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Code of Conduct (Extended Version)

The SOC consider harassment to include offensive comments, gestures and behaviour related to sex, gender identity, sexual orientation, marital or parental status, age, disability, physical appearance, body size, race, religion, sexual images in public spaces, deliberate intimidation, stalking, following, harassing photography or recording, sustained disruption of talks or other events, inappropriate physical contact, and unwelcome intrusions of personal space or sexual attention. Conduct can be harassment even if it was not intended to violate the recipient’s dignity, if it had that effect. A single incident may amount to harassment if it is sufficiently serious. Conduct normally becomes harassment if it persists once it has been made clear that the behaviour is regarded as offensive. Participants asked to stop any harassing behaviour are expected to comply immediately.

Be careful in the words that you choose. Remember that sexist, racist, and other exclusionary jokes can be offensive to those around you. Offensive jokes and excessive swearing are not appropriate for DCC2-24. If a participant engages in behaviour that violates this Code of Conduct, the SOC may take any action they deem appropriate, including warning the offender or expulsion from the meeting.

Attendee procedure for incident handling

The impact on an individual and whether the behaviour is unacceptable by normal standards will be the focus. If you experience behaviour that breaches this Code of Conduct and feel comfortable calling attention to it at the time, please do so. Resolving issues early and informally is usually preferable for everyone concerned. Often, people are unaware that their behaviour is perceived as harassment, discrimination or bullying, and in these cases taking prompt informal action can be particularly effective.

Report any harassment incident (preferably in writing) to a LOC/SOC member. Please do not disclose public information about the incident until the SOC have had sufficient time in which to address the situation. This is for the safety and protection of those affected. When reporting the event, try to recall as much information as possible about the incident. 

Note: Incidents that violate the Code of Conduct are extremely damaging to the community, and they will not be tolerated. The SOC requests that they be your first resource when reporting a DCC2024-related incident, so that they may enforce the Code of Conduct and take quick action toward a resolution. Awareness and reporting of these incidents present a chance for the offenders, and the community at large, to grow, learn, and become better.

Local organising committee procedure for incident handling

Be sure to have a good understanding of our Code of Conduct policy. Also have a good understanding of what is expected from an attendee that wants to report an incident of harassment. Deal with any potential cases of harassment with discretion, but do not promise confidentiality as that cannot be always guaranteed.

Try to get as much of the incident in written form by the reporter. If you cannot, transcribe it yourself as it was told to you. The important information to gather include the following:

  • Identifying information (name) of the perpetrator(s) of the harassment

  • The behaviour that was in violation

  • The approximate time and location of the behaviour (if different than the time the report was made)

  • The circumstances surrounding the incident

  • Other people involved in the incident

  • The identity and role of the victim and (if not the same person) the individual making the report​

Prepare an initial response to the incident. This initial response is very important and will set the tone for DDC2024. Depending on the severity/details of the incident, please follow these guidelines:

  • Offer the victim a private place to talk

  • Ask "is there a friend or trusted person who you would like to be with you?" (if so, arrange for someone to try and locate this person)

  • Ask them "how can I help?"

  • If everyone is presently physically safe, involve the police or security only at a victim's request There are also some guidelines as to what not to do as an initial response:

  • Do not overtly invite them to withdraw the complaint or mention that withdrawal is OK. This suggests that you want them to do so, and is therefore coercive.

  • Do not ask for their advice on how to deal with the complaint. This is the LOC's responsibility.

  • Do not offer them input into penalties. This is the LOC's responsibility.

Once something is reported to a LOC member, immediately meet with other LOC members. The main objectives of this meeting are to find out the following:

  • What happened?

  • Are we doing anything about it?

  • Who is doing those things?

  • When are they doing them?
     

After the LOC meeting and discussion, have a LOC member or members communicate with the alleged harasser. Make sure to inform them of what has been reported about them. Allow the alleged harasser to give their side of the story to the staff. After this point, if the report stands, let the alleged harasser know what actions will be taken against them.

Some possible actions/responses for the LOC to consider when dealing with Code of Conduct offenders:

  • Warning the harasser to cease their behaviour and that any further reports will result in sanctions

  • Requiring that the harasser avoid any interaction with, and physical proximity to, their victim for the remainder of the event

  • Not publishing any material that violated the policy

  • Not allowing a speaker who violated the policy to give (further) talks at the event

  • Immediately ending any event responsibilities and privileges the harasser holds

  • Requiring that the harasser immediately leave the event and not return
     

Give accused attendees an opportunity to appeal, but in the meantime the report stands. Keep in mind that it is not a good idea to encourage an apology from the harasser.

It is very important how we deal with the incident publicly. Our policy is to make sure that everyone aware of the initial incident is also made aware that it is not according to policy and that official action has been taken - while still respecting the privacy of individual attendees. When speaking to individuals (those who are aware of the incident, but were not involved with the incident) about the incident it is a good idea to keep the details out.

A list of the Organising Committee members can be found at the homepage.

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