FINANCIAL EXCHANGE AND PRICING FOR MY WORK
Please take the time to read this page in its entirety if you’d like to pay less than the listed price for an offering. If you know it’s fair for you to pay the listed price, please read this page as an example, resource and education toward new models of economic justice and awareness of financial privilege. This page is sourced from many resources which are cited here. Please feel free to replicate any aspect of this scale, and also please source accordingly. This is a work in progress and I’m open to all feedback about this page and scale.
Not everyone can or should pay the same price for my work. A dollar is not the same dollar in our current systems of power and privilege. It is and has always been important to me that the spaces I create be accessible to everyone, while still making a fair living for my creative work. After a decade of trial and error, only recently have I been led to a model of a sliding scale for economic justice that accounts for the many complexities that determine financial privilege, while allowing me to price my offerings at fair value, and allowing those who face systemic barriers to resources and support to join my work as an essential part of this community fabric. Thank you to Janeen Singer of Janeen Singer Dreamwork and Studio for her example, encouragement and spark of education in this realm, which has led me to many other wonderful resources who i’ll reference on this page.
WHAT IS A SLIDING SCALE?
A sliding scale is a tool for building economic justice, and it requires your active participation. If a sliding scale is implemented effectively, everyone pays a similar percentage of their income for the same products or services. A wide range of payment options across the scale promotes broader accessibility, while insuring fair compensation to the producer. Paying according to one’s available resources creates a more equitable system for pricing of products and services.
This scale is intended to be a map, inviting each person to take inventory of their financial resources and look deeper at their levels of privilege or systemic barriers. It is a way to challenge the classist and capitalistic society we live in and work towards economic justice as a community.
Sliding scales are often based on individual income levels, with people of higher incomes paying more. However, many factors complicate and affect our financial status. Some groups of people have costs that the larger population does not. Others have access to resources that are not always reflected in their lifestyle choices and income levels. Please consider both your class background and earning power when choosing your price.”
HOW THIS SLIDING SCALE WORKS
This sliding scale works through your active participation in determining where you fall in the scale, which is based on trust, honesty and accountability.
Each offering I create reserves a certain number of discounted slots, and a certain amount of full-pay slots, which are stated on each respective page. BACKPACKING TRIPS AND OFFERINGS WITH A LIMITED NUMBER OF PARTICIPANTS HAVE THEIR OWN CODES, LISTED SEPARATELY BELOW.
TO DETERMINE YOUR COST FOR MY OFFERINGS…
1. Read this page and the following visual models and bullet-pointed maps to locate yourself on the sliding scale
2. Based on your location in the spectrum of financial privilege, choose the fair price you wish to pay by entering a discount code (or no discount code at all if you fall at the higher end of the scale) at checkout. Discount brackets and codes are explained below these following graphics and bullet points:
Consider investing at listed price or higher on the scale if you…
- own the home you live in
- have investments, retirement accounts, or inherited money
- travel for recreation
- have access to family money and resources in times of need
- work part time or are unemployed by choice, including unemployment due to full-time school in a degree-earning program
- are able to repay your student loans, are in repayment or have paid off vour student loans
- have emplover health insurance and/or other insurance and/or other emplover benefits
- have daily reliable transportation
- are able to miss work either for sickness or leisure and are still able to pay next month’s bills
- Can travel when needed especiallv for an unexpected occasion like a family funeral or a family funeral or emergency
- work part time or are unemployed by choice, including unemployment
due to full-time school in a degree-earning program
- have a relatively high degree of earning power due to level of education (or gender and racial privilege, class background, etc.) Even if you are not currently exercising your earning power, I ask you to recognize this as a choice.
Consider investing less on the scale if you..
- are eligible for public assistance
- have medical expenses not covered by insurance
- have immigration-related expenses
- are a refugee, migrant or asylum-seeker
- are undocumented
- are an elder with limited financial support
- are an unpaid community organizer
- have significant debt (not debt from assets)
- have inherited debt rather than assets
- are unable to work because of a chronic illness or longstanding acute illness
- are a returning citizen who has been denied work due to incarceration history
- experience discrimination in hiring or pay level
- have been cut off from family resources and financial support because you are part of the LGBTQAI community
- are of Japanese descent- I am a white settler in the square mileage of a former post-WWII Japanese Internment camp and acknowledge this specific history in the physical place I live
- are descended from the Tewa peoples of O’Ga P’Ogeh Owingeh, upon whose unceded land I live as a a white settler in Northern New Mexico
- are descended from enslaved people or other Native American/First Nations Peoples (I acknowledge much of my privilege has come at the historical and present-day systematized oppression and expense of these communities).
AND NOW…THE ACTUAL SLIDING SCALE
A 4-payment bi-weekly interest-free payment plan is available to everyone, regardless of where you fall on the scale, at check out for everything I offer. That means one payment of 25% on the day you sign up, and 3 more payments spaced two-weeks apart from the day you sign up. Longer payment plans are available by request. Please email me to ask for that.
- The listed price (no discount code) reflects the true cost of the offering or service. This is the cost that the practitioner would charge all students in the absence of a sliding scale. If you find yourself toward the left side of the above financial privilege models, you would not traditionally qualify for sliding scale services. If you are able to pay for “wants” and spend little time worried about securing necessities in your life, you have economic privilege and power in our community. This price is for you.
A discounted price: DISCOUNT CODE 10OFF (gives 10% off) reflects the practitioner’s acknowledgement that paying the full cost would prevent some folks from being able to attend, who do not honestly find themselves reflected in either descriptions for the highest cost or the lowest cost, but are perhaps struggling to conquer debt, build savings or move away from paycheck to paycheck living but have access to steady income and are not spending most of your time thinking about meeting basic needs such as food, shelter, medical care, child care, etc., you belong here. If you, however, can ask others for financial support, such as family members, partners, or friends, please consider using those personal resources before you use the resources of the sliding scale and limit opportunities for others.
The lower price: DISCOUNT CODE 20OFF (gives 20% off) This tier is for folks who find themselves toward the right side of the Green Bottles/lists above. It represents an honest acknowledgment by the practitioner that there are folks whose economic circumstances would prevent them from being a part of classes if there was not a deliberate opportunity made for them to access services at a cost that is reflective of their economic realities. If you struggle to maintain consistent access to needs such as health care, housing, food, child care, and are living paycheck to paycheck, you probably belong here and you deserve a community that honors your price as equal an economic offering as the person who can pay the highest tier.
- The bottom price: DISCOUNT CODE 40OFF (gives 40% off) This price is for folks who fit the description of the above paragraph (of the “lower price”), but who know that even with a 20% discount and payment plan (the tier above), they would not be able to join this offering while still being able to eat healthily, pay their rent, medical bills and other monthly expenses for themselves and/or their families. You deserve a community that honors your price as equal an economic offering as the person who can pay the highest tier. If this bottom tier is still prohibitive, please reach out to me directly and I will do my best to work with you including extended payment plans and other solutions
**SPECIAL CODES FOR BACKPACKING TRIPS AND SPACE LIMITED OFFERINGS BELOW
There are a limited number of slots for products, services, and classes offered at the middle and lower end of the scale. Please be mindful that if you purchase a price at the lower end of the scale when you can truthfully afford the higher ticket prices, you are limiting access to those who truly need the gift of financial flexibility. Being honest with yourself and your financial situation when engaging with sliding scale practices grows strong and sustainable communities. It also respects the work of educators and creators like myself who rely on this income in order to live. Additionally, when I am paid fairly, I am able to invest more time and resources to free and lower cost offering.
SPECIAL CODES FOR BACKPACKING TRIPS AND SPACE-LIMITED OFFERINGS: based on the tiers explained above
GILA WILDERNESS TRIPS: GILA TRIP: GILA20 (20% OFF) GILA40 (40% OFF).
OWL CANYON TRIP: OWL20 (20% off) OWL40 (40% off).
MOTHER TONGUE IMMERSION: MOTHER10 (10% off), MOTHER20 (20% off), MOTHER40 (40%off)
THE GATELESS RESIDENCY: GATELESS10 (10% off), GATELESS20 (20% off), GATELESS40 (40%off)
If the code does not work at checkout it means there are no more spots available at that discount tier for this particular offering.
Thank you to Alexis J. Cunningfolk for her wonderful models and writings on Sliding Scales as a Tool for Economic Justice, including these bullet points above. This Ride Free Fearless Money Blog on Sliding Scales is also a world of awesome education and possibility toward economic justice and new models of economy.