TL:DR; I believe a set of principles and rules like these should be posted prominently in the shop:
“In order to serve its current and future members, Protohaven must be a safe, functional, and productive space, as well as an inclusive and sustainable organization. To support this, users of the shop must abide by the following rules:
Do not put yourself at risk. (Supports “Safe” and “Sustainable”)
Do not threaten the safety or well-being of anyone else. (Safe, Sustainable, Inclusive)
Only use tools and equipment you have been cleared to use. (Safe, Functional)
Follow the use and safety guidelines for each tool. (Safe, Functional)
Report maintenance issues or other safety concerns immediately. (Functional, Safe)
Take responsibility for the tools and equipment you use. (Functional, Sustainable)
Keep the shop clean and tidy. (Safe, Functional, Productive, Sustainable)
Keep the shop organized. (Functional, Productive)
Follow policies concerning guests, minors, and pets. (Safe, Functional, Inclusive)
Follow additional rules, guidelines, and procedures wherever present. (Safe, Functional, Productive, Inclusive, Sustainable)”
All members need to receive a detailed orientation to the shop rules and other shop procedures as part of their membership. In addition to these general rules and principles, specific tools, areas, or other conditions may require more detailed rules, guidelines, and procedures, which should also be posted prominently and publicly in the area or at the tool to which they apply.
Failure to adhere to these rules warrants restorative discipline (making amends); chronic failure or malicious disregard warrants a loss of membership and dismissal from the shop.
Below is a pretty long post, which contains a revised set of the proposed shop rules. I’ve looked over the various suggestions and other contributions made to Devin’s original rules, and tried to incorporate as much feedback as possible from the comments as well as integrating some additional information from a discussion I had with Devin. These rules, in general, are similar to the original 1.0 rules suggested by Devin, though I’ve tried to use more explicit and direct language (as was suggested in a couple comments), and have adjusted the presentation of some rules slightly, for reasons explained below.
Given that Protohaven is public space operated largely by volunteers, I believe shop rules and procedures need to be publicly visible, prominent, and reinforced by all members. I also believe that we need to have, and make public, an overarching set of principles that support the continued operation of the space, so that it’s clear how each rule benefits the membership as a whole.
Because Protohaven contains such a wide variety of machinery, certain tools, areas, and circumstances will warrant more specific rules, which too should be posted publicly and prominently. For example, rules about storing food in the fridge should be posted on the fridge; rules about wearing safety glasses and closed-toed shoes should be posted on doors leading to the Workshop; guidelines and additional safety requirements or required PPE for using the Ironworker should be posted at the Ironworker, etc. The more that knowledge of what is required or appropriate is public, and connected to a set of higher values, I believe the easier it will be for members to adhere to and reinforce these rules among ourselves.
While I think that these rules are straightforward and sensible, they depend on members’ understanding and adherence - we have to self-police. Therefore, I think it is necessary that all existing members receive a detailed orientation to the shop rules once they are finalized, as well as an orientation to other shop procedures like check-in, tool cribs, tool checkout, after-hours and minor policies, etc. We need to provide a similar orientation to all new members as a condition of their membership. It is the shop’s obligation to educate, it is the responsibility of us as members to adhere and reinforce our rules and policies.
When presented publicly on a poster or something similar, the principles and general rules do not need to be presented in as much detail as is given below; something similar to what is written in the TL;DR section above would suffice.
Below is my recommendation for a revised set of shop rules and the principles they support, as well as a brief justification as to why we need shop rules in the first place. While I expect that most of us understand the need for rules, making this justification explicit helps ensure we’re all pulling in the same direction.
Why we have Shop Rules:
Protohaven is a shared workspace that operates for the benefit of its members, and by the contributions of its members. In order to serve its community of current and future members, Protohaven must be a safe, functional, and productive space; in order to persist and grow, Protohaven must also be an inclusive and financially-sustainable organization.
Members are responsible for contributing to the continued operation of Protohaven with respect to these principles, both through their payment of membership and service fees as well as through the actions they take while working in the shop. As such, these principles and associated shop rules are outlined in greater detail below; it is the responsibility of members to ensure they fully understand these ideas and can comply with them as a condition of their membership. Failure to do so will result in restorative disciplinary action; repeated failure to follow (or intentional disregard) of these principles and rules is grounds for immediate revocation of membership and dismissal from the shop.
Protohaven shall be:
Safe: Members shall be able to utilize the space and equipment without risk of injury from malfunction, negligence, or malicious actions of other members or guests.
Functional: At any given time, the majority of the equipment at Protohaven shall be in fine working order, and members shall have a reasonable understanding of what equipment is operational, what is non-operational, and an understanding of the expected timelines for maintenance and repairs.
Productive: Members shall be able to utilize the space to produce personal and commercial projects on a reasonable timeline, without significantly interfering with, or experiencing significant interference from, the projects of other members.
Sustainable: Protohaven’s continued operation and ability to serve its membership and the community at large requires that the space be financially sustainable. Financial sustainability for Protohaven comes as the result of a combination of three factors:
- Direct revenue from membership and service fees
- Minimization of operating costs through the use of volunteer labor and the conscientious behavior of all members
- Demonstration of Protohaven’s value as a community-serving organization for the purpose of securing grants for operational and programmatic funding.
It is the responsibility of the members to support the continued operations of Protohaven by promptly paying membership and service fees; engaging conscientiously with equipment and tools to minimize losses and maintenance costs; volunteering skills, experience, and labor, when possible, to support shop operations; and contributing usage data and other information as needed to support Protohaven’s pursuit of grants and other external sources of funding.
Inclusive: The primary determinants of membership in Protohaven are the member’s ability to adhere to these principles, follow the shop rules, and pay their membership and service fees. As such, Protohaven shall welcome new members regardless of ethnic background, sex, gender expression, education level, experience, skill, physical ability, or other socioeconomic or demographic factors. Protohaven shall provide all members with a detailed orientation to the mechanisms of shop operation and expectations and responsibilities of members, so that all members may have a shared understanding of appropriate behavior within the shop.
The General Shop Rules below serve to support these principles, to the benefit of all members.
General Shop Rules:
1. Do not put yourself at risk. (Supports the principles of “Safe” and “Sustainable”)
There are safe and unsafe ways to use every tool and area of the shop. You are responsible for your safety - for your sake, the sake of those around you, and the sake of the shop as a whole, do not put yourself in dangerous situations. Wear personal protective equipment appropriate for the tools you are using and areas of the shop you are working in. Use tools as they are intended, and do not use damaged or malfunctioning equipment. Verify that equipment is properly set-up before activating it - don’t depend on the last user to leave the machine in a safe state.
Do not use any tool or machine if you are rushing, frustrated, fatigued, distracted, or otherwise unable to focus. Keep your eyes on task, mind on task, body balanced and stable, and out of the line of fire.
The risk of severe injury or death as a result of working alone is very high. Severe injury or death not only poses a risk to individuals, but risks the long-term sustainability of the shop as a whole. Therefore, Protohaven strongly discourages members from working in the Workshop by themselves. Pro Members planning to work after public hours should make every effort to coordinate with other members via the forums, Facebook page, or other means to find at least one other person to be present in the shop with them.
2. Do not threaten the safety or well-being of anyone else. (Safe, Sustainable, Inclusive)
Do not distract or impede other members while they are working. Approach individuals when they are not operating equipment or are at a neutral state of work. When moving through the shop or using equipment yourself, be aware of your surroundings, and do not ever leave equipment running unattended.
Watch your language: be considerate of how your speech and behavior may make others feel. Verbal or physical threat, assault, or misconduct is grounds for immediate dismissal from the shop.
3. Only use tools and equipment you have been cleared to use. (Safe, Functional)
Most large pieces of equipment, and some smaller tools, require clearances to use. Do not use any tool for which you have not been cleared. Required clearances are posted on most tools - if you are unsure if a piece of equipment requires a clearance, ask before using it.
4. Follow the use and safety guidelines for each tool. (Safe, Functional)
Use tools as they are intended, and follow the guidelines presented in clearance classes, in the manual, and in other reputable sources for the safe and proper use of tools. If you are unsure or have forgotten how to use a particular tool, ask for assistance from another member cleared to use the equipment, or refer to the manual or to other reputable sources for more information about the proper use of a given tool.
