LOPSA Policies/Conflict of interest

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Conflict of interest

To protect the integrity of LOPSA's decision making process, it is essential that every effort be made to ensure that all participants in the activities of LOPSA are governed exclusively by the best interests of the society. Significant financial or administrative relationships which might create a conflict of interest must be fully disclosed and mechanisms established to deal with such conflicts.

LOPSA recognizes the inherent right of members to pursue outside interests. However, these outside interests may affect a transaction in which LOPSA is involved or diminish LOPSA's ability to conduct objective and unbiased decision-making. If a potential conflict of interest exists, it is LOPSA's policy to require disclosure. Examples include:

  • Receiving compensation from a company/organization that offers services to LOPSA (e.g. consulting fees, speaking or writing honoraria, research or other grants, editorial stipend, etc.)
  • Doing business or having a relationship with any entity that wishes to do business with LOPSA.
  • Serving as an officer, councilor (director) or editorial board or committee member of another organization in the general interest of LOPSA
  • Having family members with these relationships

The need for disclosure applies to all LOPSA officers, councilors, committee chairs, development committee members, editorial board members and administrative staff, herein after referred to as the "disclosees".

Advance disclosure requirement

Each LOPSA disclosee will report each issue, subject, person or entity in which s/he has a financial or other interest where there is the potential for a conflict of interest relating to LOPSA. This disclosure will be made on the appropriate form and reviewed by LOPSA's President and Executive Director, and kept on file in the LOPSA office. To ensure accurate information, each disclosee will review his or her disclosure statement biennially and update as necessary.

Immediate disclosure requirement

When the LOPSA council/board or committee addresses an issue, subject, person or entity in which the disclosee has a financial or other interest that is not listed on their disclosure form, s/he will immediately disclose the potential conflict.

Procedure for dealing with potential conflicts of interest

  1. Disclosure. On a biennial basis, a list of the reported potential conflicts of interest will be forwarded to the board. Those potential conflicts relevant to a committee will also be forwarded to its members. The disclosure itself and the council's or committee's awareness of the disclosure is considered sufficient to mitigate against any potential for unintentional bias.
  2. Recusal. In council or committee discussions, a disclosee may directly and openly represent the interests of another entity where a potential conflict of interest exists. However, to assure decision-making is without bias, verbal disclosure is required at that time. In addition, the disclosee is required to recuse her/himself during final discussion and voting, if applicable. Recusal in such instances can either be voluntary or at the discretion of the President or Committee Chair.
  3. Resignation. In rare instances, a disclosee may have an affiliation with another entity of such a magnitude that it could potentially compromise the ability of the disclosee to act in the best interest of LOPSA. In such an instance, the disclosee should resign his/her leadership position within LOPSA, but may continue to participate as an LOPSA member. If it's unclear how pervasive the conflict of interest may be, the disclosee should discuss this with the Executive Director and President. Resignation due to a widely pervasive conflict is at the discretion of the President.