Membership Policy - East Wind - 2004

Shared by East Wind Community
Tags: Membership, Visits and Visitors, Democracy, Gender and Sexuality, Wait List, Housing, Families

10.0 - Membership Process
Community Ballot, 15 Sep 1995
Amended by Petition of 2/3 Full Members, 17 Aug 1998 Amended to add II.E, 23 Oct 2003
Amended to revise III and add IV, 30 May 2004
I. General Considerations
Membership selection matters will be decided only through the process described in this legislation, however, two-thirds of the full members can override any decision as provided in the by-laws. Other community decisions do not have priority unless they specifically suspend or do away with this legislation.
The membership manager (mm) shall administer this legislation, however, in the event that there is no membership manager or mm is not available, a member appointed to act in mm’s place shall administer it.
This legislation replaces “East Wind’s Membership Acceptance Process, July 1991 (revised May 95)”, and “Membership Selection Revisions 12 May 95”. There will be accompanying policy revisions to conform to the new legislation where appropriate.
This legislation will be extended indefinitely, until the community decides otherwise. (Board/Membership Proposal, passed 12 to 4 by Community Ballot, 4 May 97 replaced previous legislation that stated “This legislation will come up for extension by the central decision-making body 18 months after passage.”)
II. Votes on Associates and Provisional Members [Amended by Petition 17 Aug 1998]
A. Requests for Votes: A full member (FM) may request a vote on a provisional member (PM) or associate. The request is made to the membership manager. Requests for votes may be given at any time during the provisional member period or associate residency period. Requests for votes may be received during PM and associate leaves of absence.
In order for the request to be accepted, it must be written, signed by the full member, and in­clude reasons for the request.
The request will not be confidential unless indicated by the full member, however, the names of FM’s who request votes will become public once the number of requests reaches 25% (of full members not on leaves of absence) unless, in the opinion of the Board, there is likelihood of harassment or abuse. In such cases, the Board will be fully informed of the particulars by the membership manager.
It is the responsibility of the membership manager to give information to a full member requesting a vote about how the community can help to resolve a problem between a full member and a PM or associate. Offering this information is intended to show the full member that problems can be dealt with in more cooperative ways. It is not intended to advocate for anyone. It is intended as a way to decrease festering tension.
B. If 25% of the full members request a vote on a provisional member or associate, a vote will be held to determine if the individual should lose co’s status and leave the community.
1. If requests for votes are withdrawn so that the number of requests is below 25% of the full members, the vote is not held so long as the withdrawals are made before the commencement of the vote.
2. Within 36 hours of receiving the required number of requests, the membership manager announces that a vote will take place, announces who requested the vote, and posts a summary of the reasons for the requests.
3. There will be a one week waiting period between the announcement of the vote and the commencement of the vote. If, at the end of the waiting period, requests for a vote amount to 25% of the full members, the vote will commence. The voting period is for five days.
4. Votes may not be held while the person being voted on is away on leave of absence. There will be an attempt to inform such persons that a vote will be held when they return.
5. All full members not on leaves of absence will be eligible to vote. Full members not on the premises may relay their vote to the mm via phone or by proxy arrangement before they leave. Otherwise the vote will be by ballot.
(Section II.B.6 was changed to the following by Board Proposal, passed by Community Meeting, 29 July 1997)
6. The ballot will solicit only the signature of those in favor of the individual maintaining co’s status.
The ballot will read as follows:
At least 25% of the full members have requested a vote on. If you would like for this person to continue to reside at East Wind, vote yes and return this ballot to the ballot box. If not, vote no.
At least half of the full member population not on leaves of absence must participate in this vote for any action to be taken. If less than 50% participate, a re-vote will automatically occur un­til a decision is reached. If there are more yes than no votes, membership status is maintained. If there are more no than yes votes, the membership or associate status ends. The individual must leave within a period determined by membership policy. Tallies will happen immediately following the conclusion of the voting period. Announcements of vote outcomes will be posted as soon as the ballots are tallied.
Votes will occur once a week for a minimum of three times. Simple majority will rule on the third re-vote.
7. If a provisional member is not rejected, then co becomes a full member on the anniversary of being accepted as a PM unless leaves of absence have postponed the acceptance date. Associates maintain their status and may continue their residency periods if not rejected in a vote.
