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The following is a list of suggested “tasks” for Alcoholic Anonymous Meeting Officers. Additional information about suggested duties is available in the General Service Conference approved pamphlet, ‘The A.A. Group…WHERE IT ALL BEGINS’, online here, and available for purchase at the New York Inter-Group bookstore in-person or online.
Each group determines the minimum length of sobriety for A.A. members to be eligible for any position (or office). The general guideline might be stable sobriety of six months to a year, or longer.
Experience suggests that members who have held all group offices are the most effective Group Chairs. The Chairperson coordinates activities with other group officers – and with those members who assume responsibility for literature, hospitality, coffee-making, programming individual meetings within the group and other vital functions. The more informed that Chairpersons are about A.A. as a whole, the better they function. By keeping Tradition One firmly in mind and by encouraging group members to become familiar with all A.A.’s Traditions, a healthy A.A. group will be assured.
The following are suggested duties of Group Chairpersons:
- Maintain cordial relations between the group and the organization from which the meeting room is rented.
- Schedule and preside at periodic group business meetings.
- In the absence of a meeting chairperson, open group meetings or assign the responsibility to other officers.
- Substitute for other group officers when necessary.
- Co-sign group checks if a bank account is maintained.
- Call to the group’s attention announcements from the A.A. General Service Office, A.A. World Services, The General Service Conference Committee of Southeastern New York (S.E.N.Y) and Inter-Group.
The Treasurer is responsible for the Group’s finances consistent with Tradition Seven, “Every A.A. group ought to be fully self-supporting, declining outside contributions”. Group funds, received through meeting collections, are used for rent, A.A. literature, meeting lists, coffee/refreshments and support of A. A. service entities, usually monthly or quarterly.
The following are suggested duties of group Treasurer:
- Pass the collection basket at each meeting.
- Maintain simple, accurate records of income and expenses as well as a bank account where appropriate according to group conscience.
- Pay rent to the meeting place landlord.
- Report the group’s financial condition at business meetings.
- Reimburse suppliers for refreshments and related expenses.
- Pay for A.A. literature and meeting books.
- Maintain a prudent reserve equivalent to two months’ group expenses.
- Subject to group conscience, disburse group funds in excess of a prudent reserve to A.A. service entities. A.A.’s General Service Conference pamphlet, “Self-Supporting Through Our Own Contributions” provides information on the suggested distribution of group funds. The free pamphlet is available on request from New York Inter-Group.
Suggested length of sobriety: Subject to group conscience, at least ninety days. Suggested term of office: Subject to group conscience, six months.
Group Secretaries, like Chairpersons, need to be good all-around group servants. A.A. experience suggests that Group Secretaries function most effectively with a background in other group offices.
The following duties are suggested:
- Announce information about A.A. activities and events.
- Maintain and update a STRICTLY CONFIDENTIAL file of names and telephone numbers of group members (subject to each member’s and group conscience approval); and know which members are available for Twelfth-Step calls.
- Maintain a record of members’ anniversaries (subject to group conscience).
- Maintain a Group bulletin board for posting A.A. announcements and newsletters.
- Inform the General Service Office and New York Inter-Group in writing of any changes of address, meeting place, meeting time and group officers.
- Provide New York Inter-Group with a current list of group member names and phone numbers as group Twelfth-Step contacts.
- Accept and assign calls for Twelfth-Step help (unless there is a Twelfth-Step Chairperson for this task).
- Share with group members all mail from the A.A. General Service Office, A.A. World Services, The Grapevine, The General Service Conference Committee of Southeastern New York (S.E.N.Y.) and New York Inter-Group.
- Subject to group conscience, maintain a literature table in the group meeting place. Experience suggests that the following A.A. General Service Conference approved books are often in demand: “Alcoholic Anonymous” (The Big Book), “Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions”, “Living Sober”, “Came to Believe”, “A.A. Comes of Age”, “Daily Reflections”, “As Bill Sees It”, “Pass It On” and “Dr. Bob and The Good Old Timers”. A supply of A.A. pamphlets, especially those for beginners, and New York area Meeting Books are also suggested.
The Program Chairperson is responsible for booking incoming and outgoing meetings for the group. Since meetings are the lifeline of the program experience suggests that a Program Chairperson be a member who attends meetings a variety of groups with access to bookable speakers.
The following duties are suggested:
- Subject to group conscience, attend quarterly Exchange Meetings sponsored by New York Inter-Group in March, June, September and December. Exchange Meetings are attended by Group Chairs and Program Chairs from groups throughout the New York Area, all interested in scheduling meeting speakers from other groups.
- Prepare and post a schedule of out-going meetings for which the group has agreed to provide speakers. Recruit group members for outgoing speaking commitments. Experience suggests that booking outgoing three-speakers meetings provides the group’s new members with opportunities to speak while enjoying the support of experienced home-group members.
- Prepare and post on the group bulletin board a list of incoming speakers with identification of the guest group and confirm, in advance, incoming and outgoing speaking commitments.
