Consent is Sexy, Consent is Serious

Consent Dearest Community,

Let’s take a minute to talk about consent.

Consent as the 11th Principle?

We thank you for your enthusiasm and participation. As a reminder, we are an event that follows the Ten Principles of Burning Man. This is very important to us as a community and to our status as an official Regional event. There has been a lot of talk in the communities around the globe about adding an 11th principle: consent.

Some people may say that consent is a basic tenet of respecting other people, and that respecting our fellow citizens is a vital component of the principle of civic responsibility. Other people will find that relationship a bit esoteric and insist that we adopt consent as our 11th principle. There is a reason for this.

We take Consent Seriously!

Consent is a very important aspect of our community. Consent means, simply put: asking for permission before taking actions that impact other people.

Quite often, when we refer to consent, it is in relation to sexual relations. However, consent also means disclosing before sharing food that may have something special in it; consent means asking before writing on someone else’s art; consent means asking before taking something that doesn’t belong to you; consent means asking before touching; and consent means asking before taking photos.

Also remember that a person’s age, sobriety, and cognition impact their ability to consent. We take consent very seriously. We also do take allegations of people who break our community rules very seriously.

People’s ability to feel safe and free to express themselves without fear of their boundaries being broken is an important part of what makes Apogaea special, a “temporary autonomous zone.” More on that later, but first:

What To Do If You Feel Your Consent is Violated at Apogaea?

As a reminder: if, at any time during the event, you feel as if someone has acted in a way that goes against our community standards or crosses your boundaries against your will, and you are unable to resolve the situation yourself, please contact the Rangers.

Rangers serve in many capacities, one of which is to act as peer mediators to help you remedy the situation. If the infraction is great enough, they will report the incident to the board so that it may be dealt with on a greater level. And, if at any time you feel that the Rangers are not properly responding to your situation, you may personally choose to escalate it to the Board. This escalation does not necessarily mean that you will get the outcome you desire; however, it does mean that we will take your situation seriously, listen, and do our best to help you find resolution.

Consent is Vital to Creating A Temporary Autonomous Zone

We understand that creating a temporary autonomous zone without some basic structure is nearly impossible. It is with the creation of this temporary autonomous zone in mind that the Ten Principles were created. Keeping these things in mind, we would like to express to you that we hold consent to be very important; we take allegations of consent violations seriously; and we do not tolerate predators at our event. If you have questions or concerns, please email [email protected].

Thank you. We love you. Take care of yourselves, and each other.

Your 2016 Board of Directors