8. If requests for votes totaling 25% are not received until very late in the PM period this period may be extended so as to allow enough time for the vote to take place without an automatic change of status.
C. Bounces: Visitors must leave the community in the first week of the visitor period if four full members give a “bounce” request to the visitor manager. These bounce requests must be written, signed by the full member, and state reasons like vote requests discussed above, however, they will be confidential. Visitors may not be bounced unless those requesting the bounce and the visitor manager agree that they exhibit blatant incompatibilities with the community. Examples would be severe behavior or communication problems, or deliberately repudiating the by-laws.
D. Votes on Visitors: If at any time 25% of the full members request in writing that a visitor leave the community, that visitor will be informed by the Membership Manager/Committee or the Board that co must vacate the premises of East Wind no later than 24 hours after the notification.
E. Visit-Again Option: If, before the end of a visitor period, 25% of the full members request in writing that a visitor do another visitor period, then the visitor will not transition to PM at the end of the visitor period, but must instead do another visitor period if co wishes to qualify for membership. The 2nd visitor period may be scheduled for any time during the next year, and may start as soon as the day after the current visitor period ends (if in Membership’s judgment there is enough visitor housing available).
The Visit-Again option is meant to be used for visitors when members do not have a good enough sense of their character/compatibility by the end of the visitor period. The Visit-Again option gives members a chance to ask a visitor to do a second visitor period in order to make sure of their character/compatibility before admitting them to PM.
The Visit-Again option may only be used once per visitor per year. A visitor cannot be required to do a 3rd visitor period.
For a visitor doing a 2nd visitor period, co’s labor balance and any concerns placed on co carries over to co’s next visitor period. However, a visitor doing a 2nd visitor period may not be bounced during the 1st week of co’s 2nd visitor period by 4 FM requests; instead it requires 25% of the FM’s to request for co to leave.
Note that if 25% of the FM’s have already requested that a visitor leave, that this takes precedence over any Visit-Again option.
III. PM Period and Evaluations
[revised 30 May 2004]
The provisional member period is 365 days. At 3 months and 6 months, evaluation forms will be given by Membership to all full members to elicit feedback on PMs. PMs will then meet with the Membership Team to discuss evaluations. The evaluation is intended to help the PM adjust to the community, identifying strengths, problems and potential problems, suggestions, and other information so steps can be taken to INCREASE the PM’s prospects for acceptance.
The Membership Manager will post a notice that an evaluation for a particular PM is in progress. Full members will have one week to give the Membership Manager their evaluations. After the evaluation, a summary of comments, discussions, and next steps (should there be anticipated problems with acceptance) will be compiled and posted by the Membership Manager. How evaluations and full member concerns about PMs, visitors, and associates are dealt with beyond what is stipulated here will be membership policy.
IV. Voting on PMs to Become Full Members
[revised by petition 2006]
There will be a vote on all PMs before they become full members. Ballots will be given to every full member two weeks before the PM’s anniversary date by the Membership Team. The voting period will last one week.
The ballot will read:
1) Do you want _________________________ to become a Full Member now?
? yes ? no
2) If the result of question #1 is no, would you allow a 6 months PM extention?
? ? yes ? no
Be sure to vote on BOTH questions for your vote to be valid
The option with the most YES votes will pass, as long as at least 25% of the full members vote YES. If no option receives at least 25% yeses, the vote will be extended by two days, and if necessary two more days, until an option passes. A person’s provisional membership can only be extended two times. On the third vote, the options will be limited to “Full Member” and “Drop membership.”
10.0a - Visitor Period Length
Membership Manager, 15 Sep 1995
Visitors must visit at least three weeks to be considered for membership.
10.0b - Policy on Calls for Votes on PMs and Associates
Membership Manager, 15 Sep 1995
Calls for votes must be made for each individual person. Standing calls for votes are not allowed. Calls for a vote made during the visitor period continue to count toward the 25% required for a vote until withdrawn.
10.0c - Posting News About Membership Transitions
Membership Manager, 15 Sep 1995
The membership manager will post notes indicating that visitors have become provisional members or associates or that provisional members have passed into full membership.
