary, on Monday this week I attempted to contact the Brixton police, and eventually someone at the Met answered the phone and I obtained further information which I reported to Shannon as follows (see also PDF attached [on p. 43]):

    From: Robert Cox Sent: 23 December 2019 To: ’Shannon Kennedy’ Subject: RE: Arrested by Police. . . I managed to get through to the Met Police Crime Management Service this afternoon. They confirmed a member of the public reported seeing a drunk woman attempt entry by breaking a window. As I found broken glass in the doorway, it sounds like she may have dropped the cabinet while trying to get the inner door open. After questioning, they admitted a forced entry. I asked about compensation for the damage and they gave me the crime reference number and the contact details of the department who deals with claims. I haven’t contacted them as yet, but after failing to find any details about them on the Met website, found the attached 2016 House of Commons report on making such claims. This suggests that compensation for such damage is “unlikely to be appropriate if the search was lawful, and the force used can be shown to be reasonable, proportionate and necessary to effect entry.” I should have asked if they had more information on the circumstances of the arrest – whether they saw her through the window and/or she declined to open the door. Maybe I should call them again? Previously I had got very little more detail from Cibele about the circumstances. When I attended on Saturday 21st I found the only thing broken was the bathroom-type cabinet referred to above. I cleared up the broken glass on the floor (safety hazard) but left the rest of the debris in situ, including that which had been used to  decorate’ the window (which Mark wanted left so that members could observe what had taken place).
    EC members may wish to consider further action – including whether to seek police compensation for the damage.
    That the issue with the police themselves be left, regarding the monetary cost of repairing the door.
    RESOLUTION: Browne/Shannon – “That the EC request Comrade Alvarenga return the outer door keys, and
    requests that she submit her account of the incident.”
    (Carried 5-1-1)
    (w) Trustees
    7. Correspondence
    (a) Matters of urgency
    (b) Correspondence from or concerning Branches, the Party in general, and members
    i. E-mail from Cde Foster (23 December): “Please can the attached [see p. 47] be added to the January EC
    agenda for discussion.”
    That we allow branches to put forward this item for discussion at Conference.
    (c) Correspondence from Companion Parties and Groups
    (d) World Socialist Party (India) Executive Committee minutes, October 2019 (p. 48)
    (e) World Socialist Party (India) Executive Committee minutes, November 2019 (p. 51)
    (f) All other correspondence
    8. Notices of Motion
    9. Notices of Business
    Comrade Brown – That Party Officers be reimbursed for necessary work when needing to stay overnight
    while at HO.
    10. Any other business
    (a) Call for reports to the 2020 Annual Conference
    That the call for reports be made with the deadline of the 6th of March.
    (b) Call for nominations for all 2020 Subcommittees and Appointees
    That the call out be made.
    11. Nomination of Chair for the next meeting
    Meeting adjourned at 4:42pm


    I can’t help pointing out that these Minutes are rather unbalanced. While they give a blow-by-blow account of a serious incident at Head Office, all they say about the report on the Party’s campaign in last month’s General Election is:

    ii. Report of the Election Committee (29 December):
    Noted with thanks.

    For members equally or more interested in externally-directed Party activity, the report can be found here.


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