Difference between revisions of "Event:2021/02/11"

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** erica: is there anything you need to feel heard in these problems?
 
** erica: is there anything you need to feel heard in these problems?
 
** robb: i typically just get ignored when i remind people, so idk what can be done there, idk, more people need to hold people accountable i guess, idk
 
** robb: i typically just get ignored when i remind people, so idk what can be done there, idk, more people need to hold people accountable i guess, idk
* maryann: i can 2nd to some degree what robb said, although some of the offices are closed, others are present in the building, depending on what kind of work we do. i'm not around to really see what robb's talking about, but i understand it, and i also understand that we've had internal conflicts in the past that i blelieve are still affecting peoples' attitudes and possibly behavior. idk about that, can't get inside anyone's head. but much of what's being brought up as we've dicussed how to move forward, isn't new. it's something that's sort fo been a pattern. it really concerns me, like robb said a lot of people have left, and that's left a big void that many of us don't know how to fill. we're trying but we're gonna make mistakes, and i think some people feel that it means some are gonna try and hurt you, like in the past .it's a difficult situation. there's a lot of people at omni and no reason for this to continue. i'd like to break that pattern and find a better way to work together going forward. don't need anything to feel heard.
+
* maryann: i can 2nd to some degree what robb said, although some of the offices are closed, others are present in the building, depending on what kind of work we do. i'm not around to really see what robb's talking about, but i understand it, and i also understand that we've had internal conflicts in the past that i believe are still affecting peoples' attitudes and possibly behavior. idk about that, can't get inside anyone's head. but much of what's being brought up as we've discussed how to move forward, isn't new. it's something that's sort of been a pattern. it really concerns me, like robb said a lot of people have left, and that's left a big void that many of us don't know how to fill. we're trying but we're gonna make mistakes, and i think some people feel that it means some are gonna try and purge you, like in the past. it's a difficult situation. there's a lot of people at omni and no reason for this to continue. i'd like to break that pattern and find a better way to work together going forward. don't need anything to feel heard.
 
* erica restates prompt: what problems do you want to see addressed? what do you feel like you need to feel heard? what would you like to see come out of this? (as concrete as you can)
 
