LGBTIQA+ Greens Code of Conduct
Effective from LGBTIQA+ Greens AGM 13th November 2021
We believe that the top priority in politics is inclusivity. It is therefore essential that we maintain an environment where all can feel safe to participate. While diversity of opinion and discussion around issues are valued, this should never supersede the values of safety and inclusivity.
Thus we are committed to providing an environment free of racism, sexism, ableism, homophobia, transphobia, religious discrimination or any other type of discrimination. We will also not tolerate bullying, name calling or any form of abusive behaviour towards members.
Everyone has a responsibility to respect the feelings and sensibilities of others in the party and behave in a way that does not cause offence. In some instances individuals may be genuinely unaware that their behaviour is causing offence. Still, it is the duty of each individual to be sensitive to the impact their conduct may have on colleagues. Anyone who believes a breach of this Code of Conduct is happening has a responsibility to report it to a member of the LGBTIQA+ Greens management group. It is not appropriate to publish an allegation to the wider membership before or during an investigation.
- The LGBTIQA+ Greens are committed to providing an environment free of racism, sexism, ableism, homophobia, transphobia, religious discrimination, or any other type of discrimination.
- The LGBTIQA+ Greens are committed to providing an environment free of bullying, name-calling, or any form of abusive behaviour.
- The LGBTIQA+ Greens are committed to challenging these types of oppression whenever they occur in LGBTIQA+ Greens spaces.
- The LGBTIQA+ Greens are committed to having a victim centered approach when safe spaces are jeopardised.
- Anyone who is considered to be jeopardising the safe spaces policy may be asked to leave by members of the LGBTIQA+ Greens management group.
The LGBTIQA+ Greens ask that all members pay attention to their conduct and behaviour when engaging in LGBTIQA+ Greens activity to ensure that it does not jeopardise the safe space. All members are responsible for their own language and behaviour. Respect should be given to each others’ physical and emotional boundaries. Members should be expected to tolerate others’ norms and habits as long as they do not transgress other parts of the safe space policy.
Activities that create an oppressive environment include, but are not limited to:
- Sexual harassment
- Tone policing
- Using offensive language to refer to oppressed groups
- Mis-gendering an individual
- Making assumptions about an individual based on perceived characteristics
- Sharing potentially triggering articles online without content warnings
- Victim blaming
- Unsubstantiated accusations
- Making personal attacks
- Spreading falsities
At LGBTIQA+ Greens Events
LGBTIQA+ Greens should ensure that events are as accessible as possible.
If possible, this includes but is not restricted to: providing gender-neutral toilets, using venues that are accessible to wheelchair users, ensuring members do not drink alcohol during official business and providing a safe space room.
When a safe space has been jeopardised LGBTIQA+ Greens ask that members challenge these forms of oppression when they occur. Members should follow the principle of ‘respect the person, challenge the behaviour’. If challenged on their behaviour, members should apologise and reflect on their behaviour. Please only attempt this if you feel comfortable doing so. If there is an issue which you are not comfortable dealing with, or if the oppression continues, please notify a member of the management group by email.
If members feel a violation of this policy has occurred, they can please make an LGBTIQA+ Greens management group member aware in the first instance. This can be done either in person if at an event or by emailing them at firstname.lastname@example.org. Messages on Social Networks are not an appropriate method of reporting violations of this policy. In normal circumstance, the management group member will seek to moderate the discussion and resolve the complaint through normal complaints procedure. If the management group believes there to be a potential risk, for example to a member, after consultation with at least 2 other management group officers they can take immediate, appropriate action to reduce that risk.
This could include (without limitations):
- informal warnings and requests for an apology
- removal of an individual from all, or part, of an event, or group
- formal complaint to the Greens Party of England and Wales
- suspending membership until the LGBTQIA+ Complaints and Disputes Procedure is completed
LGBTIQA+ Complaints and Disputes Procedure
- The Complaints and Disputes committee will be constituted of 5 members.
- It may also be that members have personal interests in the outcome of a case, or possess personal or professional relations, amicable or otherwise, with those involved in a case. They will be able to recuse themselves and see another member be substituted in
- Members are to submit complaints based on breaches of the LGBTIQA+ Greens Constitution, Green Party Constitution, Green Party Standing Orders, Green Party Code of Conduct or any other organisational policies of the LGBTIQA+ Greens, including Safe Space policies.
- Any complaints about another member of the LGBTIQA+ Greens, or disputes that a member feels they need help resolving, should go in the first instance to the co-chairs.
- In the first instance when a complaint is lodged, a member of the C&D will speak to involved parties and attempt to resolve the issue informally whilst maintaining clear records,
- Where any involved parties feel that hasn’t worked, or where any parties refuse the informal intervention, the complaint should be made in writing. All involved parties will have equal chance to state their own case.
- C&D Committee will consider the complaint and make a judgment, in writing, to all parties. Judgements should include a ruling on whether there have been breaches of the organisational policies of the Green Party of England and Wales and LGBTIQA+ Greens,
- After a judgement, C&D committee will make a recommendation of action to either or both complainants. In cases where there is a need for disciplinary action the will issue that decision.These disciplinary actions may include, but are not limited to:
- Ban from LGBTIQA+ Greens Events/Spaces, for a period of up to 12 months
- Suspension of LGBTIQA+ Greens membership, for a period of up to 12 months
- Censure from holding a position within the LGBTIQA+ Greens, for a period of up to 12 months
- Permanent termination of membership
- If an individual; wishes to appeal a judgment made by C&D, they may do so by communicating to the LGBTIQA+ management group. The grounds for an appeal are if new evidence emerges, or if C&D broke procedure. The management group should look over the evidence presented by the appealer and may make a ruling on whether the appeals process should be initiated. In this case, appeals will be heard by a new group formulated on the same basis as C&D in 5.3 but excluding C&D members that made the original judgment.
- There should be clear minutes and records of actions kept of all C&D meetings. These may be disclosed beyond C&D at the discretion of C&D Committee, and the need for confidentiality and fair treatment must be considered.
- A response to all initial complaints should be made to the initiator of the complaint within 48 hours of receiving the complaint, in which the standard process is outlined to them and how C&D intend to carry out the informal mediation.
- Informal mediation should start within 5 days of a complaint or dispute being lodged.
- A judgment should be made within 3 weeks of a complaint or dispute being lodged in writing following informal mediation failing or where the written statement refuses informal mediation
- Any requests for updates from any involved party should be responded to within 72 hours.
- Malicious complaints made against an LGBTIQA+ Greens member are serious and a breach of the principles outlined in the Constitution as well as the GPEW Code of Conduct. C&D Committee will dismiss malicious complaints and may notify relevant parties that a malicious complaint has been made.