seawasp (seawasp) wrote,

New WFC Code of Conduct/Harassment Policy...

... Is below. It certainly looks better than the prior one. How good it is I'll leave to others to judge. My first reaction is that I'd like some more process detail on what process will be used to determine what action or actions will be taken, and what the minimum response is, and so on. But at least this one clearly indicates that the Convention itself can take action on its own.

WFC 2015 Code of Conduct                                                       

General. We want our convention to be a safe, comfortable, and enjoyable experience for all of us.  Since the convention committee and the sponsoring corporation have neither legal police powers nor employ police officers, we have set the following standards of expected behavior which apply to everyone and comply with New York State legal requirements.

We expect everyone to behave responsibly.  Any action or behavior that is illegal, causes significant interference with event operations, causes excessive discomfort to other attendees, or adversely affects the convention's relationship with its guests, its members, its venue, or the public, is strictly forbidden and may result in revocation of membership privileges with no refund.  We offer the following guidance for anyone unclear on the concept, but remember that this code is not exclusive.

Harassment. In New York State harassment is a defined criminal offense. None of the Committee, Hotel or City Center staff are trained to recognize, in New York State law, the difference between legal harassment and incorrect/uncivil behavior. We have consulted with the Saratoga County District Attorney and the City of Saratoga Springs Police Department and been advised to report any incidents to the Police Department so that they can determine if the reported conduct meets the legal definition of harassment to charge the offender. Incidents can be reported to the registration desk or the hotel registration desk.

We do not tolerate harassment of convention attendees or staff or facilities staff in any form.  Everyone is entitled to a harassment-free convention experience, regardless of gender, sexual orientation, disability, physical appearance, body size, race, national origin, or religion.

Harassment as we generally understand it includes inappropriate physical contact, unwelcome sexual attention, offensive verbal comments, deliberate intimidation, stalking or following someone, making harassing photography or recording, and disrupting talks or other events.  These are not legal definitions. Anyone asked to stop any harassing behavior is expected to comply immediately.

A request to "stop" or "go away" means exactly that.  If anyone engages in harassing behavior, the convention committee may warn the offender, remove the offender from the room, or expel the offender from the convention with no refund as well as report the incident to the Saratoga Police Department.

If you feel that you are being discriminated against or harassed, or if you notice someone violating hotel or convention policies, we respectfully suggest the following:

1.      If you feel comfortable doing so, point out the inappropriate behavior to the persons involved. Often this will solve the problem immediately.

2.     If you do not feel comfortable talking with the persons involved or if talking to them does not resolve the issue, please report the situation immediately to a Board Member, Convention Committee Member, to the Registration Staff or the hotel registration staff. Try to provide name(s), badge name(s), badge number(s) and/or physical description of the person(s) involved.  Every incident reported may be reported to the Saratoga Police Department by the person receiving the report.

3.      In order to take action, we need to know about any incidents during the event.

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