* erica restates prompt: what problems do you want to see addressed? what do you feel like you need to feel heard? what would you like to see come out of this? (as concrete as you can)
* yar: i'm afraid of us losing people, that's my constant fear because we've lost lots of people already. people confide in me that they feel unsafe in the buildins and in meetings with some people and that's not ok. to me that's a problem. i'm not ok until everyone's ok. i don't want to be part of a project that alienates people like that. the reason i'm part of this project is so that my community can be part of the community center. i've been sticking around for a long time and i'm not going to go lightly, i want to try my best to solve the problem. trying to represent others in this meeting, which is hard because people can be flaky about showing up and saying the things in public they've said in private. i want us to take solving this problem seriously. tonight, i'd like everybody who's here to feel like it was a non-draining regenerative experience that we can do again because it won't be solved tonight. i would like robb to hear the criticisms of him about the harm he's caused to people, and be able to hold that at the same time that he also holds the consensus process stuff. becuase it's not all just about people breaking rules.
+
* yar: i'm afraid of us losing people, that's my constant fear because we've lost lots of people already. people confide in me that they feel unsafe in the buildings and in meetings with some people and that's not ok. to me that's a problem. i'm not ok until everyone's ok. i don't want to be part of a project that alienates people like that. the reason i'm part of this project is so that my community can be part of the community center. i've been sticking around for a long time and i'm not going to go lightly, i want to try my best to solve the problem. trying to represent others in this meeting, which is hard because people can be flaky about showing up and saying the things in public they've said in private. i want us to take solving this problem seriously. tonight, i'd like everybody who's here to feel like it was a non-draining regenerative experience that we can do again because it won't be solved tonight. i would like robb to hear the criticisms of him about the harm he's caused to people, and be able to hold that at the same time that he also holds the consensus process stuff. becuase it's not all just about people breaking rules.
* vicky: i feel like... i have a lot to say. witnessing this conflict has been really hard. i don't see it as just between robb & silver. i see how it's affecting all of us. [redacted] emails recently seem like [redacted] is really fed up with the dynamic, stuff. i have a lot of experience with collective stuff and boards of directors, ihave trauma around it. the first time i witnessed robb yell at silver, iwas like, robb's gotta go, noma's gotta get out of here. silver said no we have to work through this, it's community. that wasn't ok. i told robb by email that it was inappropriate, he replied with defensiveness, trying to make excuses. that was red flags 1 & 2.... no back up. red flag #1 was the community reputation of omni. when i first moved here, i went to a zine fest, someone said "this is just nasty old white people" which is a really bad reputation to have, i don't think it's reflective, but that's what i heard multiple times. i'vejust seen defensiveness, not people taking it seriously, not reflecting in the group toanalyze what's going on in ourselves that's affecting how we relate, work with other groups, our role in the community of oakland. i want to work through this. i don't want another heartbreaking situation where a group implodes. i just went this 1.5y ago, a group lost their building cause they couldn't work through this. if you're having a defensive reaction, i need you to not say it right now, that's all i need to feel heard. i need people to listen to each other.
+
* vicky: i feel like... i have a lot to say. witnessing this conflict has been really hard. i don't see it as just between robb & silver. i see how it's affecting all of us. [redacted] emails recently seem like [redacted] is really fed up with the dynamic, stuff. i have a lot of experience with collective stuff and boards of directors, i have trauma around it. the first time i witnessed robb yell at silver, i was like, robb's gotta go, noma's gotta get out of here. silver said no we have to work through this, it's community. that wasn't ok. i told robb by email that it was inappropriate, he replied with defensiveness, trying to make excuses. that was red flags 1 & 2.... no back up. red flag #1 was the community reputation of omni. when i first moved here, i went to a zine fest, someone said "this is just nasty old white people" which is a really bad reputation to have, i don't think it's reflective, but that's what i heard multiple times. i've just seen defensiveness, not people taking it seriously, not reflecting in the group to analyze what's going on in ourselves that's affecting how we relate, work with other groups, our role in the community of oakland. i want to work through this. i don't want another heartbreaking situation where a group implodes. i just went this 1.5y ago, a group lost their building cause they couldn't work through this. if you're having a defensive reaction, i need you to not say it right now, that's all i need to feel heard. i need people to listen to each other.
* joe: what bothers me and hurts most is that things get too big before they come out in the open. there's several wounds festering, some really bad, some have already infected other relationships. that and the fact that we have this reputation of what vicky said, being mean white people. we've been trying so hard for all the 4-5 years i've been here to really make our mission statement true. we had one bad run-in that really divided us with the eritrean group. in my view it was mostly because the head of the group had a personality that was very difficult to deal with, and to take a chance.... the racial criticism... i felt they were using the race card to get over on us. but anyway i can now see that's probably the biggest thing from me, since my life has been devoted to antiracism or civil rights before that it was called i guess. i have to be able to see what's going on. the thing between robb and silver has been at various times presented as between them, around issues like robb being verbally abusive, and at other times as a part of our racial problem, and i don't understand how they overlap. most important thing for me is this idea of ... i want to find a way where people can feel comfortable nad safe enough to talk about things as they're happening. the idea of saying/having criticism and self criticism, or in other words, "excuse me but what you just said hurt me". and if they need to suypport to sit down as soon as possible in a circle, for some reason i have this crazy idea in my head. when marshall rosenberg was in town i filmed some videos of his NVC sessions. that system's stuck with me. tonight i put together how the situation with spaz & jenny has led into the situation with robb & yar, and i know from myself i need to understand that more and understand how / what the crossover is. i think i have experience that robb has difficulty understanding how some peopleneed to be treated, well all people need to be treated with respect and in some cases, in special ways. i'd like to help him see what's been going wrong in his communication so we can all work on omni together. it's a great endeavor and we should be able to [?].
+
* joe: what bothers me and hurts most is that things get too big before they come out in the open. there's several wounds festering, some really bad, some have already infected other relationships. that and the fact that we have this reputation of what vicky said, being mean white people. we've been trying so hard for all the 4-5 years i've been here to really make our mission statement true. we had one bad run-in that really divided us with the eritrean group. in my view it was mostly because the head of the group had a personality that was very difficult to deal with, and to take a chance.... the racial criticism... i felt they were using the race card to get over on us. but anyway i can now see that's probably the biggest thing from me, since my life has been devoted to antiracism or civil rights before that it was called i guess. i have to be able to see what's going on. the thing between robb and silver has been at various times presented as between them, around issues like robb being verbally abusive, and at other times as a part of our racial problem, and i don't understand how they overlap. most important thing for me is this idea of ... i want to find a way where people can feel comfortable and safe enough to talk about things as they're happening. the idea of saying/having criticism and self criticism, or in other words, "excuse me but what you just said hurt me". and if they need to support to sit down as soon as possible in a circle, for some reason i have this crazy idea in my head. when marshall rosenberg was in town i filmed some videos of his NVC sessions. that system's stuck with me. tonight i put together how the situation with spaz & jenny has led into the situation with robb & yar, and i know from myself i need to understand that more and understand how / what the crossover is. i think i have experience that robb has difficulty understanding how some people need to be treated, well all people need to be treated with respect and in some cases, in special ways. i'd like to help him see what's been going wrong in his communication so we can all work on omni together. it's a great endeavor and we should be able to [?].
* silver: so many things about omni... re: desperately wanting to be heard, i love to deal with conflict 1-on-1 first. with robb i said multiple times, "hey you hurt me in this way". he can be receptive & apologize but it happens again & again & agin. i'm confused, how am i supposed to take what you say seriously when you make me feel so bad? i've been reaching out for 1.5y about this issue, people say "there's nothing i can really doabout that" and i feel sad. we can give free labor but can't feel safe? it's beyond me. we talk about our pain, a lot of it's about robb. people refues to go back, black and brown folks, because of robb. how can we hold robb accountable? people showing up here and showing him , "hey the awy you're speaking to people isn't acceptable" i get you want to protect the building, but embodying the state and acting a s a cop, that's scary. i fear comrades being incarcerated all the time. seeing that happen in a space we wanna ccall radical, trips me out. he can get away with it because he holds so much power. we need to empower ourselves to say, we can do this. for so long i felt inferior. robb likes to tell me i'm being manipulative, doing it to break rules, but i want everyone to know that's not true. idevote 40-50h/week of free labor to make it into a resiluent hub. hard to do that when people feel unsafe/unheard, get named a manipulator for speaking how they feel. i'm sad the people i reach out to, mostly elders, some don't have capacity and just leave... we can allow abuse to go on because we can't do anything about it? what's the point of holding the building if we can't hold each other? doesn'tmake senes to me. just want more room for people to speak. robb has a room at omni, his little tower, he can see ballroom & sudoroom, he came out drunk & yelled at me. noma's like "that was unacceptable", i'm like wait, he does it all the time! i'm grateful to be heard after 1.5y, thanks.
+
* silver: so many things about omni... re: desperately wanting to be heard, i love to deal with conflict 1-on-1 first. with robb i said multiple times, "hey you hurt me in this way". he can be receptive & apologize but it happens again & again & again. i'm confused, how am i supposed to take what you say seriously when you make me feel so bad? i've been reaching out for 1.5y about this issue, people say "there's nothing i can really do about that" and i feel sad. we can give free labor but can't feel safe? it's beyond me. we talk about our pain, a lot of it's about robb. people refuse to go back, black and brown folks, because of robb. how can we hold robb accountable? people showing up here and showing him , "hey the way you're speaking to people isn't acceptable" i get you want to protect the building, but embodying the state and acting a s a cop, that's scary. i fear comrades being incarcerated all the time. seeing that happen in a space we wanna call radical, trips me out. he can get away with it because he holds so much power. we need to empower ourselves to say, we can do this. for so long i felt inferior. robb likes to tell me i'm being manipulative, doing it to break rules, but i want everyone to know that's not true. i devote 40-50h/week of free labor to make it into a resilient hub. hard to do that when people feel unsafe/unheard, get named a manipulator for speaking how they feel. i'm sad the people i reach out to, mostly elders, some don't have capacity and just leave... we can allow abuse to go on because we can't do anything about it? what's the point of holding the building if we can't hold each other? doesn't make sense to me. just want more room for people to speak. robb has a room at omni, his little tower, he can see ballroom & sudoroom, he came out drunk & yelled at me. noma's like "that was unacceptable", i'm like wait, he does it all the time! i'm grateful to be heard after 1.5y, thanks.
  
