Code of Ethics and Professional Conduct Policy
Draft v1.1 – Oct. 18, 2005
All Directors, volunteers, mentors and employees of ICN, herein referred as individuals, are expected, as a matter of principles, to comply with this Code of Ethics and Professional Conduct Policy. This policy also deals with the Conflict of Interest aspect, which is an integral part of the ICN practices.
The objective of this Policy is to protect ICN against inadvertent breaches of these requirements and, in the event of a breach, to enable it as an organization, to demonstrate that all reasonable and fair precautions had been taken.
The Policy also protects Directors, Executive Board Members, Volunteers, Mentors, officers and staff of ICN, individually and collectively, by minimizing as much as possible the risk of inadvertent breaches and from the appearance of profiting from knowledge or presumed knowledge gained at the ICN. Accordingly the Policy sets a high standard to be implemented.
1 - Code of Conduct
1.1 - Respect for Each Other:
· Accept and honour diverse values and views.
· Create a climate of mutual respect and active support and trust. This must include providing equal opportunities for expressing viewpoints and listening to each other.
1.2 - Focus on Interests, Not Personal Positions.
· Allow for opportunities to provide constructive comments.
1.3 - Decision Making:
· All decisions will be reached by consensus.
· Provide for flexibility as required.
· Creativity, fairness and risk taking should be encouraged.
· Provide equal access to information.
· Strive for that delicate balance between protecting the natural heritage values and the recreational values.
· Work towards closure of discussions. If after a reasonable time no consensus is reached, table the item and return to it later for a sober second thought. If the item has been discussed 3 times, it is unlikely that consensus will be reached, so move on. Can revisit at the end if time permits.
1.4 - Communicating:
· Seek to understand and to be understood.
· Strive for clarity of ideas.
· Seek and provide feedback.
· Be constructive.
· Effectively state points and move forward.
· Communication to the media and public will be made through the Chair. This is extremely important as we are in a working dialogue to develop recommendations.
1.5 - Focus:
· Offer constructive criticism.
· Focus on ideas and issues, not the person.
· Keep group on track; proceed in a timely manner.
· Understand the big picture (mission, vision) by using detailed considerations constructively.
1.6 - Accountability:
· Continued commitment to public consultation.
· Accountability and responsibility for decisions.
· Build partnerships.
· Respect the public in the same manner as we respect ourselves.
2. Basic Principles
ICN has a role in the community as to the requirements of its Constitution and Bylaws.
Individuals are required to fully understand their individual and collective duties, responsibilities and accountabilities under this policy.
Any questions regarding this policy, and/or its Procedures, should be raised at the Board of Directors level.
2.1 - Loyalty, Honesty, Integrity, and Professionalism
Individuals are expected to exercise proper behaviour in all their dealings and express ICN core values.
2.2 - Priority of Duties
Outside activity should not hinder an individual's performance of his/her duties to ICN.
2.3 - Conflict of Interest
All individuals should avoid conflict of interest situations. But where conflicts are present, individuals should act in the interest of ICN.
They have a responsibility to disclose to the Board any conflict of interest reasonably known to them, as soon as possible.
2.4 - Confidential Information
Individuals must recognize that all non-public information is to be held in strict confidence. No one should divulge confidential information unless authorized to do so. Individuals who leave ICN, or retire from ICN, continue to be bound by this requirement. (See section 3 for more details).
2.5 - Use of Resources
ICN has invested heavily in knowledge resources. These resources should only be used for ICN business.
2.6 - Professional Guidelines
In the performance of their duties, in order to protect common interest of ICN and its membership, individuals are expected to adhere to this policy and the governing standards. In the case of conflicting standards, individuals are expected to comply with the higher standard.
2.7 - Ethical Checklist
Individuals should consider their voluntary duty above their personal interests. Individuals should evaluate decisions and proposed courses of action against the following checklist and be able to answer "Yes" to each question.
· Is it Legal?
Individuals should consider seeking legal advice, if in doubt.
· Is it Prudent?
Individuals should act in a prudent and balanced manner. All actions should hold to a test of public interest and not be perceived as bringing ICN into disrepute.
· Is it in keeping with ICN Constitution and Bylaws, Policies and other governing Acts?
ICN mandate is to implement policies as approved by the Board. Individuals should not behave contrary to the Board's resolutions.
2.8 - Reporting of Violations
An individual or employee who has made a complaint shall suffer no reprisal for taking action to stop or report violations of the Conflict of Interest Policy unless the complaint is found to be malicious.
3 - Conflict of Interest
Individuals are expected to comply with established policy on Conflict of Interest as stated herewith.
Any real, apparent, potential or contingent situation or decision in which an affected individual might be inclined to favour one party (including him/herself or a related party) to the detriment of another because such affected individual has a direct or indirect interest in one of these persons, or parties, to which this person is directly or indirectly related. This definition also covers any situations that could affect a person's loyalty, integrity or judgement.
· Board members, volunteers and employees must avoid real or perceived conflict of interest situations. Where a conflict of interest exists, ICN interests must always be considered paramount.
· No individuals may have an interest, financial or otherwise, direct or indirect, or engage in a business or transaction or professional activity, or incur an obligation of any nature that conflicts with the proper discharge of their duties.
· In determining whether or not there exists a real or perceived conflict of interest, individuals should consider whether a reasonably well-informed person would conclude that the interest might affect the exercise of those powers or duties.
· Individuals must avoid situations in which they, a related person, a dependent or a member of their immediate family could directly or indirectly benefit from a transaction or contract concluded within ICN. Similarly, they must avoid situations in which they, a related person, a dependent or a member of their immediate family, could directly or indirectly benefit from their influence or decision-making powers at ICN due to their position.
· Where a real or perceived conflict of interest exists, employees are required to declare it to their manager or, in the case of Board members, to the Board.
· A Board member, volunteers or employee may not participate in discussions or take part in deliberations where a decision is being considered if he/she has a conflict of interest regarding the issue.
· Individuals may not use the personnel or facilities of ICN for the purposes of personal gain, advantage or benefit, or for any purpose unrelated to the services of ICN.
· Individuals shall be prudent in giving or receiving any gift, entertainment, donation, benefit, service or other favour that might materially affect, or be seen to potentially affect, the performance of their roles and responsibilities, or which might prejudice the credibility of ICN.
· Board members, volunteers and employees may not solicit such gifts, donations, benefits, services or other favours under any circumstances, except for approved ICN objectives, BOD approved programs and charitable causes.