THE GEPRODIS ASSOCIATION
The proposed organisation, to be known as the Geprodis Association, is to be a group co-operation under democratic management of all persons working for and employed by the Association itself.
PURPOSE: The Geprodis Association is to fulfill a two-fold function. First, it is to be a society for the purpose of extending to its members such benefit services as it may be able to support by its industrial activities. And, secondly, it is to be an association for the production and distribution of such goods and services as the Association may, in its particular stage of development, at any time, be able to produce and distribute.
NON-DIVIDEND PAYING: The Geprodis Association being a membership association, it is not organised for profit, and the purpose of sale or other distribution of goods or services is to be primarily the support of benefit services and the accommodation of members of prospective members.
GROUP COOPERATION: Members of the Geprodis Association are to work in partly autonomous groups―to meet in such groups, in any event―which are to be federated through several stages of federation into a single central organisation having control of all groups and their activities.
Groups are to have not more than 25 members, and so average of ten is to be kept up to transferring members and splitting, uniting, or re-aligning group when necessary.
DEMOCRATIC MANAGEMENT: This group plan of organisation insures a degree of democracy which cannot be achieved by ballots or large meetings. In no case is a meeting large enough to prevent a full, informal discussion of matters presented; and the central Managing board is, at most, six steps removed from the lowest group, each step being represents by a delegate who can be easily and quickly recalled without any formality or red tape.
MEMBERSHIP: Admission to Geprodis membership is to be by the Admissions Department of the organisation, and not by vote of any groups or committees. The only application for membership is to be the employment application, and the Admissions Department is to act as the Employment Office of the organisation. Upon filling a vacancy from the list of applicants, said applicant becomes automatically a member, and is to be assigned a group.
NO DUES: No investment or dues in any form is required of any member of the Geprodis Association.
NOT A COOPERATIVE SOCIETY: The Geprodis Association is not a cooperative in the regularly accepted sense of the term. The members are not the money contributors, but the workers. Those who finance the organisation rank merely as lenders and note-holders, but do not thereby acquire a vote or any membership privileges. All profits, over and above payment of interest and principal of loans incurred in launching initial organisation, and a necessary amount for a sinking fund, will go to extending the scope of the organisation into new territory and into new fields.
INITIAL ORGANISATION: The initial organisation is to be by five incorporators, selected by the original Organising Committee in charge of the present project. These will serve as both Executive Committee and Managing Board until the Association can be organised on a more permanent basis.
FINANCING: The initial financing is to be by means of raising loans, and not, by preference, among prospective members. Loans are to be on a five-years notes renewable at the option of the Association, and with 5% per annum simple interest, unless the lender waives interest. Payments of a principal or interest may be made by an authorization to the lender to draw drafts on the Association up to the amount specified.
INITIAL BUSINESS ACTIVITIES: The organization is to start as a small-scale store or similar small sales establishment, probably a book and stationary store.
AFFILIATED ORGANIZATION: Part of the non-business services given by Geprodis will be to organize affiliated clubs for various educational and other benefit puroses, and to establish various degrees of affiliation with existing societies whose purposes conform to such plan.
For certain of the business activities of the Association, subsidiary companies may be organised, under the control of the Geprodis Association. Such subsidiary companies shall rank as "Corporate members," and shall have representation in Geprodis, with a voice but no vote.
ARBITRATION SYSTEM: The groups and the committees of delegates provide an excellent ready-made system of tribunals to which disputes may be referred for settlement, with a series of appeals. Cross-groupings will supplement this system. Such a system also would act as a series of grievance committees to hear any charges made against members, or any complaints by numbers against the organization or its officers, especially in regard to discharges or transfers of employment which may be considered unfair by the employee. The admissions Department will also use its groups as tribunals to settle any complaints of applicants or would-be applicants in regard to unfair treatment in connection with application for employment.
In view of the nature of those groups and units, hearings will be as informal as possible and parties will be duly advised of all their rights, including their rights of appeal. No paid advocates to be allowed.
ABSENCE OF PROPAGANDA: The Geprodis Association will not propagandise for any political, religious, or other beliefs. The only exception to this is to be the attempt to get members and novices to help in spreading and developing the organisation in order to make it possible for the organisation to widen the scope of benefit activities which members or novices
To this end, publicity organs of any sort which may at any time be issued by Geprodis or under its supervision or under its supervision shall be entirely of a news by Geprodis or under its supervision shall be entirely of a news (statement of facts) character, all editorial matter being strictly barred.