Accountability and Safeguarding
Parliamentary Centre members and staff shall act with honesty, integrity and openness in all their dealings as representatives of the organization. PC promotes a working environment that values respect, fairness and integrity.
Governance, Integrity and Safeguarding
The Parliamentary Centre is governed by a board of directors who oversee and direct its management and affairs. An executive leadership team, led by the President and CEO, is responsible for managing its day-to-day functions and staff in Canada and internationally.
The Parliamentary Centre is committed to an open and respectful workplace where honesty and integrity are observed by our employees, board of directors, partners and vendors and all those with whom we engage. This requires high standards of ethics in every aspect of our conduct in Canada and abroad.
Employees, associates, volunteers, consultants and partners must act with mutual respect for a diverse workforce where inclusion is a guiding value. They must demonstrate honesty and integrity in their work and comply with all applicable local and international laws as well as The Parliamentary Centre Code of Conduct, the Policy on Sexual Exploitation and Harassment (PSEAH), the Anti-Corruption Policy and all policies and regulations, including the proper use of public funds and assets.
Duty of care is the responsibility or legal obligation of a person or organization to avoid acts or omissions that could likely cause harm to others. We are committed to duty of care and good practices to mitigate risks to individuals’ health, environment, safety, security, dignity, and life.
Reporting a Concern
If you suspect, in good faith, that misconduct has or is about to occur, we encourage you to communicate your suspicions without fear of reprisal and in the knowledge that you will be protected from victimization or dismissal. For more information please consult The Parliamentary Centre’s Whistleblowing Policy.
Excerpts from our key safeguarding policies
Anti Corruption Policy, Conflict of Interest, Code of Conduct and Ethics, Preventing Sexual Exploitation and Abuse (PSEA), Anti-harassment and Sexual Misconduct, Anti-Gender Equality and Inclusion and Whistleblowing
Anti Corruption Policy
The Parliamentary Centre’s work is dedicated to strengthening The democracy and good governance around the world. Promoting increased transparency and accountability is an integral part of our work.
The conduct of The Parliamentary Centre staff, representatives, and partners shall correspond to its values and mission. The Parliamentary Centre promotes responsibility, respect, honesty, and professional excellence. The Parliamentary Centre is an open and transparent organization and does not tolerate fraud and corruption of any form.
The Parliamentary Centre anti corruption statement’s goal is to prevent fraud and corruption in The Parliamentary Centre programs and projects and contracts at the local, national, regional and international levels.
Conflict of Interest
Conflict of interest arises when a person participates in a decision about a matter (including any contract or arrangement of employment, leasing, sale or provision of goods and services) which may benefit or be seen to benefit that person because of his/her direct or indirect monetary or financial interests affected by or involved in that matter.
If such a matter arises, the person shall formally disclose the interest, refrain from attempting to persuade or influence other persons participating in the decision, and shall not cast any vote on the matter.
Employees may not use their position with The Parliamentary Centre to solicit or accept gifts, gratuities, free trips, honoraria, personal property, or any other item of value from any person or entity. Nevertheless, nominal gifts and entertainment and reasonable invitations to events such as meetings, conventions and seminars may be accepted, provided they are reasonable and serve a customary business purpose such as networking or promoting good working relationships with clients, partners or contractors.
Preventing Sexual Exploitation and Abuse (PSEA)
The Parliamentary Centre has zero-tolerance for any act of sexual exploitation or sexual abuse. To protect the most vulnerable populations, particularly vulnerable adults and children, The Parliamentary Centre adheres to the following core principles:
- Respect and promote fundamental human rights without discrimination of any kind and regardless of social status, race, ethnicity, colour, religion, gender, sexual orientation, age, marital status, national origin, political affiliation or disability.
- Treat everyone fairly and with respect, courtesy, dignity, and according to the respective national law, international law and local customs.
- Create and maintain an environment that prevents sexual exploitation, abuse of power and corruption, and promotes the implementation of the Code of Conduct.
- Uphold the highest standards of accountability, efficiency, competence, integrity and transparency in providing goods and services.
- Never commit any form of harassment that could result in physical, sexual or psychological harm or suffering to individuals/beneficiaries, especially women and children.
- Never exploit any target group’s vulnerability, especially women and children, or allow any person to be placed in a compromising situation.
- Never engage in any sexual activity with persons under the age of 18, regardless of local laws about the age of majority or consent. Mistaken belief in the age of the child is not a defence.
- Never engage in sexual exploitation or abuse of any target group (men, women, girls and boys). This constitutes acts of gross misconduct and is grounds for termination.
- Never trade money, employment, goods or services for sex, including sexual favours. All forms of humiliating, degrading or exploitative behaviour are prohibited. This includes trading of assistance that is due to beneficiaries.
- Never abuse your position to withhold assistance, give preferential treatment, or solicit sexual favours, gifts, payments of any kind, or advantage.
- Consciously avoid taking advantage of my position and may not accept gifts (except small tokens of appreciation) or bribes.
- Never engage in sexual relationships with beneficiaries. Such relationships are strongly discouraged since they are based on inherently unequal power dynamics. Such relationships undermine the credibility and integrity of humanitarian aid work. This applies both during and after working hours.
- Never accept, solicit, or profit from sexual services. This rule applies both within and outside of working hours.
- Ensure that all confidential information, including reports of breaches of these standards by colleagues, obtained from beneficiaries or colleagues are handled correctly and with the utmost confidentiality.
- Ensure that reports of breaches of these standards are immediately provided to the PSEA Director of Operations (or through other established reporting mechanisms). Those receiving these reports will investigate immediately.
The Parliamentary Centre’s work is dedicated to strengthening The democracy and good governance around the world. Supporting the participation of women and marginalized groups in decision-making processes is an integral part of our work.
The conduct of The Parliamentary Centre staff, representatives, and partners shall correspond to its values and mission. The Parliamentary Centre promotes responsibility, respect, honesty, and professional excellence. The Parliamentary Centre is committed to achieving gender equality and empowering women within the organization and in all of its programming.
The Parliamentary Centre defines gender policy guidelines at two levels: Institutional and programmatic.
- Staff Policies: All staff policies, rules and regulations shall be gender-sensitive and promote inclusion at all levels. The Parliamentary Centre is an equal employment opportunity employer. Employment decisions are based on merit and business needs and not on race, colour, citizenship status, national origin, ancestry, gender, sexual orientation, age, weight, religion, creed, physical or mental disability, marital status, veteran status, political affiliation, or any other factor protected by law.
- Gender-sensitive organizational structure
- Recruitment: The Parliamentary Centre seeks gender balance and cultural diversity in staffing. Women and individuals from underrepresented groups will be encouraged to apply for all vacancies, including management and leadership positions both at the field and head office. There will be balanced representation in recruitment and interview processes.
- Performance reviews: Gender sensitivity will be one of the performance indicators for assessing
- Capacity building for gender sensitization: We will organize workshops, training programs, and discussions to promote and enable a gender-sensitive work culture. Also, regular training will be conducted on awareness and confidence building of field staff, focusing on gender and inclusion.
- Harassment: Our Anti Sexual Harassment and Misconduct policy is gender-neutral.
- The Parliamentary Centre wants to provide a harassment-free environment for its employees. It will neither tolerate nor condone behaviour that is likely to undermine an individual’s dignity or self-esteem or create an intimidating, hostile or offensive environment. Mutual respect and cooperation, and understanding must be the basis of interaction between members and staff.
- Everyone in the workplace must be dedicated to preventing workplace harassment and violence. Managers, supervisors, and workers are expected to uphold this policy and be held accountable by the employer.
Mainstreaming gender and inclusion in all programming to ensure that gender equality is an essential component in the planning, design, selection, implementation and evaluation of all aspects of The Parliamentary Centre programming and operations.
- Designing projects that contribute to gender equality
- Consistently integrating gender-sensitive practices throughout the project management
- Determining indicators to measure gender results
- Strengthening the understanding and competencies on gender equality among stakeholders.
Reporting a Concern
If you have concerns about suspicious behaviour relating to the honesty and integrity of Parliamentary Centre employees, consultants, volunteers, or any vendors, partners, government representatives or other third parties involved, directly or indirectly, in dealings with The Parliamentary Centre, you should report the circumstances. This includes reporting any situation where you believe, in good faith, that The Parliamentary Centre or any of the other parties have violated or may violate a law or regulation or are not respecting The Parliamentary Centre Code of Conduct and financial procedures.
You may report any unlawful or unauthorized activities or incidents, without fear of reprisal, by sending an email to firstname.lastname@example.org. You can also report by phone at +1-613-947-4999.
Disclosures will be treated in a confidential manner. The Parliamentary Centre will commit to doing everything it can to protect the identity of the whistleblower.
The Parliamentary Centre will address any allegations as thoroughly, efficiently and sensitively as possible. An appropriate person nominated by The Parliamentary Centre Director of Operations or, or where necessary, The Parliamentary Centre President and CEO will investigate the allegation within two weeks of the disclosure. The whistleblower may be asked for further information during the investigation.
When reporting an incident please include the following information:
- Please provide details concerning the location of the incident. For example specific location, and office.
- Please describe the nature of your concern regarding financial, operational or ethical matters. Include sufficient information to understand the concern and to enable further investigation.
- Please state the full name(s) and title(s) of individuals whom you suspect of wrongdoing.
- How many times has this incident taken place? (if applicable)
- How long has this incident been taking place? (if applicable)
- Please upload any supporting documentation (scans, photos, documents) that support the allegation or concern.
- Would you be willing to provide your name and contact information (phone, email)? (optional) No Yes
- If yes, then please provide your name, email and telephone number.
- Would you be willing to arrange a meeting/telephone call with a Parliamentary Centre representative to discuss this matter? (this option is only available to individuals who chose to provide their name) No Yes
It is contrary to The Parliamentary Centre’s values for anyone to retaliate against any director, officer, employee, contractor or vendor who in good faith submits a report alleging a violation. An employee who retaliates against someone who has reported a violation in good faith is subject to discipline up to and including termination of employment.
Acting in Good Faith
Anyone reporting a complaint concerning a violation or suspected violation must be acting in good faith and have reasonable grounds for believing the information disclosed is accurate. Any allegations that prove not to be substantiated and prove to have been made maliciously or intentionally false will be viewed as a serious disciplinary offence.