Voices heard and not heard at the AC2022
Monitoring reports are presented at Annual Conference to understand whose voices are heard and whose voices are not heard on the floor of Annual Conference. To conduct these reports, when speakers come to the floor, they are asked to identify their gender, race, whether they are clergy or laity, their District, and their church
This year, Annual Conference was held virtually—as opposed to appearing at a microphone on the floor, these speakers waited in a virtual que and when called upon, they were able to speak via Zoom. This article will still refer to the speakers as those who came to the floor.
On Friday morning, Oct. 7, Charles Syms presented the monitoring report based on the speakers who came to the floor on Thursday Oct. 6.
Charles said, “The numbers I am giving you are based on individuals—we do not count the same person multiple times.”
Charles also reminded people that when they are called upon to speak, it is essential that they identify their gender race and whether they are clergy or laity; otherwise, they will not be accounted for in the monitoring reports.
Here are some of the findings regarding the speakers who came to the floor on Thursday Oct. 6:
- The number of female speakers and male speakers were relatively close; forty-two of the speakers were women and 45 of the speakers were men.
- Seventy-four of the people who came to the floor were white, while 13 of the people who came to the floor were People of Color.
- There were 29 lay speakers and 58 clergy speakers.
Charles mentioned that there was a large disparity in the speakers based on race. He said the fact that more clergy came to the floor than laity made a lot of sense because the topics, such as pensions and equitable compensation, were of more interest to clergy.
On Saturday morning, Oct. 8, Charles presented the monitoring report, illustrating the speakers who came to the floor on Friday, Oct. 7. There was more disparity between clergy and laity on Friday than Thursday, even though the topics wee of interest to both laity and clergy. There was also more disparity between white speakers and People of Color on Friday than Thursday.
Twenty-two of the speakers that came to the floor on Friday were clergy and six were laity. Twenty-six of the speakers that came to the floor on Friday were white and one was a Person of Color. Sixteen of the speakers were male and 12 were female.