AWE Code of Conduct

Harassment and Discrimination are not tolerated.

Harassment relates to exhibiting aggression, pressure, and intimidation towards others. Discrimination refers to treating others with prejudice based on their identity group. The definition is anyone who discriminates or harasses others based on race, ethnicity, economic status or perceived economic status, religion, age, sex/gender identity and expression, sexual orientation, marital status, disability, illness, body size, or other categories of appearance or identification — either during or after the event. — will be asked to stop and expected to comply immediately. They risk being banned from attending future events. 

Creating Conversation 

Ask questions to learn, not to confront. We want to create a space for learning and growth, which starts with asking the right questions. These conversations may be difficult, but they are necessary, and we aim to learn together in a respectful space.

DO’s: Ask open-ended questions. If you have a question about the experience of a facilitator or a participant, consider your intent in asking the question. For example, is the intent to learn empathy and support skills for experiences that you are unfamiliar with? If this is the case, ask your question as best as you can! For example: Ask questions as you would like to be asked by them. Take that brief second to think about how you would answer the question you are about to ask, and if you feel uncomfortable, then you need to rephrase it. A good question lets you better understand the situation, and this requires not putting people on the defensive. 

DONT’S: If your intent in asking a question is to confront, mock, or degrade than, refrain from asking your question. We define “confront” in this case as any question or comment meant to antagonize, gaslight, or trick an individual into denying or devaluing the truth of their lived experiences. Demeaning a person rarely produces honest feedback.

Practice Consent

DO’S: Respect and acknowledge the boundaries of all people within the digital space, before and after the event.  

DON’TS: If someone indicates that they do not want to receive private messages from other participants - either over Zoom or social media - respect their wishes and refrain from making contact. We want to reinforce that all digital interactions should be consensual, respectful, and empathetic.
Similarly, if participants/facilitators do not want to answer a question that you have asked, they are not required to do so. Respect their wishes and do not push them to answer a question of yours that they have not consented to answering.

Use Content Advisories

(Content advisory: challenging content named in the body of this paragraph)

We aim to create an open, respectful and supportive space for sharing, learning, and listening. A pivotal part in making this type of space is to ensure that participants are informed, aware, and consenting of the content they will receive, mainly if sensitive information is being discussed. 

Recommended content advisories are for content about self-harm, suicide, death, genocide or any mention of racist bigotry or trauma faced by people of colour, pregnancy/abortion/miscarriages, any form of abuse, domestic or sexual violence or assault, instances of severe and graphic bodily harm not caused by human violence, animal cruelty, religion-based trauma, alcohol, drugs, pornography, sexual content, and extreme sensory stimuli (i.e., flashing, loud, bright, harsh sound/visuals).

Practice Inclusive Language

When engaging with facilitators and participants, avoid assumptions of identity. 

DO’S: Ask people for their preferred pronouns and share your own. If a person’s gender identity and sexual orientation are not stated, focus on using gender-neutral terms (i.e., “they/them” instead of “he/she”; “partner/significant other” instead of “boyfriend/girlfriend, husband/wife”). 

When addressing a group, use inclusive language like “everyone,” “honoured guests,” “team,” “fellow Earthlings," "y’all".

DONT'S: When engaging with facilitators and participants, avoid assumptions of identity. When addressing a group, be sure to avoid using gendered language (i.e., “guys,” “ladies & gentlemen,” “boys & girls”). 

Digital Event Protocols 

AWE will not tolerate disruption to presentations throughout the virtual experience. All participants must comply with the technical instructions given by AWE staff. Removing, muting, or revoking access from other participants, staff, guests, or volunteers will not be tolerated. Any harassment of AWE staff or guests will result in the removal of the offending guest. 


If you or someone (either guest, attendee, participant, or host) within the event is being harassed, please contact an AWE staff member immediately. AWE staff is there to listen, to field participant concerns, reach out to local resources, and engage in activities that will build a resolution.

Consequences of breaking the code

AWE reserves the right to take any action deemed necessary and appropriate, including immediate removal from the event without warning in response to any incident of unacceptable behaviour. AWE reserves the right to prohibit attendance at any future events, virtually or in-person. If AWE is a guest on the call, AWE reserves the right to end the call and remove themselves from the meeting. AWE is committed to creating a respectful space for its staff, volunteers, and guests or speakers.