Skype Meeting: AGENDA and Minutes (in italics)

Skype meeting, 13.11.08. Proposed agenda

A Update on NOC situation

Susanne Lund (NOC) sent an email saying that the NOC meeting yesterday (Wed 12th Nov.) wasn't quorate and so no decision
could be taken. Those who 'attended' discussed the trade union's demand that invoices be paid first, and disagreed with this priority. The íssue
will be taken up at a face to face meeting on Sunday, when the trade union rep will be in attendance.

So Susanne hasn't anything more definite to pass on today, but will be in touch after Sunday 16th Nov. meeting. (Eileen/Fiona)

B Fundraising

Our priority must be paying the interpreters.
1) Babel funds for paying interpreters

Judith mentioned that Babels might have funds. Is this the case? If so, I suggest we use this money to pay interpreters while continuing to put pressure on NOC to come up with the cash.

Agreed that it is not appropriate to use Babels funds to reimburse interpreters, unless as a last resort. Check with Yan how much funds are available in the Babels association, and how they are accessed, in case this needs to be done. BUT the first priority is to get interpreters reimbursed from NOC

2) Selling ALIS to TC
What is the situation here? Would this raise money? Who is responsible?

This is not a suitable way to get the monies for reimbursement .

C Networking and mobilising

1) Setting up Malmo-based Babels group to work together to ensure reimbursement

Rodrigo’s letter, a message to interpreters in Malmö to contact Eileen/Fiona to help out with networking/mobilising. Fiona to write a Swedish ’alert message’

2) Contacting ESF cultural group, combining resources and energy

Check with Sophie for update

1) Are NOC legally entitled (even obliged?) to pay companies first? Who can we contact for advice?

Question to be added into Swedish alert (to be added here by Fiona 14.11.08.)

OBS! Vi behöver hjälp från Babels tolkar i Malmö om vi ska kunna få resersättning för våra Babels kollegor. Det är oerhört angeläget att NOC och deras finansiärer förstår att frivilliga tolkar måste återbetalas före företag.

Om du vill och kan hjälpa till på något sätt, t.ex. du tillhör fack eller andra nätverk, kan juridiska frågor mm, då hör av dig genast till Fiona,

Tack för er solidaritet.

NB: We need help from Babels interpreters in Malmö if we are going to be able to get reimbursement for your Babels colleages. It is incredibly important that NOC and those supplying the finance understand that voluntary interpreters must be paid before companies!

If you want to and can help in any way, i.e. your are member of a trade union or other network, have knowledge of legal issues etc., get in touch immediately with Fiona,

Thank you for your solidarity.

E Making it public

1) I suggest sending a press release to the Swedish/South Sweden press. Babels raised the issue at the Grand Assembly so there is knowledge and interest. Any other ideas, suggestions?
This could be issue for Malmo Babels group

2) Rod's letter sent by email 13.11.08. to be sent to ESF/WSF lists

See point G below and text of Rodrigo's letter


1) This issue has to be top of the agenda for the EPA in Istanbul. Who is attending?

Will Baris Yildirim (Turkish interpreter) and Yan Brailowsky and Ali Ottoman attend? What about the interpreters who offered to attend (eg Michaela) Need to discuss in advance what strategy needs to be adopted by Babels at the EPA, i.e. without guarantees that interpreters will receive reimbursement for Malmö, Babels cannot participate in Istanbul. Rodrigo suggested a skype meeting of the people who will be attending.

G Informing interpreters

Very important: we need to inform interpreters.

Rodrigo’s letter on wiki below for amendments. It should then be sent out to malmo list, babels list (Eileen) (database, Yan, can you do this?) It also needs to be sent to ESF mailing list, WSF mailing list and all available mailing lists. Addresses of mailing lists where the letter has be sent out to should be posted up on the wiki. (Where?)

Rodrigo's letter of 13.11.08. Please make changes by 15.11.08.

Babels left the ESF 08 in Malmo with a bitter and sad feeling, as many of you understood in the Assembly of the Social Movements when Babels was given the chance to read a statement regarding the situation and conditions in which we had to work during the ESF08.

Babels is encountering new problems with the NOC reimbursement procedures. The NOC publicly promised to reimburse travel expenses of the volunteer interpreters who took part in the Malmö nightmare. We left Malmö with a letter, signed by a member of the NOC board, where they committed to reimburse the interpreters before the 1st of October 2008.

Today, according to the figures we have received from the interpreters 29% have not been reimbursed. Others have not been fully reimbursed.

On 12.11.08 Babels was told that there may not be enough funds to reimburse everyone, and that companies may be given higher priority over individuals in order to avoid bankruptcy which will lead to a incapacity to reimburse or pay anybody. That priority is however unacceptable since NOC has already promised 3 times to reimburse interpreters within a certain time and has never held its promises. Knowing that the NOC will be dissolved, interpreters will have to be prioritised by the NOC, otherwise some interpreters could be left without reimbursement. This is unacceptable.

We are now studying future actions, and discussions are going on with the NOC to see how all the interpreters can be reimbursed.

We ask for your help and solidarity in this issue, as Babels is an important agent in the Forum process. We will appreciate your support in our contacts with the NOC and we ask you to take active part in the resolution of this problem. If you are a member of a ESF or WSF list, a member of an organisation that attended ESF2008 or any other relevant organisation, please circulate this message.

If interpreters do not receive reimbursement for Malmö, then Babels cannot participate in Istanbul (ESF2010).
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