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Society Operating Guidelines

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Our Society Operating Guidelines describe in detail the manner in which American Society of Safety Professionals is structured and governed. They are intended to accompany and be consistent with ASSP bylaws.

Section 6.12: Code of Professional Conduct

I. Introduction

ASSP's Code of Professional Conduct (“the code”) is the foundation for defining professionalism in matters involving the membership.

II. Mission

The primary mission of the code is to: Foster a common vision for professional conduct for the members; act as the basis for determining when an individual member's conduct is outside acceptable limits; and be the code for which a member affirms acceptance as a condition of membership.

III. Purpose

ASSP has an obligation to its membership and the profession to define the acceptable limits for professional conduct. It is upon this definition that the Society, through the Professional Conduct Committee has a basis for attempting to maintain the highest qualities of professionalism among its membership.

IV. Revisions

The code may be revised at any time. The primary unit responsible for recommending changes is the Professional Conduct Committee. Recommendations from this committee are made to the Board of Directors, who must affirmatively act on such recommendations.

IV. The Code of Professional Conduct

Membership in ASSP evokes a duty to serve and protect people, property and the environment. This duty is to be exercised with integrity, honor and dignity. Members are accountable for following the Code of Professional Conduct:

  • Serve the public, employees, employers, clients, ASSP and the profession with fidelity, honesty and impartiality.
  • In professional relationships, treat others with respect, civility and without discrimination.
  • Abstain from behavior that will unjustly cause harm to the reputation of ASSP, its members and the profession.
  • Continually improve professional knowledge, skills, competencies and awareness of relevant new developments through training, education, networking and work experiences.
  • Consider qualifications before undertaking any professional activity and perform only those services that may be handled competently.
  • Make informed decisions in the performance of professional duties that adhere to relevant laws, regulations and recognized standards of practice.
  • Inform all appropriate parties when professional judgment indicates that there is an unacceptable level of risk of injury, illness, property damage or environmental harm.
  • Maintain the confidentiality of information acquired through professional practice that is designated or generally recognized as non-public, confidential or privileged.
  • Accurately represent professional qualifications including education, credentials, designations, affiliations, titles and work experience.
  • Avoid situations that create actual, potential or perceived conflicts between personal and professional interests, and if a potential conflict of interest arises disclose applicable facts to potentially affected parties.

Code of Conduct Violations

File a Code of Conduct Complaint

Our Code of Professional Conduct is an ethical benchmark for our members. These standards bring accountability, responsibility and trust to those whom the safety profession serves. ASSP members are expected to uphold our Code of Professional Conduct.

If you believe an ASSP member has violated the Code of Professional Conduct, we ask that you please review the Code of Professional Conduct and the committee procedures before filing an allegation.

To report the alleged misconduct, please contact Jennifer McNelly, ASSP’s CEO, at executive@assp.org using the subject line: Code of Conduct Allegation. The communication must include facts, details, supporting documents and other evidence to support any claims of unprofessional or unethical conduct.


Approved By | Date: SOG Section 6.12: Board of Directors | 12/2019; Code of Professional Conduct: House of Delegates | 06/12
Replaces Edition Dated: 10/2011
Next Revision Due: 12/2022