|Re: Pet Agreements/Rules and Regulations||<– Date –> <– Thread –>|
|From: Eva Parker Passalacqua (evathinknot.com)|
|Date: Tue, 23 Feb 2021 11:54:48 -0800 (PST)|
Hello, folks: These conversations have been very timely, as our community has just reached consensus (this past weekend) on a complete rewrite of our pet policy. (Those of you who have been involved in creating similar documents for your own communities probably appreciate the scope of this accomplishment…this process took us seven months.) Our original pet policy was written about 16 year ago (at/before move-in) and was a list of nine rules, written in a “rules and regulations” tone and format. In the years since, our community has navigated a number of difficult situations involving pets and humans, and came to the conclusion that our pet policy was not very useful to us in these difficult situations. This past July, we formed an ad hoc committee to write a new pet policy. We determined that the main issue was not with the policies themselves; we needed to give them meaning by contextualizing them in our culture around pets, and to create a set of supporting procedures. So we decided to develop language around three things: Culture, Policies, and Procedures. - To define and understand our community culture around pets as an expression of our mission and values. - To create policies that are an expression of our community culture around pets and which reflect our community values concerning how we interact with one another. - To create procedures that support these policies, and that can help us support one another when friction arises around pets. We also included a shared understanding that this is an ongoing and evolving process, and made a firm commitment to revisit this in one year. I hope our community can use this model ongoing as we look at our other community agreements. I’d like to put our energy into creating the kind of culture in our community that we aspire to; to think about how we handle difficult issues in terms of connection and communication, rather than command and control. I’m including a link to the document we just agreed upon in case it might be a resource to other communities as they work on this particular facet of living together in community. Please feel free to use any of the writing we’ve done here in any manner that’s useful to your community. https://docs.google.com/document/d/16HlsHzsvGnIfpYthxbqMHLtu_D0cy5ozyNaozXTpugo/edit?usp=sharing (tl;dr: When things happen, talk to each other — and if that’s hard, ask for some support.) My appreciation for what we learned from so many of your communities! Part of our process included reading pretty much everything on this list serv that touched on the topic of pets and pet-related conflicts. Where we could find them, we also read pet policies from other communities. (We’re particularly indebted to the folks at Heartwood Cohousing in Colorado — you inspired us, and you’ll probably recognize a couple of sentences in the culture portion of this document.) In community, Eva Parker Passalacqua Rocky Hill Cohousing Northampton, MA
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