IBNS Code of Conduct

IBNS Code of Conduct

The International Behavioral Neuroscience Society (“IBNS”) continues to be dedicated toward providing a safe environment for all participants and attendees at all official IBNS events by welcoming people from all walks of life, irrespective of socioeconomic background, ethnicity, sexual orientation, gender status, mental health status, religion, able bodiedness, national origin, and political views, or any other basis protected by federal or pertinent state laws. IBNS does not tolerate any form of discrimination or harassment and is committed to enforcing this Code of Conduct (the “Code”) at every IBNS event including its annual meeting. IBNS upholds the philosophy of equal opportunity for all and fair treatment to all, enabling the encouragement of free expression, and exchange of scientific and educational ideas.

This Code is an expression of the values held by IBNS and its commitment to hosting a safe and productive environment for all attendees and participants. This Code is not in any way a description of legal obligations.

Harassment comes in many forms, none of which will be tolerated, including verbal, physical, and visual conduct that can create an intimidating, offensive, or hostile environment. Specific examples include derogatory comments, degrading or obscene words, demeaning statements, offensive gestures, targeted at someone’s race, color, sex, national origin, religion, sexual orientation, ancestry, perceived disability, or any other basis protected by federal or pertinent laws and ordinances. Sexual harassment explicitly includes unwelcome conduct that is sexual in nature, such as unwanted advances, innuendos, proposition, leering, sexually suggestive comments, etc.. Such harassment can be conducted by any individual/group toward any other. Consensual contact can be made, but can become harassment when one party withdraws consent. Any harassment will not be tolerated. Although the above list is not exhaustive, IBNS employs a “zero-tolerance” policy and IBNS reserves the right to discipline infractions deemed to be harassment even if not spelled out herein.

Individuals can report an incident as a witness or having experienced the inappropriate behavior. To report an incident, contact the Executive Director of IBNS Central Office, Ms. Marianne Van Wagner at [email protected] +01 830-796-9393 or 1-866-377-4416 (toll free from within the United States). Anyone reporting incidents are not required or expected to discuss with the alleged offender. If the harassment is an immediate or serious threat to those present or the public, security should be notified immediately.

IBNS will take steps toward promptly and completely addressing any concerns raised and will correct such conduct. IBNS will make every effort to maintain confidentiality of the reporting individual and will not deliberately share any personal information. The following steps will be taken in any investigation: 1) document the event; 2) interview the complainant; 3) conduct additional interviews if necessary and/or possibly including the alleged offender; 4) document findings; and 5) inform the complainant of findings. Corrective measures will be taken against any person found to have engaged in conduct prohibited by The Code.

The following disciplinary action may be taken by IBNS: 1) private reprimand; 2) removal from the meeting without warning or refund; 3) implement conditions upon future IBNS attendances; 4) restriction from future IBNS meetings; 5) expulsion from the society; and 6) potential reporting to the proper authorities. The individual remains free to report any incident to the relevant authorities throughout. Importantly, IBNS will not tolerate any form of retaliation and any retaliatory behavior will be subject to further investigation and discipline.

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Reporting Procedures 

Reporting procedures for how to report violations of the IBNS Meeting Code of Conduct. Enforcement procedures can be found here.

Code of Conduct:  https://www.ibnsconnect.org/code-of-conduct

Contact Information: Contact the IBNS Central Office at [email protected] +01 830-796-9393 or 1-866-377-4416 (toll-free from within the United States) and request to talk to a member of the Ethics and Diversity Committee (a committee member can be specified, if desired, or they can be contacted directly through their institutional email address) or the IBNS President.

All registered participants, staff, sponsors, vendors, volunteers, and guests have agreed to abide by the Code of Conduct. IBNS meeting attendees who invite a guest must ensure that their guest is familiar with, and abides by, the Code of Conduct. Violations of the Code of Conduct by a guest could also result in sanctions for the IBNS member who invited them to the meeting. Our official conference policies also protect the IBNS and its members against liability.

