Minutes of AGM, 2 September 2019

  • Meeting called to order at 1845, conducted by Joni & Luna
  • Members of previous Trans Pride Leeds committee present: Joni, Luna, Olivia
  • Introduction, name & pronoun-round

1st Agenda Item: Overview and Feedback from TPL 2019 - led by Joni

  • All feedback discussed comprised of feedback taken from the community following TPL 2019
  • Attendance
    • Good attendance! Over 200 people marching, same as TPL 2018 - no dip in attendance, which is positive
  • Good press response - no transphobic articles
  • No TERFs!
    • TERFs don’t come to trans events because there’s nobody there for them to persuade
  • Feedback note from the community: Why weren’t roads closed?
    • Response:
      • Not enough of us - smaller event so Leeds City Council has less incentive to pay for road closing
      • TPL, unlike Leeds Pride, doesn’t bring in money: money lost from road closures at Leeds Pride is made back up
      • Leeds Pride does potentially pay for road closures (not sure) which TPL can’t afford
  • Accessibility was better this year:
    • Redirected march route as police sent us down a cobbled street last year
    • Council provided access bus
  • People would have preferred more planning and notice of events in advance as last year it seemed last-minute
  • Organising seemed ‘cliquey’
    • Response:
      • More democratic structure (why this AGM is happening)
  • Where were other trans groups? (i.e GI, Mermaids)
    • The groups were contacted repeatedly and persistently over a long period of time in the lead-up to TPL, so the organising committee left them lots of reminders & plenty of time in advance
    • They either didn’t reply at all or didn’t want to come (with some saying it was too ‘political’)
    • Another issue was the fact TPL fell on Trans Day of Visibility last year so some orgs already had plans
  • TPL 2020 does not occur on Trans Day of Visibility so hopefully, we won’t encounter the same issue
  • Following feedback, it’s clear we need to make the process more accountable & led by elected trans people in Leeds

2nd Agenda Item: Why an AGM? - led by Luna

  • TPL 2019 was organised by 4 people, with 9 events over 4 days
  • This year it was decided to have an AGM to make organising less ‘cliquey’
  • Issues found by last year’s committee:
    • Had previous commitments - by opening it up to the community we can ensure that people are taking on commitments they definitely have capacity & time for
    • Previous organisers all involved with either TransLeeds or Nonbinary Leeds - this means more existing commitments as well as potential conflicts of interest
    • The small committee meant a lot of collective over-exhaustion
    • Another struggle with last year’s TPL committee was the lack of clear-cut roles: it can get very messy
  • Roles are very important - set up so new committee knows what’s expected of them
    • Accountable democratic processes make responsibility more community-oriented & collective
    • It’s also good on a CV
  • TPL is the first Northern Trans Pride - we had one before London even
  • We’ve previously had 2 weeks of events
  • Bearing that in mind: incoming committee needs networks, accountability, support!
  • We need to make that support happen

3rd Agenda Item: Committee Positions - Joni & Luna

  • It was initially planned to have 7 positions: Chair, Treasurer, Administrator, Outreach, Equity & Accessibility, Volunteer Co-ordinator, Marketing & Publicity
  • We now only have 5 - we are missing Chair and Marketing & Publicity due to nobody standing for those roles
    • The decision to downsize to 5 roles was made in collaboration with the incoming committee
  • The previous committee suggests a reduced programme
    • Will be smaller and different from what the website currently is planning but will be manageable for a smaller number of people
  • The odd number of committee members is important so there are no deadlocks

4th Agenda Item: What are the roles - led by Luna

The Treasurer is responsible for:

  • Creating and maintaining budgets
  • Sending and receiving invoices and donations
  • Making Payments
  • Keeping financial records

The Outreach Coordinator will be responsible for:

  • Engaging with communities, relevant institutions and groups
  • Working with Equity and Accessibility Coordinator to understand the needs and requirements of various community groups to help facilitate their involvement and engagement
  • Working with the Marketing & Communications Coordinator to see that communities are effectively engaged with.

The Marketing and Communications Coordinator will be responsible for:

  • Promotions, Press and Social Media
  • Overseeing the acquiring of merchandise, lanyards, hi-vis etc. as well as the sale of merchandise.
  • Working with Outreach Coordinator to ensure effective engagement of community groups.

The Chair of the Committee will be responsible for:

  • Planning and facilitating meetings and meeting agendas
  • Co-working on the creation of policies with relevant committee members
  • Providing supporting other committee members
  • Representing the organisation where necessary

Please Note: The Chair of the committee is not a role designed to create an unjust hierarchy within the committee. The Chair’s role should primarily be one of providing support and to help other members of the committee when needed. The Chair will also be responsible for breaking deadlock decisions the committee has reached.

This role cannot be filled by anyone who is a member of staff or facilitator at any local trans, non-binary or intersex groups or institutions working with the community.

Any conflict of interest or accountability processes must be declared in an expression of interest and at the AGM as with every other role.

