NWMAF Code of Conduct/ Policy Survey
This survey formally opens the 30-day policy Member Feedback period, leading to final edits and full membership vote of policy adoption. Please, review each section of the document and answer the brief questions below. All feedback is anonymous.
Code of Conduct and Related Policies
We are moving to make the NWMAF a more inclusive, participatory organization and this is the next step. We need your feedback! Under the leadership of Cathy Chapaty, NWMAF Board Chair through 2020, the Board drafted a Code of Conduct. Now, under the leadership of NWMAF Chair Liz Fitzgerald, we are in the final stages of its completion.

As you respond to the following questions, please keep in mind the following:
1. This is a living document. As better information and research better informs this document, the document will adapt and change. Minor changes will be voted on by the Board. Major changes will be put to the Membership for an organization-wdie vote.
2. Our Events, Youth, and other department specific policies are being completed. Once completed, they will undergo this same review process, and only then become a part of the Code of Conduct document.
3. Among the policies in progress currently are Youth safety protocols which will also  be extended to all-ages classes, workshops, and events. We are basing these policies on CDC guidelines and recommendations
(https://www.cdc.gov/violenceprevention/childsexualabuse/preventingcsa-in-yso.html) and ChildWalfare.org recommendations.
4. Once the ESD Code of Ethics is approved we will integrate it into the NWMAF Code of Conduct document.

1.0 Vision, Mission, Values
The NWMAF sees a future in which all-inclusive environments that foster safe spaces for all people, everywhere, are the norm, not the exception.
Working to build personal and collective strength, safety, and well-being through martial arts, self-defense, and healing arts, to empower women and others affected by any form of discrimination.
We believe:
That diversity matters,  
That inclusivity and intersectionality are essential in fostering a welcoming environment,
In respect and empowerment for all,
In members who lead and teach with Integrity,
In fostering trust between our leadership, our members, and the community,
In fostering a Safe Space for all who wish to learn, and
In fostering transparent communication in order to generate a better environment for all.

Diversity and Inclusion Statement
We are actively seeking to create and support truly diverse membership, including but not limited to members of all racial and ethnic backgrounds, all gender identities, all sexual orientations, and any other identity characteristics to strengthen the work and the reach of the organization.
We will not tolerate or allow discrimination against any of our members or participants. If there are claims of discrimination, the National Federation of Women’s Martial Arts will adhere to a three-step process, consisting of an official investigation into the suit, remediation of the wrongful behavior(s), and a resolution policy. When a claim is brought forth, a third party will be brought in to validate and substantiate the claim. If a claim is found to be groundless or to have been made out of malice, the reporting member will be suspended from membership for no less than one year up to permanent expulsion from the organization.

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2.0 Code of Ethics & Conduct - Summary
Our Commitment
The National Women’s Martial Arts Federation (NWMAF) is dedicated to promoting the involvement and empowerment of women and girls — cis and transgendered, and nonbinary and gender nonconforming persons in martial arts, self-defense, and healing arts.

The Document
This Code applies to the NWMAF’s
Voting and nonvoting members, including Adult, Ally, Reduced Cost, Youth, and Lifetime, as well as other Membership Levels as defined as a part of the future of the organization;
The Board of Directors, Advisory Board Members, and Committee Members;
Self-defense Certified Instructors;
Event Trainers and Participants;
Volunteers and Interns;
Non-Member Event Attendees;
Affiliated Schools and Organizations; and
Strategic Partners, Business Associates, and Vendors.
Others may be included as NWMAF grows and needs change.

For the purposes of this policy:
1. “Member” denotes voting and nonvoting NWMAF Members, as listed above; Event Trainers; Board Members; Allied or Affiliated Program Members; Volunteers; and Non-Member Event Attendees.
2. A “minor” or "child" is defined as a person who is younger than age 18 or who is not an emancipated minor. This definition applies to all such verbiage within this document.

As a condition of membership, all NWMAF Members agree to adhere to their responsibilities as stated within this membership contract and will be held accountable for any alleged violation of the code of conduct and ethics as outlined within this document.

Such violations and accountability for either the NWMAF, the Member, or any other persons or organizations affiliated or associated with the NWMAF, will be addressed through the processes for Reporting, Review, and Liability Determinations outlined within this document.

The NWMAF reserves the right to deny or revoke membership or affiliated status and deny renewal of self-defense instructor certification at any time during which the NWMAF, upon undertaking and completing the process outlined in this document, determines an Affiliate’s, Associate’s, and/or Member’s conduct to be inconsistent with the organization’s Code of Conduct and Ethics and/or Vision, Mission, and Values statements, or if a Member aids, abets, or encourages another to violate this Code.
Should the affected parties wish to dispute the matter, a third-party mediator will be assigned and agreed upon by all concerned sides and a date set for arbitration.

For questions regarding this Code, contact any NWMAF Board member.

