Common Weal North Glasgow meeting 10 December 2014

Apologies for the delay in the summary – December has its way of taking a toll!
 
The Common Weal North Glasgow held its fourth meeting on 10 December 2014. The meeting was also the last meeting of the CWNG group of 2014, a year that has saw political awareness and social justice reach a new level in the public agenda.
 
Twelve hardy souls braved the storm and found their way to Bacchus near the Merchant City. The meeting served as a summary of CWNG working groups to date and we had a brief discussion on how we plan to move forward in 2015.
 
Housekeeping
  • CWNG will continue with a rolling chair to allow everyone the chance to lead and ensure no one person is burdened with the front of house duties. In this regard Lindsay will chair the next meeting.
  • Meetings will take place fortnightly on a Mon-Tue-Wed rolling basis. The first meeting of 2015 will be 6 January 2015.
  • CWNG is still looking for volunteers who may wish to assist with treasurer duties. If anyone has experience in this area and wishes to either assist or guide the group in this regard, we would be grateful for your help.
Launch Event – 17th April 2015
  • CWNG is hosting a Launch Event to celebrate the birth of Common Weal local groups around Glasgow.
  • The date is 17th April 2015
  • The venue is the Queen Margaret Union (QMU) – a venue with 900 person capacity
  • There will be a call for volunteers to help with all aspects of Event Organisation once we return in the new year.
 
Commons Café
  • The options for the Commons Café continue to be explored and there are a number of options which could be feasible over different timescales. These include: pop-up venues, permanent public space, temporary spaces (eg. Edinburgh model), cooperative ventures across the city.
  • In early 2015 we aim to pull together these options and create some form of business plan or project plan which will allow us to proceed with one or more of these options on varying timescales. 
  • Anyone with an interest in a Glasgow Commons Café or in creating a working plan to implement the café can get involved at our next meeting.
General Election Campaign
  • We continue to work on a campaign for providing a local Common Weal interpretation and analysis of the General Election options in Glasgow next May.
  • We have been working towards comparing the realistic options available to the electorate under the first past the post system. To date we have found a wealth of information on existing MPs however it has proved difficult finding evidence of a social justice track record (or in fact any info at all) on the candidates challenging the seats. 
  • It was discussed that we should provide a critique of the existing candidates and then separately compare the parties through the Common Weal lens.
  • In order to make our campaign relevant to local areas we should do some form of market research in local areas to find out communities top priorities. This will allow us to respond to communities in a meaningful way.
  • At the next meeting we will look to set out a time frame so we can realistically achieve a meaningful campaign.
Online Group
  • As a support group to the other groups within CWNG, the online group are looking forward to publicising and promoting the activities of the larger group throughout 2015.
  • In the new year, it has been agreed that there should be at least one original blog post per week, from any member of CWNG to raise issues within the community.
 
In the year of the referendum, Scottish politics was not just a side show to Westminster. Political change has been driven by the desire of both Yes and No voters desire for something better. This year has seen massive electorate engagement, growth of Scottish parties such as Greens, SNP and SSP, the birth of new media outlets, a rebirth in left wing activism, a new first minister for Scotland and further devolution measures being debated for all UK nations.
 
As we wish you all a lovely Christmas and New Year, we can square our shoulders and know that we are part of the ongoing social movement to make Scotland a better place to live
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