Fort Point Theatre Channel has adopted the values, standards, and procedures expressed in the Chicago Theatre Standards in order to support a safe, healthy, respectful, and open artistic environment. We have committed to the full Chicago Theater Standards document, viewable at www.notinourhouse.org. The full document includes more standards, as well as expanded procedures and agreements. We encourage all those who take part in our work to view and discuss this document.
Chicago Theatre Standards Overview
As adopted by Fort Point Theatre Channel
Declaration of Purpose:
Arts environments require risk, vulnerability, and investment of our physical, emotional, and intellectual selves. Fort Point Theatre Channel seeks to nurture our performance space and practice with strong safety nets that support artists without compromising a visceral and authentic experience for artists and audiences. This overview, and the full Chicago Theatre Standards document, aim to create awareness and systems that respect and protect those who work to create the art, and to foster safe places to do extraordinary things. The overriding tenets of this document are communication, safety, respect, and accountability.
Fort Point Theatre Channel seeks to set and implement these Standards, concerning respect and safety throughout the artistic process, from season planning to strike. The Standards include the following; the full Standards document, list, and details can be found at notinourhouse.org.
Basic Health and Safety:
We intend to make health and safety a regular topic at production meetings, and to maintain awareness and procedures that provide a safe environment at all times. We seek to prevent injuries, identify and remedy situations that might be considered unsafe or unhealthy, respond to injuries and medical events, and seek medical attention when required. We intend to:
● Provide basic health and safety tools, such as toilets and sinks, access to
drinking water, a reasonable working temperature, lighting suitable for the work carried out, reasonably well-maintained rehearsal space, a stocked first-aid kit, and a plan for costume maintenance.
● Provide a safety walk at first rehearsal and first tech
Privacy and concentration are important when preparing for an audience. We will endeavor to create a dressing room environment where all inhabitants participate in fostering a safe place for artists to prepare. We commit to the following provisions:
● Children under the age of 18 should be given separate dressing room accommodations
● Reasonable accommodations should be made to respect individual modesty, and designated space should be provided for participants to change clothes and prepare for their performance. This space will be referred to as a dressing room, even if it’s not an entire room.
● Non-actors, with the exception of the SM, ASM, run crew, and wardrobe staff should not be allowed in the dressing room during the time between 30 minutes before the performance begins and 30 after the performance ends
● Recording by any means will not be permitted in the dressing room without the prior consent of all individuals present
● A full list of dressing room requirements and procedures will be posted in the green room
Choreography: Nudity, Violence, Movement, and Physical Theatre
Some forms of theatre and styles of movement carry with them a greater risk of harm than others, and our goal is to create procedures specific to these forms of higher-risk theatre. In agreements, rehearsals, tech, and performances, we intend to create a safe and respectful atmosphere for all participants. This includes:
● Providing first aid kit access, accident report forms, water, phone access, adequate lighting, temperature control, ventilation, warm-up space, well-maintained spaces at all rehearsal and performance spaces.
● At the time of audition, identifying the nature of any specialized movement or physical theatre (i.e. weapons, physical combat, sexual violence, tumbling, aerial acrobatics, dance, yoga, etc.) acknowledging that concepts may change;
● Engaging a designer or choreographer for productions that include weapons, combat, sexual violence, specialized movement techniques, or any other high-risk activity.
● Before work starts the actors, director, choreographer, and stage manager should agree to the requirements of the planned activity (kiss, slap, dance, etc.). Participants are then responsible for staying within those agreed-upon boundaries.
● Allowing for adequate time to warm up for, teach/learn, or discuss concerns about choreography
● A choreography/fight captain and choreography/fight calls before every show, as well as choreography-focused rehearsals
We recognize the potential for harassment in rehearsal, during performance, and outside the theatre among participants, staff, board, and audience members. We acknowledge that theatre environments can court confusion about the difference between chemistry, artistic freedom, and harassment; we believe participants can be bold and live “in the moment” of theatrical material while maintaining choreography, fellow participants’ safety, and agreed-upon boundaries.
For reference, the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity describes sexual harassment as follows:
“It is unlawful to harass a person (an applicant or employee) because of that person’s sex.
Harassment can include “sexual harassment” or unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, and other verbal or physical harassment of a sexual nature.
Harassment does not have to be of a sexual nature, however, and can include offensive remarks about a person’s sex. For example, it is illegal to harass a woman by making offensive comments about women in general.
Both victim and harasser can be either a woman or a man, and the victim and harasser can be the same sex.
Although the law doesn’t prohibit simple teasing, offhand comments, or isolated incidents that are not very serious, harassment is illegal when it is so frequent or severe that it creates a hostile or offensive work environment or when it results in an adverse employment decision.
