We acknowledge the Wurundjeri people of the Kulin nation as the traditional custodians of this land. We stand in solidarity with their struggles – historical and ongoing – against the violence and repression of the white colonial state. Sovereignty was never ceded.
We live in a hierarchical society. We are part of this society, but a part which wishes to challenge and improve it, starting with our spaces. In designating this event a safer space, we are making an explicit political decision to promote the voices of people who experience oppression so that they feel empowered to participate and feel supported by a radical community. We are not a judge and jury, we are not the cops; but we are a community with shared ideals about the rights of people to be free of oppression.
We would like Camp Anarchy to be an inclusive, anti-authoritarian space. Everyone who attends the event is expected to engage with respect and actively create and enforce the maintenance of a space that contrasts with the oppressive norms of mainstream society. This means actively challenging exclusionary or oppressive behaviour, including but not limited to transphobia, queerphobia, sexism, racism, ableism, whorephobia, ageism, religious vilification and prejudice based on appearance, gender presentation, language ability, migration status, or class. This is no space for violence, for touching people without their consent, or for being creepy and sleazy.
If you’re unsure about what any of the ‘isms’ or other concepts listed above mean, that’s fair enough. If you don’t make an effort to find out, though, and to challenge the indirect (or direct) ways you perpetuate those oppressions, that’s not fair and you risk alienating some people from the space. We all (to varying degrees) reproduce patterns of domination and hierarchy through our behaviours, unless we challenge them and try to find ways to deal with them. We fully encourage people to raise concerns with others who they believe are acting in an oppressive or discriminatory ways. Challenging people’s behaviour can help make our spaces safer and better. If someone does not feel comfortable or that they do not have the skills to do this, they can look to the Camp Anarchy organising collective for support. There will be a no-tolerance policy for sexual or physical violence, persistent harassment, or threats of sexual or physical violence. Anyone violating this may be asked to leave and will not be welcome at the event.
This process is not easy. Please question in advance your capacity to deal with being asked to leave the space if necessary, and how you would react in a progressive way if you or a friend of yours was called out for abusive behaviour.
Alcohol and other drugs are not an excuse for bad behaviour. For this reason we ask that you be aware of your capacity to remain in control of your emotions, actions and reactions when consuming alcohol or other drugs.
Things we all need to do to help create a safer space:
- Respect people’s physical and emotional boundaries. Always get explicit verbal consent before touching someone.
- Respect people’s right to hold their opinions, beliefs, and different points of view.
- Be responsible for your own actions.
- Be aware that your actions do have an effect on others despite what your intentions may be.
- Look out for children and try not to leave anything around that could endanger them.
- Be mindful of how children are interacting with each other (ie bullying dynamics).
- Keep the inside conference spaces and all workshops alcohol, nicotine and drug-free (until evening). And respect designated substance-free spaces at all times.
- Be aware that raising your voice or other aggressive body language may be understood as abusive behaviour by others.
No Tolerance for Violence
Camp Anarchy’s safer spaces policy includes supporting survivors of violence by asking people who have perpetrated sexual or physical violence (including threats and harassment) not to attend this event, or to amend their behaviours at the event (eg not drinking alcohol), at the discretion of those harmed. We see this as a political stance in amplifying the empowerment and inclusion of survivors and challenging an oppressive culture. If you would like to request that a perpetrator of violence or harassment be asked not to attend Camp Anarchy, please contact us at campanarchygrievancecollective[AT]gmail.com.
There may be conflict during the time that we are at this conference and the organisers have designed a basic process for dealing with this. This process is based around the principle that a resolution deemed positive to all parties involved should always be sought first, but that a survivor’s right to feel safe and empowered is the key priority. If any conflict arises that anyone feels cannot be resolved without some help, they should seek the assistance of one or more members of the organising collective. If the harmed person in a conflict (ie. survivor of abuse or harassment) is not satisfied with a proposed resolution, they have the option of taking the issue to the whole conference to make a final decision on what action needs to be taken. In dealing with conflict, the organising collective will be survivor-centred, meaning that the survivor’s rights will always be prioritised.