SSSP Statement and Policy Against Discrimination and Harassment
As a social justice organization, the SSSP is committed to creating a safe and welcoming space at the annual meeting for the free exchange of ideas and professional development; an environment free from harassment based on, but not limited to, race, ethnicity, gender identity or gender expression, national origin, age, disability, health conditions, sexual orientation, religion, language, socioeconomic status, marital status, domestic status, or parental status. This includes the harassment of colleagues, students, guests, SSSP and hotel staff, vendors, exhibitors, and others present at the annual meeting. To that end, we ask you to help us make it very clear that anyone engaging in this kind of behavior is not welcomed at the annual meeting. (The Society also has a Sexual Harassment Workplace Policy, listing numerous examples of sexual harassment, in the Operations Manual, for members to consult if they wish.)
The following is a statement and policy against anti-discrimination and harassment from our Operations Manual.
The Society for the Study of Social Problems is committed to the eradication of discrimination (both intentional and unintentional), harassment, intimidation, and violence directed at individuals and groups based on, but not limited to, race and ethnicity, sex, gender, gender identity and expression, sexual orientation, age, class, nationality and immigrant status, ability, and religion. Offensive and prohibited conduct may include, but is not limited to, offensive jokes, slurs, epithets, name calling, physical assaults and threats, unwanted touching and persistent unwanted attention and invasion of personal space, intimidation, ridicule or mockery, and insults and put-downs. Sexual harassment is defined as unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, and other verbal or physical conduct of a sexual nature that is engaged in without clear affirmative consent. Discriminatory and harassing actions are prohibited both when they are directed at specific individuals and groups and when they create a hostile environment.
Sexual harassment and sexual assault disproportionately target people subject to structural oppression: women; people of color; trans, and gender non-conforming individuals; and disabled people, although anyone can be a victim.
Whenever and wherever possible, the Society will affirm this commitment to anti-racist, antisexist, anti-homophobic, anti-xenophobic, and anti-Islamophobic agenda, publicly and explicitly. As an organization dedicated to social justice, the Society will take very seriously, reports, formal or informal, of harassment or discrimination in the organization and at annual and other Society meetings. To the greatest degree possible, the Society will do what it can to respond appropriately to those who violate our policies and to protect victims and potential victims, from being subjected to this type of unwanted and offensive behavior. We will make every effort to ensure that this commitment is manifest in the policies, programs, and practices of the organization, including in the public positions the SSSP takes on issues, both national and international. SSSP expressly prohibits retaliation against individuals who report harassment and will take action against those who retaliate.
This policy addresses harassment that involves SSSP members in general and includes specific guidelines for harassment that occurs at SSSP annual meetings and events. By joining SSSP and through registering for meetings, members of SSSP agree to comply with this policy.
If you witness an incident and can help without placing yourself or anyone else in danger, we encourage you to do so. If you or someone is in imminent physical danger, we urge you to alert hotel security and/or law enforcement. Otherwise, attendees are encouraged to report possible instances of harassment to the Executive Officer, Héctor L. Delgado or Anti-Harassment Committee Chair, Sarah Jane Brubaker, in person, by phone (Héctor: 626-710-0959, Sarah Jane: 804-497-0189), or at , .
Roles, Responsibility and Authority
Per the By-laws, the Anti-Harassment Committee shall consist of six members of the Society. Three members will be elected by the voting membership and three members will be appointed by the President, one of whom will be appointed to chair the committee. Each member will serve a three-year term with the terms staggered so that at least two members are elected each year. In addition to the elected and appointed members, the Executive Officer shall serve as an ex officio member.
The Committee reviews the policy and its enforcement on an annual basis and recommends revisions as appropriate. The Committee also selects and approves the External Consultant.
Anti-Harassment Committee Chair
Per the By-laws, the Chair should have expertise in the area of gender violence or related areas and preferably be a member of the Board of Directors.
The Chair receives and reviews reports of policy violations, meets with those considering making a report to discuss reporting options and processes and to provide support or referrals for resources, and receives the report from External Consultant once investigation is completed and shares it with the SSSP President and Executive Officer.
The Ombudsperson is external to SSSP and compensated for their time. This individual meets with those considering making a report to discuss reporting options and processes and to provide support or resources.
