Spring into Cooperation
Human Agenda and co-sponsors invite you to help understand & promote cooperatives in the South Bay this spring 2017. A three-part series of presentations, films, and dialogue. All events include lunch and will be held at the San Jose peace & Justice Center, 48 s. 7th street by SJSU.
Come see two short films by Mark Dworkin and Melissa Young of the most successful worker cooperative movements on planet earth.
WEconomics: Italy- a new report about what a more cooperative economy and society have to offer. The Emilia-Romagna region in northern Italy has one of the highest concentrations of cooperative businesses in the developed world. The capital, Bologna is an industrial powerhouse, where prosperity is widely shared, and cooperatives of teachers and social workers play a key role in the provision of government services. From the makers of "Shift Change.”
La Empresa es Nuestra- About the Mondragon cooperative network in the Basque Country, which has transformed a depressed area of Spain into one of the most productive region in Europe. Mondragón, the largest cooperative corporation in the world, is the tenth-largest Spanish company.
We will have two dynamic leaders speaking on the topic of “The Future of the United States”: Aimee Allison, Co-Director of the Democracy in Color Campaign and Senior Vice-President of POWERPAC+ David Cobb, Move To Amend National Spokesperson and Former Presidential Candidate, Green Party
In this compelling new manifesto Dr. Wolff argues for a democratic alternative based on workers directing their own workplaces.
Americans know that the corrupting influence of special interest money is destroying our democratic process. Now they want to know what they can do about it. Derek Cressman gives us the tools, both intellectual and tactical, to fight back.
Registration is now open for the US Social Forum in San Jose, to be held downtown at various locations from June 24-28. Don’t miss this polycentric national event that happens every five years in the United States. With dozens of workshops and People’s Movement Assemblies, with provocative plenaries and incredible cultural presentations, the US Social Forum will challenge you to work for a better city, state, country, and world.
Register now at https://www.ussocialforum.net/sanjose.
The Cooperative Economics Working Group of the US Social Forum will meet to discuss the content of an upcoming PMA at the US Social Forum June 24-28:
Another World Is Possible: What Will It Look Like? Explore the vision of a solidarity society based on socialized property and organizational forms incorporating democracy, equality, cooperation, kindness, and sustainability.
Another World Is Possible: What Must We Do? What steps can we take to build sustainable, democratic, egalitarian, and caring institutions and lives? Let’s identify the pre-conditions for another world, together.
For questions please contact Derek Tennant at email@example.com or Richard Hobbs firstname.lastname@example.org
The San Jose City Council will vote on the same 28th Amendment proposal request already approved in 450 local jurisdictions: that corporations should not be considered persons under the US Constitution and that money is not speech (our democracy is being bought and sold). If you are interested in attending the meeting tomorrow please email email@example.com.
Santa Clara Cooperatives Meeting participants will discuss Smart Yards Cooperative.
Cooperation and Economic Democracy
Moving Towards Cooperation Silicon Valley
April 17-18, 2015, San Jose, CA
Friday Evening, April 17, 7-9 PM
VISION, VALUES & ALTERNATIVES FOR A COOPERATIVE ECONOMY
Vision and Values Richard Hobbs, Human Agenda
The Cooperative Economy Evening Plenary
Worker-Owned Coops: David Smathers Moore, TeamWorks
Municipally Owned Commons: The Water District Hon. Tony Estremera
The Role of Finance & Money in the Solidarity Economy Marco Vangelisti
Conscious Living, Conscious Consumption Elizabeth Sarmiento
Community Dialogue 8:30 – 9:00
Saturday, April 18, 2015 9 AM – 6 PM
THE ROLE OF COOPERATIVES IN BUILDING ECONOMIC DEMOCRACY
The Mondragon Model
Sharat Lin, San Jose Peace & Justice Center
Mondragon in Practice: The Arizmendi Bakeries
Steve Rice, Arizmendi Bakeries
Legal Options for Coops
Ricardo Nunez Sustainable Economics Law Center
LUNCHTIME TREAT: THE NEW COOPERATIVES OF CUBA – Human Agenda
Lessons from Local Cooperatives: A Panel of Worker-Owners
Key Issues and Models for Coop Development
Amy Johnson, Executive Director, US Federation of Worker Cooperatives
12 Practical Steps to Form a Coop
Meche Sansores, Executive Director PROSPERA
COOKIES, ICE CREAM, DIALOGUE, & REPORT BACK 4:30 – 6:00
HOSTED BY: SAN JOSE BAY AREA LOCAL ORGANIZING COMMITTEE OF THE U.S. SOCIAL FORUM, LOW INCOME SELF HELP CENTER, SAN JOSE PEACE & JUSTICE CENTER, HIP HOP CONGRESS, CHAM, SILICON VALLEY DE-BUG, MULTIMEDIA CENTER, HUMAN AGENDA, LEGAL AID SOCIETY OF SANTA CLARA COUNTY, NATIONAL MOVE TO AMEND, SANTA CLARA COUNTY COOPERATIVES COLLABORATIVE
What would an economy and economic institutions based on democracy, equality, cooperation, kindness and sustainability look like? PRESENTERS: Greg Miller and Joan Simon
The US Social Forum needs your help! Human Agenda is an anchor organization on the National Planning Committee of the policentric United States Social Forum to be held in San Jose, Philadelphia, and Jackson, MS from June 24-28. The San Jose Bay Area Local Organizing Committee of the USSF invites you to its next planning meeting on March 19.
Get involved in the movement for REAL change by hearing reports and getting involved in any of the following Working Groups:
Resource Development (Res Dev)
Communications & Technology (Comms Tech)
Registration for the US Social Forum in San Jose is now available. You can register atwww.ussocialforum.net . You must be a registered group ($125 for 3, $200 for 10) to give a workshop or People’s Movement Assembly (PMA) at the USSF. The deadline for registering for a workshop or PMA is April 30.
Consider alternative structures and institutions that are Democratic, Egalitarian, Cooperative, Kind, and Sustainable (DECKS). Unlike private banks, multinational corporations, the patriarchal family, the federal electoral system, or the WTO, we can create transparent and democratic economic, political, and social institutions.
At the March 12 meeting:
- Get an update on key points from the study of the book What Then Must We Do? by Gar Alperowitz
- Review the work of local efforts to create cooperatives.
- Discuss the idea of creating Cooperation Silicon Valley, post-US Social Forum in San Jose in June
- Refine and discuss twelve (12) critical human needs areas needing DECKS-based analysis in the future including care work, food, clothing, housing, health care, education, manufacturing, energy, transportation, arts & culture, communications, and decision-making.
- Most importantly, finalize the program for recruiting local considered residents to the US Social Forum Movement School on Friday evening April 17 and Saturday 18. Below at #5 of this e-letter are the speakers invited and the tentative agenda.
For questions please contact Richard Hobbs at firstname.lastname@example.org.
AGENDA FOR MARCH 7 MEETING
- Plan for conducting market research, selecting industry partner(s), and creating a business plan
- Reports from the California Native Plant Society (Genet), the Ecology Center (Susan), and the Water District on its rebate program (Richard).
- Update on April 17-18 Movement School
- Next steps, next meeting date and location, announcements
REPORT FROM FEB. 7 MEETING
The following actions took place at the February 7 meeting hosted by the San Jose Peace & Justice Center:
After presentations by two independent immigrant workers who do lawn conversions now—Luis Parada and Jorge Rojas—it was agreed that the niche that the new cooperative would occupy is lawn conversions from green to brown with gray water capability.
Jorge Rojas explained that to maintain drought resistant “sustainable landscaping” the drip irrigation system is critical. He said that the expense of replacing a lawn completely is recovered in 2 years. The city has programs but you need to attend classes. Installation takes 2-3 days. There are several steps: (a) design the new lawn (Acterra does this for a fee), (b) remove grass, (c) install the irrigation system, and (d) install the new lawn. Jorge does not install gray water systems. He is available to help this coop effort.
Luis Parada explained that homeowners must decide if they want native or natural. Rocks, bark, ivy, etc. are some of the materials used. Cardboard can be used to stop grass growth. By the second year the homeowner sees the savings from water bills. He has landscaping books to show new customers. Luis also remodels bathrooms. With respect to the outside, the typical homeowner will ask for other things than the lawn conversion, like a retainer wall, lighting, patios, drainage, fencing, a deck, etc. These could be incorporated into the cooperative too.
With respect to gray water systems, which would be the add-on making this cooperative unique, more research needs to be done. Walter mentioned Oasis Design Systems in Oakland; Susan, the Ecology Center in Oakland; Sharat, rain catchment systems from South Africa. Gray water can also be used for fruits and vegetables. Ramji suggested that water analysis be performed.
Equipment needed for a lawn conversion coop: heavy duty truck ($40 K); rototiller ($3-5 K); equipment and tools ($2 K). Best to rent a forklift for $130 per day rather than buy one ($60 K).
Karita reported that the California Native Gardens Foundation would be a natural ally. There is a sample garden on Race Street. It is a non-profit and for-profit. Alriye Middlebrook is the owner and founder. She has broad experience, including with children and internationally in Africa. She is excellent at designs and plant selection.
Richard presented a 12-step process for co-op formation based upon the WAGES model: (1) market research, (2) selection of industry partner(s), (3) a business plan including pricing out natural plants and materials, (4) financial projections, (5) potential sources of start-up capital, (6) creation of a management model, (7) developing an operating agreement / by-laws, (8) a transition plan to allow the co-op to operate autonomously, (9) incorporation, (10) curriculum to map out co-op member business, technical, and cooperative skills, before and after launch, (11) recruitment of worker-owners, and (12) launch.
The group agreed to co-sponsor the Movement School of the US Social Forum April 17-18 in San Jose. April 18 will be dedicated entirely to cooperatives.
For more information contact Chuck Rawlings at email@example.com or Richard Hobbs at 408-460-2999 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Each year Human Agenda celebrates the coming year with great hopefulness and optimism as to what we can do in the coming year. We also recognize the human rights and community activism of local leaders, in support of the annual Dec. 10 U.N. Human Rights Day.
The 10-day Emulation Tour to Cuba is planned for Saturday, January 17 to Monday Jan. 26, 2015. As planned, the trip will include 2 visits to industrial co-ops, 2 visits to service co-ops, 2 visits to agricultural co-ops, visits to ELAM (the medical school), a hospital, a clinic, a school, and an ecological reserve.
Introduction to the U.S. Social Forum (USSF) & People’s Movement Assembly (PMA) on a Vision for a Better World
Human Agenda is an anchor organization for the U.S. Social Forum (USSF) to be held in San Jose the last weekend of June in 2015. he USSF poses that ANOTHER WORLD IS POSSIBLE and ANOTHER U.S. IS NECESSARY, Human Agenda is working nationally and locally to clarify the vision for that better world and United States, and what economic and political institutions might provide for a democratic, egalitarian, cooperative, sustainable and kind United States and San Jose.
Human Agenda is the fiscal sponsor of Santa Clara County Move To Amend and currently moderates MTA meetings. It also moderates the Yes on Prop 49 / MTA Coalition that recently launched a Pledge to Amend Campaign modeled on the national MTA language for a 28th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution to abrogate unlimited money as political speech and the US Supreme Court’s flawed concept of corporate personhood.
Join Derek Cressman, the Build Democracy End Corporate Rule (BDECR) Team, & the newly forming coalition in support of Prop 49 on the Nov. 5 CA ballot this Saturday, August 2, 2014, 2-4 PM.