In light of recent news events surrounding the government’s attitudes towards the trans community, Exchange wants to reiterate to all of our patrons that we have a zero tolerance policy towards all instances of transphobia, racism, sexism and classism.
We believe in a community that celebrates people’s differences and uplifts communities who have been historically marginalised.
Throughout history the progress of the arts and cultural sector has relied heavily upon contributions from the LGBT+ community, without them venues like Exchange would not be where they are today.
Exchange refutes the prime minister’s claims that ‘virtue signalling’ has ‘replaced common sense’ in the public sector and we do not believe creating inclusive and safe spaces for all to be a self righteous act of virtue signalling, but rather a responsibility that we take seriously.
Since we reopened our doors following the pandemic, Exchange has been proud to offer fully gender neutral toilets. This decision was made in order to make a more inclusive gig going experience. Overall this has been a successful step forward that we as well as many other venues, cafes, bars and public spaces around the city have decided to take, and we have no intention of back tracking on that.
We regularly have meetings with our staff where we discuss how we can improve our inclusivity and accessibility. The safety of our customers, staff and performers is always the thing we look to improve upon most, and as a group we don’t believe that putting in policies that would exclusionary to members of our community would be productive.
To all our trans and non binary customers, community members, performers, promoters and staff members we can only continue to offer unwavering support.
We believe in Bristol’s empathy as a city and hope that we can do right by those in communities currently being targeted.
If you, a friend or anyone you know has ever been the target of transphobic harassment or abuse in our venue please know you have our full support. Just notify a manager, staff member or one of our security team and they will handle the situation in a way that protects your dignity. Further from this if you have any feedback on how we can improve Exchange please email us at email@example.com.
Here are some links and resources we have gathered that offer information and guidance for those who wish to know more about how they can support the trans community or those looking for support themselves:
- Albert Kennedy Trust – How To Support Young Trans People
- Stonewall UK – The Truth About Trans
- Trans Pride South West Resources
- Trans Liberation Front Bristol
- Mind Bristol LGBTQ+ Resource Pack
- Bristol Crossroads
- Novara Media – There Were No Complaints About Trans Women on Women’s Wards
Image featured by Black Lodge Press @blacklodgepress