From April 26th – 28th 2023 the 5th EPATH conference took place in Killarney, where we re-connected, met up with old and new friends, and had extremely well prepared and up to date keynote lectures. However, we regret to inform you that our code of conduct has been broken. It is with concern and disappointment that we have read multiple articles in the media which show that audio recordings have been made of keynote presentations.
We want to let everybody know that we did not know that presentations were recorded, and the authors listed in these articles were not registered as conference participants. This is a breach of our code of conduct, which states the following:
“We are committed to providing a harassment-free conference and training experience for everyone, regardless of gender, gender identity and expression, sexual orientation, disability, physical appearance, body size, ethnicity, or religion. Harassment of participants, speakers, staff or volunteers in any form will not be tolerated. Harassment includes offensive verbal comments, and other forms of using disrespectful and pathologizing language inconsistent with human rights standards, deliberate intimidation, stalking, following, harassing, photography or recording without explicit consent, sustained disruption of talks or other events, inappropriate physical contact, and unwelcome sexual attention. Conference participants asked to stop any harassing behavior are expected to comply immediately. These policies apply in every space at the venue related to the conference, and to all participants in every role.”
EPATH wants to repeat this statement to make clear that we discourage any non-consensual behavior so that everybody feels the ability to speak freely. We are concerned that this breach of the code of conduct will have an impact by imposing barriers to speak that are needlessly intimidating, causing uncertainty and worries, and are inherently harassing.
It is EPATH’s mission to promote mental, physical and social health of transgender people in Europe, and to foster the European knowledge and skills in transgender care. With that intention in mind we voiced our code of conduct and trusted that these regulations were to be followed. We apologize to the speakers that were recorded, and to our attendees for the impact this might have, and hope that these kind of violations do not happen again. We wish to maintain our trust in our attendees and not to be forced to change our registration process. We will continue to assess the situation for future meetings.
the EPATH board