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Our Commitments

From the Moment You Arrive: Operate our venues with a focus on welcoming all patrons, treating each as a neighbor and a friend, with emphasis on respectful, appreciative, and positive interactions.  Including training on inclusion in our onboarding materials, and representing diversity of age, race, gender, abilities, and all the complexities we can in our venues and marketing so that all feel welcome in our space.

On the Screen: Take a capacious view of inclusivity and diversity, to include global, cultural, and artistic diversity, as well as gender, racial, political, social, and experiential diversity. To this end, we will continue to exhibit films from around the globe; films from diverse genres; films from unique or underrepresented cultural perspectives; all to illuminate the diversity of human experience. We seek to allow individuals to see themselves or their life experiences on our screens.  We will build programming that meets our community’s needs, with a focus on the specific power of cinema as a form of storytelling. Our goal continues to be to open eyes to lives, cultures, places, and life experiences that are often underrepresented or ignored in cinema.  

What We Track: Record actionable items annually, review them at all levels of the organization frequently, and determine the best pathways forward to improve. We will internally promote and encourage learning, listening and understanding of anti-racist and allies topics and opportunities to better the world.  We will join and participate in discussions and programs being held by organizations that specialize in the fields of diversity, equity, inclusion, and belonging.  We will include in all leadership meetings at the c-suite and board level an agenda item on diversity and inclusion to discuss ever-improving, ever-learning, and ever-striving for equity.  Hold ourselves accountable for learning and improving.

Pay for Value: Budget annually for SLFS to pay for staff to attend such programs and ask that they share their learnings on how to improve SLFS. SLFS will never ask for pro-bono work from BIPOC or other marginalized communities during our self-education and growth about race issues and anti-racism and allies’ philosophies.  We will pay for expertise and assistance in all our needs in this category.

NEVER ZERO Programming:  Hold ourselves accountable for never having an absence of programming that represents marginalized voices.  In addition, we commit a financial resource annually to programming, to provide honorariums to BIPOC & LGBTQIA+ advisors and those who can assist us in evaluating the quality of stories told at SLFS.   

AMPLIFY Outreach: Amplify the voices of institutions and individuals doing good work in the anti-racism field every week on our platforms, also amplifying those who are experts to our staff and allowing learnings from these institutions and their work.

NEVER ALONE Representation: Work to balance the BIPOC and LGBTQIA+ representation and strive to ensure our BIPOC and LGBTQIA+ are also not experiencing undue pressures for being the only one represented on our staff or board(s).  We have work to do here.

Continue Cultural Tours: Retain and grow our cultural tours and the cultural tours committee that represents and leads the tours at SLFS.  We will offer a paid $300 honorarium for every lead programmer represented on the committee.

Build Leaders: Build valuable future-leaders by ensuring an annual budget to a meaningful internship project that is dedicated to BIPOC, LGBTQIA+ and other marginalized communities.

Democracy Matters: Dedicate election day to the people of Utah.  Those that vote will get in free to any/all things happenings at SLFS that day, whether in-person or online events.

Representative Leadership: Build governing and advisory boards whose membership represents the state of Utah and its diversity, with a special focus on Salt Lake County and its metropolitan area. We will create new leadership positions at SLFS to expand our staff more quickly and utilize mentoring and internship policy to build a diverse hiring pool.  SLFS has an almost 100% retention rate in leadership, so to change the racial/ethnic leadership dynamics at SLFS, we must grow our human capital and invest capital into the creation of new positions in leadership that will take our organization into the future. SLFS will invest a minimum of 60K in our annual 2021-22 budgets to achieve change.  We will create one leadership role and one coordinator role designed to mentor a leader of the future. We recognize the challenges that Covid-19 presents to this vision.  Problem-solving is in order.  We have engaged the hearing impaired and visually impaired communities, and now must find ways to engage a deeper participation at the board, advisory board, program, and champion levels.

Hiring Policy & Practices: We support hiring practices that eliminate barriers to access jobs in our sector.  In 2018/19 we required mandatory training for all hiring managers to learn better how to measure recruitment techniques and ensure a diverse applicant pool for every job posted at SLFS.  We will continue to build upon hiring practices and diversity training. We mandate that job postings follow best practices for equitability by training hiring personnel to understand and have meaningful relationships with diverse communities.  By continuing to build upon our hiring policies to eliminate racism and bias, as well as barriers to access we set a goal to improve how our communities in the arts hire. Policies demand every job listing: 1.) Discloses salary range and never asks for salary history or salary requirement 2.) Does not ask for Higher-education except for specialized positions (legal, accounting, counseling, etc). 3.) Does not exclude candidates with disabilities through requirements like must have working vehicle or be able to lift 50 pounds, unless those are essential duties. 4.) Does not exclude candidates with criminal records unless those records are relevant to the current job, and 5.) Hiring personnel will interview for talent first when the role can be mentored and does not require specialty knowledge. SLFS will hire for our core values we appreciate and mentor where we can, including on-the-job training where feasible so that we can begin to break down some barriers to access for jobs in our field.

Join Forces: Share our commitment to diversity, equity, inclusion, and belonging with current and potential donors and encourage anti-racist philanthropic ideas.  Join groups of philanthropy working for positive anti-racism change, such as CCF.

Expand Access: Focus on program access for those of all abilities by providing sign language at all live events, by demanding CCAP and OCAP files for all films so that we might represent hearing and visually impaired, and by modifying our website for varying abilities to participate in SLFS programs.

Representative Vendors: Contract with diverse and locally based vendors and giving preference to vendors with proven records of similar commitment to diversity. 

Representative Artists:  Mentor and support filmmakers and media storytellers that span the spectrum of the human complexity we seek to represent.  Support their works as they learn the arts and craft of filmmaking in our MAST and community projects. Engage audiences at all ages, from the very young to the ageless through creative curation of films that will span the ages of a lifetime.

We know that we only build capacity by fully engaging with our diverse community. We review our project commitments, our personnel, and our budgets for information that will help us in our commitment to diversity, equity, inclusivity, and belonging. We hold ourselves accountable to an organizational standard for the nonprofit sector, and we seek, through our organization’s several feedback loops (from boards, auditors, donors, the public) the information and feedback that will allow us to do even better.