Our first meeting of the term began with talk from outgoing co-chair Adam McGibbon, talking about the Green Party in general and his involvement with them since 2007, a key year for the Greens in Northern Ireland.
We had an overview of our activities last year, mentioning World Aids Day, the Gaza and other peace protests, the campaign against then Environment Minister Sammy Wilson including the petition given in at Stormont, Fairtrade fortnight, Steven Agnew and the European election, student elections in March and the Green Party Annual Conference.
We then set out some plans for this year, welcoming the input of all members in deciding what we focus on in the coming months. We mentioned for October the Young Greens Convention; November a possible talk from Steven Agnew and John Barry, and a stall for Vegan Day. December would see a visit to Stormont, and some link with events at Copenhagen; in January Steven Agnew has some gigs planned that the Speakeasy could provide a good venue for; February Fairtrade Father Ted; March would see the student sabbatical elections and International Women’s Day and April would see the Westminster election. May is likely to be overshadowed by exams but nearer the time other events could also be included, and throughout the year other events like the peace protests will arise.
In addition to events each month, we would be interested in running some campaigns around areas that concern and motivate Green members! Some examples provided at the meeting were trident, Translink bus prices increasing and others spoke about and recycling facilities around Queens and Belfast in general. It was also decided to have an ink cartridge recycling drive which would also raise money for chairty. Members could also have the chance to become involved, if interested, in the South Belfast Greens.
Elections for the committee were held and the new committee for 2009/2010 is:
Co-Chairs - Mark McCormick & Lois Taylor
Secretary - Petrina Doyle
Treasurer - Rónán Kernan
Campaigns Support - Fionnuala Gray
It was emphasised though that everyone is usually involved in all parts of running the society!
The meeting concluded and off to the Speakeasy we went, with Mark selling the Young Greens Convention on the basis of past experience ‘you could end up in a church tower…!’