Introduction 

The integrity and reputation of Doctors for the Environment Australia (DEA) relies on its representatives upholding and promoting the highest ethical and professional standards. 

The DEA Code of Conduct is applicable to all DEA personnel, who are defined as Board, staff, spokespeople, volunteers and members of committees working for or representing DEA. It conveys the organisational culture we endeavour to have and shared understanding and expectations of our individual behaviour towards each other. 

 All DEA personnel are encouraged to recognise and acknowledge valued and excellent conduct, with private or public thanks communicated as appropriate. 

Code of Conduct 

 1. General conduct 
Maintain the highest ethical standards and behave in a manner that is a consistent with the values and vision of DEA by: 

  • Acting with honesty and integrity
  • Acting in a professional courteous manner,
  • Acting in the best interests of DEA • Protect the reputation of DEA 
 2. Working together 
Work collaboratively with DEA colleagues and partners, ensuring that this promotes trust amongst others by: 

  • Respecting others’ values, beliefs, efforts and ideas - aiming to acknowledge a wide scope of opinions and contributions.
  • Treating everyone fairly, courteously and with respect – fostering a professional collegiate environment.
  • Contributing to dialogue and discussion in a constructive manner.
  • Endeavouring to fulfil commitments - appreciating the time constraints of many volunteers. 
 3. Discrimination, harassment, bullying and exploitation 
Recognising and respecting the inherent dignity of all people, DEA personnel will challenge any form of harassment, discrimination, intimidation, exploitation or abuse by: 

  •  Refraining from behaviours that constitute harassment and discrimination. 
  • Using courteous, non-discriminatory, non-violent communication - verbal, written, physical. 
  • Refraining from exploitative relationships and/or behaviour including but not limited to sexual, physical, emotional and financial abuse. 
  • Reporting such abusive behaviours/malpractice.

4. Conflicts of interest 
Avoid any situation in which an individual’s interests might prevent them from acting in DEA’s best interests by:

  • Declaring financial, personal and/or family interest in matters of official DEA business that may impact on DEA work (e.g. contracts for goods/services, employment in partner organisations). 
  • Advising DEA if they work with or publicly represent another organisation with a similar mission (or opposing mission) to DEA, and managing any potential conflict of interest. 
  • Advising DEA of any intention to seek political office or an official role within a political party.

5. Environmental protection 
Commit to minimising impact on the earth’s finite resources by: 

  • Aiming to minimise personal and professional ecological footprints.
  • Helping reduce DEA’s ecological footprint. 
6. Avoiding corruption 
Maintain high standards of professional integrity and transparency by: 

  • Rejecting inappropriate gifts from governments, donors, suppliers and other persons when offered as a result of work with DEA.
  • Informing DEA prior to accepting any financial offer to represent DEA. 
  • Acting against corruption and not offering, promising, giving or accepting any bribes.

7. Use of financial and other resources 
Responsible use of DEA’s information, equipment, money and resources by: 

  • Respecting and protecting the physical and intellectual property of DEA. 
  • Appropriately accounting for all DEA money and property (e.g. equipment, accommodation, computers, use of the internet and email). Anyone responsible for a budget will account for the way in which funds are used.
  • Protecting the confidentiality of DEA information. Anyone with access to membership data will abide by Australian Privacy Principles and the DEA privacy policy.
  • Minimising consumption of material resources, reducing waste and avoiding duplication.   

Compliance with the Code of Conduct 

All DEA personnel are responsible for upholding this Code. If anyone is uncertain whether an action is in accordance with this Code, please discuss the matter with the Board, State/Territory Committee Chairs, or a line manager (in the case of staff or office volunteers). An alleged breach should be reported to one of these bodies.

 The consequences of a breach may result in disciplinary action and may lead to termination of contract or membership with DEA. Any breach of law will be referred to the police or relevant legal authority.

Adherence to the Code of Conduct will be reviewed annually within each individual staff appraisal process or in a regular timeframe determined by a contractual review period.   


Approved by: NDC 25 May 2020; Confirmed by Board 23.6.2020


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