How to be a “Super” in GSMOL!
Those of us who are fans of “The Incredibles” movies know that being a “Super” (i.e., superhero) means you have special powers that ordinary people don’t have.
As a mobile/manufactured home owner, you too can have powers that other park residents don’t have when you belong to a GSMOL Chapter!
OK, maybe you are thinking: But we have tried to form a Chapter in our park and it just doesn’t fly. Does this mean you will never be able to organize the GSMOL members in your park?
Or, suppose you DO have a GSMOL Chapter – but you’re not involved in a big crisis or a special project at this time and your members may be asking “What should we be doing?” or even (egads!) “Do we still need this Chapter?”
There is a way that a GSMOL Chapter which is looking for something useful to do – and a bunch of GSMOL members in another park who are unable to form a Chapter – can combine to improve both of their situations..
The answer is a GSMOL Super-Chapter!
A Super-Chapter is a Chapter that includes members from more than one park. The typical Super-Chapter has an active Chapter at its core – that park is known as the Main Park (or Anchor Park) – and one or more “satellite parks” which are nearby and usually in the same governmental jurisdiction, where the GSMOL members have not been able to form a Chapter of their own.
Super-Chapters benefit both the active Chapter and the members in the satellite parks.
- The Chapter gets a bunch of new members! More members means a bigger pool of ideas, knowledge, experience, talents and skills, not to mention more people filling the chairs at your meetings. And most importantly, more voices to speak up for your rights.
- The members in the satellite parks get the benefits of belonging to a GSMOL Chapter. (If you don’t know what those are, see https://www.gsmol.org/gsmol-chapters-and-how-to-grow-one/.)
Even if there are no parks in your area that have a Chapter, that’s fine – we can make a Super-Chapter out of any group of parks – but without an active Chapter to provide the officers, we would just need to find people from the various parks who are willing to run for office: President, Vice President, Secretary, Treasurer, Membership Coordinator and Legislative Contact. The park which has the most GSMOL members would be considered the Main Park but the officers could come from any of the parks.
Other benefits all the Super-Chapter members share include being able to work on community projects such as establishing or amending a Space Rent Stabilization Ordinance, a Park Closure Protection Ordinance, Mobilehome Park Zoning, or a Senior Park Overlay.
Combining GSMOL members from more than one park also makes a stronger network for supporting our bills in the State Legislature.
Or, if one of the component parks is going through a crisis, such as an unwarranted rent increase, failure to maintain the park, or other such problem, the Super-Chapter can support them, both by standing alongside the members in the crisis park and by helping with fundraising for legal representation. There is strength in numbers!
Now that a lot of people have learned how to use Zoom and teleconferencing during the pandemic, it is easier for people who live far apart to attend meetings together. Even a county-wide Super-Chapter, formed out of parks from different unincorporated areas within a county, would be feasible!
Does this sound like something your Chapter – or the members in your “Chapterless” park – would be interested in?
The first step is to contact your Associate Manager, Region Manager or Zone VP (in Zone A, contact President Linda Nye), who can explain more about how Super-Chapters work, help you communicate with members in other parks to get the ball rolling, and shepherd you through the process of forming a Super-Chapter.