On our dear co-worker Brandon's birthday last week, Stonewall Youth's Board of Directors voted on a number of items that are truly revolutionary for us. We thought we'd share the good news as we get it!
1. Happy birthday Brandon!
2. Permanent co-director model at Stonewall. We voted to shift our staffing structure to have 2 co-directors instead of one Executive Director. Right now we have two Program Directors coordinating our Education Programs and Speakers Bureau, and thought that having two people tackle the multi-faceted challenges that face an E.D. would be a good idea. It would allow us to find two people who can complement each other and bring different skills to the organization. Our current goal is to solidify our infra-structure and financial situation enough so that by May Day we can hire two people at 20 hours each with the expectation that they would fundraise for an additional 12-20 hours a piece.
3. Level pay rates. Our other goal is to have an equal pay rate for everyone that works at Stonewall. It used to vary depending on if someone was an intern, or where the funding was coming from for their position. Now everyone will be paid the same hourly rate and have the same benefits in terms of vacation time, etc.
4. Staff are voting Board members. Previously staff have been present at all Board meetings and have given reports and updates but were not officially voting members. Now we are hopefully working towards a more integrated structure where each level of the organization is informed by the others.
These decisions mark a momentous moment for Stonewall. The times we are living in are racked with uncertainty and fear. The state of our economy, the impacts of militarism around the globe, the attacks on the rights of LGBTQQ people, women, trans people, poor people and people of color, all lead to feeling angry, worried and depressed. Yes, it is depressing. But it's also a time that our work as communities will thrive if we can reflect on our values, and decide on strategies that embody the ideals of the world we want to build, when the world we know is no longer recognizable. It's a time of vision. We're proud to share ours with the community of Olympia, and look forward to the work we will all do together.