CODE OF CONDUCT
CODE OF CONDUCT Policy
Rise requires its directors, employees, contractors, and volunteers to adhere to the highest ethical standards and professional conduct in all activities. In the execution of the organization’s ethical responsibilities, it has developed this Code of Conduct (the “Code”) to be adhered to in addition to compliance with government laws and regulations and with contractual and other obligations. This Code applies to all directors, employees (whether full-time or part-time), contractors and volunteers, together herein referred to as “Covered Persons”, to help them make appropriate decisions and ensure that their actions reflect Rise’s values of Care, Empowerment and Inclusion.
Covered Persons shall adhere to and comply with laws, rules and regulations of each jurisdiction in which Rise carries on its business. In particular, and without restricting the generality of the following:
- Upholding the law– all Covered Persons are required to uphold government laws, rules, and regulations, as well as any Rise policies, procedures, guidelines, and standards in the performance of their duties. Covered Persons must not knowingly assist in any criminal activity or benefit from any illegal transaction. Should a Covered Person be charged with or convicted of any criminal offence, they must immediately notify their direct manager or the Chief Executive Officer.
- Honesty and integrity – Rise requires all Covered Persons to always act with honesty and integrity, using sound judgement and dealing in good faith. Any concerns relating to the honesty and integrity of Rise, or its Covered Persons must be reported. See reference at end of document to the Rise Whistleblower Policy.
- Discrimination and harassment – Rise is committed to providing an environment which is free of harassment and discrimination, and where every individual is treated in a manner that fosters dignity and respect. Harassment or discrimination of any kind will not be tolerated by the organization and Rise recognizes the following protected classes:
- Religion or creed
- National original or ancestry
- Sex, including gender, pregnancy, sexual orientation and gender identity
- Physical or mental disability
- Genetic information
Rise requires that all Covered Persons, suppliers, visitors, and donors demonstrate at all times, when engaging with or on behalf of Rise, a respect for others and appreciation of differences. Individuals are expected to immediately report any instance of harassment or discrimination, whether they were personally subject to it, overheard or observed it, or if it was reported to them. This includes any action that is likely to cause discomfort, offence, or humiliation to any person, including, without limitation, bullying or verbally abusive behaviour. Rise places the highest importance on effectively dealing with all harassment or discrimination complaints in order to promote a safe work environment, without fear or threat of reprisal.
No Covered Person should utilize their status, or the information acquired by their position for personal gain, whether by seeking, accepting or extending gifts, payment or privileges of any sort from or attempting to influence the behaviour of persons or organizations doing or attempting to do business with Rise, or otherwise. In addition, any gift must comply with the guidelines detailed in Board policy 9. Gift Acceptance Policy
CONFLICTS OF INTEREST
The onus is on each Covered Person to anticipate and to avoid conflicts of interest with Rise. No director or employee shall have any interest, direct or indirect, in the form of financial investment, of acting as an officer, director or shareholder or of providing other forms of support, including the expenditure of time, in any entity which might:
- produce personal gain for the director or employee at the expense of Rise;
- detract from the time and energy which such director or employee ought to devote to their duties on behalf of Rise;
- cause embarrassment to Rise;
- leave the director or employee open to pressure that might affect the interests of Rise.
In all matters of conflict of interest, these guidelines apply to a director or employee’s near relatives; namely, spouse, dependent children and dependent parents.
Rise has a zero-tolerance policy regarding fraud. Any Covered Person found to have engaged in fraud will be subject to termination for cause and/or serious reason without notice, as well as to possible criminal prosecution. Rise will not allow any actions that would endanger its charitable status, and expects every Covered Person, to share its commitment and belief in the law and exemplifying ethical behaviour.
There is a continuous and active responsibility for each Covered Person to be alert to any questionable or unethical behaviour or information attributed to other Covered Persons, suppliers, or Rise clients. Such behaviour may be an action or intentional omission intended to deceive to procure a benefit of some kind (either direct or indirect, monetary or otherwise) to the perpetrator. Such actions or behaviour may include:
- Unauthorized handling or reporting of Rise transactions;
- Forgery or alteration of negotiable instruments such as cheques and drafts;
- Misappropriation of Rise, client or donor assets;
- Use of cash for personal purposes, securities, supplies or any other Rise assets;
- False representation of Rise for the purposes of personal gain (financial or otherwise);
- Falsification of Rise records or financial statements; and
- Fraud committed against Rise’s health insurance and benefits providers, as defined by the providers.
The above list is not exhaustive, and should any Covered Person encounter such aforementioned behaviour or any other type of fraudulent behaviour or actions, they must report it in accordance with the procedure set out in Rise Policy #8 – Whistleblower
MAINTENANCE OF RISE’S ASSETS, REPUTATION, BUSINESS INFORMATION
Each Covered Person shall act prudently and take reasonable care to protect the physical assets of Rise, as well as its non-physical assets such as trademarks, patents and confidential and proprietary information.
Covered Persons are to use their discretion in using Rise’s IT services and assets for limited personal use and understand Rise’s right to access and monitor these systems. Any unauthorized or improper use or alteration of Rise’s IT assets, services and the data contained therein is prohibited. Should a Covered Person discover any irregularities in Rise’s IT services, they are obligated to report it to their direct manager, or the Chief Executive Officer.
CONFIDENTIALITY AND PRIVACY
Confidentiality and the proper management of donor, volunteer, employee, client, or commercial information are a top priority for Rise. Confidential or proprietary information obtained through a Covered Person’s position with Rise will remain confidential and will only be disclosed in permitted circumstances (i.e. by contract or consent) or when required by law to be disclosed.
At all times, the privacy and dignity of clients, donors, volunteers, and staff will be respected in accordance with Rise’s Policy #7 – Privacy & Information, and legislation. Any breach of privacy obligations must be communicated immediately to the Privacy Officer.
It is expected that the obligation to maintain confidentiality will be carried on by the Covered Person, despite their leaving the employ or service of Rise.
Only the Board Chair or the CEO, or a person authorized by one of them, is entitled to make any public comment or statement concerning Rise policy.
Anyone with concerns or complaints regarding improper conduct of a Rise stakeholder is expected to share their concerns by submitting a written statement with supporting evidence, as outlined in Rise Policy #8: Whistleblower Policy