5. Report maintenance issues or other safety concerns immediately. (Functional, Safe)
Report missing or damaged equipment and other maintenance or safety issues immediately. If you observe another member engaging in unsafe behavior, respectfully approach the member when they are in a neutral state of work to discuss your concern, and/or bring the issue to the immediate attention of the host on duty.
To report maintenance issues, submit a maintenance report and place the appropriate status tag on the machine. If the equipment is non-functional or dangerous, alert the host on duty.
6. Take responsibility for the tools and equipment you use. (Functional, Sustainable)
Treat tools and equipment with care and respect. Do not throw hand tools or hit larger pieces of equipment. Take responsibility for any tools or equipment you have damaged or lost, and pay for repairs or replacement parts if necessary.
Do not make permanent alterations to equipment. Clean any debris or scrap when finished using a piece of equipment, and return it to a neutral state when finished (remove any attachments, bits, etc.).
7. Keep the shop clean and tidy. (Safe, Functional, Productive)
Do not allow your projects to impede the work of other members. When working, limit your use of floor and table space to the minimum necessary for your project. When finished, clean up your work area, clean tools and equipment of any debris, dispose of waste material (including sawdust) in appropriate containers, and return any tools used to the appropriate areas.
Dispose of food scraps and other organic waste only in the kitchen. Clean and put away dishes, utensils, cups and glasses immediately after using them.
The Studio is the shop’s cleaner, quieter space, where equipment may be sensitive to dust and people expect to be able to work without personal protective equipment. The Workshop is designed for loud, dusty, and smelly projects. Use the appropriate area of the shop for your project; metal projects in the metalshop, wood projects in the woodshop, etc. No sanding, loud tools, or VOC’s in the Studio.
8. Keep the shop organized. (Functional, Productive)
Each shop area has color-coded hand tools and a matching tool crib. Certain expensive, fragile, or dangerous tools are available as checkout items from the Front Desk. The shop also offers rentals of storage lockers, cages, sheet, board, and other overnight storage options for materials and projects.
When you are finished with a hand tool, return it to its matching tool crib. When finished with a checkout item, ensure the tool or kit is complete, and return it to the front desk and check it back in with the host on duty.
When taking a break from work, return all tools and equipment and minimize the footprint of your personal materials. When finished working for the day, return all tools and equipment and remove all personal materials from working areas (tables and floorspace). Unless you have paid for overnight or monthly storage, everything you bring in with you must leave when you leave for the day. Anything left outside of your paid storage may removed and disposed of.
If you see a hand tool that has been left outside of its matching crib, or placed in the wrong crib, take a moment to return the tool to its appropriate area.
9. Follow policies concerning guests, minors, and pets. (Safe, Functional, Inclusive)
Members are welcome to bring guests into the space for meetings or to see their projects. All guests must sign a waiver on their first visit, and must be checked-in by the host on duty on subsequent visits. Guests must wear appropriate protective equipment and must be accompanied in the shop. Guests may not operate equipment or work in the Workshop or Studio.
Children age 11 and under are welcome as guests in the Studio with parental or approved adult supervision, but cannot become Members and are not allowed to operate equipment. Children age 11 and under are not allowed to be in the Workshop except during special events.
Children ages 12-18 may become Members, take clearance classes, and use relevant equipment in the Workshop or Studio, with parental or approved adult supervision.
Service animals are welcome in the Studio. For both pets’ and members’ safety pets are not allowed in the Workshop area.
10. Follow additional rules, guidelines, and procedures wherever present. (Safe, Functional, Productive, Inclusive, Sustainable)
These general shop rules are intended to cover basic operations of the shop as a whole. Specific areas of the shop, individual tools, or other circumstances may dictate additional rules, guidelines, or procedures. Follow additional rules, guidelines, and procedures wherever present. If you are unsure if additional concerns are necessary, ask.
(This rule applies only to Pro Members, and is thus not appropriate for general shop rules. This should be included in the orientation for Pro Members.)
Pro Members are responsible for the shop after hours. (Safe, Sustainable)
Pro Members may access the shop outside of public hours. During this time, minors and pets are not allowed in the shop, and all exterior doors must remain locked. When leaving for the night, the Pro Member must ensure all equipment and lights are turned off, and all exterior doors (including the loading dock) are locked.