GAMERella is dedicated to fostering a safe and inclusive environment at both our online and offline jams.
This means creating an environment where people who are typically excluded from or marginalized in game-related or academic spaces feel welcome and respected. We encourage all participants to work together to prevent or reduce harm, particularly for those who are often the targets of violence and harassment, and ensure that marginalized individuals are not being pushed out of the space.
It is foundational to us that you feel welcomed and that we create an environment for exchange that leaves participants feeling respected. The most important values we ask participants to hold during the event are: Inclusivity & Solidarity, Communication & Compassion, Accountability and Respect
Inclusivity & Solidarity
We stand together with the most vulnerable members of our community, and determine the nature of that community as a group. We welcome people of diverse backgrounds and experiences, and make space for the many intersectionalities that our members and guests bring to the table.
We aim to make space for and support people experiencing marginalization. Our ongoing goal is to make the space better for both our peers and ourselves, and to use our collective power to help make change. Activating the values and behaviors of inclusivity and solidarity can mean:
• Addressing gaps in our own knowledge regarding privilege and oppression when they’re called to our attention, and being willing to hold space for others and learn.
• Respecting the rights of others to define and communicate their identity.
• Resisting making assumptions about our peers’ identity, experiences, or pronouns .
• Actively trying to use the language that others would like us to use to describe them (such as pronouns, names, etc).
• Avoiding singling out one person about their identity (i.e. asking everyone for their pronouns and giving our own in exchange, or not questioning individuals about their heritage based on appearance or affect).
• Making space for others, and being aware of how much space we are taking (i.e. in conversations).
• Listening to people’s boundaries and respecting them.
• Actively resisting language that is racist, sexist, homophobic, classist, cissexist, ableist, xenophobic, islamaphobic, etc.
• Being generous and patient in comments and questions, and in our interpretation of other people’s intentions.
• Acknowledging that each person’s physical and mental health needs are unique, while understanding and respecting individual health boundaries, requests, and wishes.
(Partially adapted from statements and documents by Different Games, QGCon, and CGSA.)
Communication & Compassion
The Gamerella community relies on open and considerate communication. This means giving each other the benefit of the doubt and acting in good faith, while also expressing our ideas with their impact in mind.
An openness and willingness to communicate freely is key to the health of any community, and Gamerella is no exception. However, in order to empower community members to feel comfortable sharing and communicating about difficult topics, we also need to proactively value compassion, composition and response. Not only should we compassionately evaluate each others’ statements, but we should also compose our initial articulations of those statements carefully and compassionately as well. Basically, think before you speak, but offer each other the benefit of the doubt and a chance to rearticulate.
Accountability & Respect
We expect our members to act in good faith, respect each other’s boundaries, and take ownership of their actions. Mistakes are bound to happen, but they can help us grow and better ourselves if we take them as opportunities to learn.
The basis of accountability and respect is open, conscientious communication. If you feel you’ve said something awkward, it’s good to acknowledge it right away. Similarly, if you feel comfortable addressing something you experienced or observed that was problematic, hurtful or harmful that too is something you may consider responding to immediately, carefully, and compassionately. If you need help addressing a situation, there are options available to you, from informal resolution processes to official university policies (and you can find resources for doing so in the protocols and code of conduct section of this document). It is also okay to decide, if you feel disrespected, that you do not want to offer your energy to trying to resolve it or educate someone about it.
If you have any concerns or feel uncomfortable with someone’s behaviour please get in touch with Myloe. Myloe is available for support, namely: conflict de-escalation, talking with someone directly during the event or after, assisting you in considering a situation, being a listening ear and if need be, informal mediation.
HEALTH & SAFETY
All in-person participants are encouraged to wear a surgical or higher quality mask. KN94 masks will be provided free of charge to all participants. At GAMERella, we want to continue to exercise caution, approaching public health measures from a place of mutual-care and in ways that ensure the wellbeing of all our participants. Our location is very well ventilated. But we are also amplifying ventilation with a large HEPA air filter. Furthermore, please ensure that you wipe down your work-space after use using the cleaning supplies we have provided. If you have COVID symptoms leading up to/during the jam, or test positive, please remain/return home and immediately notify the organizers. Thank you!
GAMERella Organizers 2022 – Gina Hara (firstname.lastname@example.org), Courtney Blamey (email@example.com)
Support – Myloe Martel-Perry (firstname.lastname@example.org)
TAG Director – Darren Wershler (D.Wershler@concordia.ca)
Concordia Office of Rights and Responsibilities – Lisa White (email@example.com)
Concordia University Campus Security – 514-848-3717 (Dial 1 for urgent situations, dial 2 for non-urgent situations)
Montreal sexual assault hot line – 514 398-8500 (sacomss.org)
Montreal emergency and non-emergency medical – 911
Montreal taxi company – Diamond, 514 273-6331
We would like to acknowledge that the GAMERella main jam site and in-person workshop locations are located on unceded Indigenous lands. The Kanien’kehá:ka Nation is recognized as the custodians of the lands and waters on which we gather today. Tiohtià:ke/Montréal is historically known as a gathering place for many First Nations. Today, it is home to a diverse population of Indigenous and other peoples. We respect the continued connections with the past, present and future in our ongoing relationships with Indigenous and other peoples within the Montreal community.
This Territorial Acknowledgement and resources were created by Concordia University’s Indigenous Directions Leadership Group (2017). To read the entire Territorial Acknowledgement and learn more about why it was written this way, please visit https://www.concordia.ca/indigenous/resources/territorial-acknowledgement.html.