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3.0 Board of Directors Roles and Responsibilities
The NWMAF Board is responsible for:

3.1 Overseeing implementation of the Code,

3.2 Responding to questions regarding the Code,

3.3 Ruling on Code or policy complaints filed with the Board will be restricted to deferring to and seeking a third-party mediator, investigator, or appropriate counsel, as outlined in Section 10.0 of this document. Further, the Board of Directors will only be involved in the decision-making and resolution process in so far as to determine the necessary third-party mediation, resolution, or investigative body required, unless the complaints are levied against a Board Member or the Board itself. In such a case, the Board will work with the complainant to determine the appropriate third-party solution required, except in potentially criminal cases for which a Retributive Justice plan will be implemented,

3.4 Communicating the outcome of NWMAF Code or policy complaints to complainant(s) and respondent(s),

3.5 Updating the Code as needed, and

3.6 Meeting the expectations on their role on the Board as laid out within the following guideline and bylaws. Any additional roles taken on by or given to the Board member must be voluntary and not forced upon.

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4.0 Member's Code of Conduct
All Members, Board Members, and Affiliates of the NWMAF shall:

4.1 Comply with all NWMAF policies.

4.2 Treat fellow Members with respect.

4.3 Welcome all Members and event participants regardless of race, color, religion, age, gender, sexual orientation, ethnicity, national origin, or any other individual characteristic.

4.4 Comply with mandated reporting requirements in accordance with rules and regulations of their state or as outlined below in Section 7.0. The safety of our Youth Members and event participants is at the core of this requirement. The organization recognizes that reporting to necessary authorities will not result in increased safety and situational resolution for many sectors of our community; however, as reporting to governmental authorities is only required for offenses against minors, in terms of reporting offenses against adult members will be addressed as outlined in Section 10.0 of this document. [See Sections 7.4-7 and 10.0]

4.5 Cooperate with all complaint reviews requested by the NWMAF Board.
The following actions are considered Code of Conduct violations:

4.6 Being convicted of, pleading guilty or no contest to—at any time, past or present—or facing a pending charge for any crime involving sexual misconduct, hate crimes, violent crimes, or a criminal offense against a minor, as defined by the most recent governing version of the FBI’s Uniform Crime Reporting Guidelines.

4.7 Participating in any form of bullying or aiding a Member who is bullying another. For the purposes of this document, “Bullying” is defined in the Glossary section of this document.

4.8 Initiating or aiding in sexual harassment, including, without limitation, unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, and other verbal or physical conduct of a sexual nature in connection with an NWMAF-related activity by any person participating in the affairs or activities of the NWMAF.

4.9 Abusing or distributing any drugs, alcohol, or controlled substances for purposes of abuse.

4.10 Providing alcohol to a person who is under the legal age allowed to consume or purchase alcohol in the state in which alcohol is provided.

4.11 Using alcohol in excess in the presence of a minor.

4.12 Abuse of any kind which is facilitated by the perpetrator's position of power or authority over another.

4.13 Inappropriately touching a minor or another adult, including, but not limited to, excessive touching or hugging; kissing; sexually oriented behavior; or sexually stimulating or otherwise inappropriate games.

4.14 Committing fraud or being deceptive or dishonest in connection with an NWMAF-related event.

4.15 Libeling or slandering the NWMAF.

4.16 Retaliating against anyone who makes a good faith report of a Code of Conduct violation.

4.17 Filing a knowingly false allegation of misconduct.

4.18 Discrimination of any kind will not be tolerated.

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5.0 Board of Directors’ / Committee Members’ Code of Ethics
NWMAF Board of Directors and Committee members shall:

5.1 Provide service to Members and the public that is courteous, professional, equitable, efficient, and effective. The Board and Committee members shall be sensitive and responsive to the changing needs and expectations of a diverse public.

5.2 Serve their terms as outlined in role descriptions in the NWMAF Board Manual and/ or bylaws.

5.3 Serve with honesty and integrity.

5.4 Be impartial when conducting duties.

5.5 Not bring the NWMAF into disrepute.

5.6 Comply with all organizational rules, bylaws, and policies.

5.7 Provide accurate and truthful representations concerning all information directly or indirectly related to all aspects of the NWMAF.

5.8 Disclose significant circumstances that could be construed as a conflict of interest or an appearance of impropriety.

5.9 Recognize and respect intellectual property and act in an accurate, truthful, and complete manner, including all activities related to professional work and research.

5.10 Respect confidentiality and sensitive information.

5.11 Not use information obtained through their role to further any private interest, or as a means of making personal gains.

5.12 Serve the organization’s mission in the best interest of Members.

5.13 Provide accurate and truthful representations to NWMAF Members and the public in advertising, public statements, or any activities related to NWMAF.

5.14 Ensure that a conflict of interest does not compromise legitimate interests of the NWMAF or Members or influence/interfere with professional judgments.

5.15 Separate political activities from activities related to those on the NWMAF Board.

5.16 Act objectively with all tasks, work, or activities undertaken, observing high standards of integrity and fair dealings.

