The Safe Space Community Leader Award
This annual award recognises spaces that have demonstrated excellence and leadership in providing a safe space for the LGBTQI+ community and for supporting a local LGBTQI+ organisation.
This award is only open to members of the Safe Space Alliance. If you would like to join the Safe Space Alliance you can apply for free membership here.
To achieve this award, spaces must:
- Have a publicly visible safe space statement and/or policy at your physical address and/or online.
- Have publicly visible safe space signage at your physical address and/or online (an exemption applies, please read below).
- Develop and deliver a safe space initiative.
- Support a local LGBTQI+ organisation.
These are explored in more detail as follows.
1. Have a publicly visible safe space statement and/or policy at your physical address and/or online
Many spaces identify as safe spaces, but don’t communicate this through public statement and/or policy. When developing a statement and/or policy think about:
- How you define a safe space? We define a safe space as a space where the LGBTQI+ community can freely express themselves without fear. It is a space that does not tolerate violence, bullying, or hate speech towards the LGBTQI+ community. You could use our definition or develop your own. Some spaces extend the definition beyond the LGBTQI+ community to include other groups.
- Why are you a safe space?
- Why is it important to be a safe space?
- What don’t you tolerate?
- What should people do if a breach occurs?
2. Have publicly visible safe space signage at your physical address and/or online (an exemption applies, please read below)
Many spaces identify as safe spaces, but don’t show this on site or online using safe space imagery. This means people have to guess, and that can put people in an awkward situation. Using signage takes the guesswork away. When thinking about signage:
- Make it clearly visible: you don’t have to have cover every surface, but make sure people can see it. Think about adding signage to visually prominent locations (areas where the eye is naturally drawn) like your entranceway/s and/or main counter/reception.
- Ensure its legible: make sure signage is at a reasonable/readable scale (e.g. not too small people miss it) using readable imagery and fonts.
- Onsite signage could include window stickers, information postcards, and/or posters.
- Online signage (e.g. through your website and/or social media channels) could include digital badges and/or imagery/links on email signatures.
Note: the Safe Space Alliance provides free print ready files for you to print to help make things visual such as postcards, stickers, posters, and signs. We also provide free digital assets for your online channels as required including a digital badge for your website.
Exemption: In some areas of the world it may not be possible to display safe space signage, particularly where being part of the LGBTQI+ community is illegal. Spaces facing this challenge are exempt from meeting this criteria.
3. Develop and deliver a safe space initiative.
Take the passion and drive you have for being a safe space and create something that helps build public awareness of and/or grows the number of safe spaces. This could include:
- Creating an onsite or online safe space awareness campaign. For example, a “safe space week” that explores different dimensions of what it means to be a safe space.
- Encouraging other spaces to become safe spaces.
- Creating new safe spaces.
4. Support a local LGBTQI+ organisation.
If you haven’t already, become familiar with a local LGBTQI+ organisation. Reach out to the organisation and find out what they need help with. This could include support through:
- Monetary donations: they don’t have to big, every little bit counts.
- Fundraising: support and/or create a fundraising event.
- Volunteering: what activities do they need help with? What skills can you provide?
How to apply
It’s free to apply. Applications for the 2020 Safe space Community Leader Award open in September 2020. Please sign up to our monthly newsletter to be notified of the exact date.
If you have any questions, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org