This year we have been having a lot of discussions about diversity and what this means and how we can improve our conference to be more inclusive for all.

Diversity encompasses many areas.  A few of them are race, ethnicity, religion, political beliefs, gender, education, socio-economic background, sexual orientation, geographic location. 

The major changes we have made this year are:

Introducing a code of conduct

This has been a large piece to work to create a summary policy and a full detailed policy. Our shortened version is below.

SQL Relay strives to be an event where everyone can come, learn new skills and network with their peers regardless of gender, sexuality, race, disability, gender identity, appearance or religion. Language and imagery that focus on these aspects will not be tolerated from sponsors, speakers or attendees.  If you feel at any time that this code of conduct is not being followed then please alert a member of the SQL Relay team (identified by their shirts) immediately. Basically, be nice to everyone and we’ll have a great conference.

Changes to speaker selection

We wanted to improve our speaker selection process to encourage anyone who wants to speak to submit. To this end we have created a blind selection process.

Changing the Fun Bus name to the Data Bus

It is always incredibly challenging logistically moving between 5 venues around the UK in a week. To assist with this, we operate a bus service for speakers, helpers and goods.  We felt the renaming of the bus to make it more appropriate for the purpose was called for.

This will not be the end of the changes to our conference to make it more diverse but, rather a start of a new journey to continuous improvement. 

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