Happy New Year!

Many thanks to FL for kindly writing up these minutes. If you would prefer to read them in PDF format, you can download them here.

Next meeting: Thursday 9th February 2017

Join us in our usual place, Woodlands Methodist Church, at 7:30 PM for our monthly meeting.

Patrick Grady (MP for Glasgow North) is visiting the group to have a discussion on human rights and find out what the group wants from him. Attendees at the meeting are encouraged to have a think about possible discussion points and expectations prior to the meeting.

January 2017 Minutes

By convention, they have been ‘anonymised’; if you would like a non-anonymous version, please get in touch.

Glasgow West Group: Minutes of meeting, Thursday, 12 January 2017

Present: DG, JG, MR, CA, AL, LL, MDS, FL, JG, RB, RB, AGA, AP

Apologies: CC, JC (will be back in April)

1. Welcome & general business (CA)

  • Welcome to new members, introductions & apologies.
  • Summary of December’s Events:
    • Write for Rights Meeting – thank you to everyone who attended
      last month’s meeting and signed cards. If you’d still like to
      send a card(s) visit Amnesty’s website for more information.
    • Write for Rights stall in Partick Library on Human Rights Day
      (10th December). Despite the light footfall, we still had a
      generally positive response for the public. A few stopped to
      sign cards and make donations. Thank you to everyone who
      volunteered on the stall.

2. Treasurer’s report (JG)

  • We have paid for the postage of our December Write for Rights
    events. MR pointed out that this year postage was cheaper as we were
    able to bundle the cards.
  • This leave £637.00 in our account.
  • A mysterious £125 has been paid in to the account. Please get in
    touch if you know where this money is from/ who deposited it.

3. Secretary’s report (RB)

  • A reminder that RB has volunteered to take over the role of
    secretary, initially on a temporary/ trial basis.
  • It may be necessary to remind the Amnesty office to send the new
    secretary the mailings.
  • There is no January group mailing because of the Christmas holidays.

4. Planning (MDS)

  • The aim of this session was to begin to identify what the group
    wants to do over the coming year. In particular:

    • What issues and activities motivate us?
    • What do we have the capacity for?
  • MDS gave a brief summary of Amnesty’s key campaigns for 2017:
    • Global campaigns:
      • People on the Move (addressing refugees and other migrants)
      • Human Rights Defenders (due to launch in May)
    • UK campaigns:
      • Human Rights in the UK (which includes campaigns on hate
        crime and saving the Human Rights Act).
      • Individuals at Risk (this includes Urgent Actions)
      • Crisis and Tactical Campaigning (responding to emerging
        crises, e.g. current campaigning on Syria)
  • MDS then asked the group to reflect on the following two questions:
    • What are the top two campaigns you are most passionate about
      (either from the list above or something else)?
    • What two kinds of activities keep you most motivated and
      engaged in Amnesty?
  • The group gave the following feedback:
    • Favourite campaigns:
      • Human Rights in the UK
      • The Death Penalty
      • Individuals at Risk
      • People on the Move
      • However, this does not mean we will not focus on other
        campaigns if there is interest.
    • Favourite activities:
      • Awareness-raising (ideally with a social dimension),

        • Photo actions
        • More social media
        • Street actions
        • Speakers and training
        • Film nights
        • Letter writing sessions hosted at people’s houses (or
          the pub!)
      • Fundraising (this was identified as a necessity to enable us
        to continue to pay for speakers’ expenses, postage, other

        • Has the Stand been booked for the next Comedy Night?
        • Perhaps the group should start thinking about other
          fundraising activities/ events?
  • In the next part of the meeting, the group discussed the different
    roles in the group and identified volunteers:

    • Chair – CC is happy to continue being a chair. However, in the
      past group members have rotated chairing. Volunteers for
      chairing one or more meetings during the year put down their
      names. The chair should let RH and DB know the meeting agenda a
      few days before the meeting so they can update the website and
      social media. The chair is also responsible for bringing
      print-outs of the agenda to the meeting.
    • Secretary – RB
    • Website, social media and newsletter – RH and DB
    • Prisoners of Conscience and Urgent Actions – MR and J
    • Events Sub-Group – MDS, CA, RB, FL and CC
    • Campaign Coordinator for Human Rights in the UK – FL
    • Campaign Coordinator for People on the Move – AL
      • The role of Campaign Coordinator is to feedback to the group
        in meetings, be the point of contact for AIUK, identify
        possible relevant events/ actions, etc. You can make the
        role your own and do as much or as little as you like.
      • More volunteers for these roles welcome at any time!
  • MDS told the group that AIUK now has some new Scotland-based
    trainers, including MDS himself!
  • Calendar
    • Jan 18th – Events Sub-Group meeting
    • Feb 9th – next meeting
    • March, April and May meetings (and beyond!) –possible speakers

