welcome letter to new reps

General Service Conference meetings, agendas, and notes.
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* The business of the General Service Conference is discussed. We make decisions by group conscience, guided by higher power. Those elected as a trustee or delegate can vote on all GSC matters. GAAIS staff can vote on issues related to their area.
* Back and forth discussion of different perspectives is appropriate. We strive to be respectful of all.
* Anonymity reminds us to place principles before personalities.
Posts: 167
Joined: Thu Nov 19, 2020 10:53 pm

welcome letter to new reps

Post by Scott »

Hi new group representative to GSC! Thanks for your service to the fellowship. To help orient you, here are a few things to know.

You can register as a rep using the form at https://gaais.org/gsc

Your email will be added to the gsc@gaais.org email list and you can join the WhatsApp group where you’ll see a reminder of the upcoming meeting.

GSC consists of the trustees of GAA International Services and all group representatives. These are the voting members, as well as volunteer staff of GAAIS who can vote only on items affecting their work areas. All other members of GAA can attend and speak at GSC meetings, but do not have a vote.

GSC has a quorum of two-thirds, meaning that the GSC cannot make decisions unless two-thirds of reps are present. While it’s fine for you to occasionally miss a meeting, regular attendance is necessary to have quorum and make decisions. If you decide to stop attending GSC meetings, please let us know so that we no longer count you toward quorum.

The chairperson will email the agenda out at least a week in advance of each meeting. Please review the agenda items and see if you want to discuss any of them with other members of your group before the GSC meeting.

Agendas and notes are posted at https://gaais.org/forums so you can review them and report to your group.

As a rep, you have the right to vote, make motions, propose amendments, and participate in all matters on the GSC agenda. Here are some possible actions for reps during meetings.

Ask questions. Type a ? into the chat to notify the chair that you have a question. The chair may prioritize clarifying questions ahead of other discussion. Please ask questions if you don’t understand what is happening.

Speak to the issue. Raise your hand or type a * into the chat to get on the queue to speak to the current item.

Raise a Point Of Order. Type “point of order” to immediately address a problem with process or etiquette. For example, if a process step is skipped (like opening for discussion before the item has been introduced) or someone goes off topic, anyone can raise a point of order.

Add an item to the agenda. You can add a discussion item to the end of the agenda by giving it to the chair. Ideally it is sent a week in advance of the next meeting, but items can be added at any time.

Motion to table an item. If you want to discuss an item with your group before voting on it, you can make a motion to table it until the next meeting. You have the right to vote your conscience on any issue, but when a decision is impactful, you probably want to hear your group’s thoughts first.

Motion to move up an urgent item. For an item needing urgent attention, you can make a motion to move it to the top of the agenda.

Make a proposal or offer an amendment. During discussion, you can make a proposal to help resolve an item, preferably written out for clarity. You can also offer an amendment to the current proposal (which the proposer can accept or reject.)

Second someone else's proposal. If you agree with a proposal, you can support it by typing "second" into the chat. A proposal is not voted on or discussed extensively unless it is seconded.

Vote on a proposal. When the chair calls for a vote, you can vote Aye, Nay or Abstain. If you vote nay or abstain and haven’t already stated why, the chair may ask you to share your reasons so that the group has a chance to reconsider.

We resist the urge to simply vote our personal preferences. We let love and principles guide our vote. A call for a vote is asking of each participant, “Do I believe that the proposal meets all of the needs and concerns voiced? Is it better than the alternatives? Are there no further improvements to make?” As Tradition One says, “Our common welfare should come first; personal recovery depends upon GAA unity.” We vote to best serve the needs of all members and newcomers, as guided by higher power.

Decision making process works best when we assume positive intentions from everyone and work together. Group conscience process is not a debate between opposing sides where a small majority can override the needs and concerns of the minority. It is a process where we are all on the same side and strive for unanimous decisions. We start from the place of our common values such as recovery, service, and unity and craft solutions that satisfy everyone’s needs.