R2K Activist Code of Conduct
Activist Code of Conduct1
The Right2Know Campaign should be a space in which:
- We have a collective responsibility to run meetings that are focused and which address issues that are central to our programme.
- We all have an opportunity to speak and be heard.
- We have a responsibility to contribute practically to building Right2Know in whatever way we can.
This code of conduct is a personal commitment from every R2K Active Supporter to carry out our meetings and activities in a way that helps to make this vision a reality.
1. Discipline (Engaging as comrades):
- Active Supporters should engage one another with respect, regardless of gender, race, class, or age.
- If there is a personal relationship between two Active Supporters, they encouraged not to allow this relationship interfere with or disrupt the work of the organisation.
- Active Supporters should respect one another’s views and organisations.
2. Meetings (Respecting each other’s time):
- Active Supporters are expected to keep time when coming to meetings.
- Active Supporters are expected to submit apologies if they cannot attend meetings or are going to arrive late, or leave early.
- Active Supporters are expected to switch off their phone or switch their phone to ‘Silent’ during meetings.
3. Participation (Ensuring that everyone takes the opportunity to contribute):
- Active Supporters are expected to fully participate in any R2K structure they volunteer to or agree to be delegated to (e.g. working group or sub-committees).
- Active Supporters are expected to read and distribute any relevant media or information produced by the organisation.
4. Accountability (Ensuring internal democracy and remaining accountable to the collective)
- Active Supporters should be accountable for their actions and views in general.
- Active Supporters should account for any funds or resources of the organisation for which they are responsible.
- Active Supporters should carry out the tasks that they have agreed to carry out.
- Active Supporters should act on a mandate when representing the Right2Know on another platform.
- Active Supporters should report back after any engagement in which they represented the Right2Know.
- Active Supporters should respect and carry out collective decisions.
5. Observance of policies (Exercising the right to know):
- Right2Know Active Supporters should know and observe the policies, principles and constitution of the organisation, and take responsibility for ensuring these policies are respected and upheld by others.
- Each Active Supporter accepts that disregarding these policies may result in disciplinary action2.
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1As developed at the 2014 National Summit. Agreed by PWGs in the course of 2014, and adopted at the 2015 National Summit
2Disciplinary Procedures adopted at the 2015 National Summit presented below.
The purpose of discipline is to regulate behavior in terms of the R2K Activist Code of Conduct and not merely to punish transgressions.
The emphasis should be corrective, not punitive.
No formal disciplinary action regarding a major office shall be taken before an enquiry has been convened to hear the case where the charged Active Supporter shall have the right to state her/his case and to be represented.
Active Supporters shall have the right of appeal and no disciplinary action will be implemented while the appeal is pending and until such appeal has been finalized.
All offences shall be dealt with in terms of the procedures set out below.
2. Rules of procedure for Minor Offences:
Minor offences include all violations of the Activist Code of Conduct that do not pertain to sexual misconduct, violent crime, corruption, fraud, theft, and/or consistent underperformance of duties.
Minor offences do not require a hearing.
Any R2K Structure (a PWG, Focus Group, or the NWG) can issue a written warning with regards to any breach of the Activist Code of Conduct.
Such warning shall state the reason for the warning, the date of issue and date of expiry. A copy shall be handed to the Active Supporter concerned. The Active Supporter will be requested to sign the warning in acknowledgement of receipt thereof.
The Active Supporter can appeal in writing to the structure within 7 days and a final decision from the relevant structure must be issued within a month of receiving the appeal. This decision will be final.
The written warning will remain on our records for the months.
Any Active Supporter who receives three written warnings in a period of three months will be deemed to have committed a major offence and the procedure below will be instituted.
4. Rules of procedure for Major Offences:
- Major offences are violations of the Activist Code of Conduct that include sexual misconduct, violent crime, corruption, fraud, theft, and/or consistent underperformance of duties demonstrated by three written warnings in the course of three months.
- Disciplinary action regarding serious offences shall only be taken against a Active Supporter after a properly convened enquiry has sat and heard the case and thereafter given its decision.
- A disciplinary enquiry shall only be convened no less than 3 days after a charge sheet specifying the charges to be answered to has been handed to the accused, or after the accused and her/his representative have had reasonable access to relevant documents or information.
- The Active Supporter and her/his representative may collect evidence for the defense of the Active Supporter and shall be afforded reasonable facilities and time off to do so.
- An enquiry shall be composed of:
A chairperson appointed by the responsible structure (PWG, Focus Group, or NWG)
An R2K Representative appointed by the responsible structure to put the case against the accused
A translator where necessary and acceptable to both parties
An representative from within the R2K for the accused
Witnesses called by either side and
The accused, as per the charge sheet.
Enquiries shall be fair and equitable. The representative of the accused shall have the right to call witnesses, put questions to witnesses and to call for adjournments.
The chairperson of the enquiry may order the proceedings to be recorded on tape when considered necessary. The tapes will be available to all parties concerned.
After having heard all evidence, the chairperson may adjourn the enquiry and shall reconvene it for the purposes of announcing the verdict (guilty or not guilty) of each charge.
Where the Active Supporter is found guilty, the chairperson shall hear factors to be taken into account in mitigation and/or aggravation, whereafter a decision on appropriate disciplinary action shall be taken. Such a decision shall be communicated to the Active Supporter concerned in the presence of his representative.
Disciplinary action may consist of either:
A written warning (that will remain on our records for 3 months)
A suspension (whereby the Active Supporter will be barred from participating in stated R2K activities for a stated period of time)
An expulsion (whereby the Active Supporter may not participate in any future stated R2K activities)
In the event of a Active Supporter being given a written warning, such warning shall state the reason for the warning, the date of issue and date of expiry. A copy shall be handed to the Active Supporter concerned. The Active Supporter will be requested to sign the warning in acknowledgement of receipt thereof.
In the event of a Active Supporter being suspended or expelled s/he shall be informed in writing setting out the reasons thereof.
A Active Supporter may appeal against his or her disciplinary finding to the NWG within 7 days of it being announced. The NWG will respond to the appeal within a month and the NWG’s decision will be final.
In a case were the Active Supporter is disciplined by the NWG, the Active Supporter can appeal to the next National Summit. Such an appeal must be lodged within 7 days of the disciplinary finding being announced. The National Summit decision will be final.
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1As adopted by 2015 National Summmit