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6.0 Empowerment Self-Defense Instructor’s Code of Conduct
The NWMAF requires instructors it certifies to abide by the following Code. The instructor-student relationship is the central focus of ethical concerns, and the welfare of the student should form the basis of all judgments.
6.1 Instructors shall not discriminate against students based on race, color, religion, age, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, ethnicity, national origin, or any other basis that would constitute illegal discrimination.  

6.2 Instructors shall strive to protect the physical and emotional safety of students while they are participating in a self-defense class.

6.3 Instructors shall strive to provide accurate information to students and shall strive to attribute sources of information and ideas accurately.

6.4 Instructors shall maintain confidentiality of students, only breaking this confidence when a student represents a clear and imminent threat to themselves or others.

6.5 Dual relationships between instructors and students shall be approached with caution, and with the welfare of the student as a paramount concern. While it is permissible for an instructor to have a relative, loved one, or other intimate in a self-defense class, it shall be approached mindfully and with overt discussion about issues that may arise. If the welfare of the student or any other student is threatened by their presence, the student shall not participate in the training.

6.6 Sexual misconduct on the part of the instructor is an abuse of professional power. Sexual contact or romantic relationships between instructor and students shall never be initiated during the time period in which a self-defense class is ongoing.

6.7 Instructors shall recognize their own competencies and shall provide only the training they are qualified to provide.

Any student of an NWMAF-certified self-defense instructor who believes that the instructor has violated any of these principles should follow the reporting protocol set out in the NWMAF’s Response to Abuse, Misconduct, and Guideline Violations Policy as outlined below. [See Section 10.0]

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7.0 Relationships with Minors  & Mandated Reporting
Members are encouraged to review the “Communication with Minors” portion of the NWMAF’s Communications and Social Media Policy, made a part of this document (see addenda).

7.1 When planned or unplanned, one-to-one meetings occur between an adult member and a minor, others--parents, peers, or other available responsible adult--shall be, at least, able to visually monitor the conversation.

7.2 Due to mandated reporting laws, confidentiality may not be guaranteed if a minor discloses abuse, neglect, self-harm, or exploitation.

7.3 Secluded or secretive activity--online or in person--with minors, shall not be permitted.

7.4 In many states or provinces, mandated reporters are legally obligated to report suspected child physical or sexual abuse to the appropriate authorities. These obligations vary by area. Therefore, it is the responsibility of NWMAF members to be aware of the mandated reporting obligations of their state of residence or province. The Child Welfare Information Gateway is, also, a great resource for state and federal requirements and resources.

7.5 Members who have reason to suspect that abuse, neglect, or exploitation of minors has taken place shall report the activity in accordance with their state or province mandated reporter requirements, the state or province requirements of the location in which the incident occurs, or Federally via Child Help USA at 1.800. 4 A Child (1.800. 422.4453).
Because the National Women’s Martial Arts Federation is a decentralized organization with members across the country, international members, and events that vary in location, any and all matters pertaining to the suspected abuse, neglect, or sexual exploitation of a minor will be reported directly to the ChildHelp National Child Abuse Hotline or the Federal Child Welfare Department for investigation and referral to the state authorities governing the location at which the abuse takes place.  

Members who are not legally required to report this kind of activity are encouraged to reach out to the NWMAF Board for support and/or assistance.

7.6 NWMAF members shall not attempt to evaluate the credibility or validity of any abuse, neglect or sexual abuse of a minor allegation.

7.7 If the report of abuse involves an NWMAF member, a report shall also be made immediately to a member of the NWMAF Board.

For NWMAF purposes, neither civil nor criminal statutes of limitation apply to reports of cases of sexual abuse.

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8.0 Member Protection Guidelines
Policy Statement

The NWMAF prohibits discrimination, abuse of any kind, harassment, sexual harassment, bullying, and retaliation by or against its members, NWMAF event trainers, Board members, allies, NWMAF guests, event staff, and volunteers. Members shall be mindful and responsible regarding any role they may hold as an authority figure and/or leader. All terms are defined within the document Glossary.

Bystander Intervention  
When witnessing abuse, NWMAF members are to practice Empowerment Self-Defense (ESD) best practices, including safe intervention on behalf of the targeted person, and, if needed/appropriate, reporting the misconduct. A safe intervention is defined as an action or series of actions undertaken to defend the targeted person that can safeguard the targeted person and the Bystander, such as reporting an event when verbal or physical intervention at the time of the abuse is unsafe.

Background Checks

The NWMAF requires background checks for the Board of Directors and event trainers. Background checks may include, but are not limited to, reference checks, previous employment checks, interviews, Sexual Offender Database lookups, and criminal background checks. The NWMAF shall exclude from selection to an event any applicant who is flagged in a background check for a crime of moral turpitude. The NWMAF acknowledges that a background check does not fully protect its participants from offenders or predators, thus will follow procedures created to vet board members, instructors, volunteers, and anyone associated with the NWMAF, as well as procedures for running events. These procedures are outlined in the addenda and made a part of this document.

Any person listed in the National Sex Offender public website shall be automatically and permanently excluded from all events participation   . Anyone who does not consent to a background check shall not be considered for selection for the Board or an event in any capacity.

