Bristol Lesbian, Gay and Bisexual Forum Open Meeting and Annual General Meeting 6 â€“ 7 pm, Wednesday 12th January 2011 Council House, College Green, Bristol
Minutes NB Where a vote shows 'majority*', this means a visual majority, vs a small number of abstentions and votes against. 1.
Apologies - see attendance list
Approval of last AGM notes â€“ Notes passed as read
Titles in turquoise: get wording from the Agenda. 3.
Vote on Trans proposal Alan Palmer introduced the topic of Transgender inclusion He explained briefly that the consensus has been that the Forum should be inclusive, although it had always included LGB people who happen to be Transgender, but the current proposal would extend this remit to Transgender people who do not identify as LGB. Proposer: Alan Palmer Seconder: Peter Main Vote: 4 against, 2 abstentions, majority in favour Motion carried
Vote on Constitutional changes The Co-chair then introduced each of the proposals, briefly explaining the reasons for them:
Changing the word of the constitution to include T Proposer: Alan Palmer Seconder: Matt Wallis Vote: 0 against, 2 abstentions, majority in favour Motion carried
Changing the name of the Forum to one of the list below or other, to be proposed. One opposition was that the name of the Forum implies consultation and political debate.
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Cllr. Main pointed to the value of the word 'Forum' for the Charity, that underpins its role in the City Council as a Major Consultee. Jo MC Donald, Equality Officer at BCC, replied that the participation brief of BCC is not name-dependant. The suggestion was offered, that the Forum could opt to have a 'Brand' name, expressed in a strapline, while retaining its Incorporated Charity name, containing all the necessary labels. The rationale given was that the full labels should be preserved, as many do not understand the acronym LGBT, but that this could be used in the strapline, for brevity. The name must be changed in any case, because of the Trans change. It was explained by Cllr. Main that Bristol City Council could withdraw a portion of our funding in recognition of the extended remit. Another suggestion was that we consider including The West of England in the name. (1) Bristol Lesbian Gay Bisexual and Transgender Forum (adopted) (2) Bristol LGBT Forum (3) LGBT Bristol (strapline) (4) LGBT Avon (mooted) A composite Proposal was put forward: I) That the name of the organisation be changed to : Bristol Lesbian Gay Bisexual and Transgender Forum to retain the word 'Forum', which is indicative of the consultative role of the organisation and the full wording, spelling out the full, extended organisation's constituency and remit. II) That a strapline be adopted, from a choice of two: 1) Bristol LGBT Forum Proposer: Emma Bagley Seconder: Jo Mc Donald Vote: 12 in favour 2) LGBT Bristol Proposer: Helen Webster Seconded: Emily Bennewith Vote: 28 in favour Outcome: carried. The name of the Bristol Lesbian, Gay and Bisexual Forum is changed to:
Bristol Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Forum LGBT Bristol 2 of 11
Reducing the quorum to 10 or 5%. Owing to the difficulties experienced at the recent AGM of 16 October 2010, which could not reach a quorum, members were asked to vote on reducing the quorum from 10 or 10% to 10 or 5%. A question was tabled, as to why the absolute number of 10 was retained, and answered by the Chair, to explain that a smaller number would run the risk of significant constitutional changes being possible for a very small number of people; 10 is the absolute minimum number of people that could be deemed a democratic quorum. Proposer: Alan Palmer Seconded: Peter Main Vote: 4 against, 3 abstentions, majority in favour Motion carried
Allowing Proxy vote. The proposal was brought forward as an additional safeguard to the democratic process of the Forum, allowing members to submit their votes by proxy, through members attending an AGM, thus increasing the accuracy and extent of consensus. Proposer: Alan Palmer Seconder: Emily Bennewith Vote: 6 against, 2 abstentions, majority in favour Motion carried
Allowing Postal only vote. The proposal would allow certain constitutional changes to be made by postal ballot. An opposition was moved to this proposal unless there is a minimum quorum for the response. The threshold for this was explained as: [ask Sarah for exact details]. Another member voiced opposition, based on the lack of debate prior to a postal ballot. The Co-chair replied explaining that the preference would of course always be to hold an AGM or EGM, but the Development Worker explained these meetings are very expensive and the reduction in BCC funding for 2011-12 forces the Forum to economise wherever possible. The Administrator added that online e-Forums are about to be launched that will serve precisely this function: to allow open, detailed and frank debate, prior to a vote, whether at a meeting or by postal ballot.
