East Bay DSA Steering Committee Email Vote Minutes, March 27–April 11, 2018
The following votes were made by members of the East Bay DSA Steering Committee via email between the date of April 3 and April 11.
Steering Committee Minutes
On March 27, the Steering Committee voted 10 in favor and none opposed to approve the minutes of the March 18, 2018 Steering Committee meeting.
University of California Strike Endorsement
On April 4, 2018, the co-chair of the Steering Committee, Mary Virginia, motivated the following proposal, which was approved by a vote of 12 in favor and none opposed.
Whereas, as socialists, the East Bay Democratic Socialists of America are committed to supporting working class struggle and the rights of working people to all the value that their labor creates;
Whereas, as socialists, we recognize the centrality and importance of labor struggle in not only improving the lives of working people, but in building their power as a class;
Whereas, the University of California is both a public institution and one of the state's largest employers; as such, the UC bears an important responsibility in setting standards for living wages and good working conditions;
Whereas, there are many current EBDSA members working and/or studying within the UC system, and UC Berkeley in particular
Whereas, several major statewide union contracts with the University are currently expired, with bargaining talks stalled or in impasse procedure. This includes:
- AFSCME 3299, a local of American Federation of State County, and Municipal Employees, AFL-CIO, which represents 24,000 service and patient care workers at UC campuses and hospitals, including custodians, groundskeepers, food service workers, as well as X-ray techs, nursing assistants, respiratory therapists, and other frontline patient care workers.
- UPTE-CWA 9119, the University Professional and Technical Employees, a local of the Communication Workers of America, AFL-CIO, which represents nearly 15,000 licensed healthcare, technical and research workers at the UC, including social workers, pharmacists, staff researchers, and employees in media technology.
- The California Nurses Association, which represents 12,000 nurses at UC hospitals, clinics, and student health centers.
Additionally, The UC Student Workers' Union (UAW 2865), a union of over 17,000 academic student employees across the statewide UC system, is currently in bargaining with the university.
Whereas, the University of California is a strategic site of intervention in the struggle against austerity and privatization of our most important public institutions, as well as an important site of class struggle. The UC is currently run by an appointed and unaccountable board of political donors hand-chosen from the state's billionaire class, who manage the university like a for-profit corporation, while looting it for their own gain;
Whereas, the University of California is currently offering workers wages that do not keep pace with the skyrocketing costs of living, while cutting healthcare benefits, and important protections to job security and good working conditions;
Whereas, AFSCME 3299 has partnered with UC students to demand sanctuary policies as well as contractual guarantees that UC will not cooperate with Immigrations and Customs Enforcement to target the campus community, and the University has refused to address these concerns;
Whereas, AFSCME 3299 has expressed concerns about the declining numbers of African-American workers on campus and demanded that the UC implement "ban the box" and fair chance hire policies to address the effects of the racist criminal justice system on black communities, and the University has refused;
Whereas, it has been shown that public sector union jobs have played an important role in uplifting African-American workers. The struggle for workers rights is the struggle for racial justice--any assault on public sector unions, and especially a refusal to facilitate access to union jobs for black communities, perpetuates economic inequality and structural racism.
Therefore be it resolved that EBDSA fully endorses and supports these ongoing labor struggles at the University of California, as a strategic site of class struggle and the fight against neoliberal austerity;
Be it further resolved that EBDSA Steering Committee will work with the Labor Team and any other interested groups within the chapter to facilitate support for the contract campaigns of UC unions, including but not limited to collaborating on events or demonstrations, raising awareness among chapter membership as well as other California DSA chapters, and supporting any other worker actions.
Night School Curriculum
On April 4, 2018, vice chair Frances R. put the following proposal to the Steering Committee for an email vote. The proposal was written by appointed organizer. Dan D. The proposal passed by a vote of 12 in favor and none opposed.
Whereas, funding for the East Bay DSA night school has been approved through May 2018.
Whereas, the curriculum for the remaining three classes have not been submitted to the Local Council for approval.
Therefore, the proposed curriculum and readings below are submitted for approval.
