This code of conduct describes the values that inform the work and activities of The Satanic Temple. It also sets out guidelines for the kind of behavior that we expect of each other, and outlines procedural steps to file a complaint or allegation if a member has not lived up to our values or reasonable expectations of behavior.
This Code of Conduct describes our values and behaviors in broad terms. It is not exhaustive and a “common sense” test will apply to complaints about conduct not covered here.
These guidelines apply to all national leadership, chapter leadership, chapter members, employees and volunteers engaging in activities on behalf of The Satanic Temple in any official capacity.
- One should strive to act with compassion and empathy towards all creatures in accordance with reason.
- The struggle for justice is an ongoing and necessary pursuit that should prevail over laws and institutions.
- One’s body is inviolable, subject to one’s own will alone.
- The freedoms of others should be respected, including the freedom to offend. To willfully and unjustly encroach upon the freedoms of another is to forgo your own.
- Beliefs should conform to our best scientific understanding of the world. We should take care never to distort scientific facts to fit our beliefs.
- People are fallible. If we make a mistake, we should do our best to rectify it and resolve any harm that may have been caused.
- Every tenet is a guiding principle designed to inspire nobility in action and thought. The spirit of compassion, wisdom, and justice should always prevail over the written or spoken word.
Action: The goal of TST is to facilitate the communication and mobilization of politically aware Satanists, secularists, and advocates for individual liberty and participate in public affairs where ever issues might benefit from rational satanic insights. Members are expected to act in accordance with the Fundamental Tenets.
Solidarity: We are enmeshed in overlapping systems of power rooted in a history of unchallenged theocracy. As individuals, it is our responsibility to acknowledge those systems, and make alliances with the dispossessed. Collectively, it is our task to liberate ourselves and others via positive assertion of our values, rather than attack the opposition.
Liberty: Physical integrity and emotional safety are basic human rights. TST will revoke membership and end any affiliation with any members who assault, degrade, or cause harm to any other individual within the organization or outside. Violence or threat of violence upon a person, property, or institution shall also not be tolerated.
Character: Political resistance is a serious undertaking that requires loyalty, commitment, integrity, and courage. Members must always strive to enact these values in both our political organizing and our personal lives.
Respect & Equal Opportunity: We believe that everyone is entitled to respect and should have an equal opportunity to contribute to our work. We will treat everyone with respect, including those who oppose us. Members have the right to disagree with one another. We encourage all to listen to thoughts of our comrades and understand that we all have a diversity of experiences and beliefs. Additionally, values of dignity and respect encompass recognition of different roles within the movement, including those of other activists, volunteers and staff. These different roles imply differing constraints and authority.
Social Conscience: Members undertake their work in the interests of The Satanic Temple and the wider international movement. They do not seek to gain financial or other material benefit for themselves, their family or friends through this work.
V. ADDITIONAL GUIDELINES FOR BEHAVIOR
This section provides guidelines to inform the conduct of members in specific situations. These guidelines are not exhaustive but are provided to help members negotiate dilemmas that we know can arise.
1. Public statements & interactions with media
All public actions and statements must be approved and vetted by the TST National Council and the TST Executive Council. If a member is approached by media or asked for any official statement regarding an action or belief relating to TST all members must refrain from comment and refer the inquiring party to the Chapter Head.
2. Public actions: Protestors and law enforcement
Members must refrain from confronting protesters, both verbally and physically. We must never show disrespect to the opposition, regardless of slander and attacks on reason. If a member feels physically threatened at any point or uncomfortable, leave the area. Discuss a plan of action prior to any public demonstration if you expect a potential run in with police. It is encouraged to peacefully record any interactions with the public. Report any threats of violence to the Chapter Head.
Members should respect confidentiality, including documentation. Internal information should not be shared beyond members of the local chapter. Members’ names, contact information, and meeting locations are also considered confidential. If you are ever unsure, don’t share.
Material produced by The Satanic Temple is the property of the organization. Consent for use of logo, name or other identity materials may be approved for use for certain projects. You may not use any official materials without prior approval. Approval may also be withdrawn at any time.