  
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* Vicky: q for everyone but especially silver - what does accountability look like for you regarding robb?
 
* Vicky: q for everyone but especially silver - what does accountability look like for you regarding robb?
 
* silver: i really don't know. i want him to be sorry, and know that iv'e been harmed by him. be heard. instead of called a manipulator. and i dont' want it to happen anymore. he's been having a hard time hearing that from me, i hope maybe in the circle he'll hear it better. i want him to stpo pretending to be a cop at omni. removing the tower room, because that's really scary to always be watched. reminds me of the prison tower. idk what it'd look like. if you have any advice?
 
* silver: i really don't know. i want him to be sorry, and know that iv'e been harmed by him. be heard. instead of called a manipulator. and i dont' want it to happen anymore. he's been having a hard time hearing that from me, i hope maybe in the circle he'll hear it better. i want him to stpo pretending to be a cop at omni. removing the tower room, because that's really scary to always be watched. reminds me of the prison tower. idk what it'd look like. if you have any advice?
* robb: i'd like to dispel this myth that i can see the ballroom from a/v room. you can't. if i walk onto the mezzanine, i suppose you can. but there's no window. you can't even see the stage. just the mezzanine ahllway if you open the door. as far as feelings go, i feel betrayed because members asked me to help enforce policies. laura, julio, lynn used to do that. as they left i was asked to do a lot of this work. after they left we went downhill so far. we did a 180. there was an issue after covid shutdown, someone came to me with an issue they wanted mediated. [redacted story about a fight between silver and someone else] i tried to bring it to their attention, they were like "you're there too much", it didn't make sense. there was no mediation in that, i wanted there to be. they were never accountable, they got off scott free. when someone... i generally feel as if silver's done some pretty outlandish stuff at the building. so many times it's been so frustrating, i think there's some ageism, they said oh the delegates are those old people who just try to make rules and they don't come around anymore. their decisions don't matter cuz they're not currently using the building. a general "fuck you" to our consensus process, and the rules we set up to protect ourselves, and i feel like every time it turns into "come on you can't do that, it's like, investigate the investigators, just turning it around and saying "oh you're the problem" when it's like, come on, we could lose this building, are you serious? so they just gather a couple friends on these crusades, cuz they have this social capital, they're just more effective at obfuscating the egregious shit they've done, to be quite frank
+
* robb: i'd like to dispel this myth that i can see the ballroom from a/v room. you can't. if i walk onto the mezzanine, i suppose you can. but there's no window. you can't even see the stage. just the mezzanine hallway if you open the door. as far as feelings go, i feel betrayed because members asked me to help enforce policies. laura, julio, lynn used to do that. as they left i was asked to do a lot of this work. after they left we went downhill so far. we did a 180. there was an issue after covid shutdown, someone came to me with an issue they wanted mediated. [redacted story about a fight between silver and someone else] i tried to bring it to their attention, they were like "you're there too much", it didn't make sense. there was no mediation in that, i wanted there to be. they were never accountable, they got off scott free. when someone... i generally feel as if silver's done some pretty outlandish stuff at the building. so many times it's been so frustrating, i think there's some ageism, they said oh the delegates are those old people who just try to make rules and they don't come around anymore. their decisions don't matter cuz they're not currently using the building. a general "fuck you" to our consensus process, and the rules we set up to protect ourselves, and i feel like every time it turns into "come on you can't do that, it's like, investigate the investigators, just turning it around and saying "oh you're the problem" when it's like, come on, we could lose this building, are you serious? so they just gather a couple friends on these crusades, cuz they have this social capital, they're just more effective at obfuscating the egregious shit they've done, to be quite frank
 
