Our call: forming affinity groups – let‘s go for it now!
In actions of civil disobedience with many people, it has proven to be a good idea to form fixed affinity groups (AG) in advance. So we will do like this again at Ende Gelände this year. Therefore: Find yourself up to max. 9 people with whom you will go into action together.
SPECIAL NOTE FOR AFFINITY GROUPS IN HAMBURG
This year there will be two action areas. One of them is the ChemCoast Park near Brunsbüttel, the other one in Hamburg. The action in Hamburg – Anti-colonial Attack! – is carried by a majority migrant and black self-organisation. The action is mainly aimed at BIPoC and migrants or affinity groups with BIPoC and is specifically meant to create a space for BIPoC. As white affinity groups, you are invited to participate in the action in solidarity, but are asked to be reflective and mindful of your positionality and privilege. “No fucks with cultural appropriation!” *)
*) read also:
Why affinity groups?
During the whole action, the people in your affinity group will look after each other, discuss how far you want to go, how you feel and what you would like to do. Within the affinity group you decide how long you want to stay in the action. You try to go back to the camp together.
You can print out this checklist (2020) and discuss the questions in your affinity group before the action.
Do we have to stay together all the time?
Within the AG you can split into smaller units: Groups of two or three people, sometimes called Buddies, who will always stay together. So if you are a group of 5 people, for example, you can split into a team of 2 and a team of 3 buddies.
If something happens to one of you – injury, imprisonment etc. – the Buddies will be there for that person. The rest of the AG can decide whether they want to stay or continue with the action. When you arrive at the blockade point, you can re-sort yourself within the AG: Who stays here? Who wants to go somewhere else? Who wants to go back? It is important that no one is ever alone!
Who are the right people for my affinity group?
AGs are often made up of people with similar experience of action. But that is not necessary. It is much more important that you have similar ideas about the action and trust each other: How far do you want to go? How long do you want to stay? How do you behave towards the police? etc.
The better you know each other, the easier the decision making will be and the more fun you will have in the action. Therefore: Take your time to get to know each other and talk about possible scenarios!
How do I find the right affinity group?
1. Ask people you know: who will join Ende Gelände? Who has what ideas about the action? Maybe it fits together with yours!
2. Visit affinity group finding meetings in your city or organize some yourself! At such meetings people come together who want to join Ende Gelände but don’t know with whom yet. You exchange your ideas, hopes and fears and see who fits.
3. There will also be opportunities at the contact points to meet people for affinity groups. The earlier you are at the contact point, the more time you will have to form and get to know your AG.
4. There will also be opportunities to meet people for affinity groups at the camp in Brunsbüttel and at the assembly site in Hamburg. So the earlier you get there, the more time you have to form and get to know your AG.
Affinity groups and Covid-19
In order to keep the risk of infection with Covid-19 as low as possible during the action, it is particularly important for this action that you have a fixed affinity group. Your group is your infection community from the time you arrive to the time you leave. The people in your group are the only ones you should have close contact with during this time. Try to avoid switching between affinity groups and, if possible, keep your distance from other affinity groups.
A checklist for affinity groups can be found here (2020)!
Print out the list and go through all the points with your AG before you go into action together!