Safer Space Policy

Open Barbers seeks to be as safe a space as possible for its staff, clients, and visitors. We ask everyone in the space to be aware of their language and behaviour and to think about whether it might be oppressive or upsetting to others.

We define oppressive behaviour as any conduct that demeans, marginalizes, rejects, threatens or harms anyone on the basis of gender, sexual orientation, gender expression, race, religion, nationality, physical appearance, age, or ability.

Here are some things we would encourage everyone to keep in mind:

1. Respect the names and pronouns of everyone. Think about the types of questions you ask other people in the space; it can be uncomfortable for people to face questions or assumptions around their background, ethnicity, sexuality, gender identity, etc.

2. Respect everyone’s physical and emotional boundaries. Ask first before touching, and listen and change your behaviour if someone tells you that you are making them uncomfortable.

3. Do not use body shaming language in the space, however subtle you may think it is. Be aware that people may respond differently to comments about their appearance, so check in before complimenting someone.

4. Be responsible for your own actions. Be aware that your actions have an impact on others despite what your intentions may be.

5. Respect people’s opinions, beliefs, experiences, and differing points of view.

6. If you are called out for problematic behaviour, try not to be defensive. Your intentions and character are not under attack, just the behaviour that is being challenged. Be open to understanding the role your behaviour has in other people’s experiences of oppression.

7. Anyone can call out anyone else in the space, and we hope to foster an environment where this is possible, and where we encourage each other into supportive and positive behaviour.

This policy is a work in progress and can change and adapt as necessary. If you have any feedback, thoughts or comments on our policy please complete our online feedback form, speak with us directly or email openbarbers@gmail.com