update on entry refusals
5TH ANNIVERSARY PARTY OF KLUB VERBOTEN
Thank you all soo much for making this one of our most memorable nights with receiving an overwhelming amount of beautiful feedback from the event unlike ever before. (See our socials for reposts)
It felt so incredibly lovely to hear all your thoughts during the night. Thank you for finding the bravery to approach us in person in the darkness of the night, to tell us your story - it means a lot to us.
It's been an absolute pleasure to read how safe and comfortable everyone felt inside the venue. All human interactions we had the joy to monitor around our spaces felt like a very organic result of the new design and layout of the spaces, which came into shape through all your feedback from previous events.
Thank you for your kindness towards all staff involved inside the venue. Whether they were Verboten Krew or the in-house team, everyone felt the positive vibes, making it a real joy to work during this night.
What a night to welcome Oliver Deutschmann as our new resident DJ: Your sound had shaped so much of Verboten's DNA before the event even started in 2016. To have you join our family is an incredible honour for us.
This night, however, would not have been able to put together without the relentless endurance of our day crews, creatives, friends and supporters. As always: Making the impossible happening at the last minute - you know who you are, and we owe you everything.
The biggest hugs go to the venue, and their entire team, who could not be a better fit for us as the most supportive event spaces around. You took the time to understand our vision and supported it with all their powers and humbleness. We love you.
With this night we also responded following feedback from our previous event (FRI 13/08) and complaints that certain guests (including some existing members) misbehaved after being permitted entry. We did this by taking a stricter approach to enforcing our door policy at our 5th Anniversary Event.
- We made sure every ticket holder was aware of this by sending the following message to them twice before the event:
"This is our 5th birthday & we will make absolutely sure that it will be equally enjoyable for everyone. Therefore we are committed to run the tightest door possible."
As a result of these changes, we only had to eject one person from the inside of the venue, compared to a massive 36 people at the previous event. This approach was highly effective at precluding perpetrators of harassment and consent violations into the Klub. However, it is evident from feedback received that some guests felt that the decisions were incorrect. Whilst we cannot get every decision correct, the statistics don't lie.
As a private business and licensed venue, we are not obliged to permit entry to all public members provided that access is not denied on the basis of a protected characteristic under the Equality Act. We comply with the Act by admitting members and guests from all ages, religions, races, gender identities, and abilities. However, we do, on occasion, deny entry for other lawful non-discriminatory reasons. This ensures we are able to comply with license objectives, as well as cultivate a safe and fun environment for our guests. Examples of this could include because we think a person may represent a risk to other guests, they are too intoxicated, they are inappropriately dressed, they haven't demonstrated any experience of the kink scene, lack of understanding of the Klub Verboten rules or ethos, or because they have been rude to our staff (among other things).
If our gatekeepers don't feel you can be trusted to enter a space with the people we care most about, you will not be let in. We put the safety of our guests first; this is why we are the only entity of its kind fully accredited by the Good Night Out Campaign, and Safer Sounds Partnerships. These accreditations, which included training on unconscious bias and diversity, have helped inform our decision making.
- We sold tickets well below the venue's legal capacity to reduce congestion and COVID risk and only denied entrance to less than 8% of ticketed persons. This was a 3% increase in door refusals compared to previous events.
- 12 of these door refusals were on our ban list and were notified about this in the past years.
- Around 58% of refusals were based on clear disregard to our stated dress code policy.
- Approximately 44% of those who were denied entry have made complaints suggesting many were LEGITIMATELY challenged on their entry (particularly since some of the complaints were on our existing ban list).
This suggests that many who were denied entry felt we were entirely justified in making the decision not to admit. Meanwhile some of those making complaints were not made in good faith given that they arose from persons who had previously been rejected membership (and so are not entitled to attend).
The legitimacy of our decision making was reinforced by the onslaught of xenophobic abuse towards our members of staff, which followed some non-admittance.
Due to staff illness, additional anti-photography stickering and Covid-test checks, our line was busier than usual. This resulted in less availability of staff to give information to those who were denied entrance, resulting in upset caused. Around ⅔ of those guests were not informed over refund options when leaving the premises, which we regret. Given that we have always offered refunds to door refusals not based around dress code / ban-list violations.
We can't commit to being perfect, and we won't always get it right, but we will take on feedback. We will carefully review our policies and processes to get it right more often ready for our next event (particularly concerning existing members).
If your entry was refused, you can obtain a refund by simply emailing firstname.lastname@example.org. Your request will then be checked against the door refusal log and automatically processed within 14 days (times can vary down to your bank).
Please note that we cannot offer refunds to people who have disregarded our dress code policy or been previously banned or ejected from our spaces.