Approved October 2017, Amended November 2018
This document outlines the Code of Conduct for all members and volunteers of the American Industrial Hygiene Association (AIHA) and summarizes the behavior expected of members and volunteers representing AIHA in any forum, mailing list, public meeting or private correspondence.
ANTI‐TRUST STATEMENT: Members and volunteers will refrain from any discussion or communication that could provide the basis for an inference that they have agreed to take any action that might restrain trade.An “agreement” in anti‐trust terms is a very broad concept: it may be oral or written, formal or informal,expressed or implied. This includes the prohibition of any discussion or communication related to the setting or charging of prices for time or materials, dividing markets, allocating customers or agreements not to do business with a person or firm.
CONFLICT OF INTEREST: If a member or volunteer has a situation or an affiliation that might constitute or lead to a conflict of interest or might be perceived by a reasonable person in the community to be a conflict of interest, this information should be disclosed immediately to staff. If necessary, the individual should remove themselves from specific decisions or discussions in which they may have a conflict of interest.
FINANCIAL AND OPERATIONAL PRACTICES: AIHA is committed to maintaining legal, ethical and responsible financial and operational practices. If a member or volunteer believes that they have observed inappropriate financial or operational conduct or management, you are encouraged to report the concern in good faith to a member of staff (individuals may report concerns by mail, anonymously if preferred). Any good faith report or complaint will be treated confidentially and investigated thoroughly. Anyone who has a reasonable belief or suspicion that fraud or misconduct has occurred will not be reprimanded if the report is made in good faith but is found to be unsubstantiated. If a member, volunteer, or staff is found to have retaliated against a member or volunteer for reporting a concern in good faith, that individual will be subject to disciplinary action up to and including termination of membership or other relationship with AIHA.
RESPECT: When working together, members or volunteers should always be mindful of how their actions or contribution affects colleagues, peers, and the Association. We may not always agree, but disagreement is no excuse for poor behavior or poor manners. Avoid becoming involved in personal attacks or repetitive arguments. Abusive language or actions, including any form of harassment, will not be tolerated. Additionally, members or volunteers will not discriminate against another member, volunteer or staff and will be respectful of ethnic, national, cultural and other differences.
HONESTY: Sometimes the hardest thing to say is "no" or admit you've forgotten do something. Members or volunteers should be honest with each other (and themselves) with regards to what can realistically be committed to.
CONFIDENTIALITY: If members or volunteers are made privy to information that is considered confidential, the expectation is to keep the details confidential at all times. Information contained within private forums, private mailing lists, chats or other mediums is also to be kept confidential. This includes any time after the professional relationship has ended.
RESPONSIBILITY: People on every project come and go, and AIHA is no different. If a member or volunteer leaves or disengages from any position within a committee or volunteer group, in whole or in part, we ask that the individual do so in a way that minimizes disruption. This means letting the staff know of the decision and taking the proper steps to ensure that any projects assigned to the individual does not fall by the wayside. Members and volunteers should check e‐mails regularly and answer them promptly. We realize that your time is valuable, and if a member or volunteer cannot commit to a project or have committed and no longer has the time to fulfill the responsibilities, please let staff know as soon as possible.
PROFESSIONALISM: Acting in a professional manner is expected, including behaviors that are courteous and considerate, and communications that are honest, fact‐based and politically neutral. Members and volunteers shall maintain high standards and integrity, and shall be professional in dealings with other members, volunteers, and staff. AIHA members or volunteers should be mindful when making statements or taking actions based on personal views that are NOT attributed to AIHA, unless duly authorized by applicable AIHA procedures. Personal boundaries set by others must be observed. Sexual harassment including, but not limited to, unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, and other verbal or physical harassment of a sexual nature will not be tolerated.
VIOLATIONS OF THE CODE OF CONDUCT: AIHA staff will work with the AIHA Board of Directors and/or any relevant AIHA committee to resolve any issues or violations of the Executive in a professional and timely manner. If issues or violations of the Executive are persistent or egregious, the member or volunteer may be required to leave any volunteer position(s) and may be precluded from serving in volunteer roles in the future. Furthermore, and pursuant to AIHA’s Bylaws, should an individual behave in such a manner “deemed by the Board of Directors as injurious to the reputation and standing of the industrial hygiene profession or occupational and environmental health and safety profession or the Association”, the individual may be subject to due process and expelled by a “two-thirds vote of the Board present and voting at a duly constituted meeting.” If any person is thought to have violated the law, the person may be reported to the appropriate law enforcement agency.
