Standards of Conduct | Peoples Improv Theater

Standards of Conduct

THE PIT DOES NOT TOLERATE DISCRIMINATION, HARASSMENT, OR SEXUAL HARASSMENT.
The Peoples Improv Theater (The PIT) is committed to providing theatrical, educational, and social environments that ensure the equality, dignity, and respect of every PIT performer, artist, student, and instructor. In keeping with this commitment, the PIT strictly prohibits discrimination and harassment based on race, color, religion, age, sex, sexual orientation, gender, gender expression, national origin, disability, veteran or military status, or any other basis protected by federal, state, or local laws. We reserve the right to refuse service to anyone.

This policy will be given to all students, instructors, work studies, and performers at the PIT. It is also posted on our website under “Policies.”

WHAT ARE HARASSMENT & SEXUAL HARASSMENT?
Harassment means unwelcome written, verbal, or physical conduct that has the purpose or effect of interfering with a person’s ability to participate in or benefit from programs at the PIT or makes the PIT an intimidating, hostile, or offensive environment.

Sexual Harassment means unwelcome written, verbal, or physical conduct of a sexual nature (including but not limited to unwelcome sexual advances and requests for sexual favors) that has the purpose or effect of interfering with a person’s ability to participate in or benefit from programs at the PIT or makes the PIT an intimidating, hostile, or offensive environment.

Sexual Harassment can be verbal (using language of an overtly sexual nature, making sexual comments about a person’s body, making sexual innuendos to a fellow student, artist, or employee, talking or asking about sexual preferences or history, making unwanted advances), non-verbal (looking a person up and down in a suggestive fashion, giving unwanted personal gifts, displaying sexually suggestive visual materials, offensive jokes, gestures, comments, emails, or any social media messaging), or physical (unwanted touching of a person’s clothing, hair, or body, standing close or brushing against a person, giving unwanted massages.)

Sexual Harassment also includes sexual assault. No one at the PIT (management, employee, instructor, performer, coach, etc.) may request or require an employee, student, instructor, applicant, performer, or anyone else to submit to sexual harassment as a condition of receiving any benefit such as a raise, promotion, or selection for a performance.

Harassment & Sexual Harassment may be subtle, manipulative, and is not always evident. All forms of gender harassment are included. Sexual Harassment also includes sexual assault which will be reported to authorities.

WHO AND WHERE DOES THIS APPLY TO?
This policy covers conduct that takes place at the Peoples Improv Theater, The PIT Loft, in classes at Simple Studios.This policy applies to the entire PIT community. This policy also pertains to electronic communication that occurs on PIT-related social media accounts.

WHO DO I REPORT INAPPROPRIATE CONDUCT TO?
If you become aware of discrimination or harassment in violation of the policies stated above, you are responsible for immediately reporting the matter to your supervisor, instructor, or coach. You may also report the matter to PIT management – management@thepit-nyc.com.

Supervisors, instructors, coaches, and all PIT staff have a responsibility to report any inappropriate conduct brought to their attention by filing a report with the PIT General Managers. The PIT will conduct a prompt and thorough investigation of all complaints of harassment or discrimination.

The PIT will not retaliate against any person for making a good faith complaint under this policy, regardless of the outcome of the investigation. Similarly, The PIT will not retaliate against any person for providing truthful information in connection with an investigation under this policy. Making a good faith complaint or providing truthful information in connection with an investigation will in no way affect decisions made in regards to casting for any PIT house teams/productions or hiring for any potential jobs including instructors at the PIT. Any employee, instructor or performer of the PIT who retaliates against another for utilizing in good faith the procedures in this policy will be subject to discipline, up to and including termination or termination of their affiliation with The PIT, as the circumstances warrant.

Please note that if in the course of an investigation the PIT learns that a crime has been committed, the PIT may be obligated to report that crime to the relevant authorities. Similarly, the PIT will comply with any requests for records or information made in connection with any Police investigation as required by law, or with any subpoena issued lawfully in any legal proceeding.

WHAT ABOUT STANDARDS FOR PERFORMERS ON STAGE OR STUDENTS DURING CLASS?
The PIT school and theater are both dedicated to providing an open environment where performers can create original comedy, using life experience as well as new ideas and concepts that are continually being explored. In such an environment, performers may from time to time explore a concept or idea that others may find to be inappropriate or uncomfortable. The PIT does not seek to censor its shows or performers, and the PIT asks that any person who enrolls in classes or performs on one of the PIT’s stages approach the situation with an open mind.

However, The PIT mandates that all performers and students approach improvisation and writing with respect for their fellow performers and students, both on-stage and off, avoiding abusive conduct towards an individual performer/student or any group of people (i.e. race, religion, sexual orientation, gender, etc). If any performer feels that such behavior has become abusive or harassing, they may excuse themselves from the performance or exercise and should report the conduct to the parties listed above. If any student feels such behavior has become abusive or harassing, or if they are uncomfortable with the content of a particular scene, they may excuse themselves from the performance or exercise and may report the conduct to the parties listed above. The PIT will not permit retaliation against a performer or student who makes such a report in good faith and/or participates in an investigation under this policy

RELATIONSHIPS BETWEEN INSTRUCTORS & STUDENTS

The PIT values the relationship between instructors and students. Instructors are the main point of contact for students throughout their training and students depend on instructors to provide guidance, support, and evaluations. The relationship between instructors and students must not be threatened by any potential favoritism, conflict of interest, or doubt of intent or fairness.

Therefore, the PIT strictly prohibits instructors from entering into and/or engaging in romantic and/or sexual relationships with a student while the student is enrolled in classes at the PIT.   If a relationship between an instructor and a student exists prior to the student’s enrollment in classes at the PIT, the student in an existing relationship with an instructor may not enroll in a class with that instructor.  Any exceptions to this policy will be will be made on a case-by-case basis.

Additionally, members of the PIT Ensemble committee must recuse themselves when voting on teams or potential house team members with whom they are or have been in a romantic and/or sexual relationship.