JAWS Values Statement
Journalism & Women Symposium (JAWS) is committed to providing a welcoming, inclusive
and supportive environment for everyone who participates in our gatherings and interactions.
We value truth, respect, openness, acceptance and generosity of spirit in our discussions, and
a commitment to supporting one another’s journalistic ambition and pursuit of excellence.
We honor our past and embrace our future.
These values guide our conduct as an organization and as individuals. We commit to ensuring
these values are upheld as provided in our organizational policies.
Code of Conduct
To promote these Values, JAWS is committed to providing a positive, inclusive and
supportive environment for all participants. All participants, including, but not limited to,
attendees, speakers, volunteers, exhibitors, JAWS staff or board, and others, are expected to
abide by this Code of Conduct. This policy applies to all JAWS-related events, meetings,
social media platforms and other JAWS-sponsored activities, including those by other
organizations held in conjunction with JAWS on public or private platforms.
JAWS strives to foster and promote a vibrant, healthy, and equitable learning environment
where participants can learn, share knowledge and feel supported. JAWS welcomes people
from all walks of life and diverse backgrounds. If you experience or witness incidents of
discrimination, harassment or unacceptable behavior, JAWS asks that you inform either
Eloiza Altoro, Executive Director, or 414-333-6716, or Jenn Kho, Board President,
, or another member of the Executive Committee
if the issue involves both the ED and the President, so that appropriate action can be taken. If
a crime has been committed, alert law enforcement immediately.
Unacceptable behavior includes the following:
• Harassment, intimidation, or discrimination in any form.
• Verbal abuse of any attendee, speaker, volunteer, exhibitor, JAWS board or staff member, or
• Examples of verbal abuse include but are not limited to, verbal comments related to gender,
sexual orientation, disability, physical appearance, body size, race/ethnicity, religion, national
origin, inappropriate use of nudity and/or sexual images in public spaces or in presentations, or
threatening or stalking any attendee, speaker, volunteer, exhibitor, JAWS staff or board, or
• Disruption of presentations during in-person or on-line sessions, or at other events organized by
• All participants must comply with the instructions of the moderator and any JAWS staff.
• Recording, copying or taking screenshots of Q&As or any chat room or in-person activity that takes place in
the a live or virtual space without prior permission from the organizer or presenters. This ensures
protection of intellectual property, as well as an individual’s privacy.
• Other actions that are determined by the Executive Committee, consistent with organizational
policy, to violate JAWS’ values and Code of Conduct.
The JAWS Board of Directors reserves the right to take any action deemed necessary and
appropriate, including immediate removal from the meeting, event or social media platform
without warning or refund, in response to any incident of unacceptable behavior, and JAWS
reserves the right to prohibit attendance at any future meeting, event or platform, online or
When a person participating in any kind of a JAWS activity experiences or witnesses
behavior that may violate this Code of Conduct, the steps outlined below will be pursued. At
all times in implementing this Code of Conduct, JAWS’ standards of fairness and equity and
the broader ethical standards of journalists, including verification and confidentiality, will be
Person with a grievance reports it as soon as possible to a member of the JAWS board or
event moderator. If action is required to stop disruption or further harm, immediate steps may
be taken to stop the disruption or ask the individual to leave, as determined in the Board
member or moderator’s discretion.
For matters not requiring immediate action, at least two members of the Executive Committee will
review each report in a timely manner. This review will include speaking to all parties involved, including
witnesses, and will be mindful of avoiding additional harm to any of the parties involved.
The reviewers will take their findings to the full Executive Committee with recommendations on
next steps. (Note: if the matter involves someone on the Executive Committee, persons not involved will
address the issue and may bring in other members to assist if needed.) If they find that a violation of the
JAWS Code of Conduct has occurred, they may recommend mediation led by a designated JAWS
member and/or measures such as loss of membership privileges. Any loss of membership privileges will
be for a specified period of time. At the end of that time, privileges may be restored if so desired by the
individual involved and approved by the Executive Committee after a determination that the initial
inappropriate behavior is not likely to happen again.
This entire process will be strictly confidential. This includes but is not limited to conversations,
verbal and written, private or public, about allegations or responses.
Health & Safety Policy
We will follow the CDC and Austin-Travis County guidelines.
The Austin Public Health (APH) and the Center for Disease Control (CDC) have provided
recommendations on what people should do to stay safe during the COVID-19 pandemic. Please visit their websites for more information. Austin COVID guidelines: https://www.austintexas.gov/covid19.
The CDC COVID guidelines: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/prevent-getting-
This policy is subject to reassessment and will change if the risk level increases or circumstances change.
JAWS requires that all attendees, including exhibitors, vendors, and staff, show proof of full COVID-19
vaccination when checking in at onsite registration, which consists of the full course of the vaccine plus
booster, before being allowed to enter any conference facilities. This includes the conference center and
other facilities at which official JAWS conference events will take place. JAWS will not require a COVID
test prior to attendance at the conference. This may change if circumstances change.
JAWS will not make exemptions for religious or medical reasons.
Masks are currently optional at all JAWS 2022 events occurring at the convention center, hotel, and any
other venues hosting JAWS conference-related activities. This may change if circumstances change.
Conference attendees, exhibitors, vendors, and speakers will be required to participate in a wellness
check-in before they receive their event badge. Everyone will be asked to answer the following
questions before they will receive their badge and gain entry into the conference:
• Are you fully vaccinated? Please show a copy of vaccination card as proof.
• In the past 24 hours, have you experienced COVID-19 symptoms?
• Have you or people with whom you have close contact (such as someone who lives in your
home) tested positive or had any COVID-19 symptoms in the last 14 days?
Personal Protective Equipment (PPE)
JAWS encourages you to bring your own PPE to the conference, but will provide access to extra masks,
sanitizer and antibacterial wipes, while supplies last.
Social distancing practices will be implemented according to all venue, local and state guidelines. Social
distancing indicators will be available. Attendees may choose to select green, yellow, or red stickers to
wear throughout the meeting on their badge to indicate social distancing comfort level.**
• Green: Contact is ok, high fives, handshakes and hugs are acceptable.
• Yellow: Very limited contact, fist bumps or elbows only.
• Red: No contact, please. Maintain acceptable distance when possible.
** Regardless of indicators, always please ask for permission first before physical contact of any kind.
Health and Safety Signage
Signage will be placed to remind all attendees to social distance and frequently wash and sanitize their
Updates to Policy
As the meeting approaches, we will continually review the latest guidelines from the Centers for Disease
Control and Prevention and World Health Organization, as well as review industry best practices. We will
update our policies accordingly as they relate to local conditions and risk factors and will continue to
comply with all applicable laws and regulations. Please check back with us regularly on the “Health and
Safety” section of our conference website for updates.