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One member asked whether the option of secure, online voting. The Administrator replied, explaining that this has Data Protection implications, as it requires storing verifiable email addresses, names and addresses, on the host system, with security and cost implications. Proposer: Alan Palmer Seconder: Emily Bennewith Vote: 9 against, 3 abstentions, majority in favour Motion carried f)
Remove gender labels. This proposal, put forward by Helen Webster at the 2009 AGM, would remove the gender bias of the labels 'male' and 'female' ch-chair, and remove the need to force individual Trustees to adopt one or the other identity whether they are comfortable with it or not. One member voiced the opposing view that there may be a risk that gender skewing in either direction might result, in the composition of the Management Committee. The Co-chair replied that the issue is linked to labels, not the actual gender balance and that the Forum would continue to endeavour to reflect the composition of its membership on the MC, but that this is extremely difficult where members do not put themselves forward for election as Trustees, limiting choice. By way of a precis, a member clarified the feeling voiced at the last AGM about Transgender inclusion was intended to convey the view that Transgender is such a broad and complex issue that it may warrant its own Forum. Proposer: Alan Palmer Seconder: Daniel Smart Vote: 2 against, 6 abstentions, majority in favour Motion carried
Increase the term of office of 2 year for Trustees. A member asked for clarification as to whether this forced Trustees to serve for the full term information was made. The Chair replied that any Trustee is at liberty to resign at any given point, during their term of office, but tha the amendment would make it possible for them to continue to serve for the 24 months without seeking re-election, and so dispensing with the need to stand down every 12 months. Proposer: Alan Palmer Seconder: Suzanne Doyle Vote: 0 against, 5 abstentions, majority in favour Motion carried 4 of 11
Expanding Forum remit to other areas. Cllr. Peter Main moved the objection that Bristol City Council could reasonably further cut its funding, requiring the Forum to seek additional funding from other local authorities where it operates. John Hesketh, Equality Officer for South Gloucestershire and Forum member, replied as a potential commissioner of work outside the greater Bristol area. He explained that any work his authority were to commission the Forum would be viewed as project work, additional to the Forum's commitment to its programme of funded outcomes for Bristol City Council and that he saw no conflict between the two. Further comments from the Chair and others, pointed to how this could add value to the investment by Bristol City Council by adding to the financial resilience of the Forum, ensuring that it can weather the current financial crisis, ensuring its continued survival and increasing relevance. Proposer: Alan Palmer Seconder: Daniel Smart Vote: 2 against, 2 abstentions, majority in favour Motion carried
Increase the size of the MC from 10 â€“ 12, Co-optees from 3 to 5. In view of the difficulty of getting a quorum, with a relatively small MC, and the disproportionate amount of work individual Trustees are forced to take on, the increase would share out the burden of work and ensure a diversity of skills. Additionally, with an extended term in office, it could mean that a quorate MC can continue even where new Trustees cannot be found, or when resignations during the year threaten to make the work of the Forum unsustainable. Proposer: Alan Palmer Seconder: Matt Wallis Vote: 1 against, 4 abstentions, majority in favour Motion carried
Make such changes necessary for Charity Commission. The proposal is intended as a catch-all, to cater for changes in legislation that come into force long before an AGM. Proposer: Alan Palmer Seconder: Robin Corser-Langford Vote: 0 against, 2 abstentions, majority in favour Motion carried 5 of 11
20010/11 Annual Accounts and Balance Sheet Owing to the inquorate AGM of October, and the deadline for submitting the 2009-10 Accounts, these were circulated and approved by the Trustees, by email, and the original Accounts signed off by the Treasurer.
Adoption of Accounts. Owing to the inquorate AGM of October, and the deadline for submitting the 2009-10 Accounts, these were circulated and approved by the Trustees, by email, and the original Accounts signed off by the Treasurer.
Annual Report 20010/11. Report from the Co-Chair, Alan Palmer. - See Annual Report.
Reappointment of BCAP as Independent Examiners Proposal: That BCAP, the Forum's current Accountancy service providers be reappointed as Independent Examiners for the next 12 months. BCAP have discharged their duties satisfactorily and at reasonable rates. Proposed by: Alan Palmer Seconded by: Daniel Smart (Treasurer) Vote: 0 against, 0 abstentions, unanimously in favour Motion carried
Election of Trustees. Resignations. The Chair offered the Forum's formal thanks to Laura Welti, former CoChair, who is standing down. Laura has served in various capacities and roles on the MC for the past 5 years. Alan offered the Forum's thanks, for her tireless and essential working various capacities and roles. He explained that, as the Forum felt that she would be a loss to its governance, and given her generous offer of ongoing support, the MC would seek ways of inviting her to continue to contribute, in whatever capacity might suit her changed role, remit and workload, since the move of the Disability Forum into the Voluntary sector. In the coming weeks Trustees will explore this further. Helen Webster echoed the sentiment and called for the whole meeting to offer heartfelt thanks to Laura for her unstinting work.
