/ Sector News / TheatreNI News

Creating Safer Spaces in the Theatre and Performing Arts Sector

Creating Safer Spaces in the Theatre and Performing Arts Sector

Event: Creating Safer Spaces in the Theatre and Performing Arts Sector
Venue: McGrath Suite, Lyric Theatre, Belfast
Date: Friday 9th March
Time: 10am-2pm

Lunch will be provided. Please rsvp to projects@theatreni.org

In response to the recent revelations and ongoing coverage of sexual harassment and bullying across the film and theatre industries, TheatreNI will deliver this session as a first step in providing guidance to our members on how the industry can respond. This session will offer space to begin discussions about how we can all work towards building a safer sector for everyone, including what strategies we need to put in place to ensure people are protected in their place of work.

We believe that this is a vital time for our sector to take a stand against bullying, harassment and sexual harassment; behaviour which is totally unacceptable, and that should not and will not be tolerated. The people who work in theatre and performing arts deserve to be treated with the same respect and protection as others. We believe that no-one should be forced to choose between their personal safety and dignity, and their job. All places of work – whether in the office or a rehearsal room – should be equal, respectful and safe. All workers should be protected and empowered, whether they work for an organisation or as individual practitioners.

This first session, facilitated by Dr Tanya Dean (Ulster University) will involve presentations from Paul Oakes (Equality Commission NI) and Equity (who have recently launched their ‘Agenda for Change’ report). Issues to be examined will include definitions of bullying and harassment, types of bullying and harassment, nature and consequences of bullying and harassment and the legal context.

Dr Tanya Dean (Ulster University) will also facilitate an open discussion about what the needs of the sector are in working towards a more unified approach to creating a safer space for those working in the theatre and performing arts sector in NI. In this session we will consider how to respond positively and responsibly in order to support our members in the sharing of policy and practice, and what we need to do next in working towards meaningful change.

This session is suitable for anyone working in the theatre and performing arts sector, from employers, to those working for venues and companies, to those freelancing as independent practitioners. We invite you to come along and help us in making our sector a safer space.

This special initiative is supported by public funding through the Arts Council of Northern Ireland.

You can also access our guidance on Creating Safer Spaces in the Theatre and Performing Arts Sector by clicking here.

There will also be a representative from Inspire Wellbeing, to answer any questions about the counselling service now available for free for TheatreNI members. Click here.