North New Jersey DSA Convention 2021

Date & Time

January 30, 2021

12 PM to 4 PM EST

Agenda & Schedule

12:00 PMGreeting
12:10 PMRules for Respectful Discussion
12:15 PMGuest Speaker
12:30 PMBy-Laws Proposals Debate/Discussion
Vote on By-Laws
1:30 PMBREAK
1:35 PMChapter Priority Resolutions Debate / Discussion
Vote on Priorities
2:35 PMBREAK
2:40 PMCandidate Statements & Q&A
Vote on Candidates
3:20 PMGeneral Resolutions / Other Business
3:50 PMClosing

FAQ

About the North NJ DSA 2021 Convention

What is a Convention? A convention is an annual special meeting held to vote on changes to the chapter by-laws, priorities for the chapter and elect leaders of the chapter. Other DSA chapters across the country hold similar events and the National DSA itself has a national convention every two years to decide on these same issues. 

When is our convention taking place? North New Jersey DSA is having its first ever convention this January 30th, 2021.

Deadlines and important dates? Register by January 28th (two days before the convention). 

How long will the convention be? The convention will last from 12 to 4pm to give adequate time for debate. There will be breaks between agenda items.

Do I have to be a member to attend? Yes, you must be a dues-paying member of the chapter before the convention to participate and vote at the event.

Voting

Voting ballots (conducted over OPAvote) will go out 24 hours before the end of the convention. Afterwards, members will have 24 hours to vote after the end of the convention. That will be a 3 day voting period in total. We will be sending another mass message to remind and notify everyone of this, in addition to the email and slack messages. This is to provide time for people to think over their votes, and for those who cannot attend to vote beforehand. 

Amendments: Similar to the national dsa convention, for resolutions that have amendments, the amended version will be voted on first, followed by the original. 

Stack: Members will put themselves on stack, but we will request that they input whether they are speaking in favor, against, or other rules or motions. 

Each member registered for the convention will receive their own OpaVote link, which they may vote from once within the 3 day voting period.

Common Terms

Working Group: Working groups focus their work on a political issue or group of issues. 

Committee: In our chapter, the term committee describes a group of individuals doing administrative or skills based work, such as communications or tech. 

Executive Committee: The Executive Committee (known as EC) is currently the 9-member elected leadership body of the North NJ DSA. The current positions on the EC are elected by the chapter membership every January and serve one year terms. Some of the proposals to the by-laws may change the overall number of people on the EC if they are approved.

Steering Committee: The Steering Committee is part of a proposal to create a leadership body to coordinate and execute the priorities decided on by the chapter at each annual convention. Under the current proposal, the Steering Committee would be elected by chapter membership and serve one-year terms. They would also make regular reports to the Executive Committee.

Standing Committee: There are four standing committees tasked with the basic functionality and general organizing work of the chapter. The current standing committees in our chapter are the Political Education Committee (PEC), Member Organizing Committee (MOC), Media & Communications Committee (MCC) and the Tech Committee. Under a current proposal for the convention, the Standing Committees would be coordinated by the Steering Committee to help it execute the chapter-wide priorities approved by membership. 

Caucus: There are two types of caucuses in DSA, identity-based Caucuses and ideological caucuses. Identity based caucuses work to amplify the voices of marginalized communities. Ideological caucuses focus on advancing the positions and/or projects of their specific political tendency. While identity-based caucuses are officially recognized by our chapter, ideological ones are not.

By-laws: These are the rules that guide governance of the governance. Committees and working groups also might have bylaws. These can be amended at any time through a vote of membership.

Amendments: A minor change or addition to by-laws voted on by chapter membership. 

Resolutions: priorities or policies that the chapter should resolve to work on.

Ex Officio: An ex officio member is a member of a body who is part of it by virtue of holding another office. As an example, our Hudson County Co-Chairs have been elected to that position, but they are also automatically considered members of the Executive Committee because they hold those positions. 

Executive Committee Roles

Co-chairs

The co-chairs are responsible for scheduling and facilitating the Executive Committee Calls and General Membership Meetings each month and setting the agendas for the meetings as well. The chairs are also tasked with being liaisons to National DSA as well as other DSA chapters.

Secretary

The Secretary is responsible for taking notes (referred to as minutes) of the Executive Committee Calls and General Membership Meetings.

Treasurer

The Treasurer is responsible for handling the finances of the chapter and gives a quarterly (three months) update on funds, balances and expenditures of the chapter.

Engagement Coordinator

The Engagement Coordinator coordinates the media and external presence of our chapter and administers the social media accounts of the chapter as well.

Membership Coordinator

The Membership Coordinator manages the membership records of the chapter and serves as a liaison between membership and the EC.

YDSA Coordinator

The YDSA coordinator is responsible for coordinating the efforts of all YDSA chapters in the geographical area covered by the chapter. This position can only be held by someone who is 25 years of age or younger.

Hudson Branch Co-Chairs

The Hudson Branch Co-Chairs are the leaders of the Hudson Branch elected by its members. They are automatically seated to the EC due to the position they hold. (ex officio)

References

https://drive.google.com/file/d/1sygjaLqj8ABEbpJTkc9GhL8kJiLjL1Qn/view
https://north.dsanj.org/chapter-by-laws/

Proposed Amendments to the Chapter By-Laws

Proposed Resolutions

General Resolutions

SubmitterProposalsAmendments to the Proposals
Campbell C.Medicare for AllN/A
Joe L.Marxist EducationBy Sofia

Priority Resolutions

Candidate Questionnaires

Click here to view all candidate questionnaires in a single PDF. Click on a candidate’s name to view their individual questionnaire.

PositionCandidate(s)
Co-ChairEzekiel T.
Jodie T.
Engagement CoordinatorMichelle Z.
Membership CoordinatorMelody M.
SecretaryJoshua R.
TreasurerKatia O.
YDSA CoordinatorAmari P.
Jorge M.
Hudson County Branch Co-ChairWalter K.
Yi W.