** jenny: oh stop. you see everything. it's fucking creepy. get over your perceived "gotta be the omni cop" bs and we'd all be happier. omni will be fine.- want me to tell some of your most embarassing stories? wow, such extravagant detail here... I can do the same. but i don't - cuz I'm not an asshole.  -jenny (not logging on cuz can't deal with ^)  
 
** jenny: oh stop. you see everything. it's fucking creepy. get over your perceived "gotta be the omni cop" bs and we'd all be happier. omni will be fine.- want me to tell some of your most embarassing stories? wow, such extravagant detail here... I can do the same. but i don't - cuz I'm not an asshole.  -jenny (not logging on cuz can't deal with ^)  
 
** jenny: also, facilitation? sounds like exactly what i was expecting - robb monologues perpetuating his own obsessive BS
 
** jenny: also, facilitation? sounds like exactly what i was expecting - robb monologues perpetuating his own obsessive BS

Revision as of 16:14, 15 February 2021

Omni Delegates' Meeting - February 18, 2020 7pm-9pm

intros

  • Vicky they/them NOMA. omni's been hosting NOMA during pandemic, they're figuring out how to formalize being a collective
  • Yar she/her Sudo. Disappointed but grateful for those of you who showed up. We go to peace with the meeting we have.
  • Robb he/him FNB. Likes mashed potatoes.
  • MaryAnn she/her CSC fin/fun
  • Joe he/him FNB. healing from knee replacement, going very well. Finding it hard to not somehow have emotional confusion about why silver hasn't come up
    • Yar: silver appears to not be at home and is having logistical issues
  • Silver they/them
  • Erica loves facilitating. Should we find a time that works better for everyone?
  • Robb thinks as far as addressing the matter at hand, it's not a good use of our time to focus onthat right now, but i'm willing to. may not be that productive. maybe we could talk about what our current mediation process is, since we have someone who's skilled in that area. maybe we could figure out how to improve it? people might be tired, we have limited energy.
  • Might be helpful to know status of SEEDS

roles

  • yar takes notes, vicky will be backup
  • erica doing facilitation, vibes & timekeeper

