[OSGeo-Discuss] [OSGeo-Conf] LGBT in OSGeo

Cameron Shorter cameron.shorter at gmail.com
Fri Mar 9 10:44:23 PST 2018

Mark and others on this list,

I'm seeing significant agreement here in promoting diversity within 
OSGeo. I encourage anyone who feels strongly about this should consider 
starting to craft revised text for OSGeo policy documents. Until that 
happens, we are all talk, no action, no impact.

The process: Write draft changes to our policy documents, invite review, 
get rough consensus on wording, get the conference committee to vote to 
accept the proposed changes, update the official documents.

Documents that I think need reworking are:



Warm regards, Cameron

On 8/3/18 1:16 am, Mark Iliffe wrote:
> Dear María,
> Thanks for the update on this, we as FOSS4G DLOC will follow and 
> further participate with interest.
> With regard to holding this conversation slowly, may I kindly counsel 
> that we proceed as quickly and as openly as possible - to be clear, I 
> do not view this as a point of debate for Dar es Salaam, but for our 
> community as a whole - the ripples of this conversation go far beyond 
> FOSS4G this year.
> The views and their number expressed have reinforced my (personal) 
> view that to our credit, we have a great appetite for discussion on 
> this within our community regarding diversity and inclusion - to 
> proceed slowly in limited forums may provide the signal that we are 
> not taking this seriously - we know this is _not_ the case!! - but 
> there is a difference between fact and perception unfortunately.
> I am not asking for people to come out of the closet to engage in this 
> discussion; Personally, I am not LGBT+, however, I have a direct 
> interest in making our community to be as inclusive and representative 
> of our world as much as possible, this includes those in our community 
> in relative and/or absolute poverty (ie. those that utilise QGIS to 
> digitise their communities), or from under-represented communities - I 
> believe that we can participate in this discussion not based on our 
> race, creed, gender, sexual orientation but on the basis as we as a 
> community stand weaker if one of us is disadvantaged - can we not 
> engage independently as a member of humanity working towards 
> inclusivity and acceptance, instead of categorising ourselves?
> This maybe a tone deaf view - and if so, please accept my humble 
> apologies - but we clearly have a challenge here and while we cannot 
> change the laws of any nation that we are working on, we can send the 
> message to the OSGeo community that we are listening and through the 
> CoC/diversity statement/working groups on LGBT+ etc. that *_YOU ARE 
> *_
> _*
> This reinforces my personal view that we need to ensure that all are 
> kept aware of these discussions - accordingly, I kindly request that 
> we keep this in the OSGeo discuss board and make the F2F discussions 
> in Bonn accessible for all and that the board takes appropriate action 
> to ensure that this message is heard loud and clear throughout.
> Many thanks,
> Mark
>> On 7 Mar 2018, at 02:37, María Arias de Reyna <delawen at gmail.com 
>> <mailto:delawen at gmail.com>> wrote:
>> Dear Mark,
>> Thank you very much for your email.
>> I agree we should continue the discussion in the open. Now we have a
>> clear view of the current situation from the board (and people
>> following that list). A reason why I personally haven't moved this
>> quicker more open is because I don't want OSGeo to be responsible of
>> people coming out of the closet on the community and then travelling
>> to Tanzania and having problems because of that. The risk is very low,
>> as you have confirmed, but this is a very sensitive issue in many
>> countries. Everyone should be aware of this before starting to point
>> personal experiences, especially people coming from privileged
>> countries where being LGBT+ is not only legal, but socially accepted.
>> We have an OSGeo meeting in Bonn very soon and I think that is a
>> proper place to discuss this, as it will be face to face and some
>> people will be able to discuss this without having to write their
>> names anywhere. I agree there should be an LGBT+ group inside OSGeo,
>> and maybe we should provide the tools to allow members from sensitive
>> countries/personal situations to participate anonymously. (How? I
>> don't know yet.) And we should promote also some kind of diversity
>> advice group, where all kind of discriminations can be addressed.
>> Maybe merge this idea with the CoC team? Maybe a separated dedicated
>> team? I don't know.
>> Thanks for this and if you need some immediate action from the board,
>> just let us know.
>> Regards,
>> María.
>> On Wed, Mar 7, 2018 at 12:11 AM, Mark Iliffe <markiliffe at gmail.com 
>> <mailto:markiliffe at gmail.com>> wrote:
>>> Dear OSGeo Board,
>>> On the 20th of February I wrote in response to a concern raised on LGBT+
>>> concerns in Dar es Salaam. To this, set out the following four action
>>> points:
>>>> To help move forward on this, we will 1. Ensure that we provide 
>>>> guidance
>>>> to those in our community on this issue; 2. Seek dialog within our 
>>>> community
>>>> on this issue, I am personally contactable on this and fully 
>>>> welcome any and
>>>> all people who wish to discuss this on a face-to-face (over VC) or 
>>>> any other
>>>> medium that the community would feel better with; 3. Recommend that the
>>>> board puts in place guidance for future OSGEO conferences other 
>>>> this issues;
>>>> 4. Support the formation of an LGBT+ grouping within OSGEO to 
>>>> better support
>>>> appropriate guidance on this issue.
>>> To update on this:
>>> 1. We are collaborating with Humanitarian OpenStreetMap Team on this 
>>> issue,
>>> to ensure that the response to our mutual communities are in 
>>> lock-step on
>>> this issue. Guidance will be published for consultation for the 
>>> conference
>>> shortly;
>>> 2. I have reached out to members of the LGBT+ community that I know
>>> personally on a bilateral basis. I would welcome further dialogue 
>>> with the
>>> OSGeo LGBT+ community on a bilateral, private basis for people to voice
>>> their concerns in confidence;
>>> Points 3 and 4 are of specific interest, in the view of the LOC of 
>>> FOSS4G
>>> 2018, as we can set policy direction for our conference, but have no 
>>> mandate
>>> nor mechanism to set policy across OSGeo. To this end, I would formally
>>> request, in my role of Chair of FOSS4G for the OSGeo Board to provide
>>> direction to future FOSS4G conferences and to further support and 
>>> service
>>> this community within our wider community.
>>> Clearly, there is a desire for LGBT+ to be considered further in our
>>> community - as noted in the transcript of the previous board meeting 
>>> [1],
>>> but I think this needs to be communicated to our wider community - I 
>>> see the
>>> discussions on the OSGeo board mailing list, though this may not 
>>> have the
>>> widest circulation. I am also available to have a video conference 
>>> with the
>>> board, at their earliest possible convenience if such an invitation was
>>> extended.
>>> Finally, I really want to stress this for our conference in Dar es 
>>> Salaam
>>> this year to our community: We want to have the most inclusive 
>>> conference
>>> that we can possibly have. In the same way that previous FOSS4G 
>>> events in
>>> Boston and North Carolina have demonstrated, our conferences have 
>>> dealt with
>>> challenges within the wider legislative framework of their host 
>>> country, we
>>> as a community are welcoming to any and all with open arms. We will 
>>> publish
>>> guidance for those travelling, and if you still wish to participate but
>>> cannot come to Dar es Salaam, get in touch with us - we will help 
>>> you get
>>> involved! Our FOSS4G will only be successful due to ALL the people 
>>> in our
>>> OSGeo community; we are a big and dynamic family - we will reflect 
>>> and live
>>> that this year in Dar es Salaam, and I hope in the many years to come.
>>> Best,
>>> Mark
>>> [1] https://wiki.osgeo.org/wiki/Board_Meeting_2018-03-01
>>> ---------- Forwarded message ----------
>>> From: jorge.dejesus <jorge.dejesus at geocat.net 
>>> <mailto:jorge.dejesus at geocat.net>>
>>> Date: 21 February 2018 at 08:26
>>> Subject: Re: [OSGeo-Conf] LGBT in Tanzania
>>> To: conference_dev at lists.osgeo.org 
>>> <mailto:conference_dev at lists.osgeo.org>
>>> Hi to all
>>> I was following the LGBT  in Tanzania discussion, and I am happy to 
>>> see the
>>> question added to the next RfP.
>>> The discussion on LGBT rights and safety requires a bit of common 
>>> sense, I
>>> am LGBT it is one part of my live as being OsGEO member is another 
>>> (one of
>>> many) part(s), normally these two don't intercept much, personally I 
>>> think
>>> this is  why the LGBT community is present in OsGEO but very invisible.
>>> What?? No LGBT birds of the feather in FOSS4G ???
>>> Having a code of conduct that is non discriminatory, we must take  into
>>> consideration the rights of minorities and safety of ALL the 
>>> participants of
>>> and a OsGEO conference, the LOC have to do their best for the 
>>> safety.  LOC
>>> should also informed  participants on what  are the real  problems that
>>> participants may have to face, then is up to the participants to 
>>> decide if
>>> they fell comfortable to to attend the conference.
>>> Again, nice to see this topic discussed and remember these comments 
>>> are my 2
>>> cents
>>> Enjoy your day
>>> Jorge
>>> On 21-02-18 10:30, Till Adams wrote:
>>> Darrell, @ohers,
>>> thanks for the sum up, I agree in including such a question in the next
>>> RfP. In order to preserve your proposal, I've added your 
>>> questionTill here:
>>> https://wiki.osgeo.org/wiki/Rfp
>>> I will add this to the next RfP-text.
>>> Till
>>> Am 20.02.2018 um 18:32 schrieb Darrell Fuhriman:
>>> "FOSS4G attracts a global, diverse community. Are there any laws, or
>>> social norms, in your proposed location that would make members of our
>>> community feel unsafe or unwelcome? That could include, but is not
>>> limited to, anti-LGBTQ+ policies, policies that would prevent the free
>>> exercise of religion, restrictions on certain activities based on
>>> gender or other factor, etc?”
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Cameron Shorter
Technology Demystifier, Learnosity
Open Technologies Consultant

M +61 (0) 419 142 254

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