Start Planning Now

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The 2020 International Convention of Alcoholics Anonymous will be held July 2–5, 2020 in Detroit, Michigan with the theme “Love and Tolerance is our Code.” A.A. members and guests from around the world will celebrate A.A.’s 85th year at this event with big meetings held Friday night, Saturday night and Sunday morning in the Ford Field Stadium. Other meetings, scheduled or informal, will take place throughout the weekend in the COBO Center in downtown Detroit.

We know many are excited about the International Convention and eager for detailed information. As the time gets closer, additional information about the Convention and Detroit, our host city, will be provided.

This website will be updated as more information becomes available. Also watch for articles in Box 4-5-9 that is mailed to the general service representative of every group in the U.S. and Canada listed with G.S.O. and is also posted on the website.

Information about Convention registration and housing reservations will be available in fall 2019. All necessary information will be included in the registration packet which will also be available in the fall of 2019. This packet will list numbers to call for answers to specific questions about housing, the program, etc. The information will be mailed to A.A. groups, offices and contacts around the world and posted on the website.

We look forward to seeing you in Detroit!

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.

A.A. and the Service Member

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Alcoholics Anonymous has had a close relationship with the armed services almost since the Fellowship’s inception in 1935. A.A. co-founder Bill W. was a second lieutenant in the field artillery during World War I (where he developed a love of French wine while serving overseas). When World War II broke out, A.A. requested and was granted extra gasoline rations in order to continue with the important work of carrying the A.A. message to alcoholics across the U.S. and Canada, known in A.A. vernacular as “Twelfth Step work.” The Grapevine, A.A.’s monthly magazine — often referred to as “A.A.’s meeting in print” — was first published in June 1944, in part to help connect alcoholics on the world’s far-flung battlefields; and post-war, A.A. groups sprang up on military bases and in surrounding towns from Okinawa to Munich, growth that has continued ever since.

For more on this topic, see or download About A.A. … A Newsletter for Professionals (Fall of 2017)

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.

PI/CPC: What are they?

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From CNIA Accents for June

HOW CAN WE BETTER REACH THE STILL SUFFERING ALCOHOLIC IN OUR LOCAL COMMUNITIES?

Though the Public Information (PI) Committee has been around since 1956 and Cooperation with the Professional Community (CPC) Committee since 1970, many members are not familiar with the purpose of these two valuable services. Once learning of what can be done, the opportunities to reach out may seem unlimited. Perhaps there are opportunities in your own community that you have not realized.

Bill W. wrote about Public Information:

Public Information takes many forms – the simple sign outside a meeting place that says “A.A. meeting tonight;” listing in local phone directories; distribution of A.A. Literature; and radio and television shows using sophisticated media techniques. Whatever the form, it comes down to “one drunk carrying the message to another drunk,” whether through personal contact or through the use of third parties and the media.

Our literature describes CPC this way:

Members of C.P.C. Committees inform professionals and future professionals about A.A. – what we are, where we are, what we can do, and what we cannot do. They attempt to establish better communication between A.A.s and professionals, and to find simple, effective ways of cooperating without affiliating.

Want to learn more about PI/CPC?

Workbooks and Kits are available as an excellent source of information to getting started in PI/CPC service. Workbooks are available for a few dollars at aa.org and are suggested as a place to learn a great deal before moving forward. You may be surprised what you will learn and may feel enthusiastic about what you have read. Note: PI/CPC Committee has a few copies.

Sharing Sessions / Workshops are available to anyone interested in learning more, getting questions answered or sharing your own experiences with others.

Contact your PI/CPC Chair at alt-delegate@cnia.org for more details.

Web Sites like AA.org and CNIA.org can be an excellent source to information, pamphlets, helpful links, videos, and much more.

If you feel there may be a need in your community to better reach the still suffering alcoholic, maybe PI/CPC can help. Gain some knowledge about what is involved, form a committee, and consider ways that make sense for your committee members. Each committee has different strengths and resources but there is something for everybody to get started. Do what you can with what you have and build from there. You will learn more as you continue to grow in this service.

 

Applying Love,

Tom A.

PI/CPC Chair

CNIA 07, Panel 68

alt-delegate@cnia.org

 

NOTE: Local NorCal PI/CPC meets the third Monday of the Month (except when it is a holiday…then the following Tuesday or Wednesday) at the Redding Shasta County Library at 5:30 pm.