1

  • erica: things you feel? what you need to feel heard. something concrete you want to see as a next step? what would i need to be moving forward, to think about & discuss?
  • 6 people x 5 minutes = 30 minutes
  • Robb: biggest issues for me revolve around the building, the way we... it's often difficult to reach consensus, then when we finally do, when individuals ignore the consensus, it creates this problem where it's like they seem like they're above the law, or exceptional, or... it's often people who get in working groups that then break consensus more than other people. it didn't used to be like that. back when laura and julio and lynn & others... i'd say more responsible for the building. like when we get noise complaints, we used to take a really aggressive stance or action like, we got one complaint and then we cut off music after 11pm. over time we've had to adjust to complaints & laws. we've had to come up with rules for the commons wg, because it pulls in ~65% of our income. if we lose ability to have events, that's the end of the prjoect. to me it's important that we follow the consensus we come up with, which is basically to protect ourselves from people abusing the event process for their own interest, and to ensure the interest of all the other collectives have an interest in staying in the building, are met/observed. i just feel like there's been a steady deterioration of people, a decrease in the responsible people who are familiar with our legal requirements when it comes to events, and some of the procedures we set up so people can't abuse the process. they all kinda left around the same time when there was an issue as to... one group was not following any rules and we eventually had to remove them, and we even went os far as to remove a collective that contested that. and the group we removed was an eritrean group, so yknow there was a lot of tension aruond that. it seems like as soon as we removed them.... (45s left) we need a way of letting people know what our rules are and making sure it's not just one person reminding them of what they are
    • erica: is there anything you need to feel heard in these problems?
    • robb: i typically just get ignored when i remind people, so idk what can be done there, idk, more people need to hold people accountable i guess, idk
  • maryann: i can 2nd to some degree what robb said, although some of the offices are closed, others are present in the building, depending on what kind of work we do. i'm not around to really see what robb's talking about, but i understand it, and i also understand that we've had internal conflicts in the past that i believe are still affecting peoples' attitudes and possibly behavior. idk about that, can't get inside anyone's head. but much of what's being brought up as we've discussed how to move forward, isn't new. it's something that's sort of been a pattern. it really concerns me, like robb said a lot of people have left, and that's left a big void that many of us don't know how to fill. we're trying but we're gonna make mistakes, and i think some people feel that it means some are gonna try and purge you, like in the past. it's a difficult situation. there's a lot of people at omni and no reason for this to continue. i'd like to break that pattern and find a better way to work together going forward. don't need anything to feel heard.
  • erica restates prompt: what problems do you want to see addressed? what do you feel like you need to feel heard? what would you like to see come out of this? (as concrete as you can)
  • yar: i'm afraid of us losing people, that's my constant fear because we've lost lots of people already. people confide in me that they feel unsafe in the buildings and in meetings with some people and that's not ok. to me that's a problem. i'm not ok until everyone's ok. i don't want to be part of a project that alienates people like that. the reason i'm part of this project is so that my community can be part of the community center. i've been sticking around for a long time and i'm not going to go lightly, i want to try my best to solve the problem. trying to represent others in this meeting, which is hard because people can be flaky about showing up and saying the things in public they've said in private. i want us to take solving this problem seriously. tonight, i'd like everybody who's here to feel like it was a non-draining regenerative experience that we can do again because it won't be solved tonight. i would like robb to hear the criticisms of him about the harm he's caused to people, and be able to hold that at the same time that he also holds the consensus process stuff. becuase it's not all just about people breaking rules.
  • vicky: i feel like... i have a lot to say. witnessing this conflict has been really hard. i don't see it as just between robb & silver. i see how it's affecting all of us. [redacted] emails recently seem like [redacted] is really fed up with the dynamic, stuff. i have a lot of experience with collective stuff and boards of directors, i have trauma around it. the first time i witnessed robb yell at silver, i was like, robb's gotta go, noma's gotta get out of here. silver said no we have to work through this, it's community. that wasn't ok. i told robb by email that it was inappropriate, he replied with defensiveness, trying to make excuses. that was red flags 1 & 2.... no back up. red flag #1 was the community reputation of omni. when i first moved here, i went to a zine fest, someone said "this is just nasty old white people" which is a really bad reputation to have, i don't think it's reflective, but that's what i heard multiple times. i've just seen defensiveness, not people taking it seriously, not reflecting in the group to analyze what's going on in ourselves that's affecting how we relate, work with other groups, our role in the community of oakland. i want to work through this. i don't want another heartbreaking situation where a group implodes. i just went this 1.5y ago, a group lost their building cause they couldn't work through this. if you're having a defensive reaction, i need you to not say it right now, that's all i need to feel heard. i need people to listen to each other.
  • joe: what bothers me and hurts most is that things get too big before they come out in the open. there's several wounds festering, some really bad, some have already infected other relationships. that and the fact that we have this reputation of what vicky said, being mean white people. we've been trying so hard for all the 4-5 years i've been here to really make our mission statement true. we had one bad run-in that really divided us with the eritrean group. in my view it was mostly because the head of the group had a personality that was very difficult to deal with, and to take a chance.... the racial criticism... i felt they were using the race card to get over on us. but anyway i can now see that's probably the biggest thing from me, since my life has been devoted to antiracism or civil rights before that it was called i guess. i have to be able to see what's going on. the thing between robb and silver has been at various times presented as between them, around issues like robb being verbally abusive, and at other times as a part of our racial problem, and i don't understand how they overlap. most important thing for me is this idea of ... i want to find a way where people can feel comfortable and safe enough to talk about things as they're happening. the idea of saying/having criticism and self criticism, or in other words, "excuse me but what you just said hurt me". and if they need to support to sit down as soon as possible in a circle, for some reason i have this crazy idea in my head. when marshall rosenberg was in town i filmed some videos of his NVC sessions. that system's stuck with me. tonight i put together how the situation with spaz & jenny has led into the situation with robb & yar, and i know from myself i need to understand that more and understand how / what the crossover is. i think i have experience that robb has difficulty understanding how some people need to be treated, well all people need to be treated with respect and in some cases, in special ways. i'd like to help him see what's been going wrong in his communication so we can all work on omni together. it's a great endeavor and we should be able to [?].
  • silver: so many things about omni... re: desperately wanting to be heard, i love to deal with conflict 1-on-1 first. with robb i said multiple times, "hey you hurt me in this way". he can be receptive & apologize but it happens again & again & again. i'm confused, how am i supposed to take what you say seriously when you make me feel so bad? i've been reaching out for 1.5y about this issue, people say "there's nothing i can really do about that" and i feel sad. we can give free labor but can't feel safe? it's beyond me. we talk about our pain, a lot of it's about robb. people refuse to go back, black and brown folks, because of robb. how can we hold robb accountable? people showing up here and showing him , "hey the way you're speaking to people isn't acceptable" i get you want to protect the building, but embodying the state and acting a s a cop, that's scary. i fear comrades being incarcerated all the time. seeing that happen in a space we wanna call radical, trips me out. he can get away with it because he holds so much power. we need to empower ourselves to say, we can do this. for so long i felt inferior. robb likes to tell me i'm being manipulative, doing it to break rules, but i want everyone to know that's not true. i devote 40-50h/week of free labor to make it into a resilient hub. hard to do that when people feel unsafe/unheard, get named a manipulator for speaking how they feel. i'm sad the people i reach out to, mostly elders, some don't have capacity and just leave... we can allow abuse to go on because we can't do anything about it? what's the point of holding the building if we can't hold each other? doesn't make sense to me. just want more room for people to speak. robb has a room at omni, his little tower, he can see ballroom & sudoroom, he came out drunk & yelled at me. noma's like "that was unacceptable", i'm like wait, he does it all the time! i'm grateful to be heard after 1.5y, thanks.


