INCLUSION & SAFER
FOR IN-PERSON GROUPS AND SESSIONS
Our spaces are for all self-identifying LGBTQ+ individuals wishing to access a space centered on discussing sexual health and wellbeing, pleasure, passion and sex. This is inclusive of trans, non-binary and gender fluid people, people of colour as well as older and disabled members of our community, to come together and celebrate.
In order to enable this, there are a few ground rules to ensure that everyone feels as welcome and comfortable as possible at all times.
If you feel unsafe at any point, or witness any problematic behaviour, please let the host know. Anyone found to be deliberately disregarding these ground rules will be asked to leave or removed from the online space.
We must agree that no one records or takes pictures of the sessions as this is a serious infringement of our confidentiality and GDPR policies. Group photos can only be taken with explicit consent from everyone who appears in the shot - including in the background.
Participants must be 18 years or older, unless attending events specified otherwise, (for example, the majority of our workshops are open to ages 16 and above).
Identity specific spaces - Many of the groups hosted by Sexual Health cater to specific identities and lived experiences. Each group clearly indicates in their advertising who that space is designed for. We expect our audiences to respect the need for safe spaces that cater to the needs of minorities and those with intersectional identities.
A pronoun is how you refer to someone, for example using she or they. Please ask people what their pronouns are if you are meeting them for the first time. Use their correct pronouns, even if the words are unfamiliar to you. If you make a mistake and refer to someone with the wrong pronoun, apologise and move on.
Don’t make assumptions about someone’s identity and think about the ways that people from minority groups may be impacted in different ways by the issues you discuss. Be aware that your experiences of sex, sexuality and gender are not necessarily the same as everybody else in the room. Be aware of any position and privileges you may bring regarding for example your race, your class, your gender identity, your ability or your age. Try not to make generalising statements such as 'All lesbians hate X' - using ‘I’ or ‘me’ wherever possible, rather than ‘you’ or ‘we’.
Racism, sexism, classism, homophobia, biphobia, transphobia, ableism, fatphobia, ageism or discrimination on basis of ethnicity, immigration status, or religious, cultural, and/or spiritual beliefs, or any other kind of oppressive behaviour is unacceptable and will be challenged. Please do not use slurs that are not yours to use. For example, if you are white do not use racial slurs, even if you are being critical of them. Please give a choice for people to interact without having to talk if they don’t want to, If they are neurodivergent, do not tell people off if they want to talk or move when everybody else is sitting quietly and give space to people to go at their own pace.
Sexual Harassment and Physical Boundaries
There is a zero tolerance policy to sexual harassment. This means no unwanted messaging, sharing of images or unsolicited contact with someone during or after a group has ended. This also means no inappropriate sexual comments or sexually based jokes, songs or taunts.
Check in around physical boundaries. Some people are practicing social distancing, others need more personal space. Do not assume that touch or hugging will be welcome, make sure to check in about how others feel, first.
Try to use clear, uncomplicated language and to avoid any acronyms and in-jokes. If you mention a theory or person, please give a brief description of who they are, no matter how well known you believe they are.
Give people a heads up if you are going to discuss something that others might find upsetting. Sometimes upsetting things happen and we need to be able talk about how we deal with them as a community. It’s important to have a space where we feel able to do this, and we hope that this event will provide that. However, not everyone is able to talk about everything all the time, so let people know if you are going to talk about something potentially upsetting, such as mental illness or domestic abuse. During breaks and other less formal settings, you can also do this informally by asking ‘is it okay if I talk about X thing?’
Space to Speak
Please be aware that it is difficult for those belonging to marginalised groups or minority groups to participate in discussions both online and in person. Do not talk over people and try to gauge whether it is appropriate for you to speak on certain topics. Try to give less confident and quieter people a chance to speak.
Privacy and Confidentiality
We will ask everybody to respect the fact that not everybody is “out” everywhere outside of this space so if you use social media, please do not share any contact information or identifiable information of other people without their explicit consent.
Everything in this safer spaces agreement also extends to social media, including Twitter and Facebook, so keep that in mind when using social media today.