5. Health & Safety
Members are expected to take responsibility for their own health and safety and the health and safety of others when undertaking work or organizing events on behalf of TST. The TST National Council is able to provide advice and risk assessment if necessary. We cannot stress the importance of confidentiality enough as our best safety defense.
6. Public Harassment
If members ever feel harassed, bullied or uncomfortable as a result of an interaction with outsiders we encourage you to remove yourself from the situation. Understanding that TST participation is often considered a highly controversial affiliation, members should be cautious of sharing this information with others. If placed in an uncomfortable situation, treat others with respect and refrain from behavior that may be construed as bullying or harassing, including malicious gossip. Bullying and harassment may be by an individual against an individual, or involve groups of people. It may be obvious or it may be insidious. Whatever form it takes, it is unwarranted and unwelcome to the individual. Bullying and harassment may or may not be deliberate.
7. General Decorum
While members may make close friends and comrades as a result of being a part of The Satanic Temple, we encourage all to remember that we are dedicated to action, which requires a dedication of time, work, and resources. We expect all members to behave professionally and to uphold the code of conduct whenever affiliating with TST or its members.
VI. ONLINE CODE OF CONDUCT
As a member of TST, your interactions with others, both online and off, will be held to the TST Code of Conduct. As an individual, we support your freedom of speech and freedom to hold your opinions. Members’ behavior, however, reflects on the organization as whole and also builds the internal culture of TST. Therefore, we have a code of conduct specifically for the internet.
Respect the diversity of opinions you find online and respond in a courteous manner. All TST members’ online conduct must be free of harassment, stalking, threats, abuse, insults, defamation, or humiliation. This includes, but is not limited to, demeaning comments of an ethnic, religious, sexist, or racist nature; and unwanted sexual advances or intimidation by email or online. Such behavior will result in termination from the organization.
As a member of TST, always assume that what you publish on the web is permanent. Anyone can easily print out a comment or save it as a screenshot. Remember, that TST is often engaged in legal suits and exchanges online, or via text have the right to be exposed in the case of a deposition. Think before you hit “send”.
Using TST in connection with surveys, contests, pyramid schemes, chain letters, junk email, spamming or any duplication or unsolicited messages is prohibited and will result termination from the organization.
Any public disagreements between TST members should be taken to a private conversation. If mediation is needed, it will be provided.
VII. FILING A COMPLAINT
It is preferable that problems are addressed informally and locally. When a complaint is made or an allegation received about the conduct of a member, it should be drawn to the attention of the local Chapter Head. If this is not an option, or you require further assistance you may also contact the TST National Council via the TST Complaint Form.
1. Informal Process
Informal action will involve the Chapter Head having a conversation with the member(s) concerned describing the complaint and listening to their version of events. If the grounds for complaint seem reasonable then recommendations may be provided in writing to avoid a recurrence of the incident. If, during discussion, it appears that informal action will not satisfactorily address the complaint or allegation, the formal procedure may be used.
2. Formal Process
Formal complaints can be submitted to the National Council via the TST Complaint Form. A formal process will be used where a complaint or allegation is serious, or where repeated concerns about behavior have arisen. A decision to investigate an incident does not indicate support for a complaint, merely that further enquiry is necessary.
After determining that grounds for an investigation are merited, the member will be notified in writing about the complaint, about the decision to investigate.
The aim will be to complete an investigation within 30 working days, although this may not always be possible. The purpose of the investigation is to establish whether there are reasonable grounds for believing that a breach of the Code of Conduct has occurred. If no reasonable grounds are found to exist, the member will be notified and the matter will be closed.
If the complaint is felt to be justified and a member has fallen short of the standards expected in the Code, than the National Council will determine the action that is required. In some circumstances, this may involve a loss of membership or title within the organization.
Confidentiality is of the utmost importance and should be regarded as binding by everyone concerned. An allegation, and any subsequent information, will only be disclosed in the interests of an effective investigation, ensuring a fair Code of Conduct meeting (or review) and to the extent clearly required for the implementation of recommendations or instructions.