2

  • erica: thanks everybody for sharing, listening & hearing, holding space. a lot of feelings there. we have next on here, what takeaways would you like to see? we kinda wrapped that together. what i heard is, i heard robb talk about accountability for consensus decisions, and everybody else talk about group dynamics, a more interpersonal thing. sounds like we have 2 different conversations going on. one is about decision making process, how group holds itself accountable to decisions. the other is how that accountability looks like, and specifically how to hold robb accountable for his actions. i'd ask specifically.... the person who isn't comfortable with him... [?] please take some time to digest before reacting. we could probably do next steps, but it sounds like the strong things that are coming are from the accountability based on decisions group made & not following through. those decisions are serious and could impact the org's future, and that's where the strong feelings come from, but the way these feelings come out can be scary/unsafe and specifically target poc. something i heard, i'm not making that statement. it's 8:10, we have 50m left. let's spend the next 30m talking openly, where we can respond and i'll take stack. then 20m for final thoughts & figuring out what's gonna happen for the conversation that follows.
  • Yar: thank you everybody for holding space for others. maybe not the most constructive thing to say but it's what i'm feeling.
  • Vicky: q for everyone but especially silver - what does accountability look like for you regarding robb?
  • silver: i really don't know. i want him to be sorry, and know that iv'e been harmed by him. be heard. instead of called a manipulator. and i dont' want it to happen anymore. he's been having a hard time hearing that from me, i hope maybe in the circle he'll hear it better. i want him to stpo pretending to be a cop at omni. removing the tower room, because that's really scary to always be watched. reminds me of the prison tower. idk what it'd look like. if you have any advice?
  • robb: i'd like to dispel this myth that i can see the ballroom from a/v room. you can't. if i walk onto the mezzanine, i suppose you can. but there's no window. you can't even see the stage. just the mezzanine hallway if you open the door. as far as feelings go, i feel betrayed because members asked me to help enforce policies. laura, julio, lynn used to do that. as they left i was asked to do a lot of this work. after they left we went downhill so far. we did a 180. there was an issue after covid shutdown, someone came to me with an issue they wanted mediated. [redacted story about a fight between silver and someone else] i tried to bring it to their attention, they were like "you're there too much", it didn't make sense. there was no mediation in that, i wanted there to be. they were never accountable, they got off scott free. when someone... i generally feel as if silver's done some pretty outlandish stuff at the building. so many times it's been so frustrating, i think there's some ageism, they said oh the delegates are those old people who just try to make rules and they don't come around anymore. their decisions don't matter cuz they're not currently using the building. a general "fuck you" to our consensus process, and the rules we set up to protect ourselves, and i feel like every time it turns into "come on you can't do that, it's like, investigate the investigators, just turning it around and saying "oh you're the problem" when it's like, come on, we could lose this building, are you serious? so they just gather a couple friends on these crusades, cuz they have this social capital, they're just more effective at obfuscating the egregious shit they've done, to be quite frank
    • jenny: oh stop. you see everything. it's fucking creepy. get over your perceived "gotta be the omni cop" bs and we'd all be happier. omni will be fine.- want me to tell some of your most embarassing stories? wow, such extravagant detail here... I can do the same. but i don't - cuz I'm not an asshole. -jenny (not logging on cuz can't deal with ^)
    • jenny: also, facilitation? sounds like exactly what i was expecting - robb monologues perpetuating his own obsessive BS
  • joe: robb, do you think the things that've gone down between you and silver prevent you from acknowledging/understanding/empathizing with what [they] said about feeling watched, like in a prison? cuz if you're locked into a situation where you're holding stuff in your mind that blanks out [their] feelings, that's a huge obstacle towards us making any progress.
  • robb: i fully recognize that since this has gone unabated and there's never been an accountability process, and we don't really have one, other than telling somebody "hey you're not allowed to do that"... i have to admit, when it tends to be the same people and those people are supposed to be helping ,members of the same wgs, helping maintain the building, it becomes extremely frustrating when they're the ones that are making the biggest violations and putting us at the most risk. i admit i get passionate sometimes. i could stand... i feel like there was another process. i don't wanna go blast it on discuss list and clal them out.
  • robb: but i do want these things to be addressed. there's just no middle groupd. i admit i get frustrated, people said i'd been yelling, i didn't think i was. i felt passionate. i know when vicky said i yelled at silver, earlier in that week (vicky was at that meeting) i had to divert silver 4 times to not have a meeting we were planning in the building. they kept trying to have it in the building. the delegates said we can't have meetings in the building. this isn't a work party, needs to be remote. they insisted on having it. i had to keep insisting on having it outside, it finally worked. then a week later with 15 people meeting in the ballroom i stepped in like "hey i'm sorry to interrupt but we're not supposed to be having meetings right now" and the first person who talked was vicky saying "i didn't know that"., but you were at that meeting a week earlier where we said that! i got frustrated cuz sil.ver's on thw commons wg and [they] go to meetings and hsould help enforce that.
  • vicky: i didn't know why we were outside in the cold. i was unaware. that day noma was doing something with the storage specifically. you saw us standing in the circle talking. i'd have loved if you said "hey what are you doing right now?" rather than saying "wtf silver" with your hands on your hips. that was wack, sorry. earlier... i want to bring it back to structural white supremist behaviors and we live in a ws society. a group of people, if we're not intentionally trying to subvert ws we'll recreate it. i've seen this come up in a lot of groups. one thing i saw work well is the person pepetuating the most harm was taken away from pwerful roles, and lal the popele perpetuating whiteness underwent a separate many month long "examining white supramcy" training. that's what i'd like to see. robb taken away from powerful positions, having others co-lead so it doesn't feel like there's this one person. from my eyes you choose silver to yell at, but i've broken many rules and not get yelled at like that. i'd like tosee you demoted in a way and then have people address instituational white supremacy.