The External Consultant is not a member of SSSP, but is selected and approved by the Anti-Harassment Committee and is compensated for their time. They should have experience responding to and investigating harassment claims within organizations.
Executive Officer (EO)
The Executive Officer receives reports of policy violations, reaches out to those accused to address the violation without launching an investigation, approves recommended sanctions from the External Consultant, and serves on the Ad-hoc Appeals Committee.
The SSSP President responds to reports made during meetings (together with the Anti-Harassment Committee Chair and EO), approves recommended sanctions from the External Consultant, and serves on the Ad-hoc Appeals Committee.
Ad-hoc Appeals Committee
This committee is comprised of the SSSP President, Past-President, President-Elect and Executive Officer and reviews and responds to appeals made regarding the External Consultant’s report/findings/sanctions.
The advocate is a volunteer member of SSSP who is available to support those making a report by providing information and resources.
*The Executive Officer, Anti-Harassment Committee Chair, SSSP Presidents, and others involved in reviewing and responding to reports are required to disclose any conflicts of interest.
I. General violations of the anti-harassment policy.
Reports of policy violations, including retaliation, can be made via email at SSSPAHC@utk.edu or phone to the Anti-Harassment Committee Chair or EO.
Individuals who have experienced a violation of the anti-harassment policy have the following options:
- Request a confidential consultation with the Anti-Harassment Committee Chair/Ombudsperson with a request for resources, information about reporting/resolution options, and other types of support. Such a request can be made whether the alleged harassment took place during a SSSP meeting or not. The ombudsperson can help the individual decide what to do and how to do it, including, for example, helping them file a complaint at their home institution, where the harassment occurred, if that is the action they want to take after discussing their options with the ombudsperson.
- Make a confidential report to the Anti-Harassment Committee Chair/Ombudsperson with a request for screening/review and recommendation for resolution [e.g. through a mediated meeting with parties, where the EO or committee chair reaches out to the accused party] with the option, but without obligation, to file a formal report.
- Make a formal confidential report to an External Consultant with a request for an investigation/factfinding with possible sanctioning of the accused party. This option will move the report to a formal investigation.
Those requesting consultation or making a report will be provided with resources for trauma-informed support.
What to Include in a Formal Report
A complaint/report should include, to the extent possible, the following information:
1) the name and contact information of the complainant; 2) the name and contact information of the subject of the complaint; 3) a statement that other legal or institutional proceedings involving the alleged conduct have not been initiated or, if initiated, the status of such proceedings; 4) a full description of the conduct alleged to have violated the anti-harassment policy, including the sources of all information on which the allegations are based; 5) copies of any documents supporting the allegations; 6) names and contact information of potential witnesses/references.
The investigation process will apply to reports of harassment that takes place during the annual meeting, the Budget, Finance, and Audit Committee Mid-Year meeting, and online committee and Board meetings/discussions. Reports may also include cases where an institution or legal authorities have investigated and found that a member has engaged in sexual or other form of harassment and the SSSP is being asked to act in response to those findings.
Reports that move to this stage regarding harassment that takes place at SSSP events will be investigated by an External Consultant with professional experience and expertise in handling harassment cases. The accused party will be notified of the charges and given an opportunity to respond. Each party’s statement will be shared with the other. Both parties may provide contact information for individuals to serve as witnesses/references.
Reports that relate to incidents that have taken place outside of SSSP events, including those that have been investigated externally, will be reviewed by the Anti-Harassment committee and considered for specific action. The committee may consult with its own investigator, legal consultant, or others in making its decision.
Reports (other than those addressing violations occurring during the annual meeting) will be acknowledged within 48 hours and responded to within 60 days.
Resolution, Outcomes and Possible Sanctions
The consultant will keep a written record of the process and submit a written final report to the Executive Officer and SSSP President that will be shared with both parties.
Potential outcomes include the following:
- Negative/Inconclusive Finding: In the event that the consultant’s finding is inconclusive or negative, the Anti-Harassment Committee Chair will convey this to the Executive Officer and the SSSP President, who will inform both parties of the finding in writing.