DEFINITIONS

An anonymous report means that the complainant’s name is not recorded and may not be disclosed. *Note, it may not be possible to formally investigate or sanction incidents reported anonymously on behalf of a victim. However, they will be recorded and considered in developing preventative procedures and for identifying patterns of behavior among individuals (e.g. repeat offenders).

confidential report means that we will do our best to protect the identities of the complainant and other involved parties but we cannot guarantee anonymity. Safety is paramount. If someone is in danger or there is a threat, we must ensure safety. In some cases, disclosure of identities is legally required. Therefore, we cannot guarantee confidentiality.

Reports and recommendations will be made anonymously whenever possible and be kept confidential at all times; names will be provided to the Executive Council only if serious sanctions are warranted (see Enforcement Procedures document).

 

Reporting procedures adapted from The Council of Evolution Societieshttps://www.evolutionmeetings.org/uploads/4/8/8/0/48804503/reporting.pdf

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Enforcement Procedures

Enforcement procedures for dealing with violations of the IBNS Meeting Code of Conduct following a report

Contact Information: Contact the IBNS Central Office at [email protected] +01 830-796-9393 or 1-866-377-4416 (toll-free from within the United States) and request to talk to a member of the Ethics and Diversity Committee (a committee member can be specified, if desired, or they can be contacted directly through their institutional email address) or the IBNS President.

All registered participants, staff, sponsors, vendors, volunteers, and guests have agreed to abide by the Code of Conduct. IBNS meeting attendees who invite a guest must ensure that their guest is familiar with, and abides by, the Code of Conduct. Violations of the Code of Conduct by a guest could also result in sanctions for the IBNS member who invited them to the meeting. Our official conference policies also protect the IBNS and its members against liability.

The President, Ethics & Diversity Committee Chair, and at least one additional Ethics & Diversity Committee Member will determine sanctions for a documented incident upon receiving a confidential incident report and conducting an unbiased investigation of the incident (see Reporting Procedures document for protocol).

If serious enforcement procedures are recommended (beyond requests to stop the behaviors), the identity of the accused should be made known to the Executive Councilors only after those sanctions have been determined.

The President, Ethics & Diversity Committee Chair, and at least one additional Ethics & Diversity Committee Member should be involved in discussions of an incident. The majority must agree on the appropriate sanction(s).

In addition to a demand to stop the behavior, sanctions may include (but are not limited to):

Examples of behaviors resulting in formal documentation of the incident and a request to stop the behavior:

            a) verbal abuse, bullying, harassment, discrimination, offensive gestures;

            b) presenting inappropriate images or language during a talk or poster (not limited to pornography, images demeaning a protected class, demeaning words);

            c) unwelcome conduct that is sexual in nature, such as unwanted advances, innuendos, proposition, leering, sexually suggestive comments.

These behaviors also include those that are presented in a joking manner.

 

Examples of behaviors resulting in possible removal from the current meeting and formal documentation of the incident(s):

            a) repeated misconduct by the same person(s) at a single meeting or reported at multiple meetings;

            b) refusal to comply with requests to stop an inappropriate behavior;

            c) falsely accusing someone of inappropriate behaviors;

            d) retaliating against individuals who have submitted a complaint.

These types of behaviors will also result in removal from Society leadership positions (as relevant).

 Examples of behaviors resulting in a ban from future meetings in addition to removal from the current meeting and formal documentation of the incident(s):

            a) any form of physical assault;

            b) actions that threaten the safety of others;

            c) repeated false accusations of inappropriate behaviors;

            d) repeatedly retaliating against individuals who have submitted a complaint.

These types of behaviors will also result in removal from Society leadership positions (as relevant).

Removal from the conference should be carried out by at least two Ethics & Diversity Committee Members (which may include the President and Ethics & Diversity Committee Chair), and security personnel should be called if someone refuses to leave the premises.

Enforcement procedures will be imposed confidentially (e.g., meeting removal will be carried out as discreetly as possible) and any details of a report that are made public will be anonymized.

The accused will also be notified of their right to appeal, in writing, to members of the IBNS Executive Council and Ethics and Diversity Committee. Recommended sanctions must stand until the appeals process is complete.

Enforcement procedures adopted from The Council of Evolution Societies:  https://www.evolutionmeetings.org/uploads/4/8/8/0/48804503/reporting.pdf.