The AIHA Executive Office shall maintain a confidential log of all complaints registered. This will facilitate timely compliance with the procedures noted below.
For any non-ethical complaints OR ethical complaints against a NON-CIH professional
- Any AIHA national member may file a complaint against another AIHA national member. Claims shall be filed within ninety (90) days of incident. Investigation and decisions on complaints shall not result in any disciplinary actions against the complainant, unless the complaint was made in bad faith. Specifically, for VGs/WGs/SIGs/Local Sections, if the Chair (or Vice Chair in the absence of the Chair) observes any unacceptable behavior during meetings or conference calls, the member may be asked to leave the forum immediately.
- The AIHA member may submit a formal written complaint using AIHA’s online form below, which will be directed to the AIHA Office of Human Resources. The AIHA Office of Human Resources will refer the complaint to the AIHA Executive Committee.
- The Executive Committee shall review all complaint forms submitted within fourteen (14) calendar days of receipt. This may be extended to twenty-one (21) calendar days if necessary.
- AIHA’s Office of Human Resources shall notify the complainant of the Executive Committee’s decision to initiate or not initiate an investigation. If the Executive Committee determines to initiate an investigation of the complaint, AIHA’s Office of Human Resources shall also notify the accused member(s) of the complaint, the allegations in the complaint and AIHA’s intent to investigate the matter. The accused member(s) shall be entitled to submit evidence to the Executive Committee in his or her defense.
- The Executive Committee shall strive to complete its investigation within thirty (30) days. A designated investigator may be secured to investigate the complaint through witness interviews/statements, interviews with member(s) accused of committing incident, review of documents or materials, and/or involvement of local law enforcement, as appropriate. Depending on the complexity of the matter, a thirty (30) day extension period may be approved by the Executive Committee.
- AIHA’s Office of Human Resources shall communicate the Executive Committee’s recommendation to the complainant and accused member(s).
- The accused member(s) has/have up to fourteen (14) days in which to file an appeal with AIHA’s Office of Human Resources and such appeal shall be provided to the AIHA Executive Committee. This may be extended to twenty-one (21) days if necessary. The Executive Committee shall hold a hearing as it determines necessary or appropriate.
- The Executive Committee shall render a decision within fourteen (14) days. This may be extended to twenty-one (21) days if necessary.
- Options may include but are not limited to: verbal warning to accused; a written warning from the AIHA President; removal of member from volunteering in any AIHA-sponsored activity; or revocation of member’s AIHA membership. If the Executive Committee determines that a revocation of AIHA membership is appropriate, it shall refer such a decision to the AIHA Board of Directors for approval. NOTE: Revocation of AIHA membership requires a two-thirds (2/3) approval by the Board per AIHA Bylaws (Article III – Membership/Section 11 – Good Standing/Termination). All other adverse actions require a simple majority approval of the AIHA Executive Committee.
- AIHA’s Office of Human Resources shall notify both the complainant and accused member(s) of the final decision.
- Those involved in the investigation, handling or decision regarding any complaint will adhere to applicable AIHA conflict of interest policy and confidentiality procedures.
For any ethical complaints against a CIH professional
Any claims of ethics violations are under the purview of BGC, which is tasked with conducting its investigation. Please contact BGC CEO directly. The Executive Committee may defer taking any action until BGC has completed its investigation.
Filing of complaints
An online form is provided for any individual to submit written complaints to the AIHA Office of Human Resources. NOTE: Any physical threats or physical (or attempted) assaults should be immediately reported to local law enforcement without any requirement for AIHA involvement.
The online form below requests the following information:
- Complainant’s full name, member number (optional field), and contact information (phone and email)
- Name of person(s) that this complaint is levied against
- Does complainant wish to remain anonymous during the course of any investigation? AIHA will strive to maintain confidentiality to the fullest extent possible.
- Approximate Date and Time of the Event prompting this complaint
- Full details explaining the incident prompting this complaint
- Did complainant feel physically threatened or harassed by person(s) involved prompting this complaint?
For any complaints against AIHA Staff or AIHA President
Complaints made against the AIHA Office of Human Resources, AIHA President, or any other staff member involved in the complaints process shall be relegated to another staff member as appropriate. This helps ensure an unbiased investigation and decision is made. The complainant shall send a confidential note directly to the AIHA Executive Office (i.e., CEO and Executive Assistant). Describe the circumstances as outlined above. The AIHA CEO will follow a similar process as outlined above, excluding those steps where the individual may be involved.
Breach of Code of Conduct Complaint Form
* = Required field.