The Victoria Event Centre (VEC) has taken steps to combat sexualized violence and harassment at its events by hiring a ‘consent captain.’
Tanille Geib, a sexual health educator and intimacy coach, will be available at VEC events to support people who feel threatened and talk to others about their behaviour if necessary.
“I’m not here to police people and their behaviour,” she said in a Canadian Press interview. “I’m definitely there to support if something uncomfortable’s happening.”
As consent captain, Geib will approach anyone accused of a non-consensual act and try talking through it with them. If the person involved isn’t willing to cooperate or change their behaviour, they may be asked to leave the venue.
New position comes in the wake of #MeToo
Ongoing discussions around consent and harassment since the start of the #MeToo movement last October encouraged the VEC to take steps in curbing harmful behaviour in its own space.
“It put a lot of these issues to the top of public consciousness,” said booking co-ordinator Chris Fretwell. “It felt like we were in a good position to be able to respond with something concrete that we can do in our space.”
Fretwell said a typical bouncer may not be as well equipped to handle instances of assault or harassment, so Geib’s position will provide some welcome support.