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Anti-Racism Plan

Raven Theatre is committed to the creation of an equitable, diverse, and inclusive environment within which artists can practice their craft as the theater tells stories of the present and the past which connect us to the cultural landscape.  We are committed to removing implicit barriers and to creating explicit opportunities for persons to participate in the telling of these stories. A commitment to antiracism is a core tenet of that work.

Raven Theatre recognizes the intersections and multiplicity of identities that exist within the American Theatre and acknowledges that these commitments to antiracism do not excuse us from the work of addressing the oppression of other marginalized identities.

  1. Land Acknowledgement

  • We will prepare a land acknowledgement statement for (i) the lobby of the theater building, (ii) the programs for our theatrical productions, and (iii) our website.
  • We will incorporate a land acknowledgement into the curtain speech before performances of our theatrical productions.
  • We will prepare land acknowledgement materials for the lobby literature display.
  • We will pursue an ongoing relationship with the indigenous peoples of the Edgewater/Chicago area.

  1. Training

  • We will provide training for our salaried staff on an annual basis.
  • We will provide training for our hourly front-of-house staff on an annual basis (which will include training on de-escalation techniques and unconscious bias behaviors).
  • We will provide training for the members of the board of directors.

  1. Audience Reaction

  • We will include in the curtain speech before performances of our theatrical productions explicit language indicating that all reactions to the performance, so long as they do not unduly disrupt the performance, are acceptable.
  • We will not constrain harmless audience reactions to the performance taking place on stage.

  1. Investing in BIPOC Artists

  • We will continue to form and maintain long lasting relationships with BIPOC actors, designers, and playwrights.

  1. Cultural Care

  • We will strive to create an environment in which BIPOC artists feel safe, especially when the subject matter of the production is difficult or sensitive. If necessary, we will provide counseling to artists to assist them in dealing with the subject matter.
  • We will provide information on available additional resources for dealing with difficult or sensitive material.
  • We will prioritize emotional health in addressing any trauma which may arise in the rehearsal process.

  1. Accountability

  • We will distribute an antiracism policy to all persons involved with a production addressing actions, attitudes, and words which the theater will not tolerate.
  • We will require a signed acknowledgement from each person involved with a production that they have read and understand the theater’s antiracism policy.
  • We will create an EDI committee comprised of members of board of directors and community members charged with oversight of the theater’s implementation of this plan and other of the theater’s EDI efforts.

  1. Hiring and Recruiting

  • We will implement compensation transparency in all job postings.
  • We will implement hiring procedures which secure a diverse pool of applicants.
  • We will not include requirements unrelated to a position in the hiring criteria for the position.
  • We will survey the demographics and skills of our board members and take appropriate steps to fill gaps identified in this survey in the future expansion and recruitment of board members.

  1. Programming

  • We will strive to program at least 33% of our annual programming with BIPOC directors and playwrights with a goal of 50% over time.
  • We will strive to engage at least 50% of the cast and crew members for our theatrical programming who are BIPOC artists.

  1. Transparency

  • We will make this plan available on our website.
  • We will issue an annual report with respect to the implementation of the provisions of this plan.
  • We will assess and revise to the extent necessary the provisions of this plan.

Last Revision Date:      May 2021