Safer Spaces Agreement
At the Scottish Radical Herbal Gathering & other events we run we want to cultivate an atmosphere of open expression and active participation. To this end, we have a safer spaces agreement that, through participation in our events, we all agree to respect and uphold.
What is a safer space for..?
It’s crucial that we do not recreate structures in our groups that silence people who are already silenced in society. We recognise that oppression can happen at a political, social or personal level and typically occurs on the basis of ethnicity, class, gender, gender identity, gender presentation, sexuality, age, income, ability, appearance, immigration, activist experience, and other forms of difference and inequality. A safer spaces agreement aims to create a space free from marginalisation and inequality that many people regularly face..
What does a safer space mean..?
A safer space is a dream and a vision of a better society, of what it could be like to feel supported, to feel autonomous, and most of all to feel safer. If we want to create a radical community then we have to question our learned behaviours and challenge others and ourselves. We need to work towards acting in ways that are respectful, & build communities of trust & support..
How can we create a safer space..?
Zero tolerance for..
• Any behaviour (including body language and verbal language) that demeans, marginalises, dominates, or perpetuates hierarchies. This includes; Abusive, threatening or violent behaviour, Homophobia, Transphobia, Ableism, Racism, Sexism, or Classism.
An awareness that..
• Feeling confidence in a skill is a privilege, so make space for others to learn what you already know, and share your knowledge with others in a way that is empowering.
• Everyone has an equal right to be heard & an equal responsibility to listen.
• There are a range of different identities (gender, race, class, sexuality) that people may identify as, so avoid making sweeping generalisations or assumptions about people.
• Anyone could be a survivor of a particular form of oppression, so treat others with care and consideration.
• Your own privilege(s) and actively challenge them..
It is everyone’s responsibility to challenge prejudice & oppression..
This list is not exhaustive and it is up to all of us to help create a space where everyone feels safe and included.
Anyone who breaks the safer spaces agreement will by their behaviour exclude themselves from The Scottish Radical Herbal Gathering.
The “safer space” is our aspiration and not a promise of a safe space detached from the many forms of oppression which exist in our society. Each of us comes from very different backgrounds and this will inevitably effect how we relate to each other. Respect for these differences is also important when being inclusive to those who may never have come across a safer spaces agreement or the principles upon which it is based.
However, the agreement can be a useful reference for any conflicts which may arise within the space. We hope that the concept of the safer spaces agreement and some of its fundamental aims will be large part of the skillsharing itself and evident in the overall atmosphere of the event.
Environmental Safer Spaces Agreement
Just as it is everybody’s responsibility to consider the well being of others in our communities, it is also our collective responsibility to maintain the well being of our environment and minimise our damage of it.