The initiative to create a Code of Conduct for Non-Equity theatres was born of artists and administrators at all levels of our community responding to sexual harassment, discrimination, violence, intimidation and bullying in our theatres. On March 2nd, over a hundred members of the community came together to say, in short, NOT IN OUR HOUSE. I, along with fellow actors Lori Myers, Molly Brennan, Tiffany Scott and Aaron Christiansen sat on a panel aimed at coming together around these issues. When at risk, artists are often too afraid to speak out – particularly when having a serious problem with a director, administrator or artist in authority. What emerged was an enthusiastic interest in taking on nothing short of a cultural paradigm shift.
The event revealed great interest in developing a code of conduct developed by theatres for theatres. The idea is that the finished document, more cultural than legal in its scope, is signed by everyone who works at each theatre as a part of the contract. A Code of Conduct seeks to discourage, and provide early response to, harassment, intimidation, discrimination, violence, bullying and unfair or unsafe practices within a production or producing company. It is also the belief that consistent language around these issues has the power to raise awareness in the community and create atmospheres with even greater freedom and respect.
A small number of artists and theatres started this initiative, but inclusivity is a priority. A collective will strengthen the process and the resulting document, which can then be made available to the entire community. Some companies may not have the resources to develop such a document on their own, so this initiative seeks to serve any interested company now and in the future.
Thank you so much for reading this letter and your interest in the NOT IN OUR HOUSE code of conduct initiative. I look forward to further strengthening our world-class community together.
Laura T. Fisher and Lori Myers
Download the Code
(last updated Jan 11, 2017)