New York Inter-Group Delegate
Inter-Group Delegates represent their A.A. Groups at quarterly meetings of Delegates from groups in the New York City Area. Delegate meetings are held on Saturday’s at 10:00am in March, June, September, and December. During the meetings, members of the Steering Committee of the Inter-Group Association of A.A. of New York report to the Delegates on the operations of the Inter-Group office. The fourteen (14) members of the Steering Committee are responsible to Delegates for the Twelfth-Step service of the Inter-Group Association.
The following are suggested duties of Inter-Group Delegates:
- Attend quarterly Delegate Meetings in March, June, September, and December. Call the New York Inter-Group office for details and or to confirm the dates, etc.
- Attend Inter-Group Area Forums as announced.
- Report the results of Delegates’ quarterly meetings and periodic area Forums to the group.
- Communicate information received from Inter-Group to the Group.
- Vote for the Group on issues presented to Delegates by New York Inter-Group’s Steering Committee.
- Communicate to the Steering Committee the Groups’ Conscience affecting the Twelfth-Step service of New York Inter-Group.
- Act as liaison between Inter-Group and the Group selling tickets to the annual dinner-dance celebrating the sobriety Anniversary of A.A. co-founder, Bill W. Proceeds from the event benefit Inter-Group.
- Follow up Twelfth-Step referrals to the Group’s meetings. Delegates receive notification by mail from Inter-Group of telephone contacts from still-suffering alcoholics requesting Twelfth-Step assistance. It is suggested that Delegates determine that the Group member identified as the Group’s Twelfth-Step contact has welcomed the newcomer to Group fellowship.
- Schedule periodic Inter-Group Information Meetings for the Group. Information meetings can be booked at quarterly Exchange Meetings or by calling the Inter-Group staff.
- Determine that Group meeting information is accurately reported in New York Inter-Group’s Meeting List Book.
- Inform group members of opportunities for Twelfth-Step service with New York Inter-Group.
- Note: It is suggested that Groups elect Alternate Inter-Group Delegates to substitute for Delegates when necessary.
Group Corrections & Treatment Facilities Representative
New York Inter-Group’s Corrections & Treatment Facilities Committee is responsible for taking 600 A.A. meetings each week into 200 hospitals, detoxes and prisons. Free A.A. Literature and New York Inter-Group Meeting Books are available to each of the meetings through monthly Area Corrections & Treatment Facilities Committee meetings.
Group Corrections & Treatment Facilities Representatives help carry the A.A. message to still suffering or recovering alcoholics who are institutionalized. The message is carried to corrections & treatment facilities who invite A.A.’s to bring meetings to their facilities. Corrections & treatment facilities meetings are arranged by Area Representatives; each of whom holds monthly local meetings of their Area Committees in Manhattan, Bronx, Queens, Staten Island, Brooklyn and Westchester. The Corrections & Treatment Facilities Committee’s All-Area Chairperson is a member of New York Inter-Group’s Steering Committee.The following are suggested duties of a G.C.T.F.R.
- Determine that Group meeting information is accurately reported in New York Inter-Group’s Meeting List Book
- Attend monthly Area Corrections & Treatment Facilities Committee Meetings (See New York Inter- Group’s Meeting Book or call the New York Inter-Group office for the schedule, etc.).
- Report regularly to their group on the activities of New York Inter-Group’s Corrections & Treatment Facilities Committee.
- Encourage group participation in the activities of New York Inter-Group’s Corrections & Treatment Facilities Committee by suggesting that group members chair or speak at corrections or treatment facilities meetings. It is also possible for A.A. groups to “adopt” local corrections or treatment facilities meetings. By adopting a local corrections or treatment facilities meeting, the A.A. group agrees to regularly chair the meeting; as well as provide speakers and interim sponsors.
- Collect used issues of “The Grapevine” from group members and send the magazines to the New York Inter-Group office for inclusion in literature packages distributed at corrections & treatment facilities meetings.
General Services Representative (G.S.R.)
The group General Service Representative (G.S.R.) is the group’s direct link with A.A.’s General Service Conference, through which U.S. and Canadian groups share their experience and express A.A.’s collective conscience. The G.S.R. position is through district and area committees. The Area Committee for Greater New York Area groups is:
South Eastern New York Area Committee (SENY or Area 49). Contact Information: SENY/199 Lincoln Avenue, Suite 302-318, Bronx, NY, 10454 / Telephone: (718) 665-1253 / Email: [email protected] / www.aaseny.org. Mailing address: P.O. Box 571, New York, NY 10116-0571
Please contact SENY for your groups District Meetings. Experience suggests that a history of group service helps in fulfilling G.S.R. responsibilities. An Alternate G.S.R. can share the function when necessary at the group, district and area levels. The following are suggested duties of the G.S.R. and Alternate G.S.R.:
- Represent the group at district and area general service assemblies.
- Keep the group members informed about A.A. General Service activities in the local area.
- Assist groups with solving problems or answering questions related to A.A.’s Traditions.
- Receive and share with groups all mail received from A.A. Service Structure entities including:
- “Box 4-5-9” the General Service Office Newsletter for communicating with the fellowship;
- “The Link”, the newsletter of SENY.