The purpose of this code of conduct is to provide Executive Committee members with clear guidelines as to their standard of behaviour, responsibilities, and best practice in fulfilling their obligations to the Care Leavers’ Association (CLA).
- Committee Members must have a good understanding of the work of the Association, be sympathetic with the aims and objects of the Association and act in accordance with the governing documents at all times.
- Committee Members must act and make decisions in the best interests of the CLA and its present and future members. Where professional help is required for the Committee Members to be able to make the best decision on behalf of the CLA, that assistance should be sought and considered carefully.
- Committee Members must not receive any financial or non-financial benefit from membership of the Executive Committee that is not explicitly authorised by the governing document(s).
- Committee Members should not exert any influence to gain any preferential treatment for themselves or their family.
- Members of the Executive Committee are jointly and severally liable for their decisions. These decisions should be taken together and communicated, as appropriate, in a unified manner.
- Committee Members are accountable to CLA members as a whole for their actions and, as such, decision-making and governance issues should be as transparent as possible, except for when confidentiality is required.
- Committee Members should be prepared to spend an appropriate amount of time reading papers and preparing for Committee meetings. A minimum attendance of 75% of meetings is required of Committee Members, in order to ensure that best practice in governance is reached and maintained.
- Committee members should not miss three, or more, consecutive Executive Committee meetings. If either this, or the above requirement, is not met then Executive Committee membership should be reviewed.
- Should a Committee Member feel that they require further guidance or training in their role, they have a duty to inform the CLA Secretary and actively develop plans for new training on an individual or group basis.
- Any information of a confidential nature must remain so outside the confines of the Committee meeting.
- Email communication of Committee business must be restricted to committee members, the National Development Worker and the Office Administrator at all times.
- If a Committee member has a complaint about any other member of the Committee or a member of staff, this should be directed to the Chair in the first instance.
- All Committee members must act appropriately towards each other, staff and other members at all times and respect individual opinions and beliefs.
- In the case of all urgent media contacts, responses need to be either from the Chair or cleared with the Chair in the first instance, who may decide to consult with the other members of the Executive Committee.
- With respect to representation of the Association at meetings and other public forums, any Committee member statements must be in line with the already agreed policy positions of the Association. Where this is not the case, the Committee member must make clear that statements are made in a personal capacity.
- The CLA will strive to meet all legitimate expense claims by Committee members. However, these must be submitted using an expenses form, following the agreed procedure.
- An executive member who has professional or financial interests outside the CLA, or is part of another organization, political or social, that advocates views or positions contrary to the CLA’s policies must declare those interests at the beginning of any executive meeting. If a conflict of interest arises during a meeting then the executive member may be asked to leave the room while the matter is under discussion.
- A register of declaration of interest will be kept by the National Director. In general, executive members will follow the good practice as laid down by the Standards Board of England.
Agreed by the CLA Executive Committee on 6 June 2009