      • the Glasgow Human Rights Network
        (A network of scholars and practitioners throughout Scotland
        who study and work to protect human rights in Scotland and
        beyond. The network facilitates research, teaching and
        knowledge exchange on human right)
      • Interfaith Glasgow’s Weekend Club
        (Organises events aimed at reducing the social isolation
        experienced by refugees, asylum seekers, and new migrants in
      • GRAMNET (the University of Glasgow’s Refugee, Asylum and Migration
        Network). RB suggested subscribing the group to GRAMNET’s
        mailing list.
      • Other suggestions for speakers always welcome. Send
        suggestions to CC
    • April 8th and 9th Amnesty’s AGM in Nottingham. There’s still
      time to reserve your place
      Places are free and the AGM is always an interesting and
      inspiring event. The group may be able to support you with
      accommodation and travel expenses.
    • Summer/ early Autumn – Comedy Night at the Stand
    • December meeting – Write for Rights Campaign
    • The group should also look out for other human rights related
      events in Glasgow (film screenings, book signings, fundraisers,
      lecturers, etc.) and send information to RB
  • Group “Christmas Dinner”. The group voted for Thursday 16th
    February. The meal will be at Chillies. A great chance to
    socialise as a group and drive away the post-Christmas blues!
  • MDS informed the group that the Scottish Amnesty office is keen to
    re-start an Amnesty South group. MDS proposed two solutions:

    • Setting up a new separate group. Perhaps the Sikh temple could
      host the meetings? Amnesty office happy to support with funding.
    • Creating one Amnesty Glasgow group with separate branches. This
      way we could share a bank account and some of the administrative
      burden. The group felt this was the best idea and MDS will
      explore further.
  • The group should also explore more liaison/ collaboration with the
    university Amnesty groups and recent graduates this year.

5. Actions (MR)

  • MR introduced the new attendees of the stories of the group’s two
    prisoners of conscience.
  • This month’s urgent actions:

1. Four human rights activists gone missing in Pakistan

Since the beginning of January activists Salman Haider, Waqas Goraya,
Asim Saeed, and Ahmed Raza Naseer have gone missing in a suspected
enforced disappearance by state security forces in Pakistan.

UA 5/17 issued 10/01/2017:

2. Veteran activist sentenced to death in China

A court in China’s Henan province has convicted and sentenced Xu Youchen
to death for killing a policeman when authorities were taking him and
his wife away for peaceful petitioning.

UA 3/17 issued 11/01/2017:

3. LGBTI activist held in pre-trial detention in Turkey

Fashion designer and LGBTI activist Barbaros Şansal is being held in
pre-trial detention, accused of ‘inciting the public to hatred or
hostility’ for a video message and tweet he shared on social media on
New Year’s Eve.

UA 2/17 issued 06/01/2017:

Members may also find the following Human Rights Watch article

“The Dangerous Rise of Populism: Global Attacks on Human Rights Values”


Date of next meeting: Thursday, 9th February 2017.

January 2017 Minutes
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One thought on “January 2017 Minutes

  • March 1, 2017 at 12:27 pm


    I hope you don’t mind me contacting you, however, I am e-mailing regarding an event which we think that you and your Members may be interested in later this month.

    The Coop are looking to return to its Membership in order to listen to their views, particularly in respect of the campaigns which they think we should be championing in the future.

    A lot of this work is obviously taking place on-line via our website https://www.co-operative.coop/get-involved, however, we still want to meet up with our Members to hear in person their thoughts on the direction they feel we should be travelling.

    One such meeting is actually taking place in Glasgow on Saturday 18th March from 11am to 1pm at the Teacher Building.


    We would therefore be grateful if you could please forward details of this event to your Membership in and around Glasgow so that they could consider attending and helping to shape the future of their Coop and its campaigns.


    Thank you in anticipation,

    Kind Regards,


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