- Finding of Policy Violation: In the event that the consultant finds that harassment has occurred (and has determined the appropriate sanctions), the Anti-Harassment Committee Chair will convey the finding and the sanctions in writing in the form of a recommendation to be approved by the Executive Officer (or a staff member designated by the EO) and the SSSP President, who will inform both parties of the finding and sanctions in writing.
Based on a finding of policy violation, potential sanctions may include, but are not limited to, any of the following:
- immediate removal from a meeting or event without notice or refund
- prohibiting participation in society events
- revoking membership or removal from leadership positions
- rescinding awards
- barring from future events and/or leadership positions
- report to appropriate legal authority/home institution
Either party may appeal the findings of the investigation within 30 days of receiving the report. Appeals will be made to an Ad-hoc Appeals Committee consisting of the SSSP President, Past President, President-Elect (chaired by the Past President), and Executive Officer. Grounds for appeal include a claim of procedural error, substantive or significant new evidence, evidence of the use of impermissible criteria, or evidence of bias in the treatment of the fact-finding and decision process.
Policy Updates and Approval
This policy and its enforcement will be reviewed by the Anti-Harassment Committee on an annual basis and updated/amended with the Board’s approval as deemed necessary and appropriate.
II. Violations of the anti-harassment policy at annual meeting and other SSSP events.
As a social justice organization, the SSSP is committed to creating a safe and welcoming space at the annual meeting for the free exchange of ideas and professional development; an environment free from harassment based on, but not limited to, race, ethnicity, gender identity or gender expression, national origin, age, disability, health conditions, sexual orientation, religion, language, socioeconomic status, marital status, domestic status, or parental status. This includes the harassment of colleagues, students, guests, SSSP and hotel staff, vendors, exhibitors, and others present at the annual meeting. To that end, we ask you to help us make it very clear that anyone engaging in this kind of behavior is not welcomed at the annual meeting. (The Society also has a Sexual Harassment Workplace Policy, listing numerous examples of sexual harassment, in the Operations Manual, for membersto consult if they wish.)
Sexual harassment and sexual assault disproportionately target people subject to structural oppression: women; people of color; sexual minorities, trans, and gender non-conforming individuals; and disabled people, although anyone can be a victim.
A particular form of sexual harassment is sexual assault, which includes actual or attempted physical attacks and any type of sexual contact or behavior that occurs without the explicit consent of the recipient.
Importantly, certain situations and circumstances escalate harassing behavior and/or language including power imbalances (e.g. graduate student/mentor, during an interview, etc.) and social events that may or may not involve alcohol consumption.
If you witness an incident and can help without placing yourself or anyone else in danger, we encourage you to do so. If you or someone is in imminent physical danger, we urge you to alert hotel security and/or law enforcement. Otherwise, attendees are encouraged to report possible instances of harassment to the Executive Officer, Héctor L. Delgado, or Anti-Harassment Committee Chair, Sarah Jane Brubaker, in person, by phone (Héctor: 626-710-0959, Sarah Jane: 804-497-0189), or at , .
Those making a report regarding behavior at a meeting can request that the person violating the policy be contacted by the Executive Officer and asked to avoid contact with the individual reporting the violation, or to leave the meeting altogether. Reports received during annual meetings will be responded to within 2 hours.
Given the compressed timing of the meetings, an investigation of the report may be conducted by the Executive Office, SSSP President, and Anti-Harassment Committee Chair, so that immediate response and action are possible.
Below is a list of local agencies and professionals that may be of assistance to you. Please note, however, that we have not vetted and, therefore, cannot recommend them. We are simply providing a list of options in the area for you to contact if the need arises, and for you to vet.
DOMESTIC VIOLENCE RESOURCES
Asian Women’s Shelter (AWS): https://www.sfaws.org/
AWS Shelter services are open to all survivors of domestic violence and human trafficking, including to those with disabilities. Other non-shelter services, including community-building activities and our crisis hotline are open to anyone. 1-877-751-0880 (24-hour hotline)
La Casa de las Madres: https://www.lacasa.org/
La Casa de las Madres provides emergency shelter, legal assistance, and counseling for domestic violence survivors. They also offer training for providers and law enforcement, as well as outreach and education. Adult Crisis Line 1-877-503-1850 and Text Line 1-415-200-3575
Cooperative Restraining Order Clinic (CROC): https://www.probono.net/sf/volunteer/item.Cooperative_Restraining_Order_Clinic_CROC
CROC provides free and confidential support to help domestic violence survivors get restraining orders against their abusers. Call 1-415-255-0165 to schedule an appointment.