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9.0 Child, Youth, and Teen Abuse Prevention Policy
The NWMAF takes the protection of minors seriously and requires all members, event attendees, volunteers, interns, NWMAF representatives, and associated schools to follow their preventative measures. Therefore, they shall adhere to the following:

9.1 Interview   all members and non-members who will be working with or around minors in a leadership role (see Instructor application, interviewing, and hiring procedure  by department and made a part of this document);

9.2 Obtain written consent from the child, youth, or teen,   as well as at least one of their legal guardians for participation in the event;

9.3 Enforce best practices of abuse prevention, as outlined by the CDC in its Child Sexual Abuse and Abuse and Neglect Prevention Guidelines, at all events.    For further guidance, please refer to the Code of Conduct Addenda to review specific departmental policies;

9.4 Limit one-on-one communication   and interactions with minors, including in-person, online, social media, email, or telephone [See sections 7.1-3];

9.5 Gain verbal consent from any child, youth or teen during any physical aspects of a lesson, including but not limited to high fives, self-defense techniques against strikes, punches, grabs, holds, submissions;

9.6 Any contact with a minor which may be deemed inappropriate are prohibited. These include, but are not limited to, tickling, lap-sitting, petting, kissing, spanking, or other analogous behaviors. Hand holding, hugging, and carrying must only be for the emotional benefit or safety of the minor, and can only be done with, at least, two adults present; and,

9.7 At least two adult representatives of the NWMAF must be present when a class with minors is in session.

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10.0 Organizational Response to Reports of Abuse or Misconduct and Guideline Violations
Conflicts can arise in the normal course of any organization. When conflicts arise, the NWMAF shall work, to every extent possible, toward a quick and fair resolution for all involved.
When dealing with conflict, the NWMAF as an organization shall:
Provide an initial Assessment Process to determine what resolution options are possible,
Provide the parties involved with Conflict Resolution, Restorative Justice, and Retributive Justice options, as the conflict requires, in an effort to resolve and reconcile the issue(s),
Provide access to third-party investigation and mediation to assist with the resolution process,
Provide, when possible, a safe space in which to host these discussions, including but not limited to in-person space at NWMAF hosted or endorsed events, Zoom meeting room, or other online meeting options,
Provide a safe, transparent path to resolution,
And provide parties with a level of confidentiality designed to protect victims.

It is important to note that, as criminal charges or convictions levied against a party are public record, confidentiality agreements will not be extended in those cases. In cases in which legal lawsuits are filed, tried, or settled, the NWMAF will comply with any confidentiality agreements made as a part of the resolution of the lawsuit.

For the purposes of this document, Conflict Resolution, Restorative Justice, and Retributive Justice are defined as:

Conflict Resolution – “a process to resolve ‘struggle[s] between at least two interdependent parties who perceive incompatible goals, scarce resources, and interference from others in achieving their goals.” (Interpersonal Conflict, Wilmot & Hocker)

Restorative Justice – “a process to ‘involve, to the extent possible, those who have a stake in a specific offence and to collectively identify and address harms, needs, and obligations, in order to heal and put things as right as possible.” (Howard Zehr, 2002)

Retributive Justice – “a system of criminal justice based on the punishment of offenders rather than on rehabilitation.” (Oxford Languages)

The NWMAF shall treat all parties to a conflict respectfully and without bias.

The NWMAF Board of Directors will restrict its ruling on Code, Policy, and other complaints filed to deferring to and seeking a third-party mediator, investigator, or appropriate counsel as outlined in this Section. Further, the Board of Directors will only be involved in the decision-making and resolution process in so far as to determine the necessary third-party mediation, resolution, or investigative body required, unless the complaints are levied against a Board Member or the Board itself. In such a case, the Board will work with the complainant to determine the appropriate third-party solution required, except in potentially criminal cases for which a Retributive Justice plan will be implemented.
Reporting Process

The NWMAF encourages members who believe they have experienced or witnessed abuse   to contact any Board member in the way most comfortable for them, for example in writing via postal mail or email, verbally in person, via text message, or by telephone. (You can find Board Member email addresses on the federation’s website: www.nwmaf.org.)
For self-defense instructor complaints, members may also contact the NWMAF’s Self-Defense Coordinator (selfdefense@nwmaf.org) and/or its Self-Defense Instructor Certification Coordinator (certification@nwmaf.org) directly.

The Board shall accept anonymous complaints. All complaints and alleged violations shall be kept confidential, save communications with any party needed to complete a thorough inquiry.

