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Consent and Dance
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Updated January 25, 2022

Consent and Dance

No dancer should have to endure unwanted attention, touching, or other actions which cause them discomfort, anxiety, or pain.   Consent is an important facet of the dancing done at the Emerald City Hoedown.

Couples dancing — and even some line dances and round dance mixers — require physical contact with dance partners.   For some styles like Shadow and patterns like West Coast Swing whips, that contact may be more than just handholds and contact on shoulders and the back.   Some workshops may even specifically cover dance moves which might be deemed “inappropriate” in other contexts.

We consider these standard or specific forms of bodily contact during dancing to fall under Implied Consent at the Emerald City Hoedown.   If you are in a workshop where these styles or patterns are being covered, or if you elect to dance with someone in a style where these may occur, there is no requirement for a dance partner to detail their expected actions in advance and ask specific consent for them.   Instructors are encouraged to let students know if a particular dance syle or move requires more body contact.

As well, accidents happen.   A missed handhold can easily result in unexpected, undesired bodily contact, even in a sensitive region.  We ask attendees to recognize accidents for what they are — apologize and be forgiving.

Ultimately, if you as an attendee feel unable to safely participate in a given workshop or with a given dance partner, please remove yourself from the situation immediately and if necessary, find one of the Hoedown Co-Chairs to deal with the issue.

Code of Conduct

Sometimes bad things do occur, and not all issues relate to phsyical conduct.   Rain Country Dance Association has a Code of Coduct for attendees at our events, including the Emerald City Hoedown:

 

We seek to ensure that all those interested in participating in our community feel safe and welcome.  We expect our members and event attendees to respect one another, including on social media.  No form of discrimination, bullying, or harassment will be tolerated.  We treat any concerns regarding these issues seriously and will review any brought to our attention promptly.  For any questions or complaints, please contact us at info@raincountrydance.org.  We invite all to support our community, to dance, and to have fun.

 

If you feel bullied, harassed, discriminated against, or physically impinged upon at the Emerald City Hoedown, and you need event staff to step in, please locate one of the Emerald City Hoedown Co-Chairs (Pete Winowitch or Jim Drew; the staff at the registrtaion table should be able to contact them).  If it is a stronger issue which Emerald City Hoedown staff cannot handle ourselves, the hotel staff can help you contact the authorities.