Riley Center at the St. Vincent de Paul Society of San Francisco: https://svdp-sf.org/what-we-do/riley-center/
The Riley Center offers emergency shelter, housing safety planning, counseling, support groups, case management, and other services for domestic violence survivors. 1-415-225-0165 (24-hour hotline)
Women Organized to Make Abuse Nonexistent, Inc: http://www.womaninc.org/
W.O.M.A.N., Inc provides peer counseling, therapy, safety planning, and referrals. 1-415-864-4722 or 1- 877-384-3578 (24-hour crisis lines)
National Domestic Violence Hotline: www.thehotline.org
567-SHATTER is a national legal hotline for ALL victims of sexual harassment, assault and rape to learn about their legal options.
Bay Area Women Against Rape (BAWAR): https://www.bawar.org/
Bay Area Women Against Rape (BAWAR) is Alameda County’s community rape crisis center offering advocacy and counseling to folks in Alameda County who have experienced sexual violence. BAWAR has a 24/7 crisis line in both English and Spanish.
Family Violence Law Center (FVLC): http://fvlc.org/
Family Violence Law Center (FVLC) provides survivor-centered legal advocacy and assistance for individuals who have experienced intimate partner violence or sexual assault. They have a 24/7 crisis line for people living in Alameda County.
Alameda County Family Justice Center: http://www.acfjc.org/
Alameda County Family Justice Center provides access to 80 community agencies and programs that provide healing, support and resources to people impacted by domestic violence, sexual assault and exploitation, child abuse, elder and dependent adult abuse, and stalking.
A Safe Place: https://www.asafeplace.org/
A Safe Place is an Oakland based domestic violence agency that provides an emergency domestic violence shelter for women with children, 24/7 crisis line, mental health services, and community outreach programs.
Deaf Hope: http://www.deaf-hope.org/
Deaf Hope is a center providing culturally specific services to deaf survivors of interpersonal violence and their children.
Narika is an agency providing multicultural services for people who have experienced intimate partner violence. Narika offers support groups, seed programs and a helpline particularly for immigrants from South Asian communities.
Ruby’s Place: https://www.rubysplace.org/wp/
Ruby’s Place is a free, multi-population program serving women, men, transgender people and accompanied minors who have experienced domestic violence, human trafficking or both. Shelter and 24/7 crisis line offered.
Shalom Bayit: https://www.shalom-bayit.org/
Shalom Bayit strives for social change and offers confidential peer counseling, support, information, referrals, and advocacy for women identified folk in the Jewish community. Healing support groups are offered in the East Bay, SF, Marin, and the Peninsula.
Community United Against Violence (CUAV): https://www.cuav.org/
Community United Against Violence (CUAV) centers and provides support to low income LGBTQ+ survivors of violence. CUAV Offers support groups and peer-based advocacy-counseling.
LGBTQ Psychotherapists: https://www.lgbtqpsychotherapistsofcolor.com/albany-ca
LGBTQ Psychotherapists of color is a website linking users to QTPOC therapists and mental health providers in the greater Bay Area regions.
My Sister’s House: http://www.my-sisters-house.org/
My Sister’s House is an agency in Sacramento providing support groups, shelter for trafficking survivors, transitional housing, work programs and language services for Asian, Pacific Islander and other underserved woman identified folks impacted by domestic violence.
MENTAL HEALTH RESOURCES
If you are in need of mental health services, call: 1-415-255-3737 or 1-888-246-3333. You should be able to see a counselor within 48 hours. If you or a loved one are in crisis, call the Mobile Crisis Treatment Team: 1-415-355-8300.
24 Hour Crisis Services:
San Francisco General Hospital Psychiatric Emergency: 1-415-206-8125 Comprehensive Child Crisis Services: 1-415-970-3800 Suicide Prevention Talkline: 1-415-781-0500 McMillan Center drop-in: 1-415-241-1180
San Francisco Suicide Prevention: www.sfsuicide.org
The mission of San Francisco Suicide Prevention is to provide emotional support, education, assistance, and intervention as necessary to all persons in crisis and those impacted by them, with the goal of reducing suicides and self-destructive behaviors. Call 1-415-781-0500 for more information.
