Conflict of Interest Policy
The purpose of this policy is to outline the regulations, expectations, and procedures used in order to prevent conflicts of interest within The Peak.
“Board” refers to the governing entity of the Peak Publications Society, the Board of Directors.
“Board member” refers to someone who is on the Board of Directors.
“Chairperson” refers to the elected head of the Board of Directors.
“Collective” refers to the entire group of members of the Peak Publications Society.
“Collective member” refers to any person in good standing as part of the Peak Publications Society (please refer to the Constitution for more details).
“Conflict of interest” refers to a real, apparent, or potential private or personal interest of an individual that has the potential to interfere with, bias, and/or influence that person’s duties at the Peak Publications Society.
“Contributor” refers to any person who is paid for their contributions to The Peak (see Contributor Pay Policy for details).
“Copy” refers to any and all written material in The Peak.
“Editorial Employee” refers to all editors including, but not limited to the Editor-in-Chief, Copy Editor, Production and Design Editor, News Editor, Opinions Editor, Features Editor, Arts Editor, Sports Editor, Humour Editor, Multimedia Editor, Assistant Multimedia Editor, Photo Editor, Assistant News Editor, Assistant Production Editors, and Staff Writers (see Job Descriptions for details).
“Employee” refers to all editorial and non-editorial employees.
“Entering into a relationship” refers to, and includes, any form of dating, be it casual, long-term, or merely for sexual gratification.
“Intimate familial relationship” refers to the relationship between immediate family members including, but not limited to: parents, siblings, step-family members, family-members-in-law, kids, and/or adopted family members.
“Non-editorial Employee” refers to the Distribution Coordinator, Business Manager, Promotions Coordinator, and Satellite Distribution Coordinator (see Job Descriptions for details).
“Perceived conflict of interest” refers to a possible influence that could interfere with, bias and/or influence a person’s duty at the Peak Publications Society, even if the conflict isn’t evident or does not exist.
“Section Editor” refers to an editor in charge of one of The Peak’s sections.
“The Society” refers to the Peak Publications Society.
- Policy and Procedure
A. An employee of the Peak Publications Society cannot have any romantic and/or sexual relations with another employee of the Peak Publications Society in which there is a difference in perceived power.
1. For more information please see Appendix I.
B. Any member of the Board cannot have any romantic and/or sexual relations with an employee of the Peak Publications Society, and vice versa.
- Members of the Board cannot have romantic and/or sexual relations with each other.
C. An editorial employee cannot have an intimate familial relationship with another editorial employee where one family member holds a supervisory position over the other, or otherwise evaluates the other family member’s work.
1. This includes, but may not be limited to the following relationships:
a)News Editor and Assistant News Editor
b)Production and Design Editor and Assistant Production Editor
c)Editor-in-Chief and any other editorial employee
d)Copy Editor and any other editorial employee
e)Multimedia Editor and Assistant Multimedia Editor
f)Any section editor and staff writer
D. A member of the Board cannot have an intimate familial relationship with any employee of the Peak Publications Society.
- Members of the Board cannot be in intimate familial relationships with each other.
E. An editorial employee must edit and proofread all copy thoroughly and critically, no matter who created the copy.
F. An editorial employee or contributor must report on, write on, and/or interview a person or organization in a fair and unbiased manner.
- Articles in the news section and sports recaps cannot be editorialized.
G. A contributor will not be paid for any copy for The Peak if the copy reports on an organization, club, event, or team (with possible exceptions) that the contributor is a part of.
- The copy must explicitly state that the writer is part of that organization, event, or team.
- For non-varsity SFU sports teams and/or other clubs, a member of the team or club may report on the team’s or club’s games, tournaments, or events so long as their involvement with the team or club is explicitly stated.
a. These contributors will be paid 50% of the regular terms for the article, subject to the Contributor Pay Policy and editorial discretion.
H. An employee cannot serve in a paid or an executive position at the Simon Fraser Student Society, an Independent Student Society, a Departmental Student Union, or the Simon Fraser University administration.
I. An editorial employee cannot serve in a paid, executive, or authoritative position in other SFU publications, subject to review by the Board of Directors and Editor-in-Chief.
J. An employee cannot hold another paid position during their tenure with the Peak Publications Society if there is or could be a conflict of interest or a perceived conflict of interest.
K. An employee of the Peak Publications Society cannot use their role, connections, or confidential information obtained through The Peak for personal gain.
L. Gifts valued at $100 or less can be accepted on the premise they will not influence or bias reporting at The Peak.
- Gifts that are valued at $100 and up will not be accepted.
- Reviewers’ tickets to events are not considered gifts and will not influence or bias the reporting of the event at The Peak.
APPENDIX I: Further Information About Object 3A
- An employee of the Peak Publications Society cannot have any romantic and/or sexual relations with another employee of the Peak Publications Society in which there is a difference in perceived power or a direct supervisory aspect to the working relationship, including, but not limited to:
A. News Editor and Assistant News Editor
B. Production and Design Editor and Assistant Production Editor
C. Copy Editor and any other editorial employee
D. Multimedia Editor and Assistant Multimedia Editor
E. Any section editor and staff writer
- Under no circumstances is the Editor-in-Chief permitted to be in a romantic and/or sexual relationship with another employee or board member.
- Under the following circumstances, a sexual and/or romantic relationship between Peak Publications Society employees may occur:
A. The involved parties are not or will not be in a working relationship as described in section one of Appendix I.
B. If the parties involved are in a relationship prior to their hiring, they must disclose their relationship status to the Chairperson of the Board of Directors and the Editor-in-Chief prior to the commencement of their work contracts
C. If the parties involved enter into their relationship in the middle of their work contracts, they must disclose their relationship status to the Chairperson of the Board of Directors and the Editor-in-Chief as soon as possible.
D. The parties involved in the relationship fill out the affirmation attached as Appendix II.
- Should a relationship be disclosed with the appropriate paperwork and then a party of the relationship fails to behave without bias toward, against, or because of the other party(ies) in the relationship, the following actions may be taken by the Board of Directors
A. A formal warning may be issued to the responsible party
B. The responsible party may be suspended
C. In the event that the lapse in judgment affects the Peak Publications Society negatively in respect to public reputation or financial credibility, or other instances of willful harm to the Peak Publications Society or employees of the Peak Publications Society, the responsible party may be terminated immediately
APPENDIX II: Affirmation of Unbiased Behaviour
I, __________________________, hereby disclose that I am in a relationship with _________________________________________________________________.
I also hereby affirm that this relationship will not impact my ability to fulfill the duties and responsibilities outlined in my job description to the best of my abilities.
I hereby affirm that I have read and understood the aforementioned responsibilities required of me as a person in a relationship which may potentially result in a conflict of interest.
I also hereby affirm that I have read and understood the possible consequences of my behaviour in this potentially biased relationship if I so choose to act in a way that is biased or otherwise influenced by my relationship with __________________________________________________________________.
I hereby affirm that I will act neither with bias nor favouritism toward my partner(s) in the relationship.
I hereby affirm that I will not, for the duration of this in-office relationship, file workplace harassment claims against the Peak Publications Society with respect to my partner(s) in the relationship.