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Pacific Association of Women Martial Artists

Uniting and empowering a diverse community
of women and girls in the martial arts.

Non-discrimination Policy

Last updated: September 6, 2009

The Pacific Association of Women Martial Artists shall promote an atmosphere of respect for and sensitivity to the dignity of every person. It is the policy of the Association to refrain from discrimination with respect to its governance policies, educational programs, activities and employment policies, including on the basis of age, color, disability, national origin, race, religion, creed or sexual orientation.

Procedure for Complaint

Allegations of harassment or discrimination will be dealt with seriously, expeditiously and sensitively. If you believe that the behavior of any member of PAWMA at a PAWMA event is in violation of the policy, you must immediately report the facts of the situation, in writing, to the President of the Board of Directors. If you need assistance with putting the matter in writing, you may make a verbal request to the President, Vice-President, or Secretary, to you in writing the complaint. Written complaints may be submitted to the official PAWMA address, or to an email address on the PAWMA website dedicated to that purpose.

Resolution Procedures

Discrimination complaints will go to a Complaint and Resolution Committee comprised of two PAWMA members with legal or complaint resolution experience, the elder counsel to the Board, and, optionally, the President of the Board.

Receipt of a written complaint will be acknowledged within 14 days, and an investigation will be promptly initiated by the Committee. The Committee will remain in contact with the complainant and provide an estimated timeline for the investigation. At the conclusion of the investigation, the committee will attempt to determine whether any violation of PAWMA’s non-discrimination policy or local law has occurred. In making this determination, they will look at the totality of the circumstances, including the nature, frequency and severity of the conduct, local legal requirements and the context in which the conduct occurred.

If PAWMA determines that a violation of this policy has occurred, PAWMA will take prompt and appropriate remedial action, determined by the committee, which is commensurate with the severity and individual circumstances of the offense and consistent with our local legal rights and obligations. We will also take reasonable steps, as necessary, to avoid and prevent any further violation from occurring. Any member or employee found to have violated this policy will be subject to corrective action up to and including immediate termination of membership and restriction from attending PAWMA events and functions.

All individuals who are involved in the complaint reporting, mediation and/or investigation process are expected to maintain strict confidentiality. These confidentiality provisions are not intended to silence victims, but rather to protect parties and the integrity of investigations into alleged discrimination and harassment. PAWMA is very sensitive to the need for victims to discuss incidents of discrimination or harassment with counselors, trusted advisors and friends as part of the recovery process. However, complainants are encouraged to allow PAWMA to investigate and take appropriate corrective action rather than using negative publicity to expose or punish parties involved.

PAWMA will not tolerate any form of retaliation or reprisal against an employee or member for reporting or complaining in good faith of alleged violations or perceived violations of this policy, or for participating in any investigation of any such reports or complaints. Any member found to have engaged in any form of prohibited retaliation will be subject to corrective action up to an including immediate termination of membership and restriction from attending PAWMA events and functions.

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