Freedman’s Town Project Meeting Minutes
Present: Swim, Amanda Renee, Shamus
Subject: Initial workgroup meeting for the Freedmen’s Town Project House
Background Info: It is through Amanda and Shamus’ work with Lynwood and Emily of the Freedmen’s Town National Historic District that Occupy Houston has affiliation with the duplex space at 1109 Genesee. The intention of this workgroup is to perform renovations on the space as part of a larger campus plan in the Freedmen’s Town District while providing an office space and workgroup storage** area for Occupy Houston. The Freedman’s Town Civil Rights Center leases the entire duplex, but only uses the 1111 space for its work, and has extended the 1109 space to us. The lease is in Emily’s name and she has given the keys to Shamus and Amanda, who are accountable for whatever happens in the property.
** Workgroup storage means storage for supplies necessary to the activities of workgroups. This does not mean personal items; this space is not infinite, and we need to ensure the clutter in the house remains minimal.
The following rules have been established to ensure proper use of the building:
- Clean up after yourself.
- Conserve resources.
- Smoke outside.
- Sign In/Out.
- IF staying for any amount of time, you must be working here.
- Respect Shaun and Amanda’s wishes, they are responsible for the house and what happens within it.
- To address concerns about access to the house, we have established that the house will be open daily from 8am-6pm. House access is limited to daylight hours for the time being as we do not have sufficient lighting to accommodate work efforts past sunset at this time.
- During these hours, volunteers may come over to assist in renovation efforts, or perform other Occupy Houston related tasks.
- Workgroups wishing to utilize the space for meetings, storage, or other work are welcome to come during the open hours, or to contact a FTPH workgroup volunteer about securing the space for after hours if necessary.
- FTPH meeting times will be on Wednesdays at 9 am and Sundays at 1pm.
- There will be no construction or physical labor on Sundays, and the group wishes to establish a weekly brunch to accompany the meeting.
- Efforts to obtain wireless internet are of high priority and are under way. One person has already offered to pay for our internet, we are hoping to have a Clear hotspot up and running by next week.
- Because the Freedman’s Town Civil Rights Center currently pays the bills for the entire duplex, use of the bathroom facilities by volunteers and workgroup members needs to be strictly limited.
- To address many concerns raised by other occupiers about the FTPH’s role in the ongoing movement, we agree to draft an email as a team explaining our involvement with Freedman’s Town and how this house is an asset and not a detraction from the efforts of Occupy Houston. The goal for completion and submission of the email is Sunday, December 4th.