an open letter to Balticon, which I am not attending

An open letter to the folks who run Balticon:  

I’m afraid that I must decline the invitation to be an author guest/program participant at Balticon 55, and have no plans to return to the convention any time soon.  

The convention’s handling of the multiple harassment complaints against convention chair Eric Gasior is disappointing. All the more so because my wife Wrenn Simms and I were witnesses to the incident spelled out in one of those complaints. We were at Arisia 2016, and we observed Eric’s behavior toward one of the complainants. At the time, we thought it was an isolated incident due to a particular set of circumstances. We have since learned that there were at least three other complaints against Eric of a similar nature to that of the one we were privy to. Our names were passed on to the investigator that Balticon hired to look into the allegations, but we were never contacted. Now the investigation is said to be complete and finished, even though Wrenn and I were not questioned, despite being witnesses to Eric’s harassment in January 2016.  

This is massively unacceptable and I cannot in good conscience support the con. Balticon is a favorite convention of ours, and I am disappointed to not be attending, but to attend now would be to give my tacit support to a convention committee that has proven to not care about the safety of its attendees.  

Sincerely,

—Keith R.A. DeCandido

5 thoughts on “an open letter to Balticon, which I am not attending

  1. Pingback: Pixel Scroll 3/31/21 Run Back To The Shelter Of Her Pixel’s Scrolling Helper | File 770

  2. I am very sorry you won’t be attending, because I always enjoy hearing you on panels!

    That said, thank you for standing up on this issue, especially because you have direct personal knowledge about the accused’s prior actions. Even if you didn’t, having someone as well known in the Balticon and wider con community make a public statement truly matters.

    All the best!

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