Alternate ROOTS Community Agreements

As part of ROOTS’ community-building practice, we are intentional about the ways in which we gather together and share space. These meeting agreements are an evolving practice we use to cultivate equity, community, and wellness when we convene as a group. As you participate in discussions/workshops/meetings, please use these agreements as a starting point and add/edit/transform them as needed!

We’ve also developed special Late Night Community Agreements to help everyone at our legendary Late Night open mic/cabaret feel safe, respected, and included. See these further down the page.

Community Agreements

  • We use “I” statements and speak from our own experiences and feelings.
  • We take care and responsibility for ourselves and our own physical, emotional, mental, spiritual needs.
  • We seek first to understand and assume good intent while also acknowledging impact – if something we say or do causes harm we commit to working through it.
  • We give each other grace, knowing that the work of undoing oppressions is hard and we will all mess up at some point.
  • We write pronouns on our name tags, include our pronouns in group introductions/check ins; we are mindful of using folks’ correct pronouns as part of growing our practice of gender liberation.
  • We share time and space equitably: if we’re prone to participating a lot, we are intentional about moving back, if we’re prone to not participating much, we challenge ourselves to move forward.
  • We ask before we hug – we acknowledge everyone has different physical boundaries, and seek to create a space where everyone feels safe and empowered in their own bodies.
  • As time and group size allows, we check in and out at the beginning and end of meetings; we invite folks to share what’s going on in their neck of the woods or in what physical/spiritual/emotional state they’re entering or leaving the meeting.
  • We share the labor of meeting roles including (but not limited to): facilitator(s), note taker, public scribe, emotions monitor, timekeeper, doorkeeper. (And sometimes meeting DJ and food maven.)
  • We avoid alphabet soup and coded language by unpacking acronyms or buzzwords.
  • We take stretch/dance/movement breaks whenever possible!
  • We leave our physical spaces in better shape than we found it.

Late Night Community Agreements

Late Night is ROOTS’ legendary after-hours cabaret/open mic. In 2017, thanks to the encouragement and leadership of our Gender & Sexuality Work Group, we created Late Night Community Agreements as an effort that everyone feels safe, respected, included, and able to move freely about the space. Here are the agreements the work group brought to the table:

  • Late Night offers an inclusive space for creative expression, including expression through gender and sexuality. 

  • You may encounter nudity and/or adult subject matter in this space… parents, please self-monitor your young ones. 

  • Late Night is not a sober space, but not everyone partakes in drinking or smoking. Be respectful of those who choose to abstain.

  • Audience etiquette: respect the folks who are performing, and be wary of noise levels near doorways.
  • Be mindful of people’s personal and sexual boundaries. Make sure you have verbal consent before all levels of touch. There will be no assumption of consent, and someone who is under the influence of alcohol may not be in a state to give their consent. 

  • We all agree to be allies for each other. If you find yourself in a situation that is uncomfortable to you (in the context of sexual engagement), you can turn to another ROOTer and they will be your ally. 

Alternate ROOTS supports the creation and presentation of original art that is rooted in communities of place, tradition or spirit. We are a group of artists and cultural organizers based in the South creating a better world together. As Alternate ROOTS, we call for social and economic justice and are working to dismantle all forms of oppression—everywhere.