Version 1, 14th April 2020
Culture of change
The first principle of UCRF is to affect systemic change in the fashion sector, for fashion that respects Earth’s limits and the health and survival of all species. This means that we, its board and members, always have to ask – is this action likely to lead to most possible change, with priorities outlined in the UCRF manifesto. Is this the best way to spend our energy, time and resources?
UCRF is a platform for collective action and not for self-promotion. This also means that individuals or collectives, whether founders, board members or members, cannot use the UCRF as a platform for financial gain.
UCRF seeks to be a leader in its culture of change as well as through its actions. To this end, we take time to reflect on our culture at each meeting and the AGM.
Culture of collaboration
UCRF keeps seeking to expand diversity in fashion and give space for voices that otherwise often remain unheard.
UCRF acknowledges that with privilege often comes a sense of entitlement to take up discussion space and therefore actively seeks to calibrate contributions.
UCRF strives for accessibility. For example, English is our working language, but as most members have English as a second language UCRF English seeks to be tolerant of mistakes and see diversity of articulation as a value.
In a situation when individuals are acting on behalf of the URCF, such as in a presentation or an interview with the media, they speak as the UCRF and not as an individual and should seek to make this explicit.
Speaking on behalf of the UCRF means only discussing what the UCRF has agreed.
UCRF signatories and board members commit to being on time for meetings and deadlines and communicating when this is not possible. They keep relevant working groups informed on progress.
Culture of care
UCRF practices nonviolent communication – communication constantly striving for collaboration, respect and learning.
UCRF meets resistance with respect. It sees a difference between anger and aggression.
UCRF seeks to ‘tell it straight’ – UCRF members address issues immediately and directly with the person/s involved.
UCRF practices a culture of sharing and support.
UCRF does not attack individuals, targeting instead issues and striving for dialogue.
UCRF accepts that all people make mistakes. When this happens, UCRF acknowledges it, discusses it, learns from it and moves on.
UCRF seeks to resource ourselves and each other and offer support.
Culture of courage
UCRF acknowledges that activism is a challenging relationship that probes at vulnerabilities, but does not exploit them.
Further it sees activism as not about producing harm, but leveraging towards a more just peace.
UCRF sees activism as fostering communication that dares to challenge aggression and violence.
In addition UCRF acknowledges that activism is exhausting and often overwhelming and as a result there is a need to cultivate a culture of encouragement and support that helps feed endurance.
The Code of conduct has different sources of inspiration, including that of Academy Culture for Staff, Department of Design, Linnaeus University