Associates may become provisional members at any time during a residency period by informing the membership manager of co’s intention. The membership manager will post a note informing the membership. The provisional membership period will last one year as is the case with a visitor who becomes a PM.
10.1 - Provisional Member Evaluation
Board Policy, 31 May 1995
Revised, Membership Manager, 15 Sep 1995
[This policy replaces Board Straw Polls Policy of 22 Aug 1993]
Full and provisional members are invited to give feedback to provisional members whenever they have concerns or suggestions for change. This can be done directly, or through the membership manager or other community channel.
At the 4th and 8th months of provisional membership, there will be a formal call for evaluative comments on provisional members. The membership manager will post a note indicating that evaluation of the provisional member is being solicited. Generic forms will be available for members to fill out.
The membership manager may meet with members who express concerns to clarify their concerns. The membership manager will offer mediation of any concerns expressed where appropriate.
Evaluations will be relayed verbatim to the provisional member with this exception: the membership manager will not be the conduit for rude or hateful remarks (those will be paraphrased). A paraphrased summary of the evaluations will be posted by the membership manager. The names of the members who turn in evaluation forms will be confidential, unless they choose not to be. Evaluation forms will ask for the following information from members:
1) Do you have any constructive feedback or suggestions for improvement for this person?
Do you have concerns that might cause you not to want to live with this per-son?
[if #2 is true] Are you willing to discuss concerns face-to-face with this per-son (with or without facilitation)?
Do you want your name revealed?
10.1b - Child Members Becoming Full Adult Members
Membership, 22 Mar 1995
A full child member between ages 16 and 18 ½ may apply for full adult membership. At no later than age 18 ½, co will become a full adult member or drop membership. There will be no vote.
Full child members will not be required to go through a period of provisional membership.
10.2 - Responding To Membership Concerns
Board Policy, May 1995
Revised, Membership Manager, 15 Sep 1995
[This policy replaced automatic concerns meetings]
If the membership manager receives any calls for a vote on or concerns about a provisional mem­ber, the PM will be offered the following choices by way of response:
In person if the concerned member and the provisional member are willing to meet together (with or without the membership manager or someone else facilitating). Other members may be invited to meet with them if the concerned member and the provisional member are agreeable.
In a note written by the provisional member and delivered to the concerned member by the membership manager.
In notes taken by the membership manager when meeting with the provisional mem­ber, which will be posted.
In writing on the backboard.
In a community forum facilitated by the membership manager or another person ac­ceptable to the provisional member. The provisional member may choose to just speak or may offer to answer questions from the group. Members will never-the-less have a chance to express their concerns.
The provisional member may choose one or more of the preceding avenues of communication or may choose not to respond to concerns; the choice may be mentioned, if appropriate, in notes by the membership manager.
10.3 - Time to Pack
Board, 20 Sep 93
Those who have been rejected for membership, full or provisional, or expelled will have one week to make such arrangements as they need and leave.
10.4 - Loans to Departing Members
Board Policy, 05 Nov 96
All loans to departing members or associates must have been posted as a concerns note one week in advance and have been approved by both the Board and Finance Management.
Amended Community Meeting, 2 September 2006
All loan or AR requests $500 or more must go to community meeting and be voted on via ballot. The voting period will last 7 days.

10.5 - Provisional Membership and Associate Labor Trouble
Community Meeting, 24 May 2001
Old Part VII deleted by Community Meeting, Sept 2001 Revised 30 May 2004 to add new Part VII
Part I
The following actions will be taken when it appears that a Provisional Member’s labor balance has fallen more than 60 hours in the hole:
The member will be notified by the Labor Manager of the situation and be given the opportunity to submit any changes that would affect the member’s balance. The Labor Manager will then make a de-termination of the member’s correct balance.
If the correct balance is more than 60 hours in the hole, the Labor Manager will inform the Membership Committee, which will in turn notify the member that co has 15 days from the date of the informing to raise co’s balance above 60 hours in the hole and that failure to do so could result in expulsion, demotion, and/or a labor contract.
The member will also be informed that at 15 days from the issuing of this warning, the member’s labor balance must be above 60 hours in the hole, even if the member’s labor balance had been above 60 hours in the hole at any point during the 15-day period.
The Labor Manager will make every effort to find work for the member.
