Code of Ethics and Conduct - Study Notes

Self regulating profession o its a club o they

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Unformatted text preview: Self-regulating” profession o It’s a club o They determine the membership Tuesday, January 24, 2012 They determine criteria for such membership “moral fitness” (club has the right to kick you out if you behave immorally) Formal, Quasi-legal mechanism 1) Complaint – you do something wrong 2) Fact-finding (Commission of 3-5 senior mentors of the professions) 3) Formal hearing – you get a chance to defend yourself (usually lawyers involved), other side gets to prosecute 4) Commission gives finding or judgment (and can’t be appealed, because its self-regulated) Punishment (if found guilty): o Pay all the costs (lawyers fees, all the hearings etc…) o Process becomes public (everyone will know, might lost reputation) o Pay a fine o Suspension of your license (one of three ways: 1) “training wheels” lose independence/authority because you’re not trusted, 2) temporarily suspend your license (6 months is the norm), 3) permanent suspension of your license o - Pros and Cons of Codes of Ethics Cons: - Ladd (lawyer who went on to become a judge) o He is a critic of ethics and says: o Codes of ethics are artificial and legalistic o “Rule worship” (they are rules for their own sake) o Rules are either way too vague or way to specific o Codes of ethics focus on the small picture, questions remain about the big picture He saw that within the industry are glossing over questionable conduct (mining companies causing pollution, yet they have codes of conduct) His view is that codes of ethics might lead people to think that they are morally better than they are o Codes are “useless” Ethical people don’t need them to know what to do Unethical people won’t follow them (won’t make them refrain from bad conduct) o He thinks its about: a public relations function (companies making themselves better than what they truly are) o Professional ethics and ordinary morality are the same Pros: - “Easy ethics” if they help make ethics easy for people then they might provide some guide - Floor and ceiling: Floor: establishes a minimally acceptable conduct...
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