ARTICLE XVII – CODE OF ETHICAL PRACTICES
The Code of Ethical Practices and Conflict of Interest Policy enumerates WOUFT’s ethics rules and standards and helps WOUFT to accomplish its mission. The Code and policies enable WOUFT to meet any ethical challenges that we face as we pursue our ambitious goals. They are intended to give WOUFT members and leaders guidance for achieving the highest ethical standards. By holding officers accountable, these policies promote WOUFT’s goal of justice for all.
Section 1. Fiduciary Duties
1.1. WOUFT Executive Council members have a duty to discharge their responsibilities solely on behalf of and for the benefit of WOUFT.
1.2. Financial Practices.
1.2.1. WOUFT funds are held in trust for the benefit of WOUFT. Members of WOUFT are entitled to assurance that those funds are spent for appropriate purposes only.
1.2.2. WOUFT will not permit funds to be invested or expended in a manner which results in a personal profit or advantage for any Executive Council member.
1.2.3. WOUFT will not make loans to members, Executive Council members, or members of their families.
1.2.4. Members and Executive Council members will not engage in self-dealing transactions with WOUFT, such as buying from or selling property to WOUFT, without the informed unanimous approval of the Executive Council after full disclosure that includes an independent appraisal. Any such transaction must be reported to the membership in Executive Council meeting minutes.
1.2.5. Executive Council members are prohibited from accepting money or anything else of value from the Employer or any agent of the Employer.
1.2.6. Financial Processes
126.96.36.199. Payments are presented by the Treasurer to the Executive Council. Each payment requires the explicit approval of two other Executive Council members. The Treasurer may not authorize expenditures. Authorizations are documented through the shared account ledger. Checks may be signed with a single signature; this will usually be the Treasurer, but the President serves as an authorized signer.
188.8.131.52. Any proposed expense payable to an officer may not be authorized by that same officer.
184.108.40.206. The Treasurer executes payments once they are authorized. 1.2.7. Any WOUFT member, with just cause, can examine books, records and accounts that would verify WOUFT’s financial reports or tax forms.
Section 2. Conflict of Interest Policy
The purpose of the following policy and procedures is to prevent the personal interest of Executive Council members from interfering with the performance of their duties to WOUFT, or result in personal financial, professional, or political gain on the part of such persons at the expense of WOUFT or its members, supporters, and other stakeholders.
2.1. Definitions: Conflict of Interest (also Conflict) means a conflict, or the appearance of a conflict, between the private interests and official responsibilities of Executive Council members of WOUFT.
2.2. Policy and Practices
2.2.1. Full disclosure, by notice in writing, shall be made by the interested parties to the full Executive Council in all conflicts of interest, including but not limited to the following: a) An Executive Council member is related to another Executive Council member or staff member by blood, marriage or domestic partnership. b) An Executive Council member stands to benefit from a WOUFT transaction.
2.2.2. An interested Executive Council member shall not participate in any discussion or debate of the Executive Council, or of any committee or subcommittee thereof in which the subject of discussion is a contract, transaction, or situation in which there may be a perceived or actual conflict of interest for that member. However, they may be present to provide clarifying information in such a discussion or debate unless objected to by any present Executive Council or committee member.
2.2.3. Anyone in a position to make decisions about spending resources (i.e., transactions such as purchases and contracts) – who also stands to benefit from that decision – has a duty to disclose that conflict as soon as it arises (or becomes apparent); s/he should not participate in any final decisions.
2.2.4. This policy must be reviewed annually by all Executive Council members at a meeting of the Executive Council. The minutes of that meeting must indicate that every member of the Executive Council agrees to abide by the Code of Ethical Practices.
Section 3. Whistleblower Policy
3.1. WOUFT requires Executive Council members to observe high standards of business and personal ethics in the conduct of their duties and responsibilities.
3.2. It is the responsibility of all Executive Council members to report ethics violations or suspected violations in accordance with this Whistleblower Policy.
3.3. No Executive Council member who in good faith reports an ethics violation shall suffer harassment, retaliation or adverse employment consequence. An employee who retaliates against someone who has reported a violation in good faith is subject to discipline up to and including expulsion from the union (Article III, Section 4). This Whistleblower Policy is intended to encourage and enable WOUFT members and others to raise serious concerns within WOUFT.
3.4. WOUFT has an open door policy and suggests that members share their questions, concerns, suggestions or complaints with someone who can address them properly. WOUFT members are encouraged to contact any Executive Council member about any issue of concern.
Section 4. Oath of Office for WOUFT Executive Council Members
The following Oath of Office shall be taken by all incoming Executive Council members:
“I (state your name) accept my responsibility as an Executive Council member of the Western Oregon University Federation of Teachers and pledge that I will faithfully observe its constitution and bylaws and those of AFT-Oregon and the American Federation of Teachers.
I will carry out these duties to the best of my ability and pledge that I will work to the best of my ability to provide effective and responsible leadership. In this role, I agree to defend the principles of trade unionism, to work to improve the lives of our members, to encourage non-members to join, and to encourage the unrepresented to organize.
I will purchase union-made products and use unionized services whenever available and feasible, and I will not knowingly wrong a fellow union member or see a member wronged if it is in my power to prevent it. In addition, if eligible I will qualify myself to vote in all local, state and federal elections.
I further promise that I will turn over to my successor, when duly qualified, all documents and property belonging to the organization that are in my charge at the conclusion of my term.”