Wellness Basic Comm Agreements

We propose that the organizing group, as a whole, agree to establish a
basic set of communication agreements that would serve as a cornerstone
for healthy and accountable group process, which would allow for the
initiation of recourse if the agreements should be breached.

If this were to pass consensus, the next step would be to ask for
submissions for said agreements, for instance, we will not call each
other names, etc…
This proposal will also be offered on tonight's call (Goddess willing I
don't have a technology breakdown).


a few months ago i went through this process with the other camp i
help organize, witchlets. witchlets now has a provisional set of
communication agreements, for the organizers. i can share these.

my experience is that the most important part of this discussion is
what to do when there is conflict, when there is a breakdown in
communication, when someone's communication does not meet someone
else's needs. fawc does accept consensus minus one as a consensus
process, this is often the final step in conflict resolution for
consensus using groups.

there are lots of choices to work with conflict within consensus
besides consensus minus one. different quaker groups and the
federation of egalitarian communities have done this work.

i see one difficult conflict on the horizon for fawc, andy wanting to
rejoin organizing after this year. ross



ross and all,
i would really like to see the agreements, for if there is already a
template, so to speak, no need
to recreate that work. it would a useful "rough draft" that could
easily be customized
for our camp culture with our own specificity. i agree also about
responsiveness. that was my thinking too, if we have a baseline set of
agreements, if and when there is a "breach" of agreement, then there is
a place from which to move, a place from which to respond. i think that
anticipating conflict or difference of opinion, or inadvertent
transgressions of communication (in the broadest sense-not just verbal)
agreements, is not the same as invoking those energies. clearly we have
seen in the past, within the organizing for this camp, not to mention in
camp or culture in general, that conflict happens, that abuse of power
happens, that differences of opinion happens and sometimes happens to
so, the thought is if we are prepared with a "menu" of potential
responses then we may be prepared in a timely way with a proportionate
and contexually- based response.
what i mean, is that i wouldn't like to see a "if this happens, then the
set consequence is that…". that feels too much like homogenized
empire culture responsiveness and lends itself to retribution rather
than restoration of balance and healing and wholeness. what i would
rather see is a set of containers and processes than we, or
whomever would be available to be part of the responsiveness (and this
feels like another conversation altogether) that would allow for action
to be taken that is reasonable and related to the exact circumstances of
the situation. it would require a willingness to converse with all
parties and to find the best match for a possible response. i hope this
makes sense.
it might even be a "waterfall" of containers and processes, depending on
the situation. trying one container or process and then moving to
another, but being willing to adapt based on observation, intuition and

as for andy's potential re-entry, i too have anticipated this and have
been bringing it into the wellness group conversations. my thought is
that we have a facilitated discussion as the organizer's group and see
where that goes. i think it would be wise on our part to come from a
place of wary openness. wary of the patterns of the past and open to
what might be different in the future. i have been using the word
"catalyst" to reframe my own experiences into a more open possibility.
andy has catalyzed a number of important conversations about organizing
structures, consensus process and relationships to power. i am also
aware that not all is mended from the past, and i don't mean me,
although i still have some residual feelings about what has happened.
so, i think that too might be included in the discussion. i am holding
this as an opportunity to create, recreate, re-member, and reclaim some
important wisdoms for our culture of wellness, of healing and
wholeness. it is, i think, reasonable to expect that as we collectively
shift from dominator culture to relationship culture, that there will be
more encounters with catalysts. so the question is how to come to those
experiences with eyes and hearts open?

love to hear more thoughts and feelings.
with heart,

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