2019 Agenda Items Workshop

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DISTRICT 11 INVITES YOU

2019 Agenda Items Workshop

 

Sunday, March 31st, 2019

Alano Club  1050 State St. Redding, CA

11:30 AM – 3:30 PM

Lunch Potluck

Presentations by CNIA Area 07 Past Delegates

Panel 44 Delegate, Inez Y.; Panel 58 Delegate, Lee W.

COME FIND OUT WHAT SUGGESTED CHANGES TO AA ARE ON THIS YEAR’S AGENDA.
EVERYONE IS WELCOME.

2019 Agenda Items

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2019 General Service Conference Committees

Agenda Items

I. Agenda

A. Review suggestions for the theme of the 2020 General Service Conference.

B. Review presentation/discussion topic ideas for the 2020 General Service Conference.

C. Discuss workshop topic ideas for the 2020 General Service Conference.

D. Review the General Service Conference Evaluation Form, process and 2018 Evaluation Summary.

E. Discuss report on the Conference Agenda Process from the trustees’ Committee on the General Service Conference.

 

II. Cooperation with the Professional Community

A. Discuss progress on implementation of A.A.W.S. LinkedIn page.

B. Consider request to remove text “They may help arrange hospitalization” from the pamphlet “Alcoholics Anonymous in Your Community.”

C. Review contents of C.P.C. Kit and Workbook.

 

III. Corrections

A. Consider request for a review of all corrections related literature in order to make the language more modern and inclusive.

B. Consider request that the General Service Office establish and help maintain a database of Correctional Facilities in each service area in the U.S. and Canada and the status of meetings held therein.

C. Review contents of Corrections Kit and Workbook.

 

IV. Finance

A. Review suggested area contribution for delegate expense for the Conference.

B. Review the Conference-approved level of $5,000 for individual bequests to the General Service Board from A.A. members.

C. Review the Conference-approved maximum annual contribution of $5,000 to the General Service Board from an individual A.A. member.

D. Review Self-Support Packet.

 

V. Grapevine

A. Consider the list of suggested AA Grapevine book topics for 2020 and later.

B. Consider request to remove the “Alcoholism at Large” section from AA Grapevine.

C. Review progress report on AA Grapevine Workbook revisions.

D. Review AA Grapevine Fellowship Feedback Survey and summary.

 

VI. Literature

A. Review progress report on the development of the pamphlet for Spanish-speaking women in A.A.

B. Review progress report on the development of the pamphlet on A.A.’s Three Legacies.

C. Consider requests to develop a Fifth Edition of the book Alcoholics Anonymous

D. Review progress report regarding updating the video “Your General Service Office, the Grapevine and the General Service Structure.”

E. Review progress report on the update regarding text on anonymity to the pamphlet “Questions and Answers on Sponsorship.”

F. Consider the development of a Literature Committee Workbook.

G. Review progress report on the update to the pamphlet “Too Young?”

H. Review progress report on the update to the pamphlet “Young People and A.A.”

I. Review proposed revision to A.A. World Services’ “Policy on Publication of Literature: Updating Pamphlets and Other A.A. Materials.”

J. Consider request to revise the pamphlet “The A.A. Group.”

K. Review progress report regarding the update to the pamphlet “The Twelve Traditions Illustrated.”

L. Review progress report regarding language on safety and A.A. for inclusion in Living Sober and “Questions and Answers on Sponsorship.”

M. Consider revising the Foreword to the book Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions.

N. Consider suggestion to add “Nonalcoholics may attend open meetings as observers” to the end of the open meeting side of the Primary Purpose (blue) card.

O. Consider request to update the pamphlet “The Twelve Steps Illustrated.”

P. Review matrix of A.A. recovery literature.

 

VII. Policy/Admissions

A. Review dates for the 2022 General Service Conference.

B. Review report from G.S.O.’s general manager on General Service Conference site selection.

C. Consider a process for how a Conference committee could review, discuss and act on proposed agenda items not forwarded to a Conference committee.

D. Discuss the process of approving qualified representatives from other A.A. service structures to observe the U.S. and Canada General Service Conference.