  • robb: i don't really have any authority that anybody else has... we dont' have a policy. it's up to members ot self regulate. idk what position i have other than i've done what people asked me to do, enforce the building policies as people have asked me. you're right, idk what violations you've done, i never saw you do anything uynusual other than that one meeting. up until then, diana had been informing me before every work party. i put it on the calendar, we were clear about it. that was the first meeting without communication. i just walked in and there's 15 people in the ballroom. unannounced, wasn't work party , just a meeting. caught me off guard cause i've gotten over it with silver numerous times. i apologize, i admit i got testy when yknow. it is with silver predominantly but it's basically with people that routinely violate our policies. that's what led to jenny and i's problems. she invited people to just [] in the basement and get half the money without consensus. she was [] take the money, events without alcohol permits til 6am
    • jenny: that is some next-level bullshit, robb. and you know it. would you like a zip file of all permits filed and financial transaction history? cuz i fucking have it. and you know it.
      • jenny: also, can we please acknowledge that SPAZ is a 20-year old+ collective that raises funds for radical causes and is amazing? i love SPAZ as much as every other collective that's part of this project, but it's robb's toxic BS that essentially rendered their participation in omni moot.
    • jenny: last time i was at omni, i was helping silver and lukas build the fridge container. robb's only interaction (not even a 'hello') was to pace about us smoking and then finally demand, "where you gonna hook up the power?" also with hands on hips like we were little children to be chastised rather than comrades to help think through optimal solutions. i mean, really, wtf?
  • erica: is there... robb says he doesn't have powerful position, but maybe it's implicit/undefined? seems like self regulating each other is not working and there needs ot be another system other than there being 1 person who's feeling responsible for reminding and not so gently reminding everyone to follow the rules? we're in a challenging time and everything's harder
  • maryann: when covid happened, delegates assigned 3 people to be responsible for omni while it was shut down. the rest of us had to work at home except essential services. one of them disappeared, i think he left his collective and is no longer around. another person was out of town for a fairly lengthy time and i think was involved in moving into a new space. that left robb. he was assigned to be responsible for the building. at that time, i don't think noma existed. if it did, it wasn't the project that it's evolved into during covid. so there's a lot of kind of uncertainty. it's a different dynamic than when the building is completely open and we're doing the things we normally do. so idk how that's affecting what's going on but it may be playing a role. for me it's very hard to make decisions or hear about what's happening and not be able to be there & see it, and not even know some of the poeple involved in it. i'm listening and trying to clarify that point.
  • yar: had i been in the meeting, i would have opposed the creation of "head bastard" position and nominating robb. he's also the treasurer and thus an officer for the organization. lots of people don't feel comfortable with robb. he keeps filling powerful positions. it's not ok that people have to tiptoe around the problems with robb. robb should internalize the fact that people have expressed they don't feel comfortable with him in the room. (I'm sorry i'm doing a bad job notetaking for you -vicky) jenny is participating in the meeting by adding notes to the riseup pad.
  • what yar really said: "if someone told ME they feel uncomfortable sahring space with ME, i would do everything i could to solve that problem before expanding like a gas to fill every void in the organization"
    • jenny: wow that's so well-said. yeah, i never saw that proposal on the consensus list. and would have blocked personally as well as (to speak on behalf of sudo mesh) organizationally.
  • silver: i'm aware of building protocols, respect building 100%, maybe we need to put work & love into the structure rather than just enforcing. robb loves enforcing rules on me but not to white folks, just me. that meeting was specifically for inventory for mutual aid. we needed to see what was there. maybe it should've been pre-spoken about but it was specifically for mutual aid work. robb, so many times you come out and yell at me and tell me i'm a bad person cuz i'm trying to do something malicious. i don't want to do anything bad. wrt the conflict you mentioned - he's my best friend, we went through an accountability process, he reached out to you and you didn't want to be part of it. conflict isn't abuse, but you've been abusive to me. i think you do come from a white supremist angle. it's usually to black & brown queer & trans folks that come to omni. something to reflect on, not to get upset & defensive abuot. just my own words.
    • robb: i never said they were a bad person
    • silver: i have a recording of you at anka's bday party treating me like shit
    • robb: i said there were things you've done
    • yar: i've been taking notes about everything you're saying, and a reasonable person could interpret what you've said just a half hour ago as calling silver a bad person. those are your words, i wrote them down for you.
  • vicky: i have a hard time trusting your reporting of a situation. it was 7 people, not 15. i'm taking things you say with a grain of salt.
  • erica: trust seems to be an issue in the group in general. i was not here today to specifically do conflict mediation. my take is that's what's needed, and some laid out... building protocols haven't been updated in 8 years?
    • jenny: we've only existed for 6.. and plenty updated in commons WG contracts & processes..
    • yar: first thursday meetings were in late 2013, first official "delegates meeting" was almost exactly 7 years ago: https://omnicommons.org/wiki/Event:2014/02/06_Bootstrapping_Meeting
      • i'm liking this debate way more than the prior convo haha. wow this page is gold
      • "BAD" - "Bitches for Absolute Destruction" - Feminist collective - facili*cating ass-beating, breeding
      • somebody into fighting
      • propaganda collective"
      • lol - gold...
