To the Populace of the East Kingdom and our friends in the Known World,
I have been in several conversations in which people fear that the Society’s bullying and harassment policy has become a weapon to be wielded by anyone who wants to harm those with opposing views. There is talk of thought police and of deleting past posts or entire social media accounts. The fact that the complaint investigation process is confidential adds to the uncertainty about who is investigated and for what reasons.
Let me be clear: I will not allow the Society’s bullying and harassment policy to be trivialized or used for retaliation. The policy exists to redress genuine harm, not to score points.
The Seneschallate investigates formal complaints that are sent to this office. We are not trawling through social media posts, past or present, to find examples of offenses, nor do we tolerate complaints that are retaliatory in nature. The investigators work hard and follow a protocol to ensure a fair and even-handed process.
Some have shared with me the concern that the complaint brought against Duke Brennan was a tit-for-tat response to the Order of Chivalry’s petition to the Crown that Sir Sichel be removed from the Presence.
I state unequivocally that this is not the case.
Investigations are necessarily confidential, but the complaint against Brennan is dated June 16th. Although it seems directly connected with Sichel’s post, the timing is a coincidence. The complaint was initially sent to the incorrect Ombudsperson on the Board, and was only forwarded to the Society Seneschal and myself late in the evening of June 26th.
However, Brennan’s role was the Special Projects Deputy, whose purview is to investigate formal complaints. In an administrative action — which is different from a Royal sanction — I asked him to step back from this role for a short period so that someone who’d apologized for his choice of language unbefitting his very public position within the Society, was not also investigating complaints against others which could be of a similar nature.
I am here to have conversations with members of the populace about this and all policies of the Society.
In service to the East,