Affiliate Your Group with Move to Amend

March 2, 2011

Information on Affiliating with Move to Amend

WELCOME!
Thank you for joining the movement to amend the Constitution to abolish corporate personhood, remove big money from politics and empower local communities over large corporations!

If you're just getting started forming a MTA group, we encourage you to take a look at our "Five Easy Steps to Get Started."

Please read through this document before filling out the Application for Affiliation with Move to Amend. We also encourage you to check out our Local Action and Affiliation FAQs and Organizing for Local Action Toolkit.

If you have any questions about the affiliation process or Move to Amend, please contact Kaitlin Sopoci-Belknap at (707) 269-0984 or affiliate-support@movetoamend.org.

GOALS OF THE AFFILIATION PROCESS

  • To assure that applicants understand:
  1. The Move to Amend campaign, its goals, values and plans
  2. The criteria we expect them to fulfill
  3. The resources available from the national Steering Committee (SC) to assist them in community organizing to fulfill the criteria.
  • To assist applicants in the application process.
  • To speedily deliberate and make recommendations to the Move to Amend Steering Committee

TYPES OF LOCAL MOVE TO AMEND ORGANIZATIONS

Currently there are two types of local Move to Amend (MTA) organizations: Affiliates and Partners. As we see the success and proliferation of these grassroots organizations we will add State Chapters.

Affiliates (Local Dedicated Organizations)

Local organizations that form explicitly to work on Move to Amend issues may apply for Affiliate status. Coalitions that form to work on Move to Amend issues on the local level are also eligible to apply. A requirement of becoming an Affiliate is that your organization's name include the phrase "Move to Amend" (for example, South Central Wisconsin Move to Amend or Move to Amend Springfield). When a state-level Chapter is formed, Affiliate organizations are expected to participate as Chapter members.

Affiliates are expected to institute a democratic decision-making process for making decisions and choosing leadership. Each Affiliate is required to clearly describe its decision-making process in written form and submit it to the national Move to Amend organization. Affiliates are also expected to share their membership/supporter/organizing lists with the national Move to Amend organization.

The Move to Amend national Field Team members will support Affiliates by by generating materials and providing leadership for national strategy and networking such as calls to action, events, and web, telephone and in person conferencing/networking opportunities.

Each Affiliate will have an Affiliate Group Page on the MTA website and access to the site to post announcements and events and other information of local interest. This page will feed content to the state page on the MTA site. Affiliates are expected to keep these pages current.

Affiliate members are eligible to participate in national organizing work through Working Groups, provided those individuals meet requirements and expectations as outlined by the Working Group(s).

Affiliates representatives are expected to participate in the national campaign through a monthly Coalition Conference Call, on internal email-listserves, and through the monthly Take Action Webinar trainings.

Partner Affiliates (Local Pre-Existing Organizations)

Local organizations that are already established but wish to work on Move to Amend issues may apply for Partner status. Any statewide, countywide, municipal or other local organization is eligible to apply, as are coalition organizations and local chapters of statewide or national organizations. When a state-level Chapter is formed, Partner organizations are expected to participate as Chapter members.

Chapters (State-Level Coalitions)

Once numerous Affiliate and Partner organizations exist in a state, they may come together to form a state Chapter. A Chapter is a coalition organization that facilitates interactions, and cooperation, between its member organizations. To apply for Chapter status, a coalition must consist of enough active Affiliate and/or Partner organizations to cover the diverse populations and regions of the states, and express interest in expanding its membership in the future. Chapters are expected to participate on the national Move to Amend Steering Committee, and to eventually take on the responsibility of managing applications for Affiliate and Partner status from organizations within their states.

State Chapters are expected to institute a democratic decision-making process for making decisions, choosing leaders and electing representatives to the national Steering Committee. Each Chapter is required to clearly describe its decision-making process in written form and submit it to the national Move to Amend organization.

For consistency, all Chapter names are expected to be composed of the state name followed by "Move to Amend" (for example, California Move to Amend).

THE RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN MOVE TO AMEND ORGANIZATIONS

Affiliates and Partners are Move to Amend organizations of equal status. Chapters are coalition organizations composed of Affiliates and Partners. Only Chapters are represented at the level of the national Steering Committee. As the movement grows (and therefore the size of the Steering Committee), the exact representative structure may change. However, Move to Amend's commitment to fair representation will not.

CRITERIA FOR AFFILIATION WITH MOVE TO AMEND

  • Acceptance and support for the Motion to Amend.
  • Has applied to the Move to Amend National Steering Committee for affiliation and has included written decision-making process, leadership and other documentation with that application.
  • Have implemented a functional structure that allows for new people to participate and get involved and also make decisions democratically, with accountable leadership, and a commitment to anti-oppression (leadership and involvement of women and people from oppressed communities such as people of color, LGTB, etc.)
  • Has a history of networking with other organizations (eg. social justice, labor, environmental, faith, etc.), or is involved in that networking from the start of formation.
  • Evidence of commitment to, and good faith efforts to achieve gender balance in group leadership and organization.
  • Evidence of good faith efforts to empower individuals and groups from oppressed communities, through, for example leadership responsibilities and alliances with community-based organizations.

MOVE TO AMEND ORGANIZING PRINCIPLES

Move to Amend will only succeed if its local organizations build a broad-based movement in communities across the country. To this end, we stress that we are nonpartisan and welcome people with diverse viewpoints. All Chapters, Partners and Affiliates are expected to gain the skills needed to build a movement that is inclusive across lines of race, ethnicity, gender, sexual orientation, and socio-economic class.

To assist local organizations in this process, the national Move to Amend organization will provide training and support to the extent that resources allow. In addition, we will provide information on locally available resources, and will assist local organizations in establishing channels of communication so that they can educate and support one another.

Local Move to Amend organizations are expected to work to build excitement at the state and local levels about being part of a larger movement, and about the process of movement building itself. All local Move to Amend organizations should also strive to empower their members, and help them develop the skills they need to be effective.

APPLICATION PROCESS

All applicants should fill out an application and submit it to Kaitlin Sopoci-Belknap (affiliate-support@movetoamend.org) for review by the national Move to Amend Field Team. The Field Team will then invite the applying organization to an orientation conference call with the leadership of the applying organization.

This call will function as an interview of the applying organization, provide a chance for the applying organization to ask questions, and serve to establish shared goals, ideas and expectations. The Field Team will then approve or deny the application.

Click here to download an Application for Affiliation with Move to Amend.