The following information about conflict resolution is also included in the Akin Code of Conduct. Click here to read the full Code of Conduct.
What happens if there is a conflict at the Akin studios?
What are the steps to resolve an issue?
Anyone asked to stop unacceptable behavior is expected to comply immediately. We are committed to a robust conflict resolution process in order to foster safe spaces for our members:
If you have any issues or concerns, please be aware of our process as follows:
1. DIY: If comfortable to do so, we strongly encourage the parties involved to speak to one another directly - where safe and appropriate - as we have found that issues can often be resolved this way. If this approach is not possible, any issues or concerns can be escalated in the following ways:
2. An informal complaint: involves filling out a form which can be found here. An informal complaint is anonymous and will be taken seriously but does not involve an official investigation unless the matter is deemed to be serious.
3. A formal complaint: Outlined in the anti-harassment policy above, a formal complaint is investigated and engages both the complainant and complainee directly. A formal complaint is a matter of record and often engages external consultants, elders and mediators.
4. Mediation: This facilitated type of conflict resolution involves an objective third party. If mediation is deemed to be the appropriate process, a discussion occurs with someone from our staff and/or board in conjunction with the affected parties to select an appropriate trained mediator. Mediation may take the form of a healing circle, a transformative justice process, reconciliatory meeting(s), a facilitated conversation etc. Mediation may result in: removal from the space, permanent ban or further actions at the discretion of the Mediator and Akin.
If someone makes you or anyone else feel unsafe or unwelcome, please report it as soon as possible. Harassment and other code of conduct violations reduce the value of our spaces and events for everyone. We want you to be happy and safe. People like you make our spaces and events better for all.
We understand that speaking about the harm we’ve experienced is difficult and often traumatizing. We strive to honor the courage of those who come forward. As such, we have several avenues for reporting harassment, discrimination and inappropriate behaviour:
Anonymous Report [Digital]
Formal Report [In Person]
Formal Report [Digital]
You can make an anonymous report here by leaving the contact info fields blank and putting the word ‘report’ in the subject line: akincollective.com/contact
We can't follow up on an anonymous report with you directly, but we will fully investigate it and take whatever action is necessary to prevent a recurrence.
You can make a personal report by:
Contacting Akin staff by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org
Speaking with your Studio Manager, who may ask that you document your report in an email.
Filling out a detailed form which identifies you, here.
When reporting formally in person, our staff will ensure you are safe and cannot be overheard. They may involve other staff to ensure your report is managed properly. Once safe, we'll ask you to tell us about what happened. This can be upsetting, but we'll handle it as respectfully as possible, and you can bring someone to support you. You won't be asked to confront anyone and we won't tell anyone who you are.
Our team will be happy to help you connect with third party resources and supports including options for free counselling, support groups, mental health services and sexual assault supports.
Participants/users asked to stop any harassing behavior are expected to comply immediately.
If a participant engages in harassing behavior, depending on the nature of the complaint and the extent of the harm, complainees may be engaged in a transformative justice/mediation process, sanctioned or banned from Akin spaces, programming and digital platforms immediately.
Akin may seek the counsel and support of external consultants, educators, community leaders, support persons, mediation experts in the facilitation of conflict resolution, complaint investigations and healing/restorative work between our staff, members and other stakeholders.
If a participant engages in harassing behaviour, Akin retains the right to take any actions to keep the event a welcoming environment for all participants. This includes warning the offender or expulsion, whether temporary or permanent, from Akin’s spaces, events and programs. Members who repeatedly engage in unacceptable behaviour will face progressive consequences up to and including expulsion and a ban from Akin spaces and programming.
Consultation: in the development of our policies, our strategic planning, and our programming
Community engagement: engaging our membership and stakeholders to receive input and foster a sense of inclusion
Making mistakes and learning together: we know we will make mistakes, we aim to acknowledge those mistakes, to learn from them and to reconcile the harm that results from them with the support of our community
When someone is harmed
Reach out and offer support. Contact our team, and we will do our best to support the member, staff, volunteer, student or stakeholder impacted. We centre a culture of care and empathy. Respect the boundaries of individuals who may not want your support. Consent and respect are central to providing meaningful support.
Empathy is our preference
We all make mistakes, and we all have different and unique lived experiences, this means we have to have substantial empathy for ourselves and others. We acknowledge that everyone makes mistakes, that those mistakes often cause harm to others and that intent does not equal impact. As such, we invite our members and stakeholders to acknowledge the mistakes we’ve made, so that we can be accountable for the harm and can help reconcile it in a way that centres those we have harmed. We don’t believe that people are disposable and we believe that responsibility and accountability and trauma-informed conflict resolution are key to fostering safe spaces.