Safety at AIDF

At the Austin International Drag Festival and Foundation, safety is our top priority to ensure all attendees, performers, vendors, and staff have a positive and enriching experience while attending our festival. Please reference and note the document below for our safety guidelines put in place throughout the duration of the festival.

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

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


The Austin International Drag Festival aims to be a safe, respectful, inclusive, and enriching environment for everyone, regardless of gender, gender identity and expression, sexual orientation, disability, race, or religion.

We do not tolerate harassment of any kind, including but not limited to: 

  • Intimidation and/or threats of any kind
  • Inappropriate disruption(s) of events
  • Harmful language that is directed towards a specific group or individual
  • Physical assault
  • Stalking 
  • Non-consensual interactions of any kind, including but not limited to non-consensual physical interactions, photography, and/or video-taking

If you SEE something, SAY something. Festival staff can be identified by their “STAFF” branded lanyards equipped with name tags.

To file a formal complaint, email

  • Please provide detailed information about the incident, as well as your contact information so AIDF staff can follow up with you. 
  • For emergencies, ALWAYS dial 9-1-1.
  • There are staff members within AIDF who are CPR certified and can provide assistance in the case of an emergency.


AIDF is aware of current legislative practices that allegedly target drag performers and the larger LGBTQIA+ community in Texas. During the festival, heightened security measures will be taken with implementing third-party security staff presence. Security and safety are the Foundation’s top priority to ensure this year’s Fest is a safe, inviting experience for all.

AIDF is working with LGBTQIA+ focused security organizations that will be present at the festival. More information to come.

In addition to our safety measures that will be implemented during the Festival, AIDF is practicing COVID-19 safety measures so all involved this year can stay both safe and healthy. There will be disposable masks and hand sanitizer available at Registration, and we encourage all those attending AIDF 2023 practice social distancing by standing 6 feet apart in all locales within the Festival.



Types of Festival Credentials:

  • Full-Festival Wristband - $X
    • Available for purchase at Registration
    • Credential for Volunteers
  • Day Passes (individual days Thursday, Friday, Saturday, Sunday) - $X
    • ONLY valid for day purchased - if you want to attend more than one day, you will need to purchase that day’s wristband, or consider getting a Full-Festival Wristband.
  • VIP Full-Festival Wristband - $X
    • Available for purchase at Registration
    • Credential for Vendors, Performers, and Staff of AIDF
  • Artist Wristband - ONLY for Performers
    • Also functions as a VIP Wristband for Performers of the Festival
  • Press Pass Wristband - $X
    • Designated ONLY for Press Pass applicants
    • Valid through entirety of Festival
  • Additional Wristbands NOT FOR SALE - MUST be paired with at least one of the above throughout the duration of the festival:
    • 21+ Wristband
    • Non-Photo Consent Wristband
    • Minor Wristband for individuals under 18
  • Equipment Credential Tags NOT FOR SALE - Given upon purchase of a Wristband
    • Personal Use DSLR/Small Handheld Camcorder - x color
    • Press Pass Equipment - x color


VIP Lounge hours will run between:

  • Thursday, April 6th 
    • 3:00 pm - 1:00 am
  • Friday, April 7th 
    • 12:00 pm - 1:00 am
  • Saturday, April 8th 
    • 12:00 pm - 1:00 am
  • Sunday, April 9th 
    • 1:00 pm - 5:00 pm

Those allowed in the VIP room include:

  • AIDF Festival Management and Board of Directors
  • Headliners
  • Ambassadors
  • Special Headlining Guests
  • Featured & Selected Artists 
  • VIP Pass Holders 

VIP Lounge Notes:

