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BSL Code of Conduct

We’re all here to have a good time and to enjoy each others’ company. Dancing is enjoyable for everyone and so is the music. Here are some ground rules to maximize the experience and make socials a safe place for everyone. Please read it once through. We really appreciate you taking the time to read this.

Harassment, Consent and Offensiveness

  1. We are fair to everyone and treat each person with respect. We do not harass anyone nor discriminate against someone on basis of race, sex, gender, nationality, religion, sexual orientation, age, physical appearance or dance experience. 

  2. All interactions at our events happen with consent from both parties, if consent has not been given it is considered harassment. Please alert a staff member or ally if you see something happen at our events. We will be respectful and acknowledge that the personal boundaries of others may not be the same as our own. We will be mindful of the appropriateness of language or certain behaviours that some may find offensive. We will be mindful that what does not seem offensive to us, may offend other people. 

  3. We allow pictures and videos to be taken at our events but please ensure that you have consent from the people in them to post online or on social media. Our dance can be wild and some pictures/ poses/ posts/ comments may be offensive taken out of context so be mindful when posting. Attached captions must be free of offensive material such as sexual innuendo, racial prejudice, criticism or “shade” at another person. 

  4. Anyone asked to stop unacceptable or harassing behavior is expected to do so immediately. Actions that compromise the safe and respectful environment of this event are not acceptable from any member of our community and the decision of the staff present at the event is final. 

Safety and Courtesy on the Dance Floor

  1. We are responsible for safety, be it our own, our partner’s or the other dancers on the dance floor. We watch out for each other and are careful not to kick, bump or step on another dancer. If we do, we apologize immediately. We only allow aerials/airsteps during performances and jams, NOT on the social dance floor. We allow floor steps like dips or tricks but please make sure your partner has consented to doing these with you.

  2. Dancers of all levels & sizes are welcome to our events and socials but we ask everyone to be mindful of your partners’ level/size and dance appropriately. Make accommodations in strength and for height, if you are dancing with beginners or small sized dancers or very tall or short people, for example.

  3. We invite you to be inclusive and take the initiative to ask people for dances, especially beginners who may be shy or leads and follows who are standing in the corners. This helps grow the community and creates bonds. However, we may turn down a dance without giving a reason and if we agree to dance at a later song, we honour that agreement. If you are turned down, please accept graciously. If you are turning down a dancer more and more because of their behavior on the dance floor, we ask that you speak to a staff member about it as soon as possible. 

  4. We appreciate that you do not offer unsolicited advice/ feedback/ instruction to other dancers at our social in ANY form, especially to beginners. If you have been on the receiving end of unsolicited feedback about your dancing, please let a staff member know. 

Personal Boundaries and what to do in the case of violation

  1. If at any point in a dance you feel uncomfortable or unsafe, you can tell your partner that you are uncomfortable, ask for any adjustments you need, or stop the dance before the song ends without explanation. Requests for your own safety and comfort are respectful of your partner as your ally in creating fun for everyone, and are not the same as offering someone unsolicited feedback on their dance skills. This includes experiences of roughness, yanking, forcefulness, inappropriate touching or body positions, unsafe turns, jumps or throws as well as verbal comments made during the dance.  Please be aware that our dance does have close body to body contact. If you are unsure of what you need but feel something is “off”, please reach out to any staff member for help as soon as possible. The staff at BSL are there to attend to your questions and safety. If you are the victim of harassment or injury after dancing with someone, or have witnessed something happen to a dancer, please seek out a staff member without delay. While we understand that some experiences can be traumatic or leave a bad feeling, we also want to help you and in order to do that we need to be on top of it as soon as we can. We applaud your bravery and courage in coming to staff immediately after an incident has occurred. 

  2. We would like to remind all the dancers that it isn’t always only one parties’ fault in any given scenario. Some of us tend to blame the other party when something goes wrong, while some of us tend to blame ourselves, based on our individual characters. If something happened during a dance that is unclear or still bothers you after the dance is over, we invite you to speak to a staff member for clarity. We will be patient and listen carefully. You may request a staff member of the same sex if you feel uncomfortable speaking with a staff member of the opposite sex. If you feel uncomfortable speaking alone with our staff member, please bring along an ally or friend with you.

Examples of unacceptable behaviour include: intimidating, harassing, abusive, discriminatory, derogatory or demeaning conduct. Harassment of any kind is unacceptable, such as (but not limited to): offensive verbal comments oe social media posts related to gender, age, sexual orientation, disability, physical appearance, race, religion; deliberate intimidation, stalking, following, harassing with photography or recording, sustained disruption of talks or other events; inappropriate physical contact, or unwanted sexual attention.

How do I recognise this?
“From the inside”: anything that doesn’t feel good can be questioned.
“From the outside”: anytime someone is not giving you enthusiastic consent, make room for them to speak up. Anytime someone’s body language is not clear, you may ask for clarification.
Sometimes it is helpful to compare it to a situation in an aspect of everyday life - such as at work or with conventional rules of behaviour at a public event. While this may not apply across the board it may be useful to help focus on what felt wrong.
In all cases we encourage you to speak with a staff member for clarity. 

Staff Members - Female
Jingyi Heng (J), Susana Toro (Su), Deborah Koh (Debs), Denise Lwin (D)

Staff Members - Male
Kev Teo (K), Pierre Karpov (P), Brian Ang (B), Thow Xinqiang (XQ)

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