Safer Spaces Policy

We believe challenging aggressive and offensive behaviour is the responsibility of all. To create a balanced environment in which people feel at ease we believe that everyone should feel empowered to challenge aggressive and oppressive behaviours. Your actions have an effect on the collective environment and others around you. We ask that everyone reads and adheres to the following:

The Policy in Brief

This policy applies to all attending Edinburgh AF events, at all times between all Edinburgh AF members, and all members will aspire to act in accordance with this policy in their relations with others (with the possible exception of class enemies).

If you feel unsafe due to somebody else’s behaviour, you should contact Edinburgh AF on either our group phone number/e-mail or personally contact one of our members. The Safer Spaces working group will initiate a process to deal with the behaviour.

If you wish, your complaint will be kept confidential and your identity secret.

If you have been subjected to violence, sexual assault or sexual harassment, the perpetrator will be asked not to use the spaces while the process is ongoing. The process will be survivor-led, you will be able to choose a mediator and you will not be expected to see or speak with your attacker if you do not wish to do so.

For complaints that do not involve violence, we encourage both/all parties to engage with our Conflict Resolution procedure, and will provide mediation if required. See our Conflict Resolution and Survivor-led procedures for details of how these processes work.

We define the following as abusive behaviours which are not tolerated in our spaces:

Physical abuse

  1. Violence and threat of violence (unless in self defence)
  2. Use of force and threat of force (unless minimal to protect users of the space and the space itself)
  3. Rape, sexual assault and sexual harassment

Verbal abuse

  1. Personal insult (insults or aggression towards an individual)
  2. Prejudicial language (language which is intolerant of someone’s religious background or lack thereof, sleazy, predatory, racist, ageist, sexist, heterosexist, transphobic, able-bodiest, sizist, or which may otherwise perpetuate oppression)
  3. Verbal harassment, sexual or otherwise (repeated uninvited personal comments or requests)
  4. Verbal abuse in writing (all of the above in written form)

See ‘The Policy in Detail’ for a full description of what we mean, and what we do not mean, by each of these behaviours.

See ‘Applying the Safer Spaces Policy’ for details of the places and people this policy applies to, and how to enact it.

See ‘Background to the Policy’ for more information about Safer Spaces and the reasons why we have this policy.