The Volunteer Coordinator will be responsible for:

  • Recruiting and inducting volunteers
  • Overseeing staffing of events by Trans Pride Leeds committee and volunteers
  • Ensuring that volunteers access needs are met
  • Seeing that safeguarding and safer spaces agreements are adhered to by volunteers

The Equity and Accessibility Coordinator will be responsible for:

  • Ensuring that all venues and events are accessible and that any accessibility needs are met
  • Ensuring equitable access to Trans Pride Leeds spaces, paying attention to making sure working class, underclass and those on low incomes have access to all events as well as paying particular attention to White Supremacy and Unconscious Bias within the committee, the organising process and Trans Pride Leeds events
  • Leading on Safeguarding, Safer Spaces Agreements

The Administrator will be responsible for:

  • The general email account and re-directing emails as needed
  • Taking minutes at meetings, keeping records, overseeing feedback processes and collating data
  • Overseeing organisation of all shared workspaces such as a Google Drive and shared calendars etc.
  • Working with other members of the committee to ensure effective communication

5th Agenda Item - Statements & Election - led by Joni and Luna

  • Statements are short & simple
    • Who you are & why you want the role
    • Voting occurs after each speech
    • Conflicts of interest/concerns/questions raised after each speech

Equity & Accessibility:

Gellar’s statement

  • This is what they already do
    • They were the Trans LibCo at Leeds University Union
      • Put their Pride Month ‘Focus on Trans’ campaign together basically singlehandedly
    • Responsible for Flesh in Tension’s safer spaces policy
      • Both the creation of the policy and ensuring it is followed/concerns are dealt with
  • Trans Pride Leeds is important and needs people to get involved

Question: How will you protect yourself from burnout if elected to the role?

Response:

  • Not new to organising - used to coping with burnout
  • Happy to tell people and communicate boundaries
  • Happy to ensure that work still gets done by organising/communicating

Question: Noting that the AGM is all white people, how will you ensure racial diversity at TPL?

Response:

  • Important to reach out and make links with groups like OurSpace, which Gellar already has links to
  • Committed to anti-racist work
  • Liaise and go to relevant community groups, listen and follow the lead of people of colour
  • Comfortable with addressing racism and lack of diversity, not letting it go unsaid

Vote: elected (3/3 votes)

Outreach:

Robin’s statement

  • Project worker/youth worker at Barnardo’s and GI for 2½ years
    • Involves a lot of outreach & bridging gaps
  • Specific interest in making space for young people and mixed-age spaces
  • Interest in working closely with Gellar to create outreach to marginalised communities

Question: How will you protect yourself from burnout if elected to the role?

  • Used to doing this work already
  • Good communicator
  • The responsibility of coping with burnout is often pushed onto individuals - need to create a community culture of care

Question: How will you reach out to younger & older trans people?

  • Because of youth work at GI, Robin is the person they would reach out to!
    • In a position to make links with younger trans people
    • Has access to communicate directly with groups of younger trans people
    • Connections with Young People’s Network in Yorkshire
  • Connecting with older trans people:
    • Getting in touch with Sage and Open Doors
    • Have an event specifically bringing younger & older trans people together

Vote: elected (3/3 votes)

Volunteer Coordinator:

Lea’s statement

  • TPL & volunteering is a lot of fun!
  • Volunteer last year at Trans Pride Leeds at Leeds City Museum
  • Ideas to improve volunteer experience, use of volunteers & volunteer programme
  • Has contacts across community to bring people together
  • Used to running groups for trans & nonbinary people

Question: How will you protect yourself from burnout if elected to the role?

  • Used to running D&D (involves herding the useless)
    • So good at planning and pulling things together
    • Good at communicating & delegating

Question: Do you have a policy on the identification, usage & development of skills?

  • Honestly: not sure, hoping to improve understanding of this
  • Offering people opportunities to try new things
  • Encouraging people to get involved

Question: are you willing to work with other committee members to ensure diversity of volunteers?

  • Yes - wanting to work with other committee members with contacts in different communities

Comment: volunteering is a good way to get older people involved

  • Yes - we’re looking for a wider variety of roles

Comment (Joni): finding out what volunteers were needed was very last-minute last year - hard to figure out what other event organisers needed in volunteers. It will be about committee working together - ‘this role is responsible for what shape [an] event takes’

Vote: elected (3/3 votes)

Treasurer:

Wren’s statement

  • No direct experience of being a treasurer - but a lot of organisational experience (Wren is a librarian) including time management, scheduling, emailing, and general admin
  • Involved in planning & taking minutes for Dyke Pride
    • (Best minutes ever)
  • Organiser/one of the people who started Hear Trans Voices
  • Previously a board member of Leeds Roller Dolls - so used to being part of a committee, doing independent & group work

Question: How will you protect yourself from burnout if elected to the role?

  • Mental health is stressful but has a strong support network/knows limits & when to step back
  • Good communicator
  • Treasurer isn’t the most intensive role, provided there is good planning/organisation

Comment from Luna: has already had a meeting w Wren to discuss the commitments of the role etc

Comment from Leo: not asking the burnout question to gatekeep committee members struggling w/mental health - it’s just important to have a commitment to self-care and communication made going into TPL planning, with some mention of what support might be needed to share responsibility

Question: Handling the minutiae of banking can be stressful - are you prepared for that

  • Previous experience in customer service means they’re used to being patient, happy to handle banking in person

Comment: Organising signatories, keeping track of where money is is also stressful

  • Used to doing detective work in the library and figuring out where money’s gone, as well as being trained to cash up

Vote: elected (3/3 votes)

Adminstrator:

Flo’s statement (read out by Luna because Flo was unable to attend):

  • Introverted but still looking forward to contributing
  • Used to admin work: being on committees like their housing co-op committee
  • Treasurer of small world community arts centre
  • On several network committees - including international committees that take place entirely online so used to working with shared google drives, skype meetings etc

Vote: elected (3/3 votes)