The Membership Committee will ask the Medical Committee to make a determination of the mem­ber’s ability to work, and report back.
The Medical Committee will determine whether the member is able to work. It will report this to the Membership Committee.
If the Medical Committee determines that a member is unable to work quota, it may make a partial or full work exemption for the member. If so, it will report this to the Membership
Committee, which will cancel the 15 day warning period, and not take further action until the member has been determined able to work again.
Part II
After the above actions have been taken, and it is determined that the member has been able to work, and the member is still more than 60 hours in the hole at the end of the 15 day warning period, the Membership Committee will notify the member that a community meeting is to be held and a vote taken on the question of expulsion, demotion, and/or labor contract. (If the member who has been warned raises co’s labor balance above 60 hours in the hole during the warning period, but allows co’s labor balance to fall below 60 hours in the hole by the end of the warning period, then the warning pe­riod is violated and the procedure described herein will continue.) After this notification, there will be a period of at least one week and no more than three weeks. This is intended to give the member time to prepare for the meeting, or to choose to resign co’s membership. If co does not choose to resign, the following process will happen:
A. A community meeting will be held to discuss the matter.
B. Following the meeting, Full Members will vote on three separate actions to take:
Whether or not to expel the member.
Whether or not to demote the member to a day 1 PM and place said member on a mandatory labor contract designed to help said member out of the hole.
To allow member to retain current membership status, but be placed on a labor contract designed to help said member out of the hole.
C. If 51% or more of the Full Members vote to expel, then the member will be expelled from the community, regardless of the vote to demote. If less than 51% vote to expel, but 51% or more vote to demote member to day 1 PM status and place member on labor contract, then member is demoted to day 1 PM status and immediately placed on a labor contract. If less than 51% vote for either expulsion or demotion, and 51% or more vote to allow member to retain current membership status and be placed on a labor contract, then member will automatically be placed on contract at the end of the vote. If less than 51% of Full Members vote to carry out any of these three options, then, member more than 60 hours in the hole will automatically be scheduled for another community meeting and the voting process will repeat until 51% of Full Members vote to take some action concerning said PM’s labor situation.
D. Labor contract should include:
What constitutes violation of labor contract.
Who deals with labor contract violations.
What appeals process, if any, will be followed if violation occurs.
Labor contract can provide for no more than one revote on member’s status, as outlined in this proposal. Subsequent violation will be considered grounds for immediate expulsion. Labor contract will be designed at the meeting concerning the member in violation, and will be approved by straw poll at same meeting.
Part III
This legislation is not intended to, nor can it, preclude any other proposal to expel, demote, or place on labor contract, that does not follow this process.
Part IV
Only one 15 day warning period will be allowed per calendar year. That is, any verified repeat occurrences of member falling more than 60 hours in the hole during any one calendar year will result in a meeting, followed by a vote as described above, without a 15 day warning period.
Part V
Part VI
Part VII

Any Provisional member or associate who goes 160 or more hours in the labor hole (barring mistakes by the labor accountant) is automatically expelled. 7 days are allowed to pack. No back hours will be ac­cepted after hitting the –160 mark.
In the absence of a Labor Manager, a Membership Committee, or a Medical Committee, the responsi­bility of carrying out any action prescribed to these entities will fall to the Board of Directors.
11.0 - Returning Former Members
Membership Manager, 15 Sep 1995
If a former member who may be controversial wants to return for a visitor period, the visitor manager will put up a note asking for feedback. Responses to the poll will be discussed with the membership manager. If 25% of the full members say they would call for a vote on the returning former member, the visitor manager will automatically deny a visit. If less than 25%, the visitor manager will use co’s discretion, giving consideration to the strength of negative or positive feed-back, previous history of returning member, etc.
11.1 - Drop-Ins
Community Meeting, 2007
Drop-ins will not be excepted under any circumstances until they have left the farm for at least one month, written a visitor letter, and been invited back by the membership manager (team).
11.2 - Housing and Membership Limit
Community Meeting, Sept. 1993
East Wind’s active membership may not exceed the number of standard private spaces we have and such doubles as may be designated by the Board. The Board may choose to set the member-ship limit below the number of spaces we have. An example of when this might be done is to have set aside space for full members returning from leave, community financial difficulties, or when extensive repair work needs to be done on rooms or buildings.
