Welcome to our SAFETY page.

The Austin International Drag Festival is a Drama Free Zone.

  • Treat everyone with respect and kindness. 
  • Do not touch costumes/clothing without permission.
  • Respect gender identities and pronouns.

Please ask performers and guests for permission to photograph.


The Austin International Drag Festival aims to be a safe, respectful, inclusive, and fun environment for everyone (regardless of gender, gender identity and expression, sexual orientation, disability, physical appearance, body size, race, or religion).
We do not tolerate harassment of any kind, including: intimidation or threats, inappropriate disruption of events, hurtful language that is intended to harm a specific group or individual, physical assault of any type, stalking, following, harassing photography or recording, and unwelcome sexual attention.  
We ask you to agree to the following:

• If you are asked to stop any specific behavior, please STOP immediately.

• If you experience or witness any form of harassment, please contact the nearest festival staff member.  

Festival staff can be identified by their STAFF SASH.
To file a formal complaint, email or call (830) 542 8623 please provide detailed information and your contact information. If you feel unsafe in your current situation, please alert our staff, and we will handle it accordingly!

The VIP Lounge


VIPs include: Headliners, Ambassadors, Festival Management & Board of Directors, Special Headlining Guests, and VIP Pass Holders. (Featured & Selected Artists are not allowed in the VIP Lounge)
Only ages 21+ are allowed in the VIP Lounge (no exceptions).

No plus one’s or Artist friends/entourage will be allowed to enter the VIP Lounge.

There is a strict No Smoking policy (even on the balconies) at the hotel.

VIP Room attendants/management have the right to refuse to serve you and escort you out if you become too intoxicated. Absolutely no drugs of any kind. Food will not be available all day.

We request that noise be kept at a reasonable level out of respect for other hotel guests. Drinks are not allowed to leave the VIP Lounge. You will be asked to surrender your drink if you are exiting the room.

There is a room capacity of 20 guests.


There will be Sober meetings available at 10am: Friday, Saturday, and Sunday at the festival hotel in the Elm Room.

Please help us create a safer festival atmosphere.

Help us maintain prominently placed signage upon entering all venues (including the hotel ballroom) – There should be signs that state “No touching without consent” and other safety precautions.

Don’t touch other performers WITHOUT CONSENT.  This includes during performances.  Being spontaneous is NOT justification for touching other performers!  Get permission in advance if you are going to make bodily contact with another performer.

Interrupt Harmful Behavior – We have a responsibility to keep each other safe.  If something doesn’t look right, please check in. Say, “hey are you ok?”  or “Hello, that’s not cool”.  

Be supportive.  If someone shares an experience with you, do not focus on “the silver lining”.  Don’t downplay the incident. Affirm them. Believe them. Offer to help them report.

Why is this important?

There are sexual assault survivors in the audience. “The National Coalition of Anti-Violence Projects (NCAVP) estimates that nearly one in ten LGBTQ survivors of intimate partner violence (IPV) has experienced sexual assault from those partners. Studies suggest that around half of transgender people and bisexual women will experience sexual violence at some point in their lifetimes.”

Watch out for fake news – If someone is filming or asking you questions in a way that makes you uncomfortable, please let us know ASAP.

Watch out for Minors with X’s on hands or bracelets – There will be many minors in the audience!  For many of them, this is a fun experience, and they are happy to go along with our rebelliousness – but we must keep them safe.  Keep them away from alcohol. Minors under 17 must be accompanied by their parents at all times.  

IF YOU HAVE AN INCIDENT or witness an incident, please contact or call (830) 542 8623 and notify a festival staff member about what has happened. 

For additional support, we urge you to call The SAFE Alliance 24-hr SAFEline – 512.267.SAFE (7233) or Text: 737.888.7233  or 

The SAFE Alliance is the local and LGBTQ+ friendly sexual assault center.  They can provide an advocate and neutral / supportive environment if the survivor wishes to report their experience to the police.  This will not be frowned upon for “endangering the festival”. We want you to feel safe. The SAFE Alliance is a merger of Austin Children’s Shelter and SafePlace, both long-standing and respected human service agencies in Austin serving the survivors of child abuse, sexual assault and exploitation, and domestic violence.  

If a complaint is received, a festival board member will be brought in ASAP.  They will get the information and address the situation immediately by removing the harasser or taking similar necessary action. The manager may also contact the police if there is a safety issue. If the concerned party would like to file a formal complaint, they will send it to or call (830) 542 8623 , where it will be investigated by staff members. All complaint emails will receive a response within 24 hours during the festival. The privacy of all parties will be maintained during an investigation and the person making the complaint will be kept informed and notified when the investigation is completed.

Austin International Drag Festival is practicing a zero-tolerance policy against harassment and sexual assault.  Assailants will be banned from attending / future volunteering at all drag fest events for the emotional safety of their survivors, and the physical safety of everyone else.

If any of the parties involved are under 18, the Austin Police Department will be notified.  

Additional Resources

If you or someone you know has been sexually assaulted, there are some LGBTQ-friendly resources listed below in addition to those already mentioned:

Let’s Talk About It: A Transgender Survivor’s Guide to Accessing Therapy

National Sexual Assault Hotline – 1-800-656-HOPE (4673) 24/7 or Online Counseling at

Love is Respect Hotline  1-866-331-99474 (24/7) or Text “loveis” 22522

The Anti-Violence Project– serves people who are LGBTQ Hotline 212-714-1124 Bilingual 24/7

GLBT National Help Center Hotline 1800-246-PRIDE (1-800-246-7743) or Online Chat at

Gay Men’s Domestic Violence Project Hotline 1-800-832-1901

FORGE– serves transgender and gender nonconforming survivors of domestic and sexual violence; provides referrals to local counselors

The Network La Red– serves LGBTQ, poly, and kink/BDSM survivors of abuse; bilingual Hotline – 617-742-4911

Northwest Network– serves LGBT survivors of abuse; can provide local referrals Hotline– 206-568-7777

SAFE Austin: Stop Abuse For Eveyone The SAFE Alliance exists to stop abuse for everyone by serving the survivors of child abuse, sexual assault and exploitation, and domestic violence. The SAFE Alliance 24-hr SAFEline – 512.267.SAFE (7233) or Text: 737.888.7233  or


PHOTOGRAPHERS/VIDEOGRAPHERS (VOLUNTEER) Volunteer photographers must check-in at registration to receive their lanyards and festival credentials. They have been assigned specific shifts and venues to do their volunteer work. They will be asked to agree to the festival safety regulations.

PHOTOGRAPHERS/VIDEOGRAPHERS (NON-VOLUNTEER) – You must have a special lanyard and festival credentials in order to take photos at our festival. Anyone with a camera (other than a cell phone) will be asked to stop taking photos and to speak to festival management to obtain permission and festival credentials. Not all photographers will be allowed to have a lanyard/credentials.

If a person is wearing a sticker requesting that you do not take their photo, then do not take their photo.

Festival management reserves the right to escort of the property anyone who breaks our rules. No refunds.