Section B: Rules and Procedures for the NYAAP Standing Committee on Ethics and Professional Practices (SCEPP)
The New York Association for Analytical Psychology (NYAAP) has established the Standing Committee on Ethics and Professional Practices (SCEPP) which endeavors to resolve complaints of ethical violations alleged to have been committed by members of the NYAAP, to provide consultation to members concerning ethical principles, to protect the public with whom members have a professional relationship, and to aid the Association and its members in achieving the objectives as reflected in its Bylaws. These Rules and Procedures have been established to protect the rights of both complainants and respondents, to provide fair consideration and due process for all parties, and to maintain the standards of the NYAAP. The SCEPP shall endeavor to take actions toward members found in violation of the Guidelines for Ethical Conduct of the NYAAP that are just, educative, and constructive rather than punitive in character. At the same time, a primary concern of the SCEPP shall be to protect the public against harmful conduct by members.
A. Composition and Function of the SCEPP, and of the Expanded Committee for Appeal of Informal Cases and Evaluation of the Most Serious Cases
- The Committee members of the SCEPP shall be elected by the membership at a regularly scheduled meeting. The SCEPP shall consist of five members which shall include at least one senior member (more than five years in the Association) and one junior member. Nominations shall be made by the Executive Committee of the Association in accordance with the procedures stipulated in the Bylaws. Nominations may also be made by members of the Association in accordance with the procedures stipulated in the Bylaws. The Executive Committee of NYAAP shall appoint the Chairperson from among the elected members of the SCEPP. No member of the SCEPP may serve for more than six (6) consecutive years. Membership shall be on a rotating basis, the nature of the rotation to be determined by the NYAAP and reviewed periodically.
- Elected at the same time and in the same manner, normally for terms of three years, shall be six additional members to constitute an Expanded Committee. The Expanded Committee will be called upon on certain occasions as indicated below in B, PROFESSIONAL MISCONDUCT PROCEDURES, sections 11 and 12, pertaining to evaluation of the most serious cases (formal actions) and appeals. The six persons selected for the Expanded Committee will include four persons who have been members of the NYAAP Executive Committee, the Institute Board, or the SCEPP in the past, and two persons who have been members in good standing of NYAAP for ten years or more, including the current year.
- The SCEPP is authorized by the Association to investigate allegations of unethical professional conduct that may be harmful to analysands, the public, to colleagues, or that is otherwise contrary to or destructive of the objectives of the Association. The committee shall have the power to ascertain facts; hear evidence; notify necessary parties that an investigation is proceeding; advise members of their rights of appeal and of legal representation; resolve a complaint informally; report its findings and make recommendations to the President for action in a case; keep records of inquiries; notify the parties concerned of the determination of its action; and, if deemed necessary, notify state licensure or other recognized and affiliated professional associations of the determination of its case in accordance with these procedures.
- By written appeal to the Chair of the SCEPP, with a copy to the President, the respondent or the complainant shall have a thirty (30) day period from the date of the mailing of the notification by the SCEPP that it will investigate a complaint within which to challenge the composition of the SCEPP. The complainant or the respondent must clearly demonstrate a conflict of interest between any of the members of the Committee with any of the parties in the case under investigation. The Chair of the SCEPP shall act upon such appeal within a reasonable time after receipt of a request, the determination shall be binding upon the parties. Any member of the SCEPP shall also have the right to appeal to the Chairperson or the President for relief from the responsibility for considering any complaint. To proceed, the SCEPP must retain at least three members. If the need arises interim members shall be temporarily appointed to the SCEPP by the President in consultation with the Executive Committee.
B. Professional Misconduct Procedure
- Complaints against a member may be submitted by either a member or non member of the NYAAP. All complaints shall be in writing and shall be submitted to the Chairperson of the SCEPP who, upon receipt, shall send to the complainant a copy of the Guidelines for Ethical Conduct and the current Rules and Procedures of the SCEPP. The complainant will be asked to describe the claimed ethical violation more fully if the complaint is not specific enough in the opinion of the Chairperson, and will be asked to inform the SCEPP of previous steps, if any, that have been taken to remedy the situation.
The complainant will be asked to sign an agreement to accept the rules, confidentiality of the proceedings, procedures of the SCEPP, and a release authorizing the SCEPP to give a copy of the complaint letter or to quote or paraphrase provisions thereof to the respondent. The complainant will be asked for permission for the SCEPP to forward a summary report of the final decision in the case to the appropriate state licensing board, or other affiliated professional associations, if in the opinion of the SCEPP that becomes necessary. If the complainant has been an analysand of the respondent, consent will be requested to allow the respondent to provide the SCEPP with appropriate records and to answer questions concerning the confidential professional relationship.
