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Code of Conduct


This Code of Conduct sets the standard of conduct expected of participants in the MASH program and its related spaces.

It sets the expectation that all participants will actively work to create a safe, welcoming, and inclusive environment. It strictly prohibits discrimination, harassment, and sexual harassment.

Being a mentoring program, this Code of Conduct explicitly prioritizes the most vulnerable in any conflict situation.

Participation in the MASH program is conditional upon acceptance of the Code of Conduct.

If you experience or witness a violation of this Code of Conduct, please submit a report by email to or contact one of the core team members via any of the provided communication channels.


This Code of Conduct applies to all aspects of MASH activities, including mentoring sessions, communication via the program, publicly available communication, and also any conferences, virtual or in-person, that are related to the MASH program.

This Code of Conduct applies to all participants, including mentors, mentees, speakers, authors, sponsors and volunteers.

Standard of Conduct

The MASH program seeks to offer a safe, welcoming, honest, and inclusive space for learning and sharing, guided by the values of diversity, equity, inclusion and harm-reduction. It explicitly seeks to ensure the safety of the involved mentees and will therefore prioritize the needs of the most vulnerable.

These values can only thrive in an environment that is free from harassment and discriminatory behavior.

Expected behavior

Behavior that is expected and encouraged:

  • Be respectful, inclusive, and accepting of others. Actively seek to challenge your personal biases, assumptions, and preconceived stereotypes, and approach differences with openness and curiosity.
  • Be conscious of how your words and actions (including unintentional ones) might harm others. Take time to educate yourself on how to be more inclusive, and listen when someone takes the time to educate you.
  • Be aware of privilege and power dynamics.
  • If you share the work or ideas of others, give credit where it is due.
  • Be considerate of privacy and personal boundaries. Give others a chance to “opt-in” to personal interactions, and respect limits when they are set.
  • Be constructive in offering criticism, and be gracious in accepting it. Consider “calling in” rather than “calling out,” and direct critiques toward ideas rather than people.

Unacceptable behavior

Harassing Defined:
to annoy persistently; to create an unpleasant or hostile situation for especially by uninvited and unwelcome verbal or physical conduct.

Behavior that is strictly prohibited:

  • Discrimination, including unfavorable or disparate treatment to others because of any aspect of their identity, appearance, or protected class.
  • Use of epithets and slurs, derogatory or hostile comments, repeated attempts to make contact, or any behavior that interferes with another person’s participation in the conference.
  • Sexual harassment, including use of sexual images, jokes of a sexual or gendered nature, or any unwelcome contact of a sexual nature in any medium. 
  • Violence and threats of violence.
  • Incitement of violence towards any individual, including encouraging a person to commit suicide or to engage in self-harm. 

Enforcement Responsibilities

The MASH core members are responsible for clarifying and enforcing our standards of acceptable behavior and will take appropriate and fair corrective action in response to any behavior that they deem inappropriate, threatening, offensive, or harmful, while prioritizing the most vulnerable.

Every incident will be reviewed by at least two of the MASH core members.

In case of an incident that involves a MASH core member, the member involved is temporarily expelled from its Code of Conduct enforcement responsibilities.

Enforcement and Sanctions

Instances of abusive, harassing, or otherwise unacceptable behavior may be reported to one of the MASH core members. All complaints will be reviewed and investigated promptly and fairly in the mindset of prioritizing the most vulnerable.

All MASH core members are obligated to respect the privacy and security of the reporter of any incident.

Engaging in harmful behavior has consequences. The MASH core members may impose sanctions (including other MASH core members) depending on the severity of a violation.

Examples of potential actions may include:

  • Issuing a written or verbal warning
  • Removing a person’s volunteer or MASH program responsibilities
  • Removing a person’s mentor status
  • Ending a mentoring relationship
  • Blocking or reporting a person in online platforms (Facebook, Twitter, email lists, etc.)
  • Imposing a ban on future participation
  • Reporting a person’s behavior to conference organizers and usergroups
  • Reporting a person’s behavior to the appropriate authorities


This Code of Conduct was developed by the founding MASH core members.

Some sections were adapted from the OpenCon Code of Conduct and the Contributor Covenant.

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