Formal Complaints

Any conflict that substantially affects Member safety or organizational liability shall be documented through the NWMAF grievance process and made a part of the organization’s administrative records.
For Complaints against a Board Member
Any NWMAF member or member of the public may submit:
1. A statement of concern (request for clarification),
2. A statement of complaint (registering discontent),
3. A statement of grievance (request for redress), or
4. A call for a vote of no confidence (request to remove party from any formal NWMAF role).
Stages 1 and 2 shall be communicated to the Secretary, who will record pertinent details of the complaint. A Stage 3 or 4 grievances must be submitted to the Board of Directors in writing, with a copy submitted to the Secretary for recordkeeping. The Board of Directors will then undertake the Assessment Process and selection of resources for resolution. Unresolved disputes shall be forwarded to the Board for further action if necessary.
The person filing the complaint can expect actions to be undertaken with 10 business days for simple concerns or complaints, up to three business days for grievances and votes of no confidence, and within 24 hours for potentially criminal offenses.
The Board member connected to or involved in the dispute shall abstain from any mediation or voting role.

For Complaints Against an NWMAF Member

Any NWMAF member or member of the public may submit:
1. A statement of concern (request for clarification),
2. A statement of complaint (registering discontent), or
3. A statement of grievance (request for redress).
Stages 1 and 2 shall be communicated to the Secretary, who will record pertinent details of the complaint. A Stage 3 grievance must be submitted to the Board of Directors in writing, with a copy submitted to the Secretary for recordkeeping. The Board of Directors will then undertake the Assessment Process and selection of resources for resolution. Unresolved disputes shall be forwarded to the Board for further action if necessary.
The person filing the complaint can expect actions to be undertaken with 10 business days for simple concerns or complaints, up to three business days for, and within 24 hours for potentially criminal offenses.
IMPORTANT: The NWMAF has a zero-tolerance   policy for bad-faith allegations. Such allegations will be immediately referred to the Conflict Resolution process.

Conflict Resolution Process

In keeping with Empowerment Self Defense principles and Restorative Justice goals, the NWMAF commits to the process of non-violent verbal de-escalation and mediation to every extent possible, in the process of resolution and reconciliation. The NWMAF also requires that these principles guide the conduct of its members and leaders.

Upon receipt of a report of misconduct, The Board of Directors will meet to review the information provided or requested. During this meeting, a simple assessment of the type of conflict in question will be made in order to determine what form of unbiased third-party assistance is needed for resolution. Potential third-party intervention options include, but are not limited to:
Third-party mediators or Restorative Justice experts;
Legal Counsel; and/ or
Law enforcement or another governmental agency.
Costs for third-party intervention from outside of the NWMAF organization may result in fees payable by the parties involved in the conflict.

Any conflict that substantially affects member safety or organizational liability shall be documented through the Formal Complaints Process. Therefore, the Board of Directors will, during the assessment meeting, create a reporting file to track steps taken, decisions made, and agreements reached.

The confidentiality of these can be determined during mediation. If the conflict is taken up in civil court, the court shall determine the confidentiality or accessibility of the report. If the conflict results in criminal charges, only the victim’s information shall remain confidential.

The NWMAF Board shall, to the extent possible, respect the privacy of the complainant, person(s) against whom a report is filed, and any witnesses. However, the NWMAF Board shall not engage in secrecy, and shall be as transparent as possible without breaking confidentiality of the people involved. Limited disclosures may be necessary to conduct the original assessment.
Conflicts arising in the course of NWMAF business shall be resolved using ESD principles and ethics.

Assessment Process
During the initial assessment meeting, the Board of Directors shall utilize the following guidance in determining what resolution options can be applied:

1. Conflict Resolution
a. The involved parties share a relative “moral balance” as described by Howard Zehr;
b. The conflict or grievance in question can be resolved through negotiation;
c. The goal of the resolution process is to find compromise.

2. Restorative Justice
a. The involved parties are navigating a “moral imbalance” created by an offender’s harmful act;
b. There is a clear potentially offending party responsible of a violation of an individual’s rights or which violate the rules or norms set by the organization;
c. The goal of the resolution process is to re-balance the relationship through dialogue and restoration, in which the offender has incurred an obligation toward personal accountability, whereas the victim has no such obligations.
3. Retributive Justice

a. The issue involves a clear potentially offending party;
b. The harmful act is a violation of the victim’s rights in a way that presents the potential for a criminal charge;
c. One or both parties involved either refuse to undertake or abandon the Conflict Resolution or Restorative Justice resolution options when offered.

The Board of Directors will further consider the following guidance in order to frame the incident in an unbiased way for the involved parties, organizational community, reporting purposes, and future Boards which may need to make reference to the decisions made. We borrow this guidance from Restorative Justice vs. Conflict Resolution: Assessing for Intervention (Aaron Lyons, Just Outcomes).

The parties’ framing of the incident:
Is one party taking responsibility for having wronged another?
Is there disagreement about who is responsible?
Is there a shared feeling of mutual responsibility?
The community, organization, or society’s framing of the incident:
Did the incident violate rules or collective ethics, or otherwise ‘cross a line’ within the group?
Imagining the parties were left to frame and resolve the situation without the support of a third party, would any negotiated outcome be acceptable to the organization? If not, why not?
If the community or organization has a clear ‘stake’ in the incident, this may be one indication that justice issues are present, which would then require a justice response.

