Member Statements on 2023-08-GR13: Increasing Resolution Transparency

This is a thread of member statements on the proposed resolution “Increasing Resolution Transparency

IN FAVOR by Alex M.T. (They/her)

Hello Comrades, I encourage you to vote for this resolution. Democracy, as you know, takes work, and our lives are already so full of the activism and obligations we already do. Maybe you have a job, go to school, or do both. Perhaps you are taking care of children or a loved one? Whatever the reason, your voice matters, and we need to build systems that allow our members to participate in our internal democracy. Right now, there is no minimum for the number of days that must be given to a member to write a statement for or against a resolution (literally what I am doing right now), and that means in the past, we have given members as short a window as two days to prepare one. Tell me, do you always have the time in your life to learn about an issue (even one you care about) and motivate for it in as short a period as two days? That is a tall hurdle for everyone but the most engaged of members. This resolution seeks to change that by requiring at least one week for members to be able to prepare a statement for or against a resolution. It also pushes our Chapter to send notifications for such resolutions via email rather than just on Slack, as it has in the past. Join me and the other members of the Community & Solidarity Caucus in passing this resolution and making our Chapter that much more accountable to its membership. With Solidarity & Cooperation, Alex

IN FAVOR by Kaiser F. (They/them)

Hi Comrades! I’m reprising some of my comments that I made in favor of this resolution at the last GBM. In short, this establishes a method and timeframe for notifying members of (1) when there will be a vote on a resolution, and (2) when statements for/against it can be submitted, in a way that greatly increases the chances of more members seeing it in time to engage with the process. I’d like folks to consider that all of us, from those actively organizing to those who are busy with other aspects of life, can have a difficult time keeping up with chapter business day-to-day. Since there is no current timeline (aside from the two-reader process), it’s possible for a major resolution to be read at a GBM and voting to start just 1-2 days later – meaning that someone can completely miss out on providing input if they’re too busy for just those 1-2 days to check every Slack channel or forum post. Under this resolution, the fastest timeline (barring emergencies) would allow for at least a week to gather statements and require an email notifying members in advance, similar to how members are already notified of OpaVote ballots. (I’m including a figure if this helps visualize.) This will make future resolutions and bylaw changes much more visible before voting begins, so I urge you to vote in favor.

IN FAVOR by Les P. (He/him)

To me, this seems like a common sense resolution aimed at strengthening our chapter by bringing as many members as possible into the internal processes of our chapter. I don’t think there are necessarily barriers to participating in the resolution process currently, but it was a bit confusing when I first joined the chapter, and I admit there have been times where votes on resolutions have passed me by during a particular busy time with work or other obligations. The steps outlined in this resolution are simple, pragmatic, material steps that will lend more structure to our organization’s practice of mass politics and, I believe, will not only lead to more members engaging in voting on or participating in other parts of the process for resolutions - ideally, it will also spur more members to take the next step and plug into other socialist organizing work. For that reason, I urge all comrades to vote YES on this resolution!

IN FAVOR by Preston K. (He/him)

Greetings, comrades. I encourage members of Metro DC DSA to vote in support of Increasing Resolution Transparency. As we strive to achieve the goals of a democratically-run socialist organization, it is imperative that we choose to err on the side of increased transparency, accessibility, discussion, and participation whenever possible. By passing this resolution, we can ensure that all members of our chapter have time to ponder and discuss issues brought before us in order to make informed and nuanced decisions, and are informed as to how to submit opinions on those decisions to the body as a whole. An actively informed body is to the benefit of us all.