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PURPOSE AND APPLICATION

The Legal Education Society of Alberta (“LESA”) has a long tradition of integrity and credibility. This Code of Conduct and Ethics (“Code”) is designed to help preserve this tradition. The Code applies to LESA’s Board of Directors, employees (including the Executive Director), and others who provide services on LESA’s behalf, referred to in this Code individually and collectively as “LESA personnel”. It outlines principles to help LESA personnel better understand their rights and responsibilities and to position LESA to achieve its vision of excellence.

CORE VALUES

LESA has an established set of core values that reflect a clear vision for the organization and how it operates. These core values provide a roadmap for LESA’s growth and relationships; they are used to guide decision-making.

At LESA:

  1. We are professional. We believe in providing consistent, high-quality pre-call and continuing legal education designed to support the legal profession and support staff in effectively, ethically, and competently serving the public. Professionalism embodies integrity and continuing competence.
  2. We are collaborative. We believe in building relationships with members of the legal community, and with other continuing legal education providers, to continually enhance our offerings. A collaborative approach requires individuals to treat others with respect, dignity, and equality.
  3. We are innovative. We believe in leveraging current knowledge and technology to provide engaging educational experiences that respond to the diverse needs of the legal profession.
  4. We are responsible with our resources. We feel a strong obligation to stakeholders to exercise the utmost fiscal responsibility. We responsibly plan and manage our resources, allocate them conscientiously, and invest them for a sustainable future.

LESA’s core values form the foundation of this Code. These values are reflected in a number of important policies, including the provisions set out below.

STANDARDS OF CONDUCT

LESA insists on the highest ethical standards in conducting its operations. LESA personnel are expected to conduct themselves ethically, promote LESA’s mission and objectives, and act in accordance with all professional standards, governing laws, and LESA policies, as they apply to responsibilities and actions performed for, in relation to, or on behalf of LESA.

Conflicts of Interest

LESA personnel are expected to disclose and avoid any activity that creates an actual or potential conflict of interest. A conflict of interest arises in any situation in which actions or loyalties are divided between LESA’s interests and the interests of LESA personnel.

Privacy and Confidentiality

LESA personnel are obliged to respect the confidentiality of LESA’s information and the information of others with which LESA has been entrusted, and to protect the confidentiality of the personal information of LESA’s students, customers, volunteers, contractors, and employees. Other obligations relating to confidentiality can be found in LESA’s Privacy Policy and Confidentiality Agreement.

Protection of Resources

LESA personnel are obliged to protect LESA’s resources, including its intellectual property. Hardware, software, internet access, email, voice mail, and other equipment and resources are provided for LESA’s use and LESA’s exclusive property. LESA personnel must not misuse LESA’s property or resources.

Respectful and Inclusive Working Environment

LESA has a legal duty to provide a working environment that is civil, decent, and respectful. LESA is committed to meeting its legal obligations with respect to the protection of human rights. Beyond complying with legal requirements, LESA is committed to a healthy, positive workplace environment in which all are treated with respect, in which equal opportunities are promoted, and personal and professional excellence is fostered.

Diversity and Equality

LESA is committed to proactively creating an environment that promotes equal opportunities and where individual differences are welcomed and valued. LESA takes positive measures to ensure that terms, conditions, and opportunities for students, customers, volunteers, contractors, and employees reflect equality principles. LESA is committed to promoting a work environment that does not adversely affect individuals on various grounds including race, religious beliefs, colour, gender, physical disability, mental disability, age, ancestry, place of origin, marital status, sexual orientation, source of income, or family status.

Harassment

LESA has a zero tolerance policy towards all forms of harassment in the workplace, at a LESA- sponsored event, or any time LESA personnel are acting on behalf of LESA. Harassment consists of comments or actions that could be viewed as offensive or unwelcome and which serve no legitimate work-related purpose. Such offensive behaviour belittles, demeans, humiliates, or embarrasses the recipient. Discrimination, sexual harassment, personal harassment, violence, and retaliation are forms of workplace harassment.

Discrimination. Discrimination includes any treatment that has a discriminatory effect in respect of an individual’s race, religious beliefs, colour, gender, physical disability, mental disability, age, ancestry, place of origin, marital status, sexual orientation, source of income, or family status.

Sexual Harassment. Sexual harassment is any conduct, comment, gesture or contact of a sexual nature that someone would find to be unwanted or unwelcome, or that might, on reasonable grounds, be seen as placing a condition of sexual nature on employment or career development.

Personal Harassment. Personal harassment in the workplace includes conduct that a reasonable person would consider unwelcome, results in the recipient feeling intimidated, humiliated or embarrassed, creates a hostile work environment, and serves no legitimate workplace purpose.

Violence. Violence is the intentional use of physical force or power, threatened or actual, which results in (or could likely result in) injury, death, psychological harm, or deprivation.

Retaliation. Retaliation against an individual for reporting a violation of this Code can be a form of harassment in itself.

All forms of harassment are strictly prohibited.

Resolving Conflict

LESA personnel are expected to manage work-related conflict in a positive way. Work-related conflict occurs for a variety of reasons, including differences in working or communication styles. While conflict can be healthy and productive, poorly-managed conflict can lead to an unhealthy and unproductive work environment. Often, early and open communication between the parties involved is an effective means of managing conflict. Ideally, LESA personnel manage conflict by discussing concerns directly with the individual involved, and/or by seeking support, coaching, or assistance. If these options are unsuccessful (or inappropriate), the person or persons affected may choose to request some form of mediation or, in cases involving harassment, a formal review.

Representing LESA

LESA personnel should not speak on behalf of LESA, except within the scope of their authority and assigned duties or responsibilities. LESA personnel may be contacted by outside sources requesting information about LESA matters. If the request relates to information outside the assigned duties of the person to whom the request is made, the question should be referred, to an appropriate LESA representative to avoid disclosure of inaccurate, incomplete, confidential, or proprietary information. LESA personnel who speak or write publicly about LESA must ensure that they are acting in accordance with this Code.

IMPLEMENTATION

LESA personnel who have any questions regarding this Code, or who believe there has been a violation of this Code, may contact either the Chair of the Board Directors (for questions or concerns raised by a Director or the Executive Director, or in relation to a concern regarding the Executive Director) or the Executive Director (for questions or concerns raised by an employee or another person).

All reports concerning violations of this Code will be investigated promptly by the Chair, the Executive Director, and/or an outside investigator, as appropriate. Anyone violating this Code will be subject to discipline up to and including termination.

Other conflicts between the private interests of LESA personnel and their obligations to LESA that are not specifically addressed in this Code or in other LESA policies are dealt with according to the principles and intent of this Code. This Code will be reviewed and evaluated from time to time and revised as necessary.

CONTACTING LESA

If you have any questions, comments or concerns about LESA's Code Of Conduct, please contact us by one of the following methods:

E-Mail: info@lesa.org
Regular Mail or in person: 2610, 10104 - 103 Avenue
Edmonton, Alberta T5J 0H8
Telephone: 780.420.1987 or toll free in Alberta at 1.800.282.3900
Fax: 780.425.0885

To report a violation of the Legal Education Society of Alberta’s Code of Conduct, please complete this form.


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