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Our newest submit is by Rosemary Lucy Hill, Senior Lecturer in Media and Well-liked Tradition, College of Huddersfield. Right here she outlines analysis into sexual violence and harassment at gigs, and introduces the information that emerged from it about tips on how to write a ‘safer areas’ coverage.
TL;DR: safer areas insurance policies are actually helpful; right here’s our Information on tips on how to write one.
Proper now music venues are combating for his or her lives. Slivers of hope in placing on gigs once more are tied in with fascinated by how to take action safely.
While we think about viewers security from covid, different types of security should be remembered. Violence and sexual harassment have been a pernicious a part of the gig expertise, particularly for ladies, for a few years. Going to a gig generally is a distinctly unsafe expertise, resulting in long-term trauma, lack of neighborhood and lack of a musical life. For musicians it may well imply a reconsideration of profession selections.
This second, then, presents a possibility to mirror on how we would enhance security by way of decreasing sexual violence and harassment, and selling equality in gig going.
My workforce and I've been researching the impacts of sexual violence at gigs, and what we are able to do to mitigate them. We found that some venues are superb at coping with violence, however others felt at sea when an incident occurred. They didn’t know tips on how to reply for the most effective.
Safer areas insurance policies may be useful for workers in coping with sexual harassment and violence, particularly if workers have additionally obtained good coaching. Insurance policies can present consistency so everybody within the venue is on the identical web page. They're good for audiences and musicians too, as they supply extra details about tips on how to behave or tips on how to get help if one thing goes flawed.
However for all that, we discovered numerous selection amongst current insurance policies: some lengthy, some quick, some complicated, some as distilled as ‘Don’t be a dick’ (as if everybody is aware of what ‘being a dick’ is). This implies it’s fairly patchy by way of how helpful insurance policies are, or how simple they're to learn and perceive.
We additionally discovered that individuals who run venues are actually pushed for time. They won't really feel assured about writing a safer areas coverage. One of many venue managers we spoke to mentioned,
“I’m not the skilled on rights and insurance policies, it’s not my factor. I’m actually good at operating issues easily and effectively, however writing isn’t [one of my strengths].”
We needed to assist resolve this drawback with a simple information to writing a coverage and a template to go together with it. So we created the 5 Step Information to Writing a Safer Areas Coverage for Your Venue. We drew on our analysis and consulted with venue managers, promoters and anti-violence charities to guarantee that the information is sensible and a optimistic expertise for customers.
Our Information units out 5 steps to steer venue managers and their groups by way of a dialogue of what to place of their coverage and tips on how to write it. That is concerning the beliefs of the workers and what sort of venue they're operating or wish to create. It asks about sensible measures already in place and what extra may very well be completed (and what help could be wanted to attain it).
Our analysis discovered that numerous safer areas insurance policies use fairly unfavourable language: they’re about what individuals shouldn’t be doing in a venue, not what they need to be doing (having enjoyable!). We advocate that insurance policies are framed in optimistic language. This encourages individuals to share within the values of the venue and to take constructive motion.
Our pattern coverage is explicitly framed on this optimistic language and units out clearly what viewers members can do to take pleasure in themselves safely and with out impinging on others’ enjoyable. For instance,
“Say ‘excuse me’ when shifting by way of the gang, relatively than pushing or touching individuals. A few faucets on the shoulder could also be okay in the event that they haven’t heard you”
Additionally it is clear about what the venue supplies and the way workers will reply if an incident of violence does happen. Sadly, incidents do occur even in venues with insurance policies – however realizing how finest to take care of it may well cut back the trauma for these on the receiving finish.
The Information consists of hyperlinks to additional assets, reminiscent of anti-violence coaching organisation Good Evening Out Marketing campaign, and free entry to journal articles about our analysis.
We hope that the 5 Step Information to Writing a Safer Areas Coverage will show a useful software for venues and promoters as they foster security at gigs. It's our philosophy that the gig expertise must be enjoyable for everybody. Clear steering for audiences and help from venues can promote that. We consider this as a ‘framework for enjoyable’ through which everybody’s freedom to have enjoyable is being supported, so long as it doesn’t impede another person’s enjoyment.
Please share the Information with venues and promoters that you simply suppose will discover it helpful. And in case you use it and prefer it, please tell us! Twitter@musichealthy or email@example.com
Hill, R. L., Hesmondhalgh, D., & Megson, M. (2020). Sexual violence at stay music occasions: experiences, responses and prevention. Worldwide Journal of Cultural Research, 23(3), 368–384.
Hill, R. L., & Megson, M. (2020). In defence of safer areas: punk, privilege and safer areas insurance policies. Punk & Submit-Punk, 9(1), 59–76.
Rosemary Lucy Hill, Senior Lecturer in Media and Well-liked Tradition, College of Huddersfield, UK; Twitter@rosemarylhill