Re: Last resort dealing with very difficult member
From: Tom Smyth (tomsassafras.coop)
Date: Sun, 17 May 2015 07:28:54 -0700 (PDT)
Do any cohousing communities operate under a legal structure other than
condominium? Do any have the legal ability to force someone out? Or to deny
someone from moving in? I believe co-ops can do this, but it seems that
condo-law would prevent either?

It seems to me that a true community should have the ability to both
interview and vet those joining it as well as to ask folks to leave. Most
other organizational forms have this right (businesses, religions, clubs,
associations, etc.) Why shouldn't we?

On 17 May 2015 at 10:11, Joanie Connors <jvcphd [at] gmail.com> wrote:

>
> It sounds like it is time to talk to a lawyer.
>
> But after doing so and learning their options, I would encourage them to
> try mediation.
>
> On Sat, May 16, 2015 at 5:59 PM, Fred-List manager <fholson [at] 
> cohousing.org>
> wrote:
>
> >
> > The author of the message below prefers not to identify
> > themselves and their community so it was posted by
> > Fred, the Cohousing-L list manager <fholson [at] cohousing.org>
> > --------------------  FORWARDED MESSAGE FOLLOWS --------------------
> >
> > Many communities have had difficult members. Usually members who do
> > not like the people and/or the process eventually leave. But what are
> > one's options when they don't and won't? I'm talking about a situation
> > that has persisted after years of good faith attempts to mediate,
> > facilitate, outreach, accomodate, non-violently communicate: you name
> > it. And we still have a member who is contentious, adversarial,
> > litigious: threats of lawsuits, unfounded allegations taken to local
> > police and courts (even when always found to be baseless). Someone
> > whose presence is experienced as a drain on community time, energy,
> > money, and happiness. The only plausible reason I can think of, for
> > staying where you don't like the people or the process, is a
> > personality that thrives on drama and victimhood. What then?
> >
> > Our community is long-built, and otherwise runs smoothly and happily:
> > lots of good people (including a number of mental-health
> > professionals), and good process.  We accomodate a diversity of
> > opinions and approaches, but this works best within our process, not
> > for a situation where the dissident places themselves outside the
> > group, and not quietly. This party has truly burned most of us out,
> > and we find it hard to take any more.
> >
> > I think perhaps co-ops can evict someone, but I believe the rest of us
> > -- homeowners' associations, nonprofits, etc -- cannot do so. Has
> > anyone ever successfully dealt with such a last-resort scenario? Our
> > documents say if you are an Owner, you are a Member. Nonpayment of
> > assessments can lead to loss of privileges to use common facilities
> > and participate in decision making. But if assessments are paid, we
> > don't seem to have any other tools for denying community rights, much
> > less causing departure.
> >
> > Any relevant experiences or advice?
> >
> > Thanks,
> > Disappointed it's come to this, but it has.
> >
> >
> >
> > _________________________________________________________________
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> > http://www.cohousing.org/cohousing-L/
> >
> >
> >
> _________________________________________________________________
> Cohousing-L mailing list -- Unsubscribe, archives and other info at:
> http://www.cohousing.org/cohousing-L/
>
>
>


-- 
Tom Smyth

Worker-Owner, Sassafras Tech Collective
Specializing in innovative, usable tech for social change
sassafras.coop *·* @sassafrastech

Resident, Touchstone Cohousing
touchstonecohousing.org

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