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FAI Values Statement

A Values Statement

Our board would like to state that everyone is welcome at Folk Alliance International. We are committed to fostering an inclusive community that is safe and inviting for all who love, make, and support Folk music.

During our annual strategic planning meeting last spring, the board discussed diversity, both in Folk music and our organization. Those discussions led us to form this series of belief statements to guide us as Folk Alliance International grows.

We believe that greater diversity throughout the organization allows Folk Alliance International to:

  • Build a more creative and compassionate community. Folk music has historically been inclusionary at all levels and by nature brings community together. It has often been a part of movements for social and political change.
  • Spur awareness of other cultures and perspectives. We value sharing knowledge and conducting ourselves in a respectful manner. Interaction with a broader membership base introduces us to traditions from different countries and regions, along with perspectives of sub-communities within Folk Alliance International. Openness to and acceptance of these varied interests and perspectives will lead to greater inclusion and participation.
  • Provide enhanced opportunities for the organization and members. These additional viewpoints and communities will support our intrinsic value by fostering international and multi-cultural understanding, allowing FAI to make a greater impact in the music community and the world at large.

We also believe that bringing greater diversity to the organization will challenge our assumptions while revealing our similarities. It will have indefinable, intangible, and unpredictable effects. The costs of international expansion are worthwhile and of value.

As emphatically as we welcome people of all national, geographic, cultural, ethnic, social, economic, gender, sexuality, orientation, mobility, and other forms of diversity to our events and organization, we also wish to express our rejection of discrimination and harassment.

As defined by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC): “Harassment is a form of employment discrimination that violates Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, the Age Discrimination in Employment Act of 1967, (ADEA), and the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990, (ADA).” In accordance with US law, our board recently adopted refined language regarding harassment in our employee handbook. For reference, please see the way FAI defines and informs our staff of this important issue. We encourage our membership to adopt similar policies in their places of work and to adhere to this standard at their events.

Accordingly, we want to make members aware of what to do in the unfortunate event that harassment does occur. If you experience discrimination and/or harassment at our conference or any FAI event, take action:

  • Cite the FAI value statement and linked definition, tell the offending party to stop
  • Talk immediately with a trusted colleague
  • Contact your union
  • Contact an FAI staff member in person or email operations@folk.org
  • Contact Hotel Security by dialing 0 to reach an operator
  • Call the 24 hour National Sexual Assault Hotline at 1-800-656-4673
  • Call the local police at 911

We are constantly seeking new ways to welcome and support creators, helpers, and lovers of Folk music worldwide. If you have any questions or comments about these belief statements or anything related to Folk Alliance International, please contact director@folk.org.

     

Michelle Conceison
FAI Board President (2016), on behalf of the entire Board of Directors

 

Aengus Finnan
Executive Director, on behalf of the FAI staff

Folk Alliance International, 512 Delaware Street, Kansas City MO 64105 • 816-221-FOLK (3655) • fai@folk.org

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