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Safer Spaces Policy

SAFER SPACES POLICY: JURA COLLECTIVE

30TH July 2008
 
A Safer Space

No space can be completely safe and free from oppression. What this policy aims to do is increase the awareness of all Jura Collective members / trusted friends, and all Jura users, to make this space as safe as possible. We hope that everyone will feel welcome and comfortable in this space, and also respect the general politics and principles of the Jura community. We encourage everyone to participate in the activities and structures of the space, to the extent that they agree with the politics and responsibilities connected to different levels of participation. For example, there are more rights and responsibilities that come along with being a Member or Trusted Friend, than those with being a visitor or guest.

Jura aims to be a survivor oriented space. This means that when decisions need to be made, the "benefit of the doubt" will go to the survivor in preference to the perpetrator.

By entering Jura Bookshop, and participating in the activities of the Jura Collective, you agree to abide by these guidelines. Those engaging in non-consensual violence (including sexual violence and harassment) will be asked to leave the space. We welcome the continuing discussion about and improvement of this policy.

Many thanks to all those in our extended communities who have been laying the foundations of this important work over the past few years.

Jura Collective and Bookshop

The events of the Jura Collective, and the Jura Bookshop are safer spaces. Violence, harassment and abuse will not be tolerated in any form. This can be based on gender, sexual preference, race, socio-economic status, political beliefs, physical abilities, class, age, physical appearance, religion, and a myriad of other factors.

If we wish to enact social change, we must implement that change in our daily behaviours.

What This Means in Practice

There can be no definitive list of behaviours / comments / situations which make people feel uncomfortable. The main thing is to concentrate on how your actions are affecting others, and modify your behaviour as appropriate.   

Try to remain open to discussion of ways to improve communication in the space, and continually question the privilege you have (e.g. from being older, from being an "experienced" activist, from utilising the space more frequently, from your ethnicity, from your gender, etc). It's YOUR responsibility to ensure you aren't taking up too much "space", and devaluing or disregarding the opinions and experiences of others.

This includes, but is not limited to: speaking loudly and over the top of others, interrupting other's speech, dominating conversation and not allowing others to speak, assuming everyone knows where all utilities are in the building, explaining concepts condescendingly, making assumptions about the experiences and lifestyles of others, starring at others in a manner which makes them uncomfortable (i.e. "checking them out") and invading the personal space of others during conversation.

Please keep the following in mind when utilising Jura Bookshop or interacting with Jura Collective:

  • Every-one's physical and emotional boundaries are different. Always ask consent before touching someone in a manner that could be considered intimate, and check if people are comfortable discussing certain topics that may be triggering (e.g. sexual abuse, sexual experiences, physical violence, or encounters with the police).  
  • Pay attention to body language, as people often use non-verbal clues to communicate a lack of consent (e.g. not making eye contact, making excuses to move away from you, not responding to your physical advances).  
  • Take responsibility for your own actions, and consider how your behaviour and speech affect others. Remember that not everyone reacts the same way.
  • Respect other's thoughts and opinions. This doesn't mean we all have to agree, but that discussion is entered into without prejudice or personal insult.  
  • There may be certain situations when you feel comfortable using language which some may find offensive or derogatory – Jura is not an appropriate space for this. You do not know who will overhear you, and how they will react to this.  
  • Look out for others, and try not to leave anything around that may endanger their physical safety. This is particularly important when using the kitchen or during renovations!
  • No smoking is allowed within the Jura building itself. Please go outside to smoke. Talk about the influence of alcohol and other drugs on yourself and others, and think about limiting your use if you know that you become violent or disrespectful under their influence.  
  • Be aware of yourself and how you are feeling. If you need assistance, do not be afraid to ask someone or call a friend. Removing yourself physically from a situation can be a great help.   

Remember, you are responsible for articulating 100% of your needs 100% of the time. This can be intimidating and scary, but there are ways we can support you in doing this.

Dealing With Grievances

If you feel unsafe, or experience any behaviour which crosses your boundaries, please approach a Jura Collective Member / Trusted Friend whom you feel comfortable talking to. They can talk to you about how you wish to resolve the issue and can act on your behalf if you desire.

The Collective shall have two people with whom grievances can be taken up with, one male and one female (transgender?). They can act on your behalf at the next collective meeting if you do not feel comfortable raising an issue, or can assist you in dealing with more immediate problems. This position will rotate. Contact details for these people will be kept at the Jura desk.

Generally, grievance issues will be discussed at the next collective meeting, and resolved as the collective, in discussion with all the parties, feels appropriate. More urgent grievances can be dealt with by the grievance people as appropriate. Whist we acknowledge the autonomy of survivors of sexual and physical assault, we would prefer to resolve issues without the police or other state institutions. However, we recognise that this is ALWAYS an option for the survivor themselves to take into consideration.

