New Coalition Formed to End Sexual Harassment in the Events Industry

May 15, 2018

In the wake of movements such as #MeToo and #TimesUp, every industry must act to end sexual harassment and create positive, lasting change.

The exhibitions and meetings industries are no exception.

A new coalition recently was formed to eradicate sexual harassment in the events industry and workplace; a task force that will identify tools and develop new resources to assist in educating individuals and the events industry about sexual harassment. 

Comprising leaders and executives from organizations including the American Society of Association Executives (ASAE); Association for Women in Events (AWE); the Events Industry Council (EIC); the International Association of Exhibitions and Events (IAEE); IMEX; JMIC; Meeting Planners International (MPI); Professional Convention Management Association (PCMA); and SITE, the group was formed after each group determined that this issue required policies that span beyond the confines of each individual organization.

“All the organizations came together because the ethical concerns and human rights would be better served working together, so we can stop sexual harassment from occurring in the industry,” said John H. Graham, IV, president and CEO of ASAE.

Industry leaders who have joined this task force include:

  • John H. Graham, President and CEO, ASAE
  • Susan Robertson, Executive Vice President, ASAE and ASAE Foundation President
  • Bob Skelton, Chief Administration Officer, ASAE
  • Kiki J. Fox, President and Co-Founder, AWE
  • Carrie Abernathy, Past-President & Co-Founder, AWE
  • Johnnie White, Treasurer, AWE
  • Julie Sullivan, Vice President, AWE
  • Nicole Unger, Secretary, AWE
  • Karen Kotowski, CEO, EIC
  • Cathy Breden, COO, IAEE
  • Carina Bauer, CEO, IMEX     
  • Rod Cameron, Executive Director, JMIC
  • Amanda Armstrong, Chair, MPI
  • Sherrif Karamat, President and CEO, PCMA
  • Rhonda Brewer, Immediate Past President, SITE

While Abernathy and Fox gathered these industry leaders together for regular meetings and discussed the direction of the coalition, Fox has been charged with organizing action items and driving the initiative.

The group’s next step is to release a webinar introducing experts on the subject matter. 

“It’s imperative that our organizations present a united front against sexual harassment in the industry,” Fox said. “Together, we are declaring zero tolerance for behavior that harasses or discriminates.”

All nine organizations involved will be posting more details about upcoming education and initiatives around this subject to their respective website homepages, while the coalition encourages the events industry to follow along and participate.

Don’t miss any event news! Sign up for any (or all) of our e-newsletters HERE and engage with us on TwitterFacebookLinkedIn & Instagram!

 

Add new comment

Partner Voices
  MGM Resorts is renowned for its exceptional service and diverse venue options across Las Vegas, Detroit, Springfield, National Harbor, Biloxi, and Atlantic City, providing flexible spaces for meetings of any size. Beyond these offerings, MGM Resorts distinguishes itself through a strong commitment to social responsibility and sustainability, making it an ideal choice for your next meeting.  At the core of MGM Resorts' company values is its platform, "Focused on What Matters," dedicated to meeting customer needs while advancing socially responsible practices. This commitment is evident in several key areas:  Protecting Natural Resources  MGM Resorts is home to industry-leading recycling, renewable electricity and water conservation programs. Some highlights include a cogeneration power plant at ARIA, producing ultra-efficient electricity; one of America’s largest contiguous rooftop solar arrays atop the convention center at Mandalay Bay; and onsite wells that provide water for the celebrated Fountains of Bellagio, avoiding reliance on precious Colorado River water. These efforts and many more save on natural resources while boosting attendee satisfaction.  Committed to Community  Always striving to be good neighbors, MGM Resorts works to avoid food waste and combat food insecurity with the Feeding Forward program. In partnership with local food banks, they safely divert unserved food to food insecure members of the community. Since 2016, over 5 million meals have been provided, highlighting MGM Resorts' commitment to minimizing food waste and addressing community needs.  MGM Resorts supports clients in their responsible-meetings efforts, not only with efficient venues but also waste-reducing décor and signage; sustainable food and beverage options; and outreach to help planners communicate sustainability efforts to attendees. What’s more, they offer a Mindful Meetings series that puts attendee wellness first—through fitness and mindfulness activities, and in give-back events with local charity organizations.   Fostering Diversity & Inclusion  To MGM Resorts, a diverse and talented workforce is essential to success. By cultivating innovative strategies that consider multiple perspectives and viewpoints, the company creates an inclusive workplace culture that benefits its employees and community. MGM Resorts takes pride in being a welcoming home for veterans, individuals with disabilities, people from diverse backgrounds, LGBTQ+ community members, and more. This commitment to inclusion is reflected in the company's recruitment and hiring practices and its social responsibility initiatives. From the workplace to the community, MGM Resorts' commitment to diversity, equity and inclusion remains unwavering, and its efforts continue to create a more equitable and sustainable world for all.  MGM Resorts offers unparalleled service and venue options while standing out for its proactive approach to sustainability and community engagement. Choosing MGM Resorts for your next meeting means aligning with a company that values social responsibility, efficiency, and attendee satisfaction, ensuring a meaningful and impactful event experience.