4/17/18 The New Wave of Resistance: The Teachers' Strikes in Context
- Cathy Kunkel "Saving West Virginia" Jacobin
- Meagan Day "It Was About The Insurance Fix" Jacobin
- Eric Blanc "The Lesson of West Virginia" Jacobin
- Kevin Prosen "Do-It-Yourself Class Struggle" Jacobin
- Ben and Sarah Manski "It Started in Wisconsin" Jacobin
- Shaun Richman "If the Supreme Court rules against unions, conservatives won't like what happens next" WaPo
5/1/18 The Capitalist State
- Option 1
- Option 2
5/15/18 A Socialist Strategy for Today
- Sam Gindin "Building a Mass Socialist Party" Jacobin
- Vivek Chibber "Our Road to Power" Jacobin
- Asbjørn Wahl "The Left in Government - A Strategic Project" Socialist Project
- Optional (Response to Chibber)
Daniel Deck, Appointed Internal Organizer
Labor Movement Pamphlet
On April 7, 2018, co-chair Molly A. put forward the following proposal, motivated by Jeremy G. for an email vote by the Steering Committee. The proposal passed with 12 in favor and none opposed.
Proposal to Pre-Order Labor Movement Pamphlet
By Jeremy Gong, 3/27
Whereas East Bay DSA is committed to educating our members and the public on the labor movement.
Therefore be it resolved that EBDSA will pledge $250 to pre-order 100 copies of the pamphlet called "NO POWER GREATER: Socialism and the U.S. Labor Movement" by Chris Maisano, Dan La Botz, and Stephanie Luce.
Therefore be it further resolved that EBDSA will distribute these pamphlets, once received, for a suggested donation of $5 each to members at our events. The labor team will use these pamphlets in future labor education efforts.
Renters Rising 2018 Endorsement
On April 7, 2018 Co-Chair Molly A put forward the following proposal from the EBDSA housing committee for an email vote by the SC. The proposal passed with 12 in favor and none opposed.
DEMOCRATIC SOCIALISTS OF AMERICA, EAST BAY CHAPTER
RESOLUTION ENDORSING "RENTERS RISING 2018" ACTIONS
WHEREAS, the membership of East Bay DSA overwhelmingly approved a resolution endorsing the repeal Costa-Hawkins, and committed to campaigning for the passage of a ballot measure to repeal it, at its February 25, 2018, meeting; and
WHEREAS, DSA chapters in Los Angeles, San Francisco and Sacramento have also endorsed the campaign to repeal Costa-Hawkins; and
WHEREAS, East Bay DSA, along with some of our sister DSA chapters in California, has participated in statewide coalition meetings convened by the Alliance of Californians for Community Empowerment (ACCE), a proponent of the ballot measure to repeal Costa-Hawkins; and
WHEREAS, East Bay DSA has closely partnered with ACCE locally, including at the Bay Area launch of the repeal campaign and in canvassing to gather signatures on ballot petitions; and
WHEREAS, ACCE is sponsoring a "Renters Rising 2018" event in Sacramento on Sunday, April 22 and Monday, April 23, which is intended as a day and a half of workshops, trainings, and solidarity, including a rally on the steps of the Capitol and lobbying of our state decision-makers; and
WHEREAS, ACCE has invited DSA chapters to co-sponsor this event; and
WHEREAS, our chapter's co-sponsorship will express and promote both our solidarity with ACCE and renters organizing statewide to build power as a class, and our membership's commitment to campaign to repeal Costa-Hawkins;
THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that East Bay DSA endorses and agrees to co-sponsor "Renters Rising 2018";
THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that the co-chairs of East Bay DSA's housing subcommittee will communicate that endorsement to ACCE; and
THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that East Bay DSA and its housing subcommittee will make efforts to turn out our members to "Renters Rising 2018."
[This text is from ACCE's description of the event: "Tenants and other housing justice warriors are coming together at a scale not seen in decades in California. Local coalitions are working to put rent control and just cause eviction on the November 2018 ballot in a number of cities across the state. A statewide coalition is working to put the repeal of the Costa Hawkins Rental Housing Act, the state law that prevents local government from enacting strong rent control, on the state ballot in November. Gubernatorial candidates and state legislative candidates are being pushed on these issues at forum after forum across the state."]