E. Discuss a request to “develop a procedure to deal with special requests/agenda items.”

F. Consider revising the “Process for Polling the General Service Conference Between Annual Meetings.”

G. Reconsider the 1986 Advisory Action regarding a simple majority vote by the full Conference.

 

VIII. Public Information

A. Review 2018 annual reports from the trustees’ Public Information Committee regarding aa.org and aagrapevine.org.

B. Review a report regarding the 2019 Public Information Comprehensive Media Plan.

C. Public Service Announcements (PSAs):

  1. Review the distribution and tracking information for the video PSA “Changes.”
  2. Review the 2018 Report on the Relevance and Usefulness of Video Public Service Announcements.
  3. Consider request that the video PSA “My World” be discontinued.
  4. Consider request to approve the development of a new PSA in video format that utilizes full-face actors (not members of A.A.).

D. Review draft language addressing anonymity and safety proposed for the pamphlet “Understanding Anonymity.”

E. Consider request to update language in the flyer “A.A. at a Glance.”

F. Review the 2018 trustees’ Public Information Committee progress report on the usefulness and effectiveness of the A.A.W.S. YouTube account.

G. Review the 2018 trustees’ Public Information progress report on the use of Google AdWords and Google Grants to carry the A.A. message.

H. Review contents of P.I. Kit and Workbook.

 

IX. Report and Charter

A. Discuss General Service Conference Final Report.

B. The A.A. Service Manual, 2018 – 2020 • Review progress report from A.A.W.S. Publishing Department on the redesign of The A.A. Service Manual.

C. Discuss A.A. Directories (Canada, Eastern U.S., and Western U.S.)

 

X. Treatment and Accessibilities

A. Consider revising the pamphlet “Bridging the Gap” to include related corrections activities.

B. Consider adding a story from an A.A. member who is deaf to the pamphlet “Access to A.A.: Members Share on Overcoming Barriers.”

C. Consider updating the pamphlet “A.A. for the Older Alcoholic – Never too Late.”

D. Discuss the concept of posting anonymity-protected interviews on aa.org with military professionals about their experience with A.A.

E. Review draft of proposed Remote Communities Kit.

F. Review contents of Treatment Committee Kit and Workbook.

G. Review contents of Accessibilities Kit and Workbook.

 

XI. Trustees

A. Review resumes of candidates for:

  1. Northeast Regional Trustee
  2. Southwest Regional Trustee
  3. Trustee-at-Large/Canada

B. Review slates of trustees and officers of the General Service Board of Alcoholics Anonymous, Inc.

C. Review slate of directors of A.A. World Services, Inc.

D. Review slate of directors of AA Grapevine, Inc.

E. Review draft procedures for partial or complete reorganization of the General Service Board.

 

XII. Archives

A. Consider request to add the 1940s home movie of the co-founders and their wives to the video “Markings on the Journey.”

B. Review Archives Workbook.

 

XIII. International Conventions/Regional Forums

A. Discuss an anonymity-protected photograph of the flag ceremony to be taken at the 2020 International Convention.

B. Consider a broadcast of the 2020 International Convention Opening Flag Ceremony, similar to the anonymity-protected delayed Internet broadcast of the 2015 International Convention Opening Flag Ceremony.

C. Discuss ways to encourage interest in Regional Forums and attract first-time attendees.

 

Available in original format at https://wp.me/a3ta1W-lQ

 

Is My Triangle Balanced?

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Participation in All of A.A. — Is My Triangle Balanced?

In A.A., this symbol represents the three parts of our program (recovery, unity, service), which are the solutions to the three-part disease of alcoholism (physical, mental and spiritual). The circle surrounding the triangle represents Alcoholics Anonymous as a whole. The equilateral triangle is the strongest construction structure known to us. Because all three sides are equal, the triangle represents the balance required among all 36 principles in order for us to stay sober. The body should be triangular, stable — the mind, circular, open.

The triangle represents the means for generation of good energy, and is the most stable physical posture. The circle symbolizes serenity and perfection, and is the source of unlimited potential. Together they represent the perfect union of mind and body.

Recovery (bottom of the triangle): The Twelve Steps are known as recovery, and it is the entire foundation of our program. Consequently, it is the bottom of the triangle, holding up unity and service. There are three basic principles of our spiritual program of action that can be summed up in a formula of three words: awareness, honesty and responsibility. I realize that for this formula to work, I have to apply it to my entire life. There is no compartment of my life that can be immune to the application of these concepts. They are to be applied equally to my inner life, my outer life, to my personal life and my public life, to my work life, my social life, to my family relationships, to my business relationships and my personal friendships. Recovery is absorbed rather than learned, caught rather than taught. For me this is my recovery foundation.

