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(en) Ireland, Workers Solidarity Movement* Autumn 2005 conference - Practice of the WSM

Date Thu, 17 Nov 2005 11:07:52 +0200


'Practive of the WSM' is a set of guidelines we have drawn up to ensure
that the group functions effectively, and in a properly anarchist manner.
SMOKING
Passive smoking is a health hazard. Bearing this in mind it is
requested of all members that they refrain from smoking during any
national meetings - Conference and IB meetings, etc. In consideration
of members who do smoke, time will be allotted at such meetings for
smoking outside the meeting room. This arrangement only applies to
national meetings. It is up to WSM branches to decide for themselves
as to whether or not they wish to adopt a similar arrangement at local level.

MEMBERSHIP

In order to ensure that all members take responsibility for both
developing and implementing WSM policies, members are expected
to attend their branch meetings or send advance apologies when not
able to attend. Where a member misses four successive branch
meetings without good reason the Branch Secretary will propose a
motion that the member concerned is deemed to have resigned. The
member concerned will be informed by post not less than ten days and
not more than one month before the motion is tabled. where a
member is not part of a WSM branch (because of geographical
distance) they are expected to attend national meetings and
conferences, or to send advance apologies when not able to attend.
Where a member does not take part in branch meetings, activities or
conferences for more than three months, without good reason, the
National Secretary will propose a motion that the member concerned
is deemed to have resigned. The member concerned will be informed
by post that the motion will be voted on at the next Delegate Council
meeting. Any member who falls more than three months behind in
their payment of subs loses their voting rights. If they fail to pay subs
for a further six week period they are deemed to have resigned.
Treasures will keep track of subs payments and notify members when
they fall into arrears. any suspensions of voting rights and/or
expulsions must be reported in the Internal Bulletin by the relevant
Branch or National Secretary.
INTERNAL CONDUCT

Since the WSM is not a vanguard organisation (except in the sense of
a vanguard of ideas) we must avoid the internal characteristics of a
vanguard organisation. To this end we must encourage all members to
take part in speech writing, article writing, proposing perspectives, and
similar activities. When tasks such as these come up we will always
ask the question "Who has not done this before (or has done it least)?"
so that we can try to include less experienced people.

We must also ensure that people do not get left behind. This means
assuming that people have less knowledge about the group than is
generally accepted. Explanations are needed about how decisions are
made, what conference is for, what branch meetings are for, how the
paper is organised, etc. If members do not understand something it
should be automatic that somebody will take time to explain the
matter thoroughly. Although it is nice to win arguments, we should
not underestimate the importance of bringing up issues and
encouraging people to explore ideas. For peoples politics to develop
they have to be able to articulate their ideas. We must not let ourselves
be drawn into adversarial style debating. It is not, nor ever shall be part
of any members responsibilities to hassle, harass, humiliate,
embarass, guilt-trip or put down in any way, any member, or for that
matter anyone else, by comparing work done by different members or
any similar method. Members shall not be asked at any meeting why
they will not be attending any event. At the same time, we must
ensure that the same people do not get stuck with the same tasks all
the time, and, conversely, that everyone takes part in some activity.
While debates may sometimes become heated, it must be accepted by
all members that every member of the WSM is a committed anarchist,
and their activities and comments/statements are directed at
reinforcing the group's libertarian credentials.
CHILDCARE

No member should be forced to miss anything because they have to
mind children. Any member who requests it will be reimbursed in full
for the cost of childcare. Childminding facilities will be advertised for
all public meetings. Those requiring childcare will be requested to
contact us in advance to enable us to provide facilities.
REPORTS TO MEETINGS

In order to save time at meetings, reports from campaign groups,
other meetings etc., should, where possible, be prepared in advance,
in the style used to prepare a report for the IB. For example, a report
from a campaign group would include details of how many attended
the meeting (and how many apologies), what major decisions were
taken, any reports of how previous major decisions were carried out,
what other political groupings were putting forward.
INTERNAL BULLETIN

Given that one of the functions of the Internal Bulletin is to be our
journal of record, it is necessary that contributions be understandable
to members who may consult it in future years. Therefore,
descriptions must be clear, eg. texts of talks should state who gave
them and to what audience. Dublin branch reports should be clearly
identified as coming from Dublin, care should be taken with spelling
(at least to the point where meaning is clear), etc.
CAMPAIGNS

That a co-ordinator be elected when we are involved in specific
campaigns (e.g. a strike support group, 'Justice for Abu-Jamal',
service charges). This person will be responsible for collecting
information about the issues involved, informing the WSM of same,
preparing reports for the IB, and the co-ordination of our activity
within the campaign.
Library

That at least one copy of every book sold by the WSM bookservice be
held by the WSM library.
WSM Logo

That the WSM logo be redesigned. That a member or members be
mandated to draft a new design/designs which will be submitted to the
Internal Bulletin for approval by the Delegate Council

As ammended Oct 2005

What is a position paper and more WSM position papers
http://struggle.ws/wsm/positions.html
=======================================
* WSM is an anarchist federation
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