For larger events (e.g. gigs, zine fairs, large collective meetings) a "chill-out space" will be designated. This will be a room for people to have a cup of tea, be alone (or with small, selected company) and recuperate. Please seek this space out if you need it. There will be information available on the day in question.

A suggestion box will be kept at the Jura Bookshop Desk for anonymous comments on this policy. Alternatively, all are welcome to attend collective meetings and have further input.  
   
The Jura Collective committs to holding regular workshops (at least once a year), to re-familiarise people with the safer spaces policy and it's implementation.

OURSIDE SERVICES

NSW Rape Crisis Centre

24 hour free call: 1800 424 017

Help available online: http://www.nswrapecrisis.com.au/
 PO Box 555, Drummoyne 2047
Ph: (02) 9819 7357
Fax: (02) 9819 6295

Leichhardt Women's Community Health Centre
55 Thornley Street, Leichhardt 2040
PO Box 240, Leichhardt 2040
 Ph: (02) 9560 3011
Fax: (02) 9569 5098
 
NSW Health Sexual Assault Services
Royal Prince Alfred Hospital
Missenden Road, Camperdown 2050
Ph: (02) 9515 9040
Ph: (02) 9515 6111 (24 hrs)
Fax: (02) 9515 9041

SAFER ACCOMMODATION SERVICES

Homeless Persons Information Service
(Crisis accommodation referral)
02 9265 9087  
1800 234 566  

Child protection and family crisis (24hr)
1800 066 777

Telephone Interpreter Service (24hr)

13 14 50

Youth Emergency Accommodation Line
(02) 9318 1531 (Sydney Metro)
1800 424 830 (Toll free outside Sydney Metro)

Tenants Union of NSW Co-operative Ltd

02 9251 6590  
1800 251 101

See: http://www.wrrc.org.au/emergencynos/ for more info and other organisations to contact.

Miscellaneous: 

The Tin Sheds

'The Hothouse: Art and Politics at The Tin Sheds'

Miscellaneous: 

Food Not Bombs Regular Serving

Saturday, August 9, 2008 - 11:00pm to Sunday, August 10, 2008 - 4:00am

Come along to the regular food not bombs serving.

Cooking from 1pm at the Jura kitchen every second Saturday, and then serving 4.30pm at the Martin Luther King Mural on King Street in Newtown (just next to the hub).

Washer uppers ALWAYS welcome!!

Hi Tech High Tea - Creating an alternative Media

Monday, August 4, 2008 -
12:00am to 3:00am

HIGH TECH HIGH TEA Sunday 3rd August @ Jura Bookshop from 2pm til 5pm An exploration of technology and ways to build a alternative structure if media and information technology.

There'll be short films, electronic music workshop, high tech vegan treats and a discussion of alternative structures of media.

This will be a fundraiser for the Kinaiyahan Unahon Collective in Davao City, Phillipines, and their new info show / social centre.

FNB Fundraising Gig

Monday, July 28, 2008 -
12:00am to 5:00am

HUGE show and zine fair fundraiser for Food Not Bombs.

There will be:
* rad bands(check back for updates!) including cripple gypsy, the thaw and bare arms
* spoken word (including fez)
* food food food!
* baked sweet treats
* zine stalls
* pinata
* other associated awesomeness!

Help us make money to purchase a van for rad dumpstering trips, more servings and other community uses.

Hip-hop High Tea at Jura

Monday, June 9, 2008 -
12:00am to 3:00am

Join us for an arvo of VEGAN high tea, popping lessons with the elegant shelly and hip-hop sounds from secret special guests!!! This shall be followed by a discussion of gender, and the subversion of gender, in hip-hop and dance.

Vegan treats are most welcome (e.g. cupcakes, jelly, choc crackles).
This event is FREE, but donations to Jura are always appreciated.

Food Not Bombs Serving

Sunday, June 29, 2008 -
2:00am to 4:30am

Regular fortnightly Food Not Bombs serving on the corner of King and Forbes St Newtown from about 4/4:30pm.

If you'd like to get involved, preparation is at Jura Books (440 Parramatta Rd, Petersham) from 1pm or email sydfoodnotbombs[at]gmail[dot]com.

Food Not Bombs Serving

Sunday, June 15, 2008 -
2:00am to 4:30am

Regular fortnightly Food Not Bombs serving on the corner of King and Forbes St Newtown from about 4/4:30pm.

If you'd like to get involved, preparation is at Jura Books (440 Parramatta Rd, Petersham) from 1pm or email sydfoodnotbombs[at]gmail[dot]com.

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