New National Suicide Hotline:
1-800-273-8255 OR 988
National Alliance on Mental Illness-San Francisco (NAMI SF): www.namisf.org
NAMI SF is the community’s voice on mental illness. They are a part of grass-roots, nonprofit, national NAMI organization, and also an affiliate of NAMI California. NAMI San Francisco was founded in 1983 by family members of people living with a mental illness. Call 1-415-905-6264 for more information.
Office of Self Help:
The Office of Self Help serves consumers who are homeless, formerly homeless or living in board and care facilities. The office is run by mental health consumers and people who were formerly homeless. Call 1-415-575-1400 for more information.
Asian Consumer Leadership Team:
A consumer-led advocacy group which organizes forums and activities on wellness and Recovery for Asian consumers. Activities are conducted in English and Asian languages. Call 1-415-255-3672 for more information.
Chinese Family Alliance for the Mentally Ill:
A family member support group, with meetings open to consumer participation. Though meetings conducted in Cantonese, English interpretation are available. Meets the second or third Saturday of every month, from 10:00am–12:00pm, at Chinatown/North Beach Mental Health Services, 729 Filbert Street, San Francisco, CA 94133. Contact Ed Koo at 1-415-352-2047. Please call ahead to confirm meetings.
San Francisco Depressive/Bipolar Support Association (SFDBSA):
A support group for the people diagnosed with depression and bi-polar disorders, as well as other mental and emotional symptoms and disabilities. Meets Saturdays, from 1:30pm–3:00pm, and Mondays, from 6:30pm–8:30pm at St. Francis Hospital, 900 Hyde Street, 2nd Floor Conference Room B, San Francisco, CA 94109. Contact Volunteer Staff. Please call ahead to confirm meetings, 1-415-995- 4792. Family Member/Friends Support Group meets first Monday of every month, same location, 6:45pm–8:30pm.
Co-Dependents Anonymous (CODA): www.codependents.org
Co-Dependents Anonymous is a fellowship of men and women whose common purpose is to develop healthy relationships. The only requirement for membership is a desire for healthy and fulfilling relationships. Meets daily throughout San Francisco. Call 1-415-905-6331 for meeting times and location.
The Marina Dock (formerly The Dry Dock): www.marinadock.org
Welcome to the Marina Dock, a non-profit facility for recovery-related meetings and workshops. Since 1986, it has been the most popular Twelve Step meeting location in San Francisco for people who desire to recover from alcoholism, drug addiction and other compulsive and addictive behaviors. Call 1-415- 567-1775 for more information.
Castro Country Club:
A gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender recovery community meeting place (though all are welcome) to hang out and socialize as an alternative to the bar scene. Coffee/espresso bar, TV room, video game room and outdoor patio. Hours: Monday–Friday from 12:00pm–11:00pm and Saturday–Sunday from 10:00am–11:00pm. Call 1-415-552-6102 for more information.
Overeaters Anonymous (OA): www.oa.org
OA offers a program of recovery from compulsive overeating using the Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions of OA. Unlike other organizations, OA is not just about weight loss, obesity or diets; it addresses physical, emotional and spiritual well-being. It is not a religious organization and does not promote any particular diet. To address weight loss, OA encourages members to develop a food plan with a health care professional and a sponsor. If you want to stop your compulsive eating, welcome to Overeaters Anonymous. Meets daily throughout San Francisco. Call 1-415-436-0651 for meeting times and locations.
Alano Club of San Francisco: www.alanosf.org
The Alano Club of San Francisco is a place for recovering people to meet and socialize in a clean and sober environment before and after 12-step meetings. It is supported by its members’ dues and by 12- Step donations from meetings held at the club. 1748 Market St. #202, San Francisco, CA 94102. For daily meeting information call 1-415-255-7903. Sex and Love Addicts Anonymous: www.slaa-sfeb.org or www.slaafws.org Sex and Love Addicts Anonymous is a fellowship of men and women who share their experience, strength, and hope with each other that they may solve their common problems and seek recovery from sex and/or love addiction or avoidance. Call 1-415-979-4715 for more information.