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Canadian Council for International Co-operation

The Council is a coalition of Canadian voluntary sector organizations working globally to achieve sustainable human development.

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Frequently Asked Questions

Organizational Integrity

Dear Ms Ethics is a communication vehicle to disseminate the answers to questions about organizational ethical dilemmas that relate to the CCIC Code of Ethics and Operational Standards.

1. Transparency, Time and Cost
We are committed to transparency, but it can be time consuming and costly to send out detailed reports.  Is it ethical if we send an annual report only to individual donors and then a more detailed report to institutional funders?

2. Meeting Minutes
Does CCIC's Code of Ethics and Operational Standards require organizations to make public (to employees and the public at large) the minutes from board of directors' meetings?

3. Balance of Trust and Privacy
Recently our Board received a letter about staff-Board relations.  If the letter is discussed at a Board meeting, should it be made available to members or the general public if someone requests it later? What does the Code of Ethics and Operational Standards say about secrecy of information of Civil Society Organizations?

4. Transparency and Confidentiality
The last Dear Ms Ethics dealt with a letter submitted to the Board about Board-staff relations. It mentioned the importance of balancing transparency and privacy. That’s all well and good, but what should we actually do with the letter - append it to the minutes? Mention it but not append it?

5. Accurate Representation
I sit on the Board of an organization that likes to put the position and company or organizational affiliation beside the name of their governing body members.  Considering I am not representing my work organization what are the ethical considerations of that practice?

6. Truthfulness
Our communication office distributed an opinion piece to a number of newspapers for publication. A national paper called to say that it would print the piece only if other major national dailies won't print it. They also said that they were not concerned about provincial dailies and so we verbally agreed to contract with them. A written contract arrived the next day stating that the chain has a time-limited exclusive right to the article. That same day a number of papers (not major national dailies) called to say that they too would like to print the opinion piece. Would it be ethically wrong to allow the other papers to print the article?

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