Girl-Wonder announces the Con Anti-Harassment Project

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Remember the Penguicon “Open Source Boob Project” that took place at Penguicon, and the resulting grassroots idea – the “Open Source Women Back Each Other Up Project“?

Feminist comics fandom site Girl-Wonder has formalised things a little more, and has just announced the “Con Anti-Harassment Project”, taglined “Conventions should be fun.”:

Our aims are to encourage fandom, geek community and other non-business conventions to establish, articulate and act upon anti-harassment policies, especially sexual harassment policies, and to encourage mutual respect among con-goers, guests and staff.

The convention experience is often a fun and rewarding one; we want to do our part to make it fun, rewarding and safe for everyone involved. Conventions can’t eliminate harassment, but they can reduce it, have ways to deal with it when it happens, and make it clear that it’s unacceptable in our fun con environments. Our campaign is based upon a three-part action plan we encourage con committees to adopt and adapt for their own con atmosphere and environment.

The CAHP encourages fan/science fiction/geek conventions to articulate and formalise anti-harassment policies, train their staff and volunteers, and act on their policies. They have a great FAQ, that lays out some things that should be obvious, but clearly aren’t, like “Why do cons need to spell it out that sexual harassment is unacceptable? They don’t tell anyone not to murder someone else on the con floor.”, “Why is this even a problem? People should be flattered when someone lets them know they’re sexy.”, and “Can’t con attendees just call the police if they feel threatened?”

You can contribute information about your favourite con’s anti-harassment policies to their Con Database, and join in the letter-writing campaign.



Categories: gender & feminism, social justice, violence

Tags: , , , ,

3 replies

  1. “Why do cons need to spell it out that sexual harassment is unacceptable? They don’t tell anyone not to murder someone else on the con floor.”

    They do when there are Klingons.

  2. DEM – hee.
    Seriously, that question should be in a dictionary of disingenuity somewhere. They don’t need to tell people not murder others at cons because it’s trivially obvious that people are already abiding by that particular community standard, unless there is some plethora of bodies strewn in the wake of cons of which I am mysteriously unaware. That total lack of instances of social transgression can hardly be claimed in the case of sexual harassment.

  3. The “Open Source Boob Project” thing still makes me go 😦 even after all this time.
    Good to see that there is now a movement to combat that sort of idiocy.

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