- The SCEPP shall determine whether it will proceed with the complaint if the complainant will not execute any of the releases provided for in paragraph 1 above.
- The SCEPP shall not act on the basis of an anonymous complaint.
- All complaints shall be initially evaluated by the President of the NYAAP and the Chairperson of the SCEPP. (a) If either is opposed the question of whether to hear the case will be determined by the SCEPP. (b) If both or the SCEPP as a whole decides that there are sufficient grounds to indicate that the conduct complained of may violate the Guidelines for Ethical Conduct, the respondent shall be so informed and advised in detail of the complaint, and at the discretion of the Chairperson, given a copy of the complainant’s complaint, and shall be asked to reply. The respondent shall be informed that the copy of the reply, or a paraphrase thereof, shall be made available to the complainant pursuant to paragraph 8 (a) below. Should the case warrant it, a copy of the respondent’s reply shall go to the Chairperson of the Board of the Institute pursuant to paragraph 5 herein. (c) When both the President and the Chairperson agree that the complaint, if proven, would not constitute an ethical violation or that the complaint is patently frivolous, the case will be closed and the complainant advised of this decision. If the complainant, within sixty (60) days of being notified that the case will be closed, alleges additional facts which cause the President and the Chairperson to reverse their prior determination, the case may be reopened.
- If the respondent is currently engaged in any aspect of the training of analysts or is on the Board of the Institute, the President of the NYAAP shall give the Chairperson of the Institute a copy of the complainant’s complaint and the respondent’s reply if it is determined pursuant to paragraph 4 above that the conduct complained of may violate the Guidelines for Ethical Conduct. The Chairperson of the Institute shall be informed of the complaint after the respondent replies, but before the SCEPP meets to investigate the complaint. Thereafter, the Chairperson shall be given a copy of all papers and documents pertaining to the proceeding submitted to the SCEPP. The Chairperson shall be given notice of any meeting of a subcommittee of the SCEPP and either the Chairperson or a person designated by the Board of the Institute may be invited to attend such meeting as an ex officio member of the SCEPP and any other meeting held to ascertain the facts in the proceeding. The Chairperson shall be promptly notified of any determination of the complaint, providing information about the nature of the violation, the recommendations and decisions of the SCEPP, and any consequent actions taken as a result of those recommendations.
- If the complainant has not signed any or all of the releases provided for in paragraph 1 above, the SCEPP shall forthwith discontinue its proceeding of the complaint and shall close the case.
- The complainant and the respondent shall have thirty (30) days from the date of the mailing of a communication from the SCEPP to respond as requested. Any extension of this time limit shall be granted only for demonstrable causes. Failure to comply on the part of the complainant may result in the termination of the investigation and the closure of the case. Failure to comply on the part of the respondent shall be viewed as evidence of lack of cooperation and shall constitute a violation of the Guidelines for Ethical Conduct unless good cause is shown. The SCEPP shall deal with a lack of cooperation in accordance with these Rules and Procedures and may recommend to the membership whatever sanction it believes the violation warrants, taking into account the nature and seriousness of the charges.
- Procedures to be followed after the receipt of respondent’s response:
- The Chairperson of the SCEPP may request additional information from the complainant and the respondent; from persons or witnesses who have information pertaining to the complaint; from the NYAAP members; from state licensing boards; from other professional organizations; and from legal counsel deemed necessary by the SCEPP to carry out its function. The complainant may be informed or advised in detail of the respondent’s reply to the complaint, and at the discretion of the Chairperson, given a copy of respondent’s response, and be asked for further information or clarification. The complainant and respondent may be given copies of any further replies between the two parties, and at the discretion of the Chairperson, be asked for additional information.
- For any given complaint, three members of the Committee shall be chosen by the SCEPP as a whole for the purpose of investigation and hearing the respective parties and their witnesses. The full Committee shall participate in the final recommendations as more particularly described in Section B herein.
- All hearings of the investigative committee shall be taped.
- Taking into account the facts presented, the SCEPP shall decide by majority vote among the following dispositions:
- Close the case. If the SCEPP finds that there is insufficient evidence to sustain the charge of an ethical violation or that the complaint is without merit or that the violation is of such a minor nature that no action should be taken, it shall close the case.
