Principles

CLAMSHELL ALLIANCE PRINCIPLES OF UNITY, DECISION MAKING AND STRUCTURE

Approved December 2023

Clamshell Alliance Principles of Unity

  1. Adherence to nonviolent discipline in all strategies, tactics, and action.
  2. Respect for all individuals, regardless of any differences.
  3. Acceptance of decision-making protocols (as detailed below in this document).
  4. Offer support and initiate nonviolent actions to stop the use of nuclear power domestically and internationally.
  5. Offer support and initiate action for conservation and energy technologies that are renewable, regenerative and non-polluting, with a preference for small decentralized democratically owned sources.
  6. Abolish nuclear weapons worldwide.
  7. Outreach and public education to concerned citizens and interest groups.
  8. Use of diverse means to get our message across, through research, writing, music, theater, visual arts, websites, social media, and nonviolent direct action.
  9. Embrace the climate change movement while we focus on ending nuclear power and build alliances with other organizations and individuals,
  10. Share Clamshell Alliance history to inspire and educate.

Clamshell Alliance Decision-Making

All agree to Clamshell Alliance’s principles of unity, including adherence to nonviolent discipline in all strategies, tactics, and actions, and the decision-making process.
A broad timeframe will be put forth by those proposing a decision. It will be circulated to allow for a first, second and third reading if needed. The proposers will gather and record feedback and circulate amendments (through email or meetings).

The group facing a decision seeks consensus during this timeframe

  • With vigorous discussion
  • Periodic reminders of time left
  • Straw polls to get a sense of the group
  • Brainstorms to bring out new ideas
  • Smaller groups to examine differing perspectives
  • Attention to who is going to implement any action.

If consensus cannot be reached in the time allotted, the group will vote by 60% to:
a) Decide to contract for extra time to reach consensus within the meeting
b) Decide to postpone the decision to an agreed upon future time
c) Decide to vote using 80%, four-fifths majority rather than continuing to seek consensus.

Steering Affinity Group (SAG). Of the 43 people on Arnie’s invitation list in the fall of 2023, 14 have agreed to comprise the current SAG, which is open to expansion through consensus of the current SAG members. As of 12/2023, the SAG is Anna Gyorgy, Adam Auster, Arnie Alpert, Brian Tokar, Doug Bogen, Sharon Tracy, Shel Horowitz, Tom Wyatt, Susanae Glovacki, Phil Stone, Jay Gustaferro, Judith Kaufman, Paul Gunter, Eric Wolfe. A quorum of the SAG comprises 50% (seven).

Effective Use of Consensus involves:

  • A commitment to, and investment in, the principles and success of the group.
  • A patient, willing, welcoming attitude toward opposing views.
  • Use of persuasion, good listening and information gathering during discussions.
  • Good facilitation, including co-facilitation for difficult discussions.
  • Effective time-keeping (consistent and vocal).
  • Accurate and comprehensive note-taking reviewed and amended by participants.
  • An understanding of process tools, i.e., straw polls, brainstorms, summary of common
  • ground positions, small groups, reporting back effectively.
  • Sharing of songs, jokes or taking breaks to relieve tension and flagging energy
  • Willingness to state reservations and “stand aside.”

Why use Consensus Decision Making?

  • It fosters creative thinking and takes advantage of all the ideas of the group.
  • It builds trust and sense of community/belonging and leads to a high level of
  • participation.
  • It helps the group come up with decisions that everyone can fully get behind and
  • implement.