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Anti-Racism Policies

Rattlestick Theater believes in the power of theater as a force for social justice and we will use every tool at our disposal to bend our collective consciousness toward justice. It is the responsibility of cultural institutions to create structures that defy, subvert, and dismantle biased traditions and practices. With this responsibility in mind, we are continually honing the ways we identify and rectify systemic inequalities as they manifest throughout our company and community. It is critical to our mission that we produce vital, innovative, and conversation-provoking theater that builds anti-racist and anti-oppressive practices into the foundation of our work. 

Commitments

As such, we make the following commitments as an organization: 

  • Working with anti-racist facilitators and coaches to develop and implement a culture of anti-racism throughout our staff and artistic community. 

  • Working with our board to identify gaps in anti-oppressive practices both internally and externally. As our board is continually shifting, this work requires regular renewal.

  • Active recruitment of a more diverse and inclusive board.

  • As active members of, and a vessel for, our community, we will shape community activities in response to the shifting needs of the moment. This work may take the form of collective volunteering, community conversations related to our programming, offering our space to community partners, and other moment-specific events. 

  • Rattlestick will schedule annual dialogue sessions for board and staff with artists from diverse backgrounds in conjunction with trained facilitators to share their experiences and artistic needs in an effort to galvanize anti-oppressive administrative and artistic practices throughout our company. These sessions will be held offsite at a neutral space and will focus on what artists need, rather than what they can teach us.

  • Moving beyond land acknowledgements, we're committed to partnering with and  providing tangible resources to First Nations groups.

  • Incorporate anti-racist practices into our rehearsal rooms through code of conduct agreements, updated policies and guidelines, and by establishing clear structures for acknowledging and addressing harmful behaviors.

  • Approach programming through an anti-racist lens and prioritize work written and created by artists who have been traditionally underserved in the American theater.

  • Increasing transparency around our budgets and continuing to evaluate our pay structures and hiring practices in ways that  align with our core values and prioritize people above all else.

  • Dedicating regular time at staff meetings to review and update anti-oppressive procedures.

  • Facilitating access to our productions through discounts and pay-what-you-can nights. 

  • Demonstrating an ongoing and substantial commitment to immigrant artists through Global Gab and Global Forms programming. 

  • Responding to the needs of our artistic communities through Artist Exit Surveys and other forms of open communication. 

We will make this work a sustained, integral, systemic part of our institutional practice. Rattlestick is committed to doing the hard work of fighting for justice in ways that reflect our core values of Community, Equity, and Empowerment for all of our artists and audiences.