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Additionally thanks were also offered to other outgoing Trustees, all of whom resigned earlier in the year: Lucas Abdecian, who served as Treasurer . Logan Blackburn, who served as Co-chair. Stripe Issit, who served as Trustee. Elections. Nominations and election of new Trustees followed. Elections were not contested, and so the Management Committee was voted in block. Proposer: Helen Webster Seconded : Jo Mc Donald Nominations list: (overleaf) Vote: 0 against, 2 abstentions, majority in favour Motion carried Candidate Alan Palmer Anna Rutherford Daniel Smart Daniel Carpenter Emily Bennewith Matt Wallis Cllr Peter Main Daryn Carter
The above Trustees were therefore elected as the Forum's new Management Committee for 2010-11. 10. Arrangement of dates for next MC meeting. Election of Officers will be held at the next MC meeting, to be agreed. Owing to the meeting over-running, it was agreed that the arrangement of dates for next Management Committee Meeting would be postponed until after the meeting. 11. Any Other Business Sing Out Bristol Bristol's LGBT choir is holding a big concert 19th Feb, in the Redgrave Theatre in Clifton, get tickets from the website. 7 of 11
Pride 2011 Anna Rutherford announced the date of Pride Day 2011 as 16th July and lead-up events in the preceding week. A meeting will be held for prospective volunteer on 31st Jan, 6-7. Details will be circulated via all possible channel, the newsletter, eBulletin and on the Forum website. Equality and Community Cohesion Team LGBTHM programme. Jo Mc Donald announce the forthcoming LGBT History Month flyer, that lists all LGBTHM events, to be circulated and made available through libraries and Community venues. The Forum will send the flyers out, post them on the website and the new eForums. Shout Out will advertise it. Circulation of homophobic material in Horfield. The Horfield Free Presbiterian Church has been circulating unsolicited newsletters, posting them through letterboxes. The September issue has been flagged to Equality and Community Cohesion as offensive, unsolicited, homophobic material. An officer has arranged a meeting with a representative of the church to address the issue, as a matter of the utmost urgency. E-forums. Toni Massari repeated her invitation to members, on behalf of the Forum, to visit the new eForums register and explore ways that these can be used to: • • • • • • •
increase membership engagement and participation promote debate on general and specific topics give the Forum Trustees and Staff feedback on work undertaken offer suggestions, ideas, news and share information reduce the number of meetings and so save carbon emissions simplify electronic dissemination, saving paper use and postage focus meetings by allowing prior discussion of agenda issues
[Addendum: visit http://lgbtbristol.forumotion.co.uk/] Electronic distribution of Newsletter and other information. Alan announced that the Forum will be working towards reducing costs by sending out information electronically, instead of using the post. An opt-in list has now been created for those who wish to continue receiving the hardcopy will operate; members who wish to avail themselves of this service should register with the office, confirming their postal address.
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This means that: •
the Newsletter will no longer be posted to members, who will receive electronic copies instead
eBulletins will continue to be sent to all members whose email we have on file; if members wish to receive these, please email the office
Annual General Meeting information will continue to be sent by post, as this is a legal requirement, but the office will keep members informed of any changes in this requirement and switch to electronic dissemination if it should become permissible.
Police LGBT Liaisons Team. An Avon and Somerset Police representative introduced herself as a member of the LGBT liaisons Team, one of the Constabulary's Community Safety Teams, and encouraged members to use the service to report incidents of hate crime, harassment or discrimination. [addendum: the website address of the Team is: http://www.avonandsomerset.police.uk/community_safety/LGBTLiaisonTeam/index.aspx
Shout Out. ShoutOut, the LGBT Radio programme broadcasting at 7pm on BCFM Vote for them as best radio programme on Pink Paper onlin eReaders' Survey – they are up against Gaydio, Radio 1 and Radio 2. [addendum: vist http://www.shoutoutbristol.org.uk/aboutbcfm and, for the Pink Paper readers' Survey: http://www.pinkpaper.com/survey2011/ ] 9.
Next MC meeting, Wednesday 11th November 2010 Toni to circulate last AGM minutes with apology to the attendees.
Meeting closed at 19:30 A summary table of all AGM Decisions is enclosed. /Users/antonellamassari/Desktop/AGM Decisions Summary 120111.odt
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Section 1 ACTION 1a
2 ACTION 2
3 MOTION 3
3 ACTION 3
4 DECISION 4
5 ACTION 5
7 DECISION 7
8 MOTION 8
Action/DecisionMotion/ Send Toni text she would like on the advertising page for the School Governance information and links
by Louise Bale
Put on the website a page about school governance, with links and documents supplied by Louise Bale.
Circulate last year's AGM notes to attendees, with apologies, for email approval, as well as post them on the Website, for verification.
Helen That separate profit and loss accounts be presented in future, for Core and Projects, for W. the purpose of Annual Reports. Sarah to circulate an Accounts and Balance sheet errata sheet.
Put to Next MC asap
That the Accounts be adopted as final, proper Robin, carried and correct Alan W. Post the Forum's Strategy on the website, Toni asap under Documents, once Sarah has proofread it. Work on the motion to go to the membership Helen carried that: Webster I. the Forum extends its remit to include Sarah Trans people; and Minter II. the Forum to change its name to â€œBristol Jo Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender McDonal Forumâ€? - BLGBTF d That the titles of the Co-chairs be changed to Helen Put to reflect the Forum's rejection of a dichotomous W. Next perception of gender, from: 'Male Co-Chair and MC Female Co-chair' to 'Lesbian Co-Chair' and 'Gay Co-chair'
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