Our Safer Space Guidelines
Creating a space that is as safe, inclusive and supportive as possible
Our Safer Space Guidelines
Our Safer Space Guidelines are not a list of rules, they are the map of how we can practice being responsible for our own behaviour.
It is something that we are all learning and practicing together so that everyone feels included, supported and safe.
We ask that folks are sober when they are at Twenty10 Inc. GLCS NSW. Being sober includes coming down and hangovers too.
This is not about making judgements on how folks live their lives, it’s an acknowledgement that alcohol and other drugs affects people’s behaviours. Since socialising is one of the main reasons we’re here, this is really important.
Consider the way your behaviour impacts others
This guideline is about cultivating an awareness of how you talk about things, the words you use, the way you are physically in a space, how much you talk and how loud or ‘big’ you are in a space. This is about cultivating an awareness of how these things have an effect on others, and how to physically behave in the space.
It is about acknowledging that when someone needs to have a chat with you about something you have done or are doing, not getting defensive or otherwise acting like a jerk. Take a breath, slow down and listen. From there you can both have a conversation.
Don’t be mean to someone because you think they are different from you
This guideline is an invitation to consider the (often unconscious) assumptions you make when you first hear, or see, or meet someone. There is often much more common ground with other people than there are differences. Don’t be mean to folks because of your assumptions.
When there are differences between one another, they can be opportunities to learn some new things and to have a try at thinking about things differently. They are also an opportunity to appreciate just how many ways there are of being in the world.
Clean up after yourself
Twenty10 Inc. GLCS NSW is a shared space, lots of people use it and need it. We ask that every person takes responsibility not only for cleaning up the mess they make, but also for taking care of this very special place so that we all can use it.
This means not only washing up and tidying, but also doing that extra little bit to make the space clean and ready for others to use too.
No violence or abusive behaviour
We ask that people are not violent while they are at Twenty10 Inc. GLCS NSW. We specify abusive behaviour as a form of violence as it is the one that occurs the most.
Abusive behaviour includes threatening, not only someone who is in the space, but also those who aren’t here. The words people use when they are threatening or describing violence they wish to enact on someone, can bring up lots of distress and fear for people.
No kissing, cuddling or intimate touching
We ask people not to touch one another while they are here. It is ok to hug and kiss your friends hello and goodbye – do check if it’s ok to do this, not everyone likes that kind of thing.
We ask people not to touch one another because some forms of touching can bring up stuff for people, and result in them feeling awful. We see it as something special we can to do to make sure that everyone can have the opportunity to feel safe and included.
This is really similar to the ‘don’t be mean to someone because you think they are different to you’, but it goes beyond that to acknowledge that discrimination happens all the time in Australia and we do not want to perpetuate it while we are at Twenty10 Inc. GLCS NSW.
Often discrimination is very subtle and not obvious, we think it’s really important to talk and learn about how discrimination works so that we can work toward interrupting and stopping it.
Respect each other, staff, volunteers and the space
Showing respect can be done in lots of ways, for example: making sure to check and respect a person’s name and pronoun, speak from your own experiences by using the word “I…” rather than stating things as if they are facts, not interrupting people and speaking over the top of them, avoid criticising people, and having your phone on silent, not using your phone if you are in a group discussion or activity, and taking calls out of the group space.
Respecting the volunteers is about knowing that people donate their time and experience toward making Twenty10 Inc. GLCS what it is. Respecting the space is about knowing that there is often a whole building full of people doing all kinds of work and having meetings and hanging out – don’t be too noisy!
Don’t share the things people say with others
This one is about confidentiality, privacy and personal stuff. It’s another way of showing respect and helps to minimise drama. It refers specifically to making sure not to discuss other people’s personal stuff with a group, and making sure you don’t share personal information that is discussed or overheard with other people without permission.
What happens when a guideline is broken?
To help us all remember the guidelines and why we use them, we remind each other when we see they haven’t been followed.
You can ask for support to do this from a volunteer or worker. If someone keeps breaking the guidelines or breaks them in a very serious way, there will be a formal process.
This includes a meeting with a worker or manager where you will be asked to complete an activity so that we know you can keep within the guidelines.
This may be having a break from accessing Twenty10 Inc. GLCS NSW, or some other activity.
Got a question about the guidelines?
Have a chat to the volunteer or worker on duty if you have any questions about our Safer Space Guidelines.
Other Groups and Services
Find out more about our social support and peer-led groups for different age groups.