Leadership and Volunteers Conduct Policy

Originally approved June 2020


In accordance with its Non-Discrimination and Harassment Policy for members, the American College of Emergency Physicians (ACEP) is also committed, as a policy matter, to ensuring that its Board members, volunteers, employees and consultants can perform their valuable services to ACEP free of harassment and discrimination.

Prohibited Harassment and Discrimination

Directors, Committee members, Councillors, and other ACEP volunteers (collectively, “Covered Persons”) should refrain from conduct that is discriminatory, harassing, coercive, or disruptive, including sexual harassment, in their dealings with ACEP staff, consultants, vendors, volunteers, or other individuals who provide support to ACEP or with whom they interact due to their position with ACEP (eg, Board, Council, Committee, Section, Task Force or other volunteer service). For purposes of this Policy, prohibited harassment includes unwelcome actions, words, jokes, or comments based on any legally protected characteristic, such as an individual’s sex, race, color, national origin, age, religion, mental or physical disability, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, pregnancy, or military or veteran status. Some examples of impermissible behavior include mocking an individual’s religious beliefs, using racially biased epithets, making uninvited sexual advances or propositions, telling obscene jokes, discussing sexual activities, or engaging in unwelcome physical conduct, including touching, assaulting, or impeding or blocking movements. 

Responding to Conduct in Violation of Policy

Covered Persons shall report any and all concerns of sexual or other prohibited harassment or retaliation in violation of this Policy to the President or to ACEP’s General Counsel. If the concern involves the President, the Board Chair may be notified instead. The President (or Board Chair) should promptly consult with the General Counsel upon receipt of any report of a violation of this Policy. The Executive Director shall be notified of any report of a Policy violation brought by a staff member. All reports of sexual and other prohibited harassment will be taken seriously, evaluated in a prompt manner, treated with respect, and maintained in confidence to the extent practicable. The President or Board Chair shall oversee any investigation into an alleged violation of this Policy, in consultation with the General Counsel.

Covered Persons must cooperate with any investigation into alleged violations of this Policy, including by providing truthful information to the investigator.  Covered Persons must not engage in retaliation of any kind against any individual who, in good faith, reports or participates in the investigation of an alleged violation of this Policy.

With respect to allegations of harassment received from staff, Covered Persons shall, at the request of the Executive Director or of the General Counsel, refrain from initiating communication or other contact with a complainant or witness during the investigation or, as deemed appropriate by the Board of Directors, as an element of resolution of the investigation.

Any Board member found to have engaged in prohibited discrimination and/or harassment may be subject to disciplinary action by the Board of Directors, as determined by majority vote of the Board, or removal from the Board in accordance with the procedures set forth in Article X, Section 3 of the Bylaws. Officers found to be in violation of the policy may be removed from office in accordance with the procedures in Article X, Section 3 of the Bylaws. A Councillor’s violation of this Policy may result in removal from the Council, in accordance with the governance documents or policies of the Councillor’s sponsoring body. Any Committee member or other ACEP volunteer, such as a Section member or member of an appointed Task Force, may also be removed from their volunteer position by the President if an allegation of a violation of this policy is received that ACEP, in its discretion, considers credible.

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