When there are more people who have been accepted for membership than there are rooms and spaces to house them, there will be a waiting list for housing.
When there is a gender imbalance we will accept members according to this proposal until 50/50 is reached.
If there is a waiting list and a gender imbalance in which one gender is greater than 55% of the adult population (children not considered), the minority gender will be given available housing at the rate of three of the minority gender to one of the majority gender. The first to receive housing after the legislation is passed will be the person longest on the waiting list regardless of gender and will go in the prescribed order from that point.
5) When a gender balance of at least 55/45 has been sustained for two months, and a waiting list is still in effect, new members will be given housing in the order of their joining without regard to gender until one gender reaches more than 55% of the adult population. This legislation does not expire upon reaching gender balance but will come into effect and go out of effect according to conditions indicated above.
6) If there is a gender imbalance and there is nobody of the minority gender on the waiting list or none willing to return at that time, the membership manager may hold a place for a person of the minority gender (either on the waiting list or prospective member) for up to one month, providing there is a likelihood of that person being able to occupy the space within that time. If not then the manager must give the room to the next person on the waiting list. The membership manager will, in these circumstances, attempt to maintain the 3 to 1 ratio over time even if it means having to accept 4 or more of the minority gender in a row on occasion.
7) The Board or its designated deputy will determine what housing spaces are standard and may temporarily designate substandard spaces as standard when members (not on the waiting list) are interested in residing in them. The Board or its deputy may make additional policies to administer the membership ceiling and the waiting list.
8) Full members returning from leave may choose to tent or camp or double with another member who offers this accommodation if a room is not available. The first available room will go to the full member returned from leave.
9) Associates and other temporary members will not be guaranteed standard housing. The Board may make additional policies concerning associates or temporary members.
10) The membership manager will have responsibility and authority to:
maintain the waiting list
make recommendations to the Board for additional policies regarding the administration of the membership ceiling and the waiting list.
hold a space for a prospective member of minority gender for up to a month in order to better maintain the 3 to 1 ratio indicated above.
11) This legislation makes null and void the Housing and Membership Limits legislation passed by community meeting on 3/14/86.
11.3 - Waiting List Guidelines
Membership Policy, Sept 1993
[Sections #2 and #5 revised 13 Dec 1996 by membership committee]
All potential and incoming visitors will be told in correspondence that we have a waiting list in effect.
If there is not space available for a new member or a member wishing to return from leave, co will go on a waiting list until space is available.
Full members on Leave of Absence of more than two months will go to the top of the waiting list, regardless of gender. If there is no housing available when they wish to return and they prefer not to live in a tent or camper, their leave of absence may be extended by the Membership Manager if necessary.
The legislated guidelines are that the minority gender will be given preference at the rate of three to one. These will be followed until we reach a 50/50 gender balance while the waiting list is in effect. Once the 50/50 gender balance is achieved, the genders can be considered to be balanced as long as one gender is not greater than 55% of the adult population. After gender balance has been sustained for two months, new members will be given housing in the order of joining without regard to gender until one gender reaches more than 55% of the adult population.
When a new person is added to the waiting list, they are added at the bottom of their section (full members, women, men). If more than one person is added to the list on a certain day, their order on the list will be determined randomly.
As spaces become available while the waiting list is in effect, the Membership Manager or a designated representative will contact the next person on leave who is eligible for space and ask them to get in touch with us with three weeks to let us know if they will be returning to occupy the space. Space can be held for up to one month. If a member cannot return at the time the offer of space is made, they will retain their place on the waiting list and will be contacted again. The next eligible person will then be contacted and offered that particular space.
Members on the waiting list who clearly indicate they will not be returning to East Wind for residency will be dropped form the list.
Men and women who are in committed relationships and wish to begin their residency together have the option of waiting until the man is eligible to return, if there is sufficient space available.
While a waiting list is in effect, Associates will not be able to return for residency periods. Members who become Associates may keep their rooms until they leave. The following exception will be made: Associates who have children and grandchildren in the community may return for residency periods if they tent or camp.
