Report from meeting to plan The First People’s Convention in New Orleans Saturday, September 15th:
1. We decided we would create a very basic “rules of conduct” for the convention.
2. We talked about and want to encourage groups to bring info for distribution if they wish. We’ll have tables set up for the distribution of such materials.
3. We will create workshops around each, broad issue that we wish to tackle. We ask that each workshop work together to create a part of the convention platform pertaining to that issue. We named a number of workshops we wish to have, and we’ll keep it open if folks want to bring additional issues to tackle. Some issues will fall under a more broad issue. For example, the environment will cover the many issues we are dealing with regarding the BP oil disaster and Isaac environmental contamination.
4. We mentioned these “workshops” so far:
b. the environment
c. Medicare for all
d. End the wars/demilitarize the U.S. economy
e. Jobs for all through public works
f. Dismantle the prison industrial complex
g. Move to amend the constitution
h. End racism and discrimination
Please keep in mind these issues are not listed in order of priority or importance.
5. We reminded ourselves and everyone that the purpose of the People’s Convention is to create a platform. The purpose of the convention is not to endorse any particular party or candidate.
6. Regarding media outreach, Mike Howells agreed to handle the Times Picayune. Elizabeth Cook agreed to contact Gambit. Elizabeth will contact WTUL to set up a radio interview. Mike Howells and Robert Sullivan will contact WBOK. Robert and Elizabeth will contact student groups with Tulane and Loyola. Several of us plan to flyer UNO on Thursday. Several members of Occupy are attempting to begin a political group at UNO. Mike agreed to contact UNO Driftwood. Roy Randall said he would contact the Tulane Hullabaloo.
7. In addition, Mike Chenier will talk about our convention in a radio interview with a station in New York City. I agreed to contact Debra Sweet for additional contacts with media in New York.
8. Roy Randall expressed an interest in doing interviews with folks who intend to participate in the convention, prior to the convention. We need names of folks who might be interested.
9. We briefly talked about the importance of reserving some time to discuss, during the convention, the need to follow up with direct action to support the issues that are important to us.
10. Robert announced that there is an all day symposium at Xavier University this Saturday. Can’t remember the name of it though, but it is an opportunity to network with others about the convention.
11. Roy Randall expressed the importance of somehow communicating our basic values, that we are not a group or people, for example, that supports torture, though our government and police agencies practice torture. We talked about creating some sort of preamble at the convention to express our basic values.
12. We decided to hold our planning meetings for the convention every Saturday, 4:30pm, at Cafe Flora in the Marigny, at the corner of Royal and Franklin Ave.
If you have any questions regarding this meeting report, let us know. Also, if you attended the meeting, and wish to amend it, please do so. — Elizabeth Cook
Please forward widely.