The facilitator’s framing of the incident:

In addition to the framing of an incident by parties and those in their surrounding environment, facilitators and decision-makers have an added responsibility to ensure that the framing of an incident helps to mitigate, rather than contribute to harm. Incidents involving bullying or harassment behaviour, physical or verbal abuse, or violence in any form, do not in themselves constitute “conflict” but rather unilateral actions made by one party to another (possibly in the context of conflict). These acts would by definition violate most people’s moral standards and almost certainly affect the well-being of other parties in a negative way. Even where forms of violence are used by both parties in a conflict, the violence itself should not be treated as conflict but rather as a breach of relationships which requires a justice intervention.”

Results of Policy, Conduct, and Ethics Violations

If necessary, removal of a Board member as a result of a vote of no confidence requires a two-thirds majority vote of Board officers. Removal of a member from the organization requires a majority vote of Board officers.  
Substantiated complaints against any member, that are not resolved via Conflict Resolution or Restorative Justice pathways, may result in revocation of NWMAF membership and/or affiliated status or nonrenewal of any future NWMAF self-defense instructor certification. Substantiated complaints against any member that result in Retributive Justice actions will result in revocation of NWMAF membership, affiliated status, non-renewal of any future ESD Instructor Certifications, and other steps required to ensure the safety of NWMAF members, including but not limited to a permanent ban from membership and participation in the NWMAF and its events. The same consequences may apply to any Member who aids, abets, or encourages others to violate an NWMAF policy or its Code of Conduct.

The NWMAF reserves the right to refuse or revoke membership or affiliated status or to refuse future self-defense certification for conduct that substantially affects member safety or organizational liability, or that damages the image, reputation or adversely affect the longevity of the NWMAF.

The Board’s decision, or that of the agreed upon third-party arbitrator, is final.

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11.0 Glossary  
A system that includes discrimination and social prejudice against people with intellectual, emotional, and physical disabilities, their exclusion, and the valuing of people and groups that do not have disabilities.

African American
People in the United States who have ethnic origins on the African continent. While the terms “African American” and “Black” are often used interchangeably in the United States, it is best to ask individuals how they identify. For example, some individuals may identify as Black, but do not identify as African American.

A system of beliefs that works against the young and the old and values individuals of a particular age range.

A person who is outside of a marginalized community who respects and supports the members of that marginalized community.

The work of actively opposing racism by advocating for changes in political, economic, and social life. Anti-racism tends to be an individualized approach and set up in opposition to individual racist behaviors, as well as, addressing the societal impacts of racism.

The process of adapting or adjusting to the culture or behaviors of a dominant or majority group or nation.

A person who identifies as belonging to or coming from two races. A person whose biological parents are of two different races. *Note: the term “mixed” is not favored and the terms bi-racial or multi-racial are currently preferred.

An inclination or preference, especially one that interferes with impartial judgment.

An acronym meaning “Black, Indigenous and People of Color."
The term Black is often used interchangeably in the United States with the term African American. However, populations all over the world use this term to denote a racialized classification of people considered to have mid to dark brown complexion or skin color perceived to be darker than other populations. Many Black Americans may trace their lineage to populations in Africa, Caribbean, or Oceania.

Repeated, persistent and aggressive behaviour intended to cause fear, distress, or harm to another person's body, emotions, self-esteem, or reputation. (http://www.duhaime.org/LegalDictionary/B/Bullying.aspx)
Bullying is not limited to physical or in-person contact. It is not limited to children.

Child Abuse and Neglect
Federal legislation provides guidance to States by identifying a minimum set of acts or behaviors that define child abuse and neglect. The Federal Child Abuse Prevention and Treatment Act (CAPTA) (42 U.S.C.A. § 5106g), as amended by the CAPTA Reauthorization Act of 2010, defines child abuse and neglect as, at minimum:
"Any recent act or failure to act on the part of a parent or caretaker, which results in death, serious physical or emotional harm, sexual abuse or exploitation"; or
"An act or failure to act which presents an imminent risk of serious harm."
This definition of child abuse and neglect refers specifically to parents and other caregivers. A "child" under this definition generally means a person who is younger than age 18 or who is not an emancipated minor.
While CAPTA provides definitions for sexual abuse and the special cases of neglect related to withholding or failing to provide medically indicated treatment, it does not provide specific definitions for other types of maltreatment such as physical abuse, neglect, or emotional abuse. While Federal legislation sets minimum standards for States that accept CAPTA funding, each State provides its own definitions of maltreatment within civil and criminal statutes. (https://www.childwelfare.gov/topics/can/defining/)

Child Sexual Abuse
CAPTA defines sexual abuse as follows: The employment, use, persuasion, inducement, enticement, or coercion of any child to engage in, or assist any other person to engage in, any sexually explicit conduct or simulation of such conduct for the purpose of producing a visual depiction of such conduct; or the rape, and in cases of caretaker or interfamilial relationships, statutory rape, molestation, prostitution, or other form of sexual exploitation of children, or incest with children. (https://www.childwelfare.gov/pubpdfs/define.pdf)

A person whose biological gender and gender identity are the same.

A system of oppression that includes institutional, cultural, societal, and individual beliefs and practices that assign value to people based on their socio-economic class. Here, members of more privileged socio-economic classes are seen as having a greater value.

The conscious or unconscious act of ‘switching’ between two languages, dialects, or intonations, depending on the specific situation of t o whom one is speaking, what is being discussed, and/or the relational, power, and/or community dynamics between those involved.

Cultural Appropriation
A term used to describe the co-opting of creative or artistic forms, themes, or practices by one cultural group from another. It is generally used to describe Western appropriations of non-Western or non-White forms and carries connotations of exploitation and dominance.

Cultural Competence
The ability to effectively and empathetically work and engage with people of different cultural identities and backgrounds in order to provide safe and accountable spaces for dialogue and discourse; cultural competence is relevant in all fields of work, education, and informal social interactions.

The pattern of daily life learned consciously and unconsciously by a group of people. These patterns can be seen in language, governing practices, arts, customs, holiday celebrations, food, religion, dating rituals, and clothing.

The withholding or limiting of access to opportunities, benefits and advantages available to other individuals or classes of individuals in society.

Emotional Tax
The combination of being on guard to protect against bias, feeling different at work because of prescribing to a non-majority identity, and the associated effects on health, well-being, and ability to thrive at work.

A state of affairs in which all people within a specific society or isolated group have the same status in certain respects, including civil rights, freedom of speech, property rights and equal access to certain social goods and services.

The situation in which all people or groups are given access to the correct number and types of resources, so as to achieve equal results; this differs from equality, which focuses on the equal distribution of resources rather than equal results.

A socially constructed grouping of people who share a common cultural heritage derived from values, behavioral patterns, language, political and economic interests, history, geographical base, and ancestry. For example, in the U.S., the term "Hispanic" denotes individuals of Spanish speaking descent. However, we know that an individual from Guatemala may have a very different experience than someone from Spain or Mexico. It’s helpful to keep in mind that sometimes being “country specific” is best practice.

Explicit Bias
A term that refers to the attitudes and beliefs we have about a person or group on a conscious level. For example, the preconceived notion that Asian people are better at math.

A socially constructed range of characteristics pertaining to, and differentiating between perceived ideas of masculinity and femininity.

Gender Expression
The external expression of one's gender; this usually is presented by clothing, mannerisms and other societal norms. This is usually considered either as masculine or feminine.

Gender Identity
The internal perception of one's gender, and how they label themselves. This is based on how much they align or don’t align with what they understand their options for gender to be. This is often conflated with biological sex, or sex assigned at birth.

Legally, it is generally defined as a course of conduct which annoys, threatens, intimidates, alarms, or puts a person in fear of their safety. Harassment is unwanted, unwelcomed and uninvited behavior that demeans, threatens or offends the victim and results in a hostile environment for the victim. Harassing behavior may include, but is not limited to, epithets, derogatory comments or slurs and lewd propositions, assault, impeding or blocking movement, offensive touching or any physical interference with normal work or movement, and visual insults, such as derogatory posters or cartoons. (https://definitions.uslegal.com/h/harassment/)
However, Harassment Laws are defined on a state level, not a Federal level.

An umbrella term for a range of negative attitudes (e.g., fear, anger, intolerance, resentment, erasure, or discomfort) that one may have toward LGBTQ people. The term can also connote a fear, disgust, or dislike of being perceived as LGBTQ.

A person who is primarily emotionally, physically, and/or sexually attracted to members of the same sex/gender. This [medical] term is considered stigmatizing (particularly as a noun) due to its history as a category of mental illness and is discouraged for common use. The terms gay or lesbian are more appropriate in current vernacular.

Horizontal Hostilities
Disrespectful or bullying behaviour among peers within a community or between similar communities.

Authentically bringing traditionally excluded individuals and/or groups into processes, activities, and decision/policy making in a way that shares power.

Institutional Racism:
A term that refers specifically to the ways in which institutional policies and practices create different outcomes for different racial groups but always benefit the dominant group. While institutional policies may never mention any racial group, but their effect is to create advantages for Whites and oppression and disadvantage for people from groups classified as people of color. For example, environmental policies, such as the locations of landfills or other trash transfer facilities, are often located near communities of color.
 “Institutions have greater power to reward and penalize.  They reward by providing career opportunities for some people and foreclosing them for others.  They reward as well by the way social goods are distributed – by deciding who receives training and skills, medical care, formal education, political influence, moral support and self-respect, productive employment, fair treatment by the law, decent housing, self-confidence and the promise of a secure future for self and children.” (from UCC Sacred Conversation on Race)

The idea that multiple identities intersect to create a whole identity. The identities that can intersect include gender, race, social class, ethnicity, nationality, sexual orientation, religion, age, mental disability, physical disability, mental illness, and physical illness as well as other forms of identity. These aspects of identity are not mutually exclusive. Each element or trait of a person is inseparably linked with all of the other elements. For example, a Black female who identifies as lesbian may consider herself through those three identities in various contexts.

Brief and common daily verbal, behavioral, and environmental
communications, whether intentional or unintentional, that transmit hostile, derogatory, or negative messages to a person because they belong to a stigmatized group.

Misconduct is defined as conduct that results in harm, the potential for harm, or the imminent threat of harm. Age is irrelevant to misconduct.
Misconduct includes all the above-mentioned violations: emotional, physical, and sexual misconduct; bullying; and harassment.

The concept that there is great diversity in how people’s brains are wired and work, and that neurological differences should be valued in the same way we value any other human variation.

Results from the use of institutional power and privilege where one person or group benefits at the expense of another. Oppression is the use of power and the effect of domination.

A social system and institution in which men have primary power in the political, social, economic, legal, and familial spheres; patriarchy favors maledominated thought, and is centralized on the male narrative or perspective of how the world works and should work.

People of Color (POC)
Often the preferred collective term for referring to non-Anglo, Germanic, or Scandanavian White racial groups. Racial justice advocates have been using the term “people of color” (not to be confused with the pejorative “colored people”) since the late 1970s as an inclusive and unifying frame across different racial groups that are not White, to address racial inequities. While “people of color” can be a politically useful term, and describes people with their own attributes (as opposed to what they are not, e.g., “non-White”), it is also important whenever possible to identify people through their own racial/ethnic group, as each has its own distinct experience and meaning and may be more appropriate.

Physical Abuse
Physical abuse is defined as intentional trauma or physical injury caused by contact behaviors.

The state of being extremely poor.

Power is the key that locks the system of racism and any system of oppression in place.  (Elaborate on this terminology: More description)

Prejudice is a set of negative beliefs generalized about a whole group of people.  All people hold prejudices, but only the dominant group has the power to enforce laws, establish institutions and set cultural standards that are used to dominate those who are the subject of their prejudice.  Prejudicial thinking is frequently based on stereotypes.

A systemic set of benefits granted to a dominant identity group (i.e. White privilege, straight privilege, Christian privilege, cis-gender privilege), such as greater access to power, resources, government, language, land, etc.

An ideology and socially constructed worldview in which humans are divided into racial groups and in which races are arranged in a hierarchy where some races are considered innately superior to others.

A system of oppression based on a perceived or actual racial identity of an individual or group. Racism is the effect of domination of certain racial groups by other racial groups, historically the domination of people of color by White/European peoples.

For this Policies purposes, refers to parties taking punitive or abusive actions against a person/ people who have exerted their rights to be free from any and all types of racism, discrimination, or harassment. Retaliatory actions are designed to intimidate and/or punish the target(s).

The individual, cultural, and institutional beliefs and discrimination that systematically oppress women.

Sexual Harassment
Sexual harassment is harassment that includes unwelcome, nonconsensual sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, or Sexually motivated physical, verbal, or nonverbal conduct  .

Sexual Orientation
A person’s sexual identity in relation to the gender to which they are attracted.

Social Justice
A concept in which equity or justice is achieved in every aspect of society rather than in only some aspects or for some people.

The process by which a human acquires the habits, beliefs, and accumulated knowledge of society through education and training (by family, friends, culture, media, educational systems, and other social institutions).

A person who lives as a member of a gender other than that expected based on sex assigned at birth. Example: Tony was born a biological male but does not identify with their biological gender and may more closely identify as a woman.

Unconscious Bias
Often defined as subconscious prejudice or unsupported judgment in favor of or against one thing, person, or group as compared to another, in a way that is usually considered unfair.

The most commonly used designation, in the U.S., for racially White people of either Anglo, Germanic, or Scandanavian heritage.    

White Privilege:
The advantages provided to people who are considered White in a racialized society that may value White people over other racial groups and whiteness over other perceived skin colors. The concept that Whites benefit from societal structuring that prioritizes White people and whiteness.

Workplace Inclusion
An atmosphere where all employees belong, contribute, and can thrive. This requires deliberate and intentional action, as well as policies and initiatives that foster a sense of belonging and acceptance for differences.

A system of oppression based on the fear, hatred, or mistrust of that which is foreign, especially strangers or people from different countries or cultures.
As an example, during the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic, many AsianAmericans were wrongfully attacked out of misplaced anger targeting individuals perceived to be from China (after connections were made to COVID-19 originating in China).

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12.0 Addenda  
These are the Policies that become part of this document as they are completed. Those in process are marked by an asterisk (*).

1. Photo, Video, Audio Use Policy and Release
2. Communications and Social Media Policy
3. Event Policies and Procedures
4. Youth Program Policy *
5. ESD Instructors Code of Ethics *

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Thank you!
We are moving to make the NWMAF a more inclusive, participatory organization and this is the next step. Once the 30-day review process is completed, we will make any necessary edits to the existing document. Any suggestions not implemented will be detailed in a separate document along with the reasons for the lack of implementation. These may include, but are not lmitied to, conflicts of interest, conflicts with required policy items, etc.

If you have any questions about this document or this process, please feel free to contact our Chair, Liz, at Chair@NWMAF.org.

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