Unity (left side of triangle): The concept of unity first suggests joining a home group and actually participating in the meetings (not just sitting in a chair). The group and its members are responsible for making sure that the door to the meeting is open and there for the newcomer. Tradition One (long form): “Each member of Alcoholics Anonymous is but a small part of a great whole. A.A. must continue to live or most of us will surely die. Hence our common welfare comes first. But individual welfare follows close afterward.”

Joining the home group and actually participating in the group conscience meetings does not mean we will agree on everything. That is when I understood that agreeing to disagree is acknowledging another person’s opinion. This is Tradition Two: “For our group purpose there is but one ultimate authority — a loving God as He may express Himself in our group conscience.” For me, this is a practice of acceptance. Tradition Four also plays a big part in unity — “Each group should be autonomous except in matters affecting other groups or A.A. as a whole.” This helps us not to lose our group individuality. However, in order to follow the Twelve Traditions, our group should not do things that will affect A.A. as a whole. In following these traditions, we will remain unified.

While A.A. structure is important and can be identified as a result of, or reflect, our unity, even when A.A. is not structured and seems to be completely fractious, our principles and common interests can and do unite us. Therefore, we have the A.A. Declaration of Unity: “This we owe to A.A.’s future: To place our common welfare first; To keep our fellowship united. For on A.A. unity depend our lives, And the lives of those to come.”

Service (right side of triangle): “Hence, an A.A. service is anything whatever that helps us to reach a fellow sufferer — ranging all the way from the Twelfth Step itself to a phone call or sitting down for a cup of coffee and listening to another alcoholic. The sum total of all these services is our Third Legacy of Service. Services include meeting places, hospital cooperation, and intergroup offices; they mean pamphlets, books, and good publicity of almost every description. They call for committees, delegates, trustees, and conferences. And, not to be forgotten, they need  voluntary money contributions from within the Fellowship. Vital to A.A.’s growth, these services, whether performed by individuals, groups, areas, or A.A. as a whole, are utterly vital to our existence and growth.”

In order for A.A. to continue to grow and keep the doors open for the newcomer, I have to take the responsibility of carrying the message of A.A. Alcoholics Anonymous will always need people to explain the A.A. structure to all who wish to be informed or helped. This means answering inquiries, fostering new groups, and distributing our standard books and publications. We shall also need others who can research important questions about our general policy or A.A. Traditions. (“Third Legacy Pamphlet,” October 1950).

I have a responsibility if I want to stay sober and give back what was so freely given to me. This is where I apply the Responsibility Declaration: “I am responsible. When anyone, anywhere reaches out for help, I want the hand of A.A. always to be there. And for that: I am responsible” Jamie B., Northeast Ohio

Excerpt from 68th GSC Final Report. To download ALL, visit the Area’s Website, cnia.org, and visit the Delegate’s Page, or go to Final Report on this site (it is Password Protected).

68th Conference Report available…

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The Final Conference Report is available. The Print Version will be disseminated later on, but for those eager to explore more than what CNIA Delegate reported, the digital anonymity-protected version is available to download at the CNIA Website on the Delegate’s Page. Note that it is the first item on the page, titled: 68th GSC Final Rpoert

Also, while this is the “scrubbed” version, it still should be treated as “restricted access” for AA member’s eyes only.

It is also available here (on the District Website) under the 2018 Conference Results Menu. This is a Pass-word Protected Area. For those that don’t remember, or even have, the PW for 2018, please email cniadistrict11@gmail.com. For ease of use, it is recommended that members use the CNIA Website that is not PW Protected.

Delegate’s Report…

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The room had a mix of those that wanted to hear the results of the 68th General Service Conference, and those that already knew the results (by earlier reading the Password Protected area of the Website of Advisory Actions and Committee Considerations). But both were entertained by Mike’s heartfelt recollections of what transpired.

From the non-conference AA meetings he attended to the closed meetings for conference attendees, there was no doubt that Mike was a typical AA member who just happens to be in General Service. Resting on a CNIA banner festooned with signatures of conference participants, his tri-fold poster board was filled with remembrances.

DCM Stacey added a nice touch with her board on General Service from her home group.

As is the norm, pre-conference trips to Stepping Stones, the AA General Service Office, and other AA-historical sites were featured as well as the “pre-requisite” Broadway Show or two programs.

It was a fantastic report! And despite the heat, was relatively well attended. Thanks to those that brought treats and fruit trays.

The Future is “All Year Long”

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Below is the last paragraph of an article in the Summer Edition of BOX 459, the Quarterly News Bulletin of A.A.’s General Service Office recapping the 2018 68th Conference. One can download directly this with other articles from AA.org.

While the efforts of the General Service Conference are felt year-round, the annual meeting held each spring is the culmination of a year’s worth of activity, a time when the collective conscience of A.A. in the U.S./Canada emerges to highlight a pathway forward that will help groups and members carry the A.A. message today and in the years to come. In this way, the Conference is a window to the future of the Fellowship, and as the 68th Conference receded, Conference members began to turn their attention toward the ongoing impact of our A.A. literature and the 2019 Conference with its theme: “Our Big Book — 80 Years, 71 Languages.”

Other articles of interest include a history of getting the Big Book to the verbal-only Navajo Nation, Myths and Misconceptions around the relationship of AA and the professional community, the A.A. practice of Fiscal PrudenceA.A.W.S./G.S.O. launching an YouTube Channel, and this one, the results of the recent conference.

Final 2018 Agenda Items

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68th General Service Conference Committees Agenda Items

I.      Agenda

  • Review suggestions for the theme of the 2019 General Service Conference.
  • Review presentation/discussion topic  ideas  for the  2019  General  Service Conference.
  • Discuss workshop topic ideas for the 2019 General Service Conference.
  • Conference Evaluation:
  1. Review summary of the 2017 General Service Conference evaluations.
  2. Review General Service Conference Evaluation Form.
  • Discuss report on the Conference Agenda Process from the trustees’ Committee on the General Service Conference.

II.    Cooperation with the Professional Community

  • Review the trustees’ committee report regarding Linkedin as a platform for reaching professionals.
  • Consider revisions to the pamphlet “A.A. as a Resource for the Health Care Professional.”
  • Consider revisions  to  the   pamphlet  “Members   of the  Clergy  Ask  About Alcoholics Anonymous.”
  • Consider revisions to the pamphlet “If You Are a Professional…”
  • Review contents of C.P.C. Kit and Workbook.

III.       Corrections

  • Consider request to create a pamphlet for inmates who are to be released after long term incarceration.
  • Review contents of Corrections Kit and Workbook.

IV.   Finance

  • Consider developing a method to standardize increases to the limits on individual contributions and bequests to the General Service Board.
  • Review Self-Support Packet.

V.     Grapevine

  • Review social media report regarding Instagram, Facebook and Google for Nonprofits.
  • Review Audio Strategy status update.
  • Review report on 2004 Conference Advisory Action on Outside Sales.
  • Reconsider the 2014 Conference Advisory Action regarding La Vina.
  • Review revised text of the pamphlet “A.A. Grapevine and La Vina: Our Meetings in Print.”
  • Consider list of suggested Grapevine book topics for 2019 and later.
  • Review Grapevine Workbook.

VI.    Literature

  • Consider proposed revisions to Alcoholics Anonymous.
  1. Request to add an appendix reflecting recognition received from the Library of Congress.
  2. Request to add the A.A. Preamble and Responsibility Statement.
  3. Request to add an endnote to Bill W.’s story acknowledging co-founder, Bob S.
  • Consider request that A.A. (U.S./Canada) publish “The God Word1‘ (a pamphlet currently published by the General Service Board of Alcoholics Anonymous, Great Britain).
  • Consider request for the development of a pamphlet for atheist and agnostic members.
  • Consider request for the development of a pamphlet based upon A.A.’s Three Legacies.
  • Review report and suggestions on the inclusion of language related to safety in A.A. literature.
  • Review revised draft pamphlet ‘A.A. for the Woman.”
  • Review revised draft pamphlet ‘A.A. and the Gay/Lesbian Alcoholic/’
  • Review draft pamphlet “A.A. for Alcoholics with Mental Health Issues.”
  • Review revised draft pamphlet “Inside A.A.: Understanding the Fellowship and its Services.”
  • Review progress report and draft revised text for the pamphlet The Twelve Traditions Illustrated.”
  • Review progress report on the update to the pamphlet “Too Young?”
  • Review progress report on the update to the pamphlet ‘Young People and A.A.”
  • Consider request for revision to Living Sober.
  • Consider request for the development of a new book combining Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions with Twelve Concepts for World Service.
  • Consider request to update the video “Your A.A. General Service Office, the Grapevine and the General Service Structure.”
  • Consider request to change the subtitle of the pamphlet “G.S.R. General Service Representative: May Be the Most Important Job in A.A.”
  • Consider request for the development of a new pamphlet for Spanish-speaking women alcoholics.
  • Consider request to add a section on anonymity to the pamphlet “Questions and Answers on Sponsorship.”
  • Review matrix of A.A. recovery literature.

VII.     Policy/Admissions

  • Approve request for one observer from A.A. in India to attend the 2018 General Service Conference.
  • Review dates for the 2021 General Service Conference.
  • Review report on the process, implementation and status on the site selection of the General Service Conference.
  • Review draft process for polling the General Service Conference between annual Conference meetings.
  • Review progress report on options for equitable distribution of the workload of Conference committees.
  • Consider request to develop a policy for the use of the Conference dashboard.
  • Discuss the following question from the trustees’ International Committee: “Does the US/Canada have a role/responsibility in assisting in the development of A.A. structures around the world through sponsoring other countries via direct invitations to observe our General Service Conference.”

VIII.  Public Information

  • Review 2017 annual report from the trustees’ Public Information Committee regarding aa.org and aagrapevine.org.
  • Review 2018 Public Information Comprehensive Media Plan
  • Public Service Announcements (PSAs):
  1. Consider approving the proposed video PSA “Changes.”
  2. Consider centralized distribution, tracking and evaluation of the proposed video PSA “Changes,” at a cost not to exceed $42,000, in addition to the work of local public information committees.
  3. Review the 2017 Report on the Relevance and Usefulness of Video Public Service Announcements.
  • Consider approving a Young Peoples Video submission.
  • Consider revisions to the pamphlet “Understanding Anonymity” which expand content on Traditions Eleven and Twelve and adds information related to safety in A.A.
  • Consider revisions to the pamphlet “A Brief Guide to Alcoholics Anonymous” which update language, contact information and information on the prevalence and severity of alcoholism and add information related to safety in A.A.
  • Review a progress report on the A.A.W.S. Google for Nonprofit YouTube channel.
  • Review the 2018 trustees’ Public Information Committee Report on the use of Google AdWords and Google Grants to carry the A.A. message.
  • Review contents of P.I. Kit and Workbook.

 IX.   Report and Charter

  • The A.A. Service Manual, 2018-2020 Edition:
  1. Review list of editorial updates.
  2. Consider request for changes to chapters 2, 3, and 5.
  3. Consider adding “Panel” to the Glossary of General Service Terms.
  4. Consider adding graphics on page S75, above the section A.A. World Services, Inc., that visually display the positions on each of the three corporate boards.
  5. Consider adding text regarding standing committees from “The A.A. Group” pamphlet.
  6. Consider removing the following statement from the section Area Newsletters or Bulletins: “Any group or district of the Fellowship is free to use the symbol of a circle and triangle on newsletters, meeting schedules or other A.A. material.”
  7. Consider developing a plan for a revised editorial review process.
  • Discuss A.A. Directories (Canada, Eastern U.S., Western U.S., and International).
  • General Service Conference Final Report.
  1. Consider request that Conference committee additional considerations be published in their entirety both in the printed Conference Final Report and the anonymity-protected digital version.

X.     Treatment and Accessibilities

  • Review the trustees’ committee report on Cooperation with Armed Services Exploration Strategies.
  • Review proposed revisions to the pamphlet “Accessibility for All Alcoholics.”
  • Discuss ways that remote communities concerns might be addressed by the Conference.
  • Review summary of the Fellowship sharing on the need for additional material to support carrying the A.A. message to Deaf and Hard-of-Hearing A.A. members.
  • Review contents of Treatment Kit and Workbook.
  • Review contents of Accessibilities Kit and Workbook.