11.31 - Tents and Campers as Housing for New PMs due to Waiting List
Membership Policy, Sept 1993
New and returning PMs who would otherwise not be able to be at EWC due to a waiting list being in effect may live in personally owned tents and campers under the following guidelines:
There will be a limit of two campers and four tents occupied at any given time while the waiting list is in effect.
First consideration will be given to women wanting to live in their own tents or campers while the waiting list is in effect, if there are no sub-standard spaces available to house them. Next consideration will be given to PMs who became members prior to February 1993 and who are currently on PM leave. PMs who became members in February 1993 or later will then be considered.
Campers belonging to PMs may not be parked in the Visitor Parking Lot while occupied. Tents may not be erected on Reim lawn, except in the case of short-term visitors and guests (at EWC for a week or less) or for special groups for whom it may be more convenient to be in a central location. Ample notice will be posted by the Membership Manager or Room Assignor for these special cases.
Campers and tents will only be allowed in certain designated areas, to be determined by the Resource Manager, Membership Manager, and Room Assignor. PMs using these areas are responsible for keeping them clean and sanitary and not damaging the natural envi­ronment. No fires will be allowed. Smoking in these areas will be discouraged for safety reason. Noise norms will apply whether the site is near a structure or not. A list of allowed sites will be posted shortly.
PMs occupying personally-owned campers and tents will not be eligible for standard spaces (or sub-standard, in the case of a woman) until such time as they would normally be called back to EWC under the terms of the waiting list. Occupancy of a camper or tent does not give the PM any priority on available spaces. The PM will be advised of their ex-act status on the waiting list at the beginning of their residency.
PMs who wish to bring a pet to live at EWC may not do so while occupying a tent or trailer.
Any member having a complaint about any violation of the above guidelines by a PM oc­cupying a tent or camper is asked to bring it to the Membership Manager, who will inves­tigate the matter promptly and take what steps are necessary to correct any problems.
Any situation that is judged by the Membership Manager ad Room Assignor to be detri­mental to safe residence in campers or tents (i.e., prolonged sever weather or high fire danger) will be a basis to refuse the initiation of such occupancy by a PM or members wishing to do so.
PMs living in personally-owned tents or campers will not be counted in determining the membership ceiling.
For the purposes of this policy, campers are defined as a truck with camper shell, camper van (e.g., VW bus), small recreational vehicle, or small pop-up trailer. Larger units such as buses are already covered by our legislation and will not be considered for the purpose of establishing residencies by PMs without further Resource or community action.
11.4 - Personal Shelters: Building, Waiting List
Membership Policy, Sept 1993
When a shelter becomes available through vacancy, the option for occupancy is given to members in residence not on the waiting list through room assigning process. Vacated space is also allocated according to room assignment policy.
When a new personal shelter is constructed, first option is given to the builder. Members on the waiting list will not be approved to build new shelters.
11.52 - Membership Ceiling, Substandard Spaces & Designated Doubles
Board Policy, 5 March 1998
Revised 12 Sep 2002, 8 Sep 2003 & 4 Dec 2003
[Replaces 11.5 and 11.7 with the following:]
The Board has the authority to set the number of standard spaces. The current number of standard spaces is 75.
The following spaces are considered substandard:
The Closet in Fanshen (too small)
The New Land Shack
There are 6 designated doubles:
The Dome
The Ark
Fanshen Suite 23
One in Lilliput
4) The adult membership ceiling = the number of standard spaces minus the number of kid rooms. (“Kid rooms” = those rooms occupied only by kids.)
[Ref: 11.71 New Land Trailer Temporarily Designated as a Single / bill]
11.6 - Families and Waiting List
Membership Policy, Aug. 30, 1994
Whereas currently 2 co-parents with a child or children are presented with an obstacle to joining as an intact family group because of the current gender ratio policy,
We as Child Board and Membership Manager propose that the policy be amended thusly:
The family will be treated as one entity as regards to the waiting list.
If one or both co-parents is female, the family (including all members) would be places at the end of the women’s waiting list.
If both co-parents are male, the family including all of its members will be places at the end of the men’s waiting list.
Regarding waiting list placement by first name initial:
If one copartner is female, the alphabetical placement will be by the woman’s first name.
If both co-parents are female, or if both co-parents are male the alphabetical placement will be by the earlier letter
(example: “Dave & Fred”, the placement will be by D ).