DEFINITION OF A PILLS ANONYMOUS “GROUP”
A meeting is when two or more people gather together to share their experience, strength and hope with each other.
A meeting may call itself a P.A. Group when:
- The only requirement for membership is a desire to stop using pills.
- It is fully self-supporting.
- Its primary purpose is to help addicts recover through the Twelve Steps of P.A.
- It has no outside affiliations.
- It has no opinion on outside issues.
- Its public relations policy is based on attraction rather than promotion.
THE P.A. GROUP
The basic unit in P.A. is the local Group, which is autonomous except in matters affecting other Groups or P.A. as a whole. The Group has but one primary purpose, which is to help others to recover from their addiction to Pills through the Twelve suggested Steps. Each Group is self-supporting through its own contributions. As the Twelve Steps are our guide to recovery, the Twelve Traditions are our guide to Group unity, growth and discipline. Its members maintain their personal anonymity at the level of press, radio, television and films.
The importance of the Group, what it constitutes and its functions cannot be stressed enough.
Maintenance of our recovery depends on the sharing of our experiences, strength and hope with each other, thus helping us to identify and understand the nature of our disease.
Most Pill addicts in P.A. achieve and sustain their recovery as a result of their participation in the activities of the Group. The Group is the heart of Pills Anonymous and it is vital to the new member.
It is equally important to those who have achieved recovery as a result of the program. They may continue to participate and receive assistance from the Group.
The Group’s total responsibility is perhaps best expressed by the First Tradition:
“Our common welfare should come first; personal recovery depends upon P.A. unity.”
Most meetings follow a suggested format, although distinctive variations have developed. It is our experience that many meetings begin or end with some form of prayer. While each PA group is autonomous, and adopts its own format, PA as such never endorses, opposes or affiliates, expressed or implied, with any sect, denomination, politics, organization or institution. A meeting leader describes the P.A. program briefly for the benefit of the newcomers, and then turns the meeting over to a speaker or to participation.
Sometime during the meeting, there is usually a period for P.A. related announcements of interest to the meeting. A collection is taken to cover rent, literature and key tags, refreshments, contributions to the World Service Office as per the 7th Tradition. Many groups hold a business meeting monthly or at other intervals to discuss such items as: group finances, distribution of 7th Tradition, meeting format, election of trusted servants, etc. It is suggested that records be kept of group business meeting decisions. Each group is autonomous, and the group conscience decides how business meetings may be conducted.
Those attending meetings are reminded that any opinions or interpretations they may hear are solely those of the speaker or participant involved. All members are free to interpret the recovery program in their own terms, but none can speak for the local Group or P.A. as a whole.
OPEN: Attended by P.A. members, their families, friends and other interested people.
CLOSED: Attendance is limited to P.A. members only.
STEP STUDY: Participants study and discuss the Twelve Steps with the Group.
BOOK STUDY: Participants study and discuss with the Group any of these books: Alcoholics Anonymous (the “Big Book”), Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions (the “12 and 12″), and The P.A. Service Manual.
PARTICIPATION: Participants discuss their experience, strength and hope with the meeting/group one member at a time.
SPEAKER: One or more P.A. members share their personal experience, strength and hope with the meeting/group at length.
H&I MEETINGS: H&I meetings are often restricted to patients or residents only, and not open to the community as a whole. These meetings are brought into facilities by local PA members through the H&I committee. H&I meetings are basically beginners meetings; with the chairperson of each meeting providing the speakers. They do not observe the 7th Tradition. Certain facilities may require H&I participants to be subject to sobriety requirements, dress and conduct codes.
“For our group purpose there is but one ultimate authority — a loving God as He may express Himself in our group conscience. Our leaders are but trusted servants; they do not govern.” OUR SECOND TRADITION
PA groups may create such service positions, as they deem necessary to carry on the group functions with such job duties and sobriety requirements, as they feel appropriate. Such positions by way of illustration might include: Chairperson, Vice Chairperson, Literature, Coffeemaker/Hospitality, Greeter, etc. The suggested business positions of groups are:
Suggested clean time: Six Months
Term: One year
The Secretary is a trusted servant whose responsibility is to provide the Group with the leadership best suited to assist the recovery of the members through utilization of the P.A. Program.
Duties and Responsibilities:
- See that the Traditions are being followed within the Group.
- Follow the format in accordance with the group conscience.
- See that the responsibilities of the other Group servants are met.
- See that Seventh Tradition contributions of the members are collected and that a record is kept of the Group’s income and expenses.
- See that the Group is represented at the World Service Meeting.
- See that rent for the meeting space is paid and that the Group’s monthly contribution is forwarded to the World Service Office.
- Keep an accurate, up-to-date record of changes of the group conscience.
- Keep a record of each officer’s election date.
- Display P.A. literature and schedules.
Suggested clean time: One Year
Suggested prior service time: Six Months
Term: One Year
Duties and Responsibilities:
- Keeps an accurate bookkeeping system.
- When applicable, maintains Group bank account(s) with checks requiring two signatures.
- Gives financial reports to the Group regularly.
- Pays all Group expenses.
- Passes on contributions to the World Service Office.
GROUP SERVICE REPRESENTATIVE (GSR) or WORLD SERVICE CONFERENCE DELEGATE
Suggested clean time: One year
Term: One year
The GSR position is probably the most important service position for which a member can be elected.
Great care should be taken with this choice; the quality of the World Services can only be as good as those choices the individual Groups make. As with the Secretaries, GSR candidates should only accept positions for those Groups that they regularly attend (50% of the time). They are the ones who will carry the information back to the Group as to what is going on in our Fellowship on the World level.
It should be understood that a GSR does not require Group approval to vote on matters affecting the Group or P.A. as a whole, although it is the GSR responsibility to vote mindful of the group conscience. (See Concept 3). A good GSR is familiar with the P.A. World Service Manual and the Twelve Concepts of World Services. If the GSR cannot attend, an Alternate should attend. The person elected GSR should be trusted with the Group vote. Before accepting a nomination for GSR, the nominee must consider the level of commitment as well as the sacrifice of time involved.
Duties and Responsibilities:
- Sees that the Traditions are followed within the Group.
- Attends all appropriate business meetings.
- Conducts communication between the Group, and the World Service.
- Reads/reviews communications from World Service.
ALTERNATE GSR or ALTERNATE WORLD SERVICE CONFERENCE DELEGATE
The purpose and responsibility of the Alternate GSR is to assist the GSR and to assume the
responsibilities of the GSR when necessary.
Suggested requirements and qualifications are the same as those for GSR.
WORLD SERVICE CONFERENCE DELEGATE
The Delegate’s Job is a Spiritual One!
- Conference Delegates are required to have a working knowledge of the Twelve Steps, the Twelve Traditions, the Twelve Concepts of Service and the World Services Conference Charter.
- Attend the World Service Conference (WSC) prepared, in order to be able to vote knowledgeably. Every Conference Delegate, after his or her election, will notify the World Service Office (WSO) in order to be placed on the mailing list and to receive all Conference materials, which require several hours of study.
- After the Conference, the Delegate transmits the information back to his or her individual Group. It is important that the information about the WSO and WSC be passed on with enthusiasm, encouraging the continued health and growth of P.A.
- Delegates shall encourage their Groups to generate funds to help support World Services.
- Delegates must be prepared to attend World service meetings. They must understand the issues in their Groups to be better able to present them to the Conference.
- Delegates cooperate with WSO by providing local meeting schedules and local P.A. information numbers.
- Delegates provide P.A. leadership by helping to solve local problems involving the P.A. Traditions. In the spirit of this leadership need, it is suggested that, if possible, Delegates and Alternate Delegates not hold any other service commitments at the Group level.Further, in the spirit of rotation, wherever possible, Delegates should only serve one term and not consecutive terms.
- Delegates visit other Groups in their Area and are sensitive to their needs and reactions.They should learn how the Groups have reacted to Conference reports. Delegates know communication is a two-way street, with information moving in both directions.
- Delegates serve on a World Service Conference Committee and work closely with Committee members throughout the year. It is the Delegate’s responsibility to work closely with other members of their WSC committee to ensure that it is in action throughout the year.
- Delegates keep Alternate Delegates fully informed so that the Alternate can replace the Delegate in an emergency.
- Delegates shall help all newly elected WSC Delegates from their Areas by passing on knowledge of WSC procedures.
- They are also responsible for contacting a World Trustee at least once per quarter to provide the Trustee with Group reports and updates.
PROCEDURES FOR DELEGATE/ALTERNATE ELECTION
TO THE PILLS ANONYMOUS WORLD SERVICE CONFERENCE
- Delegates and Alternate Delegates are to be elected to the WSC by each Group.
- The purpose of the Alternate Delegate is to assist the Delegate and to assume the responsibilities of the Delegate when necessary. Suggested requirements and qualifications are the same as those for Delegates. Any Alternate who replaces the Delegate at the WSC will remain on the WSC mailing list as that Group’s delegate for the balance of the unexpired portion of the original Delegate’s term until the WSO is informed otherwise by the Group. Such an Alternate Delegate succeeding to a Delegate position is eligible to run for election to a full Delegate term.
- The Group must decide at the Delegate election who is eligible to be a Delegate and who is eligible to vote for the Delegate. It is suggested that Delegates have one year of continuous sobriety.
- The Delegates are to be elected for a term of four (4) Conferences, within a period of up to four (4) consecutive years. It is suggested that the spirit of rotation be followed. The Group may decide the length of terms for Alternate Delegates.
- When necessary, Delegate elections are to be held 120 days prior to the World Service Conference.
RECOGNITION OF THE ORIGINAL DELEGATE
TO THE PILLS ANONYMOUS WORLD SERVICE CONFERENCE
- Delegates that attended either of the first two Conferences in Las Vegas, Nevada or Tempe, Arizona will be recognized as Original Delegates. The purpose of the Original Delegate is to provide the group conscience until the Meeting / Group count is such to provide sufficient Delegates to the Conference.
- The Original Delegates will serve a term of eight (8) Conferences, within a period of eight (8) consecutive years. (Their terms will end following the 2016 Conference.)This term may be modified by the WSC.
- The Original Delegates cannot proxy any of their votes to another Delegate. That is an Original Delegate carrying a vote as the result of being a Director, Trustee, or World Service Office member will only have one vote and cannot proxy his or her other voting right.
- The Original Delegates forfeits his or her Delegate position if he or she:
b. Misses two consecutive Conferences.
c. Formally resigns to the PAWS Board of Trustees.