- Censure the respondent. The censure may be confidential or the membership of the NYAAP may be advised that the respondent has been censured, at the discretion of the SCEPP. Censure is determined when there has been an ethical violation but the violation is not sufficient to warrant more serious action.
- Place the respondent on probation and/or impose conditions of continuing membership. Probation is defined as the continued membership in the NYAAP while the SCEPP undertakes actively and systematically to monitor, for a specific length of time, the degree to which the respondent complies with the SCEPP’s requirements. The respondent may be required to accept supervision, rehabilitation, educational training and/or psychotherapy as directed by the SCEPP, and the SCEPP may recommend to the Chairperson of the Board of the Institute that the respondent give up or modify training responsibilities. Additionally, the SCEPP may stipulate that the respondent be required to submit to it a formal letter of affirmation acknowledging the violation and assuring the SCEPP that the respondent accepts the Guidelines for Ethical Conduct as adopted and will not violate them in the future. If accepted by the respondent, such a disposition may be imposed without formal notification to the NYAAP of the circumstances of the case, or the membership may be advised.
- Offer a stipulated resignation. If the SCEPP finds a serious violation of the Guidelines for Ethical Conduct, in lieu of a detailed charge, the SCEPP may recommend that the respondent be permitted to resign and, upon recommendation of the SCEPP, reapply for membership later under stipulated conditions, including but not limited to specific supervision, psychotherapy, rehabilitation, and/or additional educational training. Approval by a majority vote of the Expanded Committee and ratification by the membership is required for a stipulated resignation to be accepted.
- Suspend or expel the respondent. Suspension will be cancellation of membership in NYAAP for a period of years with the possibility of re application for membership after the terms of suspension under specified conditions such as those indicated above concerning a stipulated resignation. Expulsion will be termination of membership with no provision of conditions for renewed membership. Suspension or expulsion shall be only upon recommendation of a majority of members of the Expanded Committee and ratification by formal action at a regular scheduled meeting of the NYAAP where the action proposed has been placed on the formal agenda and notice thereof given to the members, as provided for in the Bylaws of the NYAAP. The SCEPP shall discuss the question of the protection of the public whenever there is a suspension or expulsion and make recommendations to the membership of the NYAAP.
- A combination of the above, or some alternative action or actions as may be determined by the SCEPP to suit the case.
- When the SCEPP has decided how to resolve a case, the SCEPP shall notify the President of the NYAAP and, if appropriate, the Chair of the Institute of its findings, decisions, and recommendations.
- Recommendation of informal action by the SCEPP: The Committee shall then inform the complainant and the respondent of its decision and shall furnish such information to them as it deems appropriate. If there is a violation it shall specify the principle or principles violated. From the date of the mailing by the SCEPP of the notification of an informal determination, the respondent shall have thirty (30) days to accept or appeal the determination of the Committee. If the determination is accepted, the Chairperson shall notify the complainant that the matter has been resolved through a disposition within the Committee for an informal determination, stating the set of conditions (if any) specified by the SCEPP, and including the principle(s) violated and the rationale for its actions. An appeal may be heard as specified in section 12 below.
Recommendation of formal action by the SCEPP (stipulated resignation, suspension or expulsion by the Association): in every such case, the SCEPP shall bring its recommendation before the Expanded Committee for review and decision within 30 days of its decision. If the Expanded Committee’s recommendation is also for formal action, the committee shall inform the complainant and the respondent of the action, including which principle(s) were judged to have been violated, and the rationale for the committee’s actions. The respondent shall have sixty (60) days in which to accept or appeal the determination. (If the Expanded Committee’s recommendation is not for formal action, the case shall be returned to the SCEPP for consideration in the light of the Expanded Committee’s deliberations.)
the determination is accepted, the NYAAP will be asked to ratify the recommendation of the Expanded Committee. Such parties as have been informed of the complaint shall receive notification of the final disposition of the case. When the SCEPP deems it necessary for the protection of the NYAAP or the public, or when it deems it necessary to maintain the standards of the membership of the NYAAP, notification of the disposition within the SCEPP may be made to one or more of those bodies enumerated in Section C, paragraph 4 below. An appeal will be heard as specified in section 12 below.
- In the event the SCEPP recommends an informal action (short of stipulated resignation, suspension, or expulsion): the respondent shall have a thirty (30) day period from the date of the mailing of the notice of action within which to appeal to the President of NYAAP and the NYAAP Expanded Committee. Following review limited to the tapes and records of the proceedings, a majority vote of the Expanded Committee will make a final decision. No further appeal will be allowