Code of EthicsEthical Responsibility
Reporting Suspected Unethical Behavior
As employees of Northwest Area Foundation, we are committed to high ethics and business standards. Trust is at the heart of our connections — with our communities, vendors, families, and to each other. Trust is built on honesty, integrity and dependability — all components of ethical behavior.
Each of us expects to listen, and in turn, to be heard. We want to encourage honesty and openness — about mistakes as well as successes. No one at NWAF should ask us to do anything that is illegal or unethical. This code outlines the broad principles of legal and ethical conduct embraced by Northwest Area Foundation’s management team, and approved by our board of directors. It is not intended to be a complete list of legal or ethical questions an employee might face in the course of their work; therefore this code must be applied using common sense and good judgment. Following is a list of some areas where violations might occur. The following activities are prohibited:
- • Release of confidential information about Northwest Area Foundation or the communities with which it works.
- • Entering into a relationship or activity that creates a conflict of interest between the employee’s private interests and the interests of Northwest Area Foundation. An employment, consulting, or business relationship between an employee and a vendor or community with which Northwest Area Foundation works may create a conflict of interest and must be disclosed. Conflicts of interest may also arise when an employee, officer, or director, or members of his or her family receives improper personal benefits as a result of his or her position with Northwest Area Foundation. Conflicts of interest may not always be clear-cut, so if you have a question, you should consult with your supervisor or the Human Resources Department.
- • Communicating on behalf of Northwest Area Foundation; i.e., press releases, media, speeches, and articles without approval from a member of the management team.
- • Noncompliance with contractual obligations of Northwest Area Foundation.
- • Knowingly not complying with any federal, state, or local laws or accounting standards, or other regulations.
- • Fraud, dishonesty or criminal conduct involving or related to Northwest Area Foundation. Examples would include theft of employee or company property; misuse of computer, telephone, or mail resources; falsification of records or reports; violation of the drug and alcohol policy or weapons prohibition policy; and violence or threats of violence.
Northwest Area Foundation values responsibility. Each employee is responsible for his/her behavior. While performing your job duties, you are responsible for ensuring that you conduct yourself in a manner that reflects positively on Northwest Area Foundation.
Your personal responsibilities include:
- • Complying with all laws and regulations that impact your job.
- • Complying with all Northwest Area Foundation policies.
- • Maintaining appropriate ethical and professional behavior.
- • Not assisting others who are attempting to violate any law, regulation, or policy or attempting to commit an unethical act.
No illegal or unethical act can be justified by claiming that it was ordered by higher management. We always have options — they may not always be easy choices, but they will always exist — and we have the resources to ask for assistance.
Breaches of this code or any other unlawful acts by Northwest Area Foundation’s officers, directors or employees may be subject to termination from employment and/or fines, imprisonment, and civil litigation according to applicable laws.
Reporting Suspected Unethical Behavior
If you become aware of activities that are inconsistent with the standards above, immediately contact a member of the management team. These personnel are sensitive to the need for confidentiality and committed to researching concerns and issues. However, information that involves a threat to life and property, illegal activities, or legal action against Northwest Area Foundation may require action that does not allow for complete anonymity.
If you do not receive an answer in a timely fashion or are still concerned that the issue has not been addressed, or if the concern is regarding the acts of the management team, you may also choose to contact the chair of the Audit Committee. It is against Northwest Area Foundation policy to institute retaliation or recrimination against employees who, in good faith, reported such concerns.
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