68th GSC Results are posted

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Results of the 68th General Service Conference are now available on the 2018 Conference Results page. This is a Password Protected page; not for the general public.

Not all visitors have a need-to-know.

Post-Conference for Panel 68 2018

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Time is still left to attend the California Northern Interior Area 07 Post-Conference Assembly. Even if you are not part of General Service as a GSR, this is a way to hear the latest-and-greatest from the 68th General Service Conference results, and experience, from CNIA’s Delegate who spent almost 10 days in New York City in the latter part of April.

For more information, click here for the Flyer with registration and recommended lodging.

A.A. and the Armed Services

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Excerpt from recent Box 459

Alcoholics Anonymous has had a close relationship with the armed services almost since its inception in 1935. The Grapevine, A.A.’s monthly magazine — known as “A.A.’s meeting in print” — was first published in June 1944, in part to help connect alcoholics on the world’s far-flung battlefields. In a regular feature titled “Mail Call for All AAs in the Armed Forces,” the Grapevine kept alcoholics close to A.A., no matter where they were, sharing stories of staying sober and working the program under difficult circumstances. And, later, in the 1970s, came publication of “A.A. and the Armed Services,” a pamphlet of stories from men and women staying sober while in the military. The pamphlet was most recently updated in 2012 and has now been translated into French and Spanish. Available from the General Service Office, it is an essential tool as A.A.s across the U.S. and Canada work with the armed forces.
So, how are active duty A.A.s and veterans faring these days? And how can A.A. continue reaching out to them?

“…but I don’t forget that I am a sober member of A.A. I am here to serve my country and I can’t do that if I drink.”

For more, see this, and past, issues available at:
https://www.aa.org/pages/en_US/box-4-5-9-news-and-notes-from-gso

Airing the Message

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Public Service Announcements reach many…

Excerpts from Spring Edition of BOX 459,
the Quarterly Newsletter of General Service Office of A.A

…PSAs that are made for the public are very carefully produced in the spirit of attraction rather than promotion. Everyday words spoken by regular people (in many cases portrayed by professional actors) make the process of identification easier for the prospect as he or she listens in the privacy of a living or work space, on a car radio, or on earphones just about anywhere. Since our experience shows that most alcoholics rarely talk about their drinking problems, PSAs, like A.A. literature, are a way of reaching those who are isolated and isolating from their families and communities. They are a non-invasive and effective way for problem drinkers to learn that they are not alone.

…Putting PSAs out into the public arena has its challenges. There are a host of nonprofit organizations who create PSAs for their own purposes and getting them aired is very competitive. A.A. Public Information Committees throughout North America regularly contact local broadcasters to offer PSAs to their stations. The creation of A.A.’s download page has certainly made the final process easier, but getting the PSA physically on the air is where the challenge lies. Teddy W. has found it easier when district committees have some crossover with the professional community, like a personal contact at the station. (“It’s who you know.”) When that connection is not there, A.A.’s PSA requests often land in a stack along with countless others. As luck or providence would have it, there is sometimes a recovering alcoholic working at the broadcast site who may be able to help nudge A.A.’s request toward the top of the pile, but doing that without breaking anonymity requires great resourcefulness and delicacy. However, persistence, tact, the desire to help, and trust in the greater good continue to bring about positive results.
Most published PSAs are developed by G.S.O. and all are approved by the General Service Conference prior to distribution. If a member, group, or area has an idea for a PSA, they should send that idea to the Public Information assignment at G.S.O., something Clay R. welcomes enthusiastically: “We are always looking for new ideas… and if a group or community would like to create a PSA for local use, they are free to do so… and while G.S.O. stands ready to share A.A. experience with local committees, their group conscience can determine the type and content of a local PSA.” The General Service Board’s policy of not showing an actor’s full face is used for G.S.O.’s videos and many local entities follow this guidance, too. The only other guidelines are those contained in the Steps and Traditions of Alcoholics Anonymous and G.S.O.’s mission to share consistent and accurate information on A.A.

For more, see this, and past, issues available at:
https://www.aa.org/pages/en_US/box-4-5-9-news-and-notes-from-gso

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.

 

 

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