Nomination of Jovanka Beckles and Gayle McLaughlin for National Endorsement
On April 8, co-chair Mary Virginia put forward the following proposal to the Steering Committee for an email vote. The proposal passed with 11 in favor and none opposed.
Proposal to Nominate Jovanka Beckles and Gayle McLaughlin for National DSA Endorsement
Whereas, the membership of EBDSA voted to endorse both Jovanka Beckles and Gayle McLaughlin with ‘substantive resources', and
Whereas a national DSA endorsement would garner both candidates some amount of additional publicity, possibly leading to additional donations or long-distance phone banking, as other chapters have done in past elections, and
Whereas nominations for the summer round of endorsements are currently open, and
Whereas both candidates meet the criteria for national endorsement:
- Be an open socialist
- Be running to win – not just send a message
- Be nominated by a local DSA chapter
Therefore be it resolved that EBDSA shall nominate both candidates as soon as possible for a national endorsement, using this form:
Be it resolved, Jamie Gardner shall bottom-line submitting the nominations, by preparing answers to the questionnaire, sharing those answers with Zach McDonald and the co-chairs for review, and submitting the form online.
Support for Audit of Alameda County Sheriff's Department
On April 8, 2018, co-chair Mary Virginia put the following proposal motivated by Secretary Benjamin F. to the Steering Committee for an email vote. After discussion, the proposal passed with 10 in favor and none opposed.
Time Sensitive, Deadline for decision: 4/10/2018
Proposal to sign on to a letter requesting an audit of the Alameda County Sherrif's department and to offer support as appropriate to the Ella Baker Center for Human Rights' campaign to audit Chief Ahern's Sheriff's department. Motivated by Benjamin Fife, Secretary EBDSA
Whereas: As socialists the EBDSA recognizes that funding for the police and jails is often used to justify austerity policies that harm the working class and,
Whereas: As socialists we understand the manifold ways in which the police, jail and prison systems defend the property and interests of the capitalist classes and,
Whereas: As socialists we see how current practices of policing and jailing dispossess working class people to the benefit of the capitalist class and,
Whereas: As socialists we see the ways in which racist practices of policing and jailing contribute to the segregation of the working class and amount to a frontal assault on our ability to organize as a class and,
Whereas: While Over the past 10 years the Alameda County jail population has decreased by 44%, yet the Sheriff's budget has doubled to a total of $404 million this year and,
Whereas: Transparent accounting and a clear understanding of the Sheriff's Department's expenditures and operations, will allow more people to push back against the austerity logic that pits funding for the Sheriff's department against adequate funding for social services and diverse community needs, and
Whereas: a coalition of East bay organizations including American Friends Service Committee and the Justice Reinvestment Coalition, are endorsing the Ella Baker Center for Human Rights' campaign to audit the Alameda County Sheriff's Department.
Whereas: EBDSA has been invited by community and DSA members active with the Ella Baker Center for Human rights to join them in requesting an audit of the Sherriff's department's expenditures.
Be it resolved that the EBDSA will sign on as organizational supportersto the letter that the AFSC and Ella Baker Center For Human Rights will be presenting to the Alameda County Board of Supervisors.
Be it further resolved that EBDSA will provide organizational support when possible to aspects of this campaign including but not limited to noticing members of events related to the campaign and circulating petitions put out by Ella Baker Center for Human Rights related to the campaign among our members.
Authorization of Funds for Medicare for All Campaign Materials
On April 9. 2018, co-chair Molly A. put forward the following proposal for an email vote. The proposal passed with 10 in favor and none opposed.
Whereas a subsequent resolution will be moved to approve minor costs for button making
Be it resolved that East Bay DSA authorize the use of $2,000 to purchase the following Medicare for All campaign materials:
- 2500 pamphlets from Autumn Press = $850
- 75 t-shirts from Alliance graphics = ~$1,150
Be it resolved that any remaining funds from this allocation may be used to purchase M4A organizing booklets from National DSA.