  • Maximum capacity for the VIP Lounge is 25 people. There will be a staff member present in the VIP Lounge at all times, monitoring the amount of people who are present in the room.
  • Eligible VIP Lounge attendees will be given a special wristband at Registration to signify they are of-age to enter the lounge. If you misplace your wristband, you will need to present your ID again at Registration to acquire a new wristband.
  • Only eligible attendees who are ages 21+ are allowed in the VIP Lounge - absolutely NO EXCEPTIONS. If there are guests who are under the age of 21, AIDF Staff will suspend the offending guest from the room as well as returning to the festival. 
  • PLUS ONES and ARTIST ENTOURAGES are NOT permitted.
  • The Holiday Inn Midtown has a strict NO SMOKING Policy within the entire perimeter of the hotel.
  • AIDF Staff attendants have the right to refuse to serve attendees that are too intoxicated, belligerent, or are otherwise creating a hostile environment within the VIP Lounge. Repeat offenders will forfeit their VIP Wristbands to AIDF Staff.
  • Drinks, food and snacks subject to availability and have to last throughout the entire weekend - arrive early to enjoy VIP Lounge accommodations!
  • Drinks do not leave the VIP Lounge. Upon leaving the Lounge, you will need to forfeit your drink - alcoholic or not - at the door. No exceptions. If there is a guest found to have a VIP Lounge drink in their possession outside of the room, their VIP Lounge wristband will be suspended for the rest of the duration of the festival.
  • We request that noise be kept at a reasonable level out of respect for other hotel guests. 


Photography is allowed (and highly encouraged!) throughout the duration of the Festival. 

Photography Rules for Patrons of the Festival:

  • Personal cell phone videos and photography are allowed and will not require checking in. Any photography or video device (ex. DSLR cameras, small hand-held camcorders) MUST be checked in at Registration as Non-Press Pass Devices and must follow terms of service within this Safety Guidelines document. 
    • Non-Press Pass Devices MUST keep the tag provided by AIDF on them throughout the duration of the festival. If you misplace your Non-Press Pass tag, you will need to go to Registration to pick up another one.
  • NO Flash Photography is permitted. Please be respectful of performers and persons within the audience who might be photo-sensitive (and otherwise might not want bright flashes in front of them while they are performing.)
  • Please ask for consent before taking photos of anyone in attendance. Patrons, performers, and all those participating in the Festival will sign an Image Release Form at Registration, and can either opt-in or opt-out of having their pictures taken at the Festival.
    • People who do not consent to having their photo taken will have an additional wristband alongside their Festival wristband to signify they do not consent to Festival photography.
  • Press Passes are available for those who want to formally document the Festival using equipment that is not limited to personal use. For more information on Press Passes, please consult the link below.


Please help us create a safer festival atmosphere. It takes a village to put together this Festival every year, and we have our community to thank for this. As an attendee of this year’s Austin International Drag Festival, here’s how you can help make this festival a welcoming space for everyone:

  • Help us maintain festival signage upon entering all venues, including the hotel ballroom. There will be signs that state “No touching without consent” with information about other safety precautions. Please adhere to the signs posted in and around festival grounds, and AIDF staff and security are happy to answer questions about safety procedures and signage during the Fest.
  • Ask for consent before taking photos and touching or interacting with performers.  There might be times where performers will initiate audience participation, but this will be explicitly said by performers - be respectful of the performers’ time and space while on the stage. Unless you are going in to get close to the stage to leave a tip, please do not impede on performers during their sets.
  • Interrupt harmful behavior and stop it in its tracks. We have a responsibility to keep each other safe. If you see something, say something. If the situation escalates, please notify an AIDF staff member as soon as possible.
  • Why is this important?
    • It is important to protect victims of sexual violence who might be present in the audience throughout the duration of the Festival.
    • “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.”
  • Report any instances of tabloid news reporting.  If someone is filming or asking you questions in a way that makes you uncomfortable, please let AIDF staff know as soon as possible. Verified individuals will be marked with press pass credentials, and any press that impedes on the festival grounds will not be tolerated.
  • Be mindful of minors present during the festival.  Because this is an all-ages event, there will be minors present during the festival. 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. Minors under 17 must be accompanied by their parents at all times.  
  • If there is an incident that needs immediate attention, please contact or call (830) 542 8623 and notify a festival staff member about what has happened. For emergencies, always call 9-1-1. 
  • For additional support, The SAFE Alliance is an excellent resource for supporting our LGBTQIA+ community:
    • 24-hr SAFEline – 512.267.SAFE (7233) 
    • 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, the AIDF Board will address the complaint internally to discuss a solution. We will get the information and address the situation immediately by removing the harasser or taking similar necessary action. 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 AIDF staff members. All complaint emails will receive a response as soon as possible 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.


LGBT Hotline Numbers -

National Domestic Violence Hotline - 1-800-799-7233 or 88788 to text

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 - 1-800-246-PRIDE (1-800-246-7743) or Online Chat at

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 Everyone 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

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