ACCA Policies and Ethics
ACCA Conflict of Interest Policy
(adopted by the ACCA Board on 23 May 2020)
This conflict of interest policy recognizes that Board members and Officers in the Asian Christian Counsellors Association (ACCA) frequently have multiple roles and dual relationships. The multiplicity of these relationships creates the probability that persons will from time to time experience a conflict of interests between their roles and responsibilities to ACCA and their private interests, or the interests and commitments related to other roles and responsibilities in other organizations.
The purpose of this policy is to:
- protect and enhance the reputation and good standing of ACCA,
- ensure good governance,
- pre-empt and thus minimizeconflicts of interest,
- safeguard good management practices in the interests of ACCA and its members,
- offer ways of dealing with emerging conflicts of interests,
- outline the scope and nature of actions, conditions or restrictions to put in place to manage, mitigate or eliminate any actual, potential, or perceived conflict of interest,
- increase the perceived and real integrity of the ACCA in all its dealings with various agencies and bodies particularly within the sphere of counselling and beyond.
It is the responsibility of the ACCA Board to avoid wherever possible, identify, declare and manage conflict of interest in accordance with this policy.
Examples of what is or is not Conflict of Interest
- Using the ACCA name or logo without the knowledge and permission of ACCA to promote an activity or item that is of interest to an individual or another organization is a conflict of interest.
- A Board member who is acting in his or her capacity to represent ACCA publicly but spends substantial time talking about the matters of another organization is a perceived conflict of interest (although mentioning in the introduction about his or her role in another organization is acceptable).
- Using the name and logo of ACCA to mention that the national body is a member of ACCA to promote an activity or item of that national body is not a conflict of interest.
- Using the name and logo of ACCA by a ACCA Board member or any other individual for any commercial purposes of the individual or agency without the ACCA’s permission is a conflict of interest.
- A Partnership drawn up between a collaborating body and ACCA for mutual benefit is not a conflict of interest provided the issue has been raised, discussed and agreed by both parties in writing.
An actual conflict of interest occurs when there is a real conflict between the interests of the Association and other interests that influences a person’s actions or decision making.
A potential conflict of interest occurs when a person has interests or obligations that could conflict with the interests of the Association.
A perceived conflict of interest occurs it appears or other people could form the view that a person could be influenced by a conflict of interest.
- Declaration of multiple interests. Board members shall lodge with the President of ACCA a Declaration of their Interest (see form below). It is the responsibility of each Board member to update this declaration when there is a change in the potential conflicts of interest.
Sample Declaration of Interests
Name of Board member:
|Description of interest||Has the ACCA Executive Committee been notified of the interest?||Date of disclosure
|Steps taken by the ACCA Executive Committee for dealing with potential conflict||Actions taken by the Board member to address the conflict|
- Declare the conflict of interest. When a person has an actual conflict of interest or is aware of a potential conflict of interest, it is the responsibility of that person to declare that conflict of interest. When other members of the ACCA Board become aware of a perceived conflict of interest, it is also their responsibility to raise the issue of the perceived conflict of interest to the ACCA Executive Committee, so that it can be managed appropriately.
- Management of a conflict of interest. It is the responsibility of the ACCA Executive Committee to determine the appropriate management of conflicts of interests as they arise according to the specific circumstances and nature of the conflict of interest.
- Strategies for managing conflicts of interests. There are six basic strategies for managing conflicts of interest:
Acknowledgement: Acknowledgement of the conflict of interest so there is an openness about the potential of the conflict of interest to influence decision-making that can be considered and mitigated against.
Removal. The person with the conflict of interest is removed from the decision-making process by either taking no part in the discussion, or not voting on the decision. The person can either be requested to leave or remain present at the discretion of the ACCA President.
Restriction. The person with the conflict of interest may be required to have a restricted or reduced role with respect to the matter
Recruitment. An independent third party may be recruited to oversee the process.
When there are real on-going conflicts of interest that cannot be managed or mitigated by the above four strategies, then the person with the conflict of interest may be required to resolve the conflict of interest by either:
Relinquishment. Relinquishment of the other role or interest that is creating an actual, or perceived conflict of interest.
Resignation. Resignation from the role in ACCA.
- Minutes. A record of the declaration of the conflict of interest and how it was managed shall be recorded in the minutes of the Board.
- Public Representation. A person who is publicly representing ACCA in the context of a marketing or promotion activity must act solely as a representative of ACCA in those activities. They are to refrain from promoting or advocating for another organization or personal interest during those activities and engagements.
However, a person with the prior knowledge and permission of the ACCA Executive Committee may publicly represent or promote ACCA while representing or promoting another organization.
- National Associations. Since ACCA Board members are typically representatives of the national Christian counselling associations who are members or associates of ACCA, it shall be the practice of the Executive Committee that when there is a motion under consideration that concerns a particular national association, the representative of that national association may provide information to the ACCA Executive Committee, but shall not participate in the discussion about the motion nor vote on the motion. It is at the discretion of the ACCA President whether or not the representative can remain present during that discussion and vote.
ACCA ASIAN CODE OF ETHICS
ACCA wants to set up an Ethics Committee tasked with drafting up an Asian Code of Ethics for Christian counseling in Asia.
Qualified Christian counselors with a Masters or Doctorate degree in counseling, psychology or related discipline are invited to apply to become a member of the ACCA Ethics Committee.
This Committee targets to draft jointly the Asian Code of Ethics within a time frame of one year.
For those who are interested to join the committee, kindly write to the ACCA President at email@example.com