      • jenny: but we didn't have "building protocols" until about 2015 (cuz we only moved in fall 2014) :) my point was moreover that we've definitely evolved building protocols, rules and cultural norms around the space since then, anyways. the issue is not "enforcement of rules" (well, that mentality is in and of itself an issue), but rather, effective transmission and evolution of essential cultural norms and practices that are inherently necessary to keep the space... and keep it as a *safe* space, rather than a replica of police state BS.
  • erica: something to look at. structural things, there's been a lot of transition in the org. when orgs transition with members, all the things that build that have to be looked at again. a new group of people is consenting to things they weren't part of creating. after a time you have to rehash things. wondering what omni's budget is for conflict mediation or mental health help. sounds like people need to have some other outlet to talk to. joe said talking about things as they happen more. as they come out. silver says they have. but seems like you need a formal process for conflic tto go through. does omni have that? if so, revisit how that works.
  • maryann: when conflict between robb & silver originated, there was mediation planned & requested, but it took several months to get an answer from that person, and they turned it down. when a conflict's ongoing it festers, sucks more people into it. i think the helpful thing would be if we were able to get to mediation much faster. perhaps we need an internal mechanism to approach these immediately, and perhaps it could have a direct contact with maybe a specific mediation group or person, whatever, with the ability to resolve it much faster.
  • robb: we do have a mediation process, i've always been willing to engage in it, but i've never seen it successfully engaged from beginning to end. idk if it's too difficult or takes too much emotional labor or they burn out. but we have a process. takes more than just 1 willing party.
  • silver: i think one demand is, denouncing some power robb has been beholding. by not being a cop at omni. perhaps removing himself from the tower room. (++-jnny) those are 2 specific demands i'd have to make the space safer. he also sleeps there, so that needs to be addressed
    • robb: that's simply not true. i walk by sidewalk folks every morning
    • silver: i have photos of you sleeping at omni
    • robb: i passed out drinking a little bit, i admit it, someone snapped a picture at a party, you had an event here
      • jenny: <robb manipulates narrative to make silver the bad grrl>
    • silver: this was during covid
  • yar: we have $1500 for seeds
    • silver: i think it's way beyond that. it's robb's power and making black & brown people feel unsafe.
  • vicky: i think it'd be helpful if robb was removed from the powerful roles he has during this process
  • robb: i agreed with yar not to enforce things in building. i saw people sleeping in entrance hall but i won't say anything, i'm not supposed to. i have refrained. i haven't told anyone anything.
    • jenny: dude that is so not the point. it's how you enforce. we all care about omni. if telling them to sleep elsewhere is an issue, reach out to community for support. also you totally just told us, anyway :P
  • erica: things need to be addressed that we don't have time for tonight. but a list and several ideas to start working with, if people can agree to do another meeting and how that's gonna look. it seems a little hard for me to figure out when the center of conflict is around one person, to have a whole group of people trying to address that with one person. do people have ideas of other meeting styles to have that conversation? if there's money set aside for mediation it doesn't have to be betwee silver & robb. there's many ways for it to happen.
    • yar: can you name an alternative you have in mind?
    • erica: i heard silver & vicky ask robb for specific things. the room & the power changes. two really good places to start without addressing all the other things we talked about. with a mediator present. doesn't have to just be those 2 things. start to narrow in rather than getting super wide, with all the feelings.
      • jenny: i've gone through a SEEDS mediation. one thing i like about it is the signing of an agreement by both parties at the conclusion, with tangible commitments (eg; "I will not perpetually occupy the panopticon" [though that should probably get more specific])
  • yar fears that holding robb accountable could lead to blowback from him but we should still try it.
    • robb: tbh a lot of criticism is "robb's always here". several homeless people in our community do the maintenance, take out trash, collect mail, put out bucket when the roof is leaking. but i'm the only one people have a problem with cuz i'm the only one who reminds people what our rules are. everyone else would walk right by someone who's sleeping. if i was told i wans't allowed to be in the building - i'm homeless - i'd probably move back to missouri. if i'm not allowed to be in omni i'd have to move. i'm living out of my van. i don't have the werewithal to do a whole... if i didn't have this place as something to do & focus on, idk. ... i don't sleep in the building. that's bullshit. i've fallen asleep drunk, but so has silver, so have a bunch of people. it's usually just for a little bit, someone wakes you up. i sleep in my van. i don't have like, a sleeping bag at omni.
    • robb says he's ok with this being in the notes
      • jenny: now we getting somewhere. i can attest robb doesn't sleep at omni, though there are circumstances (i've crashed after a work party, as have others, or for other reasons, not gonna open that can o worms) - it's perpetual habitation and dependency that become problematic. these are deeper issues than randomly crashing out at omni. you *occupy* omni 24/7 (but don't even act like a fellow Occupier comrade anymore)
  • silver: i request robb to not speak to me until we finish with a mediator. i need that to be respected.
    • robb: we need to coordinate on food bank runs
    • silver: coming and telling me what to do is not ok. don't talk to me in person about anything other than food bank runs.
    • robb: i have no problem with that
    • silver: i had to tell you 10 different times now, just letting you know that.
  • maryann doesn't want to have too many more meetings
  • vicky suggests we take final hour of next delegates meeting to continue
  • robb: we don't have authority to impose an agenda on delegates, it's up to them to take up matters. we can bring it up as a topic for discussion, but we can't tell them what to do.
    • jenny: we can absolutely put it on the agenda under Conflicts. and it's not like the COVID-era agenda is packed.... this is hella important.
  • yar will propose that we spend an hour on this next week. 8pm-9pm next thursday. hope they agree.
  • yar will wait a bit for notes to settle and then post these to wiki at ~9:30 or 10