Minutes from SCA UK Chapter Town Hall Meeting 16th November 2017 and DCP Survey Results

Following the recent SCA UK meeting to discuss the SCA's Deferred Candidacy Policy (DCP) announcement please find below a summary of the main points. We have also included the results from the first 100 respondents to the survey concerning the same issue. 


Minutes from SCA UK Chapter Town Hall Meeting - 16/11/2017
Moderators: Mat North - National Coordinator
Venue: Origin Coffee, Charlotte Rd London
Attendance: 19 People, Inc. 3 Members of SCA UK Committee, 1 SCA Board Member: A Tolley


  • End time is 9:00pm
  • Raise your hand to talk; please don’t interrupt or talk over others
  • If it looks like we are off topic, moderator may redirect the conversation back to the agenda
  • Keep talking time under three minutes
  • Please be respectful of others and their viewpoints, all are welcome here.
  • Mat North, NC of SCA UK chapter to outline findings regarding the DCP, Event Site Selection protocols & SCA Board structure in an effort to provide clarity.
  • Outline and review of SCA UK Chapter stance
  • Open Discussion.
  • Conclusions and future work



  • Provided by SCA UK NC, in order to accurately communicate to UK members. 
  • Contrary to common perception, the Deferred Candidacy Policy does not currently exist in detail.
  • Press Release related to approval from SCA board for Policy in concept, alongside several other complementary policies
  • WCE board has until this point been responsible for site selection via a tender process. 
  • Potential tenders run past Sponsors.
  • WCE website has details of the host requirements, all relate to logistics, but details of process unknown beyond this.
  • Known that WCE consult Human Rights Watch and similar orgs, but focus is on the community that the event can engage with rather than the governmental issues.

SCA UK Position

  • Clarification on SCA UK announcement from Sept 11th, UK Chapter condemns choice of Dubai as a host based on LGBTQIA+ rights issues, will support any member who does not wish to attend.
  • In the case of champions, the UK Chapter will not ask why and will not send an alternate competitor.
  • 2018 UK competitions will be run as usual.

Open Discussion

  • SCA Board member Andrew Tolley, answered questions from attendees.
  • As DCP is not yet written, AT confirmed that no requirement to declare information of personal gender alignment or identity exists.
  • Alongside DCP, approval in place for policies on Advocacy, Inclusivity, Safeguarding, Site Selection.
  • Board split on Issue of Dubai, global membership support key issue.
  • Dubai approved by WCE board (details on WCE website) then sent to SCA board for approval. Contract for event signed after this.
  • Contract includes financial penalties, upheld by UAE legal code, for breaking that are significant. However, board has will to do so.
  • Board has fiduciary duty to the association as non-profit making entity, but this was not primary driver in decision. People first not financial loss.
  • Quick reaction to Sprudge article to minimise damaged relations with hosts and local community.
  • SCA board structure, 18 members, 9 to represent both SCAA and SCAE prior to merger. All voted in by members of the legacy org.
  • 4 members to represent guilds, 2 ex-officio guild reps have votes, 2 do not.
  • All are volunteers and as such take no financial benefit from these decisions.
  • Communications have been poor, but community is being heard.
  • Improved process for host site assessment will be the outcome of this situation, will include improved communications both a safeguarding policy and Inclusivity/diversity policy.

Other questions/topics

  • Concern over tone and level of communications, nor considerate of all members.
  • Why was DCP announced without policy in place? Lack of detail allowed others to fill the vacuum.
  • How would deferment work? Will two champions compete the following year? Confirmed yes by WCE, Champion defers, 2nd place attends instead. Following year both deferred champ, and that years champ will compete.
  • Deferment to have financial support from SCA, budget based on financial projections.
  • Concerns over multiple year deferments.
  • Concerns of practicality of policy, problematic at best, disaster at worse.
  • Suggestion that to avoid issue of large scale deferment from Dubai, policy take effect after that event.
  • Anger at DCP announcement, both wording re: LGBTQIA+ and focus on competitors not members.
  • Concerns in room that UAE/Dubai does not align with values of SCA / Speciality Coffee.
  • Suggestion to put future event sites to member vote.
  • Suggestion to collect site criteria, none forthcoming on day.
  • Concern over value choices made by board.

Conclusions and Future work
Routes for action, Board/guilds/national chapter/commercial partners.

  • DCP not set, presents significant chance for positive impact, make it count.
  • SCA UK chapter to support, where needed, further meetings around country.
  • SCA UK survey to be shared with board, made public.

SCA UK's  Survey regarding the recent SCA's Deferred Candidacy Policy (DCP) announcement.  

Please click HERE for the results from the first 100 respondents survey presented with no additional interpretation. 


We are still very interested to hear your views, please contact me directly on: nc@scauk.coffee and I will pass your views, concerns and questions on to the SCA board.

Thank you.

Mat North, SCA UK National Coordinator



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