XI.   Trustees

  • Review resumes of candidates for:
  1. Eastern Canada Regional Trustee
  2. Pacific Regional Trustee
  • Review slates of trustees and officers of the General Service Board of Alcoholics Anonymous, Inc.
  • Review slate of directors of A.A. World Services, Inc.
  • Review slate of directors of AA Grapevine, Inc.
  • Review proposal to censure the General Service Board.
  • Review proposal to reorganize the A.A. World Services and General Service Boards.
  • Review report on the regional geographic service structure.

XII.     Archives

  • Review draft of proposed publication, Our Great Responsibility: Selections of Bill W.’s General Service Conference Talks, 1951-1970.
  • Consider request from the AA Grapevine Board to post the 2017 General Service Conference presentation, A.A. Grapevine and La Vina” on AA Grapevine’s YouTube channel.
  • Consider developing a policy on distribution of audio recordings of General Service Conference presentations.
  • Review Archives Workbook.

XIII.    International Conventions/Regional Forums

  • Discuss selection of cities to be considered as a site for the International Convention in 2030.
  • Discuss inviting up to twenty-one non-A.A. speakers to participate in the 2020 International Convention at A.A.’s expense.
  • Discuss ways to encourage interest in Regional Forums and attract first-time attendees.

 

 

To download in its entirety, click here.

68th General Service Conference Preliminary Agenda Items

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68th General Service Conference Committees

Preliminary Agenda Items

Below are the preliminary agenda items for the 68th General Service Conference committees as of November 7, 2017. During the January 2018 meetings of the trustees’ committees, additional items received by the December 15th deadline may be assigned to appropriate Conference committees. Please keep in mind that this is a preliminary list and agenda items may be added or subject to change by the trustees’ committees at the January board weekend.

I.   Agenda

  • Review suggestions for the theme of the 2019 General Service Conference.
  • Review presentation/discussion topic ideas for the 2019 General Service Conference
  • Review workshop topic ideas for the 2019 General Service Conference.
  • Review the General Service Conference Evaluation Form and 2017 Evaluation Summary.

II. Archives

  • Review Archives Workbook.

III.    Cooperation with the Professional Community

  • Review contents of C.P.C. Kit and Workbook.

IV. Corrections

  • Consider development of a new pamphlet focused on long-term incarcerated alcoholics soon to be released.
  • Review contents of Corrections Kit and Workbook.

V. Finance

  • Review Self-Support Packet.

VI Grapevine

  • Review Audio Strategy status update.
  • Consider list of suggested Grapevine book topics for 2019 or later.
  • Review Grapevine Workbook.

VII.   International Conventions/Regional Forums

  • Discuss ways to encourage interest in Regional Forums and attract first-time attendees.

VIII.    Literature

  • Consider request to add an appendix to Alcoholics Anonymous reflecting “recognition received from the Library of Congress.”
  • Consider request to add the A.A. Preamble and Responsibility Statement to Alcoholics Anonymous.
  • Review annual matrix of recovery literature.
  • Consider request that A.A. World Services, Inc. publish “The God Word” (a pamphlet currently published by The General Service Board Great Britain).
  • Consider request for the development of a pamphlet for atheist/agnostic members.
  • Consider request for the development of a pamphlet based upon A.A.’s Three Legacies.
  • Review report and suggestions on the inclusion of language regarding safety in recovery literature.

IX.  Policy/Admissions

  • Review draft process of polling the General Service Conference between annual Conference meetings.
  • Review dates for the 2021 General Service Conference.

X. Public Information

  • Review 2017 annual report from the trustees’ Public Information Committee regarding aa.org and aagrapevine.org.
  • Review Young People’s Video submission.
  • Review 2018 Public Information Comprehensive Media Plan.
  • Review contents of P.I. Kit and Workbook.

XI.  Report and Charter

  • The A.A. Service Manual.. 2018-2020 Edition:
  1. Review list of editorial updates.
  2. Consider request for changes to chapters 2, 3, and 5 in The A.A. Service Manual.
  • Consider developing a plan with a revised editorial review proccsc for The A.A. Service Manual.
  • Discuss A.A. Directories.
  • Discuss General Service Conference Final Report.

XII.  Treatment and Accessibilities

  • Review contents of Treatment Committee Kit and Workbook.
  • Review contents of Accessibilities Kit and Workbook.

XIII. Trustees

  • Review resumes of candidates for:
  1. Eastern Canada Regional Trustee
  2. Pacific Regional Trustee
  • Review slates of trustees and officers of the General Service Board of Alcoholics Anonymous, Inc.
  • Review slate of directors of A.A. World Services, Inc.
  • Review slate of directors of A.A. Grapevine, Inc.
  • Review proposal to censure the General Service Board.
  • Review proposal to reorganize the A.A. World Services and General Service Boards.

 

Click here to download

Excerpt from Keynote Address of 2017 67th GSC

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The following excerpt is from the Keynote Address of the
67th General Service Conference Final Report.

The theme of this year’s Conference is “Supporting Our Future,” and for me there is only one way we can support the future of Alcoholics Anonymous, and that is by embracing the great Twelve Traditions of Alcoholics Anonymous. I say “embrace” because enforcement has never worked in Alcoholics Anonymous; it is only when newcomers see those who came before them embracing the Traditions that they will want to embrace them, too. I am speaking of embracing all Twelve Traditions, not picking and choosing which ones are convenient. You will never win a popularity contest by standing up against a popular idea because your gut tells you it goes against one of our great Twelve Traditions, but it is every A.A. member’s responsibility and the duty of every leader in A.A. to do the same. We don’t embrace them out of fear but rather out of love for Alcoholics Anonymous, the only thing that has worked to arrest our alcoholism.

I told you my name, my service position, and that I am an alcoholic, but let me clearly state what I mean when I say I am an alcoholic. I am not a heavy drinker, a binge drinker, or even someone addicted to alcohol; rather, I suffer from an “allergy” to alcohol, an allergy that is clearly described and defined in two specific chapters in the book Alcoholics Anonymous, “The Doctor’s Opinion” and “More About Alcoholism.” Every time I drink I have a reaction to alcohol that normal people do not; my body tells me I have to and need to keep drinking. On top of this physical compulsion, the next day or night when I grow uncomfortable in my own skin, my mind tells me the only way to feel comfortable again is to have the first drink regardless of the consequences the last time I drank.

The courts might believe they can mandate me to get better, and others feel they can legislate this; some doctors and scientists believe they can invent a vaccination or medicate my recovery. But I have accepted that only a spiritual experience as the result of the Twelve Steps can arrest my alcoholism. I know today that you can’t sentence a spiritual experience, that you can’t legislate a spiritual experience, and that, even as a sponsor, I can’t schedule a spiritual experience. You can simply have a spiritual experience as a result of our Twelve Steps.

Just like the newcomer looks to the more experienced member for help with our Traditions, groups look to districts, districts to assemblies, and assemblies to the General Service Conference and General Service Board to set an example. A.A.’s leaders have a sacred duty to, above all else, embrace all Twelve Traditions. I do not believe we should ever look for a way around a Tradition or try to make something work if it does not feel right. I firmly believe that you can’t ask a newcomer to observe one Tradition while you ignore a few others. I believe it is time for many in Alcoholics Anonymous to stop using the Fourth Tradition to break other Traditions. History shows that the Fourth Tradition was not created to be a veto over the others; rather, it was created to give groups flexibility regarding group “customs.” If any group — including an area assembly, area officers, the General Service Board or service corporations — breaks a Tradition, it is affecting other groups and A.A. as a whole.

—end of excerpt—

William N., General Service Trustee

For continuation of this, and other complete presentations, see your GSR. Every Group should have a single Hard Copy of the Final Report. They should be available for pick-up at the October District 11 meeting.
Online Continuations are planned to become available as they are uploaded. Note that the Online Versions are ‘Anonymity Protected’ and are permissible for Online use.

Delegate’s talk at Conference…

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The following is another presentation of the 67th General Service Conference. This one, in its entirety, was by our Delegate, Vikki R.

Safety — An Important Consideration

My name is Vikki, and I am an alcoholic. I currently have the honor to serve as delegate of the California Northern Interior Area, Panel 66. I would like to thank Mary Clare and Rick for the loving invitation to speak today.

I thought it was interesting at the General Service Conference last year that the original presentation topic was   “Safety in A.A. — Our Responsibility.” Then, one of my favorite Class A trustees, Judge Ivan Lemelle, came to the mike and expressed concern about the public’s perception of what “our responsibility” really means and that perhaps it could be a liability issue. The Conference presentation idea was changed to its current form.

That got me thinking. What is the public’s and professional communities’ perception of Alcoholics Anonymous? Specifically, do they think Alcoholics Anonymous is a safe place to be, and, if not, how did they arrive at that perception?

We all know there are many ways A.A. meetings can be unsafe. There are physical dangers that include, but are not limited to, misinformation about medications and treatment programs, bullying, sexual harassment and inappropriate touching. There are liability dangers and the potential for vandalism of one’s property. There may be financial predators lurking in the rooms looking for victims, and, of course, there are members with behavioral health problems.

How do we handle potential danger or safety issues? Fortunately for us, the Traditions have already been put in place to guide us. Tradition One tells us we have an obligation to our common welfare. Tradition Three states, in part, we have only one requirement in Alcoholics Anonymous. Tradition Five reminds us about our primary purpose. Tradition Ten states we should not be drawn into public controversy. Tradition Eleven reminds us that our public relations policy is based on attraction, not promotion, and Tradition Twelve tells us to place principles before personalities.

Besides the Traditions, there are many ways to increase safety in meetings. Good sponsorship is another tool we can use to increase safety. We can start by talking about potential dangers and potentially dangerous people. It doesn’t have to be a secret. If there is an individual who is known to the group as a predator, let the new person be aware. Predators are like cockroaches: the only way to get rid of them is to shine the light on them.

Also, it is important to select good leadership in our groups, districts and areas. Good leaders should know the proper procedures in case of an emergency situation and know how to stay calm but firm when potential dangers arise. A good leader should make awareness of the safety issues a priority by organizing presentations and workshops.

There are no “A.A. police.” The General Service Office has no authority, legal or otherwise, to control or direct the behavior of A.A. members and groups. So, who has the responsibility? We all do! Collectively and individually, it is up to us.

Develop a plan or course of action in your home group’s business or group conscience meeting. Decide what to do if a situation requires police involvement and who should call the police. Just because A.A. is considered a safe haven from drinking doesn’t mean it is a safe haven from violence. If your group conscience dictates, don’t be afraid to ask disruptive members to leave the meeting. Remember, our common welfare comes first. If one person is preventing other members from hearing the message of Alcoholics Anonymous, it is okay if one or two members take that individual outside to talk. If the disruptive behavior continues, a member can be invited not to attend that group for a while. We do not kick people out of A.A., but if behavior warrants, we can ask them to attend a different meeting.

It is important to our future to make sure our Fellowship is attractive to the alcoholics still out there suffering. Nobody wants to attend a meeting they hear is unsafe. Does our Fellowship seem attractive? In order to answer that question, we can review the current Feasibility Study. This study clearly states our membership numbers continue to remain flat. Why is that? I believe part of the answer is our lack of Public Information/Cooperation with the Professional Community (P.I./C.P.C.) efforts.

Did you know there are members of Alcoholics Anonymous across the United States and Canada who aren’t even aware we have P.I./C.P.C. committees? Back when Bill W. was around, we had the support of many doctors, lawyers, clergymen, etc. Newspapers were flooded with wonderful stories about our Fellowship and our members. Today, most of the A.A. coverage in public media that I see is negative in nature. As a Fellowship, we cannot stand idly by and let others define us. It is time for us to have a more visible presence on the Internet so that misinformation does not go unchallenged. We cannot give one message about A.A. to the public and ignore educating our own members about how our behavior affects A.A. as a whole.

In the March 1958 Grapevine, Bill W. wrote, “Millions are still sick and other millions soon will be.… Why haven’t these millions come to us?” Responding to his own question with a solution, he wrote, “The answer seems to be in education — education in schoolrooms, in medical colleges, among clergy and employers, in families, and in the public at large.… Sound education on alcoholism, and far more of it at all levels, will clearly pay off.”

Remember that we have found a way out from a terrible illness. Our own survival lies in our ability to carry this message of hope to fellow sufferers. Let us not squander this responsibility.

Vikki R., California Northern Interior