The harasser can be the victim’s supervisor, a supervisor in another area, a co-workers, or someone who is not an employee or employer, such as client or customer.”
Harassment includes, but is not limited to:
● Inappropriate or insulting remarks, gestures, jokes, or innuendos or taunting about a person’s body, attire, gender, gender identity, sexual orientation, racial or ethnic background, color, place of birth, citizenship, ancestry, creed, or ability;
● Persistent unwanted questions or comments about a participant’s private life;
● Posting or displaying materials, articles, graffiti, and so on which may cause humiliation, offense, or embarrassment;
● In a theatrical context, sexual harassment can be additionally defined as one or a series of comments or conduct of a gender-related or sexual nature outside the boundaries of consent or production, which is known or ought reasonably be known to be unwelcome/unwanted, offensive, intimidating, hostile, or inappropriate.
● Sexual harassment includes but is not limited to:
• Any unwanted or inappropriate physical contact such as touching, kissing, massaging, patting, hugging, or pinching outside the boundaries of consent;
• Unwelcome inquiries or comments about a person's sex life or sexual preference outside the boundaries of consent;
• Leering, whistling, or other suggestive or insulting sounds outside the boundaries of consent or production content;
• Requests or demands for sexual favors, especially those that include, or imply, promises of rewards for complying (e.g., job advancement opportunities) and/or threats of punishment for refusal (e.g., denial of job advancement or opportunities).
• Inviting an actor to rehearse sexual content outside of scheduled rehearsals;
• Using the text of a production that is sexual, violent, threatening, or offensive in offstage discourse;
It should be noted that a person does not have to be a direct target to be adversely affected by a negative environment. We assert that having a practice of building consent and an environment that allows for response to clear boundary violations can broaden our opportunity for challenging and fearless work. Concerns about harassment, safety, or a negative environment should be reported using the Concern Resolution Path on the following page of this document.
Diversity, Inclusion, and Representation
Theatre engages the full spectrum of human experience. Telling these stories often includes representations of violence, racism, homophobia, abuse, and other challenging content. We seek an ethical atmosphere when engaging in this content, working with diverse groups of participants, and particularly when producing culturally sensitive work. We make the following commitments:
● Whenever possible, diversity and inclusion will be considered both in casting and assembling production and design teams. In particular, culturally specific work will seek production personnel who can speak to that cultural experience.
● During the rehearsal process, participants can and should voice concern if they feel uncomfortable with the portrayal of their cultural personhood, including costume pieces
● We seek to address concerns with generosity and humility through the Concern Resolution Path outlined on the following page.
The Role of the Bystander - Intervening/Witnessing Harassment
STOP. SUPPORT. REPORT. Whether during work or work-related activities, it is the collective responsibility of our community to act as active bystanders and supportive colleagues when we witness or learn of acts of sexual harassment or retaliation. To end the pervasive culture of inaction and silence, we must not look the other way. We must intervene to STOP the conduct when we can, SUPPORT those who speak up, and REPORT the conduct.
Concern Resolution Path (CRP)
Creating a safe and comfortable environment for all members of our team is important to Fort Point Theatre Channel. The goal of this CRP is to provide a documented communication pathway for addressing any issues by informing participants who to address with serious issues, and dispel the fear of reprisal for reporting issues of safety, harassment, or other serious concerns. The individuals below are available to help you resolve any concerns or issues that arise. We encourage concerns of level 2 and above to be made in writing when possible.
We recognize that many concerns can be resolved through conversation between the parties involved. If you feel comfortable and safe doing so, we encourage you to discuss challenges and concerns with the individual(s) involved. Sharing and hearing concerns with openness and respect can prevent situations from escalating further, and foster and honest and open community.
If you are not comfortable directly addressing the individual(s) involved, or if no resolution can be agreed upon, your next points of contact can be any of the following:
TITLE: Stage Manager TITLE: Production Director
NAME: Naomi Ibasitas
TITLE: General Manager
If an issue has not been resolved through Levels One and Two, or if you are an individual named in Level Two who needs assistance, your next points of contact can be any of the following. Contacts at this level may consult with each other and review any legal or other implications of any decision.
NAME: Wanda Strukus NAME: Amy West
TITLE: Interim Producing Executive Director TITLE: Board Chair
EMAIL: firstname.lastname@example.org EMAIL: email@example.com
Phone: 781.405.3285 PHONE:
TITLE: Outside Facilitator
All concerns are kept confidential, at all times, however, the Stage Manager may report concerns to the Interim Producing Executive Director who will advise and outline options for next steps with the reporter and will have full consent of the reporter before pursuing any actions.
I have read and will adhere to the policy outlined above: