Event:2020/11/19 Delegates

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Omni Delegates' Meeting - November 19th, 2020 7pm-9pm

1. Joining info:

2. URL of these notes: https://omnicommons.org/notes

3. Please add items to the agenda below and send any proposals to consensus@lists.omnicommons.org prior to the meeting

4. For instructions on preparing and archiving these notes, please see the bottom.


  • Introductions [15 minutes]
    • Meeting Roles
    • Delegates Count
    • Access Check-in
  • Check-ins, Updates & Report-Backs [30 minutes]
    • Brief Announcements
    • Working Groups
    • Member Collectives
    • Conflicts, Mediation & Safe Space
  • Proposals & Discussions


Introduce yourself: Name; Preferred Pronoun; Affiliation; any brief announcements; say whether you're a delegate; let us know about any access needs you have†

  • WHY DO WE ASK PRONOUNS? To make space for people who are trans, nonbinary, gender noncomforming or otherwise vulnerable to being misgendered. It's not an invitation to make jokes or trivialize the idea of pronouns. If you are fine with the gender and pronouns society generally assigns to you, please just say what they are without fanfare or embellishment. Conversely, please don't pressure anybody to give their pronouns, as that can harm trans people who are closeted or questioning. The point is to prompt and normalize asking, but not to mandate or enforce. Thank you! <3 Yar
  • jane she/her gws delegate
  • maryann she/her csc delegate
  • yar she/her sudo delegate
  • ryan he/him fye delegate
  • helen she/her fnb delegate
  • patrick he/him ccl delegate
  • robb he/him fnb
  • ish he/him fye
  • silver they/them fnb/noma
  • joe

Access Check In

Is everybody able to participate fully in this meeting? Do people have unmet needs or concerns?

Meeting Roles

  • Facilitator/s: jane
  • Explanation of hand signals: "deaf applause", "raised hand", "point of process", "direct response"(wildcard), etc.
  • Stacktaker:
  • Timekeeper: maryann
  • Notetaker/s: yar
  • Vibe Reader: robb
  • Who will out next meeting's agenda beforehand: yar
  • Next meeting's facilitator(s): no takers


  • ANV: nobody yet
  • CCL: patrick
  • CSC: maryann
  • FNB: helen
  • FYE: ryan
  • GWS: jane
  • LL: nobody yet
  • Sudo Room: yar
  • Sudo Mesh: nobody yet
  • Quorum:

Brief Announcements

Working Group Report-Backs

Building & permits

  • Meetings: only the kitchen group meets regularly, new times tbd
  • https://omnicommons.org/lists/listinfo/building
  • robb: rain is not leaking in the roof! yar & robb held the party, everyone else missed out
  • still rodents in the building. lots of little mice. lots of them in the basement. maybe buy more traps? ish is willing to help change them. sometimes they escape with the cheese!


  • Meetings: 2nd & 4th Mondays at 5:30pm @ https://omnicommons.live/commons
  • Join! * https://omnicommons.org/lists/listinfo/commons
  • silver: we haven't met yet but been talking about solidifying covid protocols if we were to accept events yet, but haven't gotten to that part
  • county's back in the purple and we probably won't open anytime soon
  • also county has a curfew 10pm-5am
  • jane & maryann have a lot of concerns about renting to for-profit orgs in the future as that would make us taxable. talking with the lawyer about drafting a new contract.


Finance & Fundraising

Member Collective Updates

What is going on with your collective? What are you working on? What have you accomplished? Any events coming up? Any difficulties you are encountering that you need help with?


  • nobody here


  • reopening plans have been put back on hold due to case spike
  • discussion of rodents up in building wg section
    • Ish willing to help set and reset mouse traps. Rob likes the plastic ones - easy to set. Patrik will go buy some more traps at Home Despot and leave some in the basement for FYE.


  • maryann did a panel on tuesday 11/17. resigned from the board, but still a member. gonna put more time into working with omni


  • giving out supplies like winter gear, hand sanitizer & socks
  • student coops cooking weekend meals - student cooks can get stipends


  • ryan: doing well, setting up for new year, just had collective meeting today. trying to keep energy alive. a lot of personal changes, trying to support each other. we can't do events. but organizing to be better & stronger once things open back up


  • pressuring biden/harris to do caregiver relief, paying caregivers & students, calls, texting. poor peoples campaign car caravan to sacramento on monday 11/23, to push for covid relief. arriving in sac 10:30am.


  • nobody here

Sudo Room

  • on hold, nothing to report

Sudo Mesh

  • nobody here

Conflicts, Mediation & Safe Space

  • Updates for any ongoing issues
  • Has anybody been asked to leave? asked to leave
  • Silver: Robb & I have lots of issues, I requested him not to speak to me anymore until there's a mediator to resolve things, it's in process

Proposals & Discussions

Proposal: Town Fridge Outside Omni (KM & SZ) 11/2020 Proposal to install an outdoor community fridge by the ballroom entrance.

An outdoor Town Fridge at the Omni would provide a solution to two problems in one — the surplus of food, especially produce, and the need for free food in Oakland. The recent popularity of the Town Fridges popping up all over Oakland has demonstrated that there is strong community support for fridges with free produce and packaged food in the area. People are in need of fresh produce, healthy snacks, and prepared meals, and many Town Fridges are quickly cleared out. Town Fridge has agreed to support the Omni fridge with their large network of volunteers. Installing a fridge would have a low impact and high benefits.

At the Omni, it is apparent that there is a surplus of donated food, particularly from Food Not Bombs. One FNB member recently estimated that half of all produce taken in is composted. Aside from being a serious waste, having to compost 50% of all the produce that flows through the Omni is a hassle for members of FNB. We have had problems with the city of Oakland in the past because our compost bins were so full that they couldn’t take it. It’s ridiculous to be disposing of that much food when there are so many people and groups that could use it. There are other collectives based in or currently using the Omni who also often have surplus donations, including North Oakland Mutual Aid and Acta Non Verba. An outdoor fridge would provide a quick and efficient way to dispense excess produce and other donations while strengthening the Omni’s ability to provide for the community during a time when gathering is difficult.

       The nature of the Omni as a community center that people are already aware of makes the location for this fridge ideal. During the Covid-19 pandemic, the Omni is serving as a hub for many mutual aid endeavors, but its normal function of serving as a gathering space is suspended. This fridge would be an opportunity for the Omni to again engage with the larger community, but with no risk of spreading the virus. There is a Town Fridge very close to the Omni, on 44th St, but it is often used mainly for prepared food, and it gets a fair amount of traffic. That fridge is not currently providing a solution to the excess food that is already in the Omni. Additionally, many people come specifically to the Omni for things, so there would be an audience for this fridge that would be different from the other Town Fridge. 

One further outcome that we see stemming from this fridge is the possibility of its use as a hub for food sharing between different organizations. There are many groups in the East Bay that do mutual aid, food distribution, and free kitchens, and coordinating food donation between all of them is a continual effort. With a fridge outside of the Omni that would be accessible 24/7, it would be easy to coordinate no-contact produce and donation sharing between a large network of groups. This is important because there are many smaller organizations that struggle each week to scrape together enough donated food to cook with, while larger organizations like Food Not Bombs are already positioned to receive a high volume of donations (much of which does not end up getting used). As far as the impact of a fridge outside of the Omni, the projected annual costs are $98.40 to $131.20 per year based on the average electricity consumption of fridges in California. If the fridge we get is energy efficient, the cost will be on the lower end or maybe even under those figures. This is a minimal cost considering that there are already several fridges running in the Omni. We would be able to acquire the fridge for free, with the help of Town Fridge. Town Fridge has an excellent system for maintaining their fridges that has been demonstrated to work. They have a large network of volunteers, who sign up for shifts to take care of the fridges in their community. A schedule sheet detailing cleaning and purging gone-by food is sent out to volunteers, who demonstrate that they have fulfilled their shift by taking a photo. Other Town Fridges across Oakland are consistently clean and well-cared for, and we believe that this fridge would be no different. As you can see, the impact of having another fridge at the Omni, and having it outside the building, is extremely minimal. The benefits of such an endeavor are vast, and would allow the Omni to support the community during a pandemic, further the ability of various groups to provide mutual aid, and decrease the food waste currently occurring. I hope you will consider our proposal.


  • silver: kalie & i work for fnb, just trying to organize inventory, ~half of produce go to waste. sometimes sierk bikes it to other town fridges town. would be helpful if it was closer. they're very tapped into the community. when they set up a fridge they have a schedule, very efficient system.
  • can be any size - mini, huge, commercial. 10~12 throughout oakland. they can help support us in any way we need. can help with our compost issue.
  • yar is skeptical of fire & electrical safety
  • robb says a surge protector inside could protect things
  • Easily reversible if there are any issues with city or neighbors.
  • Consensus to set up a temporary fridge asap, with full consensus process by next meeting
  • Exact location TBD. Can't block fire exits. May need to be on sidewalk

Press coverage:

Last Meeting Notes


End of Meeting