The co-op currently meet every Tuesday. Minutes are taken each meeting, with a summary of those minutes posted below.
New space at Islington Mill updated:
We are currently in talks to rent out a second unit at Islington Mill as we believe there is enough interest from office rental. Both spaces need work doing to them and our architect Albane is visiting in the 1st week of January, so we will ask for her advice on both buildings, as it makes sense to have any access works done at the same time. Funding is already available for these works. The 2nd unit also benefits from a better kitchen.
The coop is to make decision on renting a further unit in January.
Paying non-staff members at Partisan:
A discussion was started on slack about paying people for things such as art-work, performances and other contributions for Partisan – we have been unclear in the past over who should be paid and what should be voluntary. Out of the co-op meeting it is still unclear over how this is best resolved, it was highlighted that voluntary work is an essential part of the collective but payments should be circumstantial and that no one size fits all approach would work. Therefore this needs further discussions and input to evolve a volunteer-payment policy that makes sense but is also flexible to Partisan’s wider community.
Volunteer and co-op recruitment drive
Partisan has been running on low capacity over the past few months and the situation has got worse with no physical space being available for our membership due to the pandemic, the co-op recognises we need to increase our capacity and therefore will seek many avenues in the new year to recruit new people as well as encouraging existing members to have more of an input, it is recognised that this is a challenge and that Partisan must think of better ways to support our members to feel like they can be more involved in a way that they enjoy.
- Whiteness: Spoke on progress and decided to assign tasks to help finalise the accountability document and to dedicate the next meeting to talk about the Community Outreach role.
- Culture Recovery Fund: The coop spoke of what can be done to perform outreach in our new community and how this can feed into what we can spend the CRF money on. It was stressed that it should reflect the needs of our members and the community.
- Use of New Space: The coop is keen to start planning ways in which members can visit the new space safely next year. It was decided that the Design team should be revitalized and we should start thinking about how we can decorate the new space and make it look homely.
- December General Meeting: It was decided that the next General Meeting should be a social. Shaun and Sophie volunteered to take this on.
As only four members of the coop were present a few agenda items were carried over for next week.
- Culture Recovery Fund: Staff provided a brief update and the coop spoke briefly about how the money could be used to make the space more environmentally friendly.
- Staff Survey: Coop member David gave an update on the staff survey and other steps to ensure staff welfare remains a priority.
- Whiteness: The coop further explored the areas to address around whiteness and spoke of organisations we could speak to to offer guidance.
- Whiteness: The coop reviewed the pledges and spoke about the need to re-establish the community outreach working group, learn more about Salford and the groups/organisations we could work with and spoke about a new history board.
- Demographics Survey: Partisan currently holds very little demographic data on its members and user groups. Coop volunteer Shaun has put together a questionnaire which the coop reviewed.
- Culture Recovery Fund: The coop reviewed what the money has to be spent on and what we would like to purchase/fund through the grant. The coop is taking steps to ensure that the fund is spent appropriately and that the collective can feed into where the money is spent. As staff wages are covered by the CRF Partisan staff are no longer on furlough.
- Plans for New Space at Islington Mill: The coop spoke about potential for the new space, mostly concerning the layout of the new offices and how the space could be used to serve the community.
- Whiteness: The pledges we made linked to the setup of Partisan’s BIPOC fund will be reviewed by the collective and we’ll decide on next steps. The BIPOC group will meet with Sophie to discuss how funds can be used effectively and for what type of event/action.
- ACE Funding / How to spend it: Due to ongoing changes to Government guidelines and the new lockdown we will be able to re-allocate spendings according to our needs. We can access more money from the new furlough scheme instead of spending grant funds on staff wages. The newly freed money can go towards accessibility, but also towards other assets for space and community. The collective is invited to share their ideas. What would you like to see in the space? Partisan’s Community Outreach Team are creating a survey initiated by Spark & Co. to research what Partisan’s BPOC community and new neighbors in Salford need the most.
- Redistribution of Staff Hours: Partisan’s Finance Coordinator Dandy has done a fantastic job in the past months and has gone above and beyond. Now that we are in a more stable and settled situation with a good safety net they have requested a reduction of work hours. The coop is looking into what Partisan needs the most and is planning to redistribute staff funds to new roles and existing roles to reflect their working hours better
- Move to Islington Mill: Partisan is about to sign the lease for the new space after thorough consultation with a solicitor. Manchester Disabled People’s Action Group will be commissioned for an accessibility audit in December to make the new space fit for purpose.
- Goodbye to Partisan’s Volunteer Coordinator Kati: Kati has done a wonderful job in mobilising and organising all things related to Partisan’s membership. All the best to her in her new job!