Towards Statewide and Regional Organizing Committees

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Build supports C/B #21: Forming State and Regional Organizing Committees

Inserts a new optional step in the process of forming state and regional organizations analogous to the Organizing Committee phase of new Local Chapter creation. This step is the State or Regional OC, which must be composed of members from a supermajority (3/4 for state, 2/3 for region) of chapters in the proposed state/regional org.

Why Is Build Endorsing This?

  • Bridging the Gap

    • If you liked organizing committees for Local Chapters, you’ll love this!

    • This fills in the procedural gap between “wanting a state/regional org” and “actually being able to submit an application for one.”

    • Provides a way for interested members of DSA to get resources and recognition for their efforts at statewide and regional organizing. 

  • Broad-Based Collaboration

    • Variety is the spice of organizing.

    • State and Regional Organizing Committees must be composed of members from a variety of chapters to form.

    • This encourages collaboration, and prevents a few chapters from being able to totally drive the process. It also lays the groundwork for a successful statewide or regional collaboration between many chapters.

Frequently Asked Questions 

Concern: Isn’t this more difficult procedurally than actually submitting the application?

Answer: Technically yes, as the state/regional organization application can begin with two or three chapters submitting a proposal. Practically, making a successful organization on this scale will require a supermajority of chapters on board anyway. This proposal encourages that degree of collaboration from the start.

Answer: Even if so, maybe we’d be better off amending the existing process to require more than just a few chapters to start it?

Concern: Are the members of the OCs accountable to their chapters?

Answer: The OCs have no formal power and only have the ability to coordinate interested parties, so it’s not clear what forms of accountability are needed.

Answer: Nonetheless, an amendment has been made to ensure that the minimum members of the OC, to count for official recognition, must have the approval of their home chapters to work on the project. 

Concern: Would this be a bureaucratic burden on members looking to make larger-scale organizations?

Answer: Forming a state or regional OC is optional. No one has to engage with this process, so no one can be “weighed down” with red tape by it.

Answer: Compared to other proposals for statewide or regional organizations, this proposal does less than others, but by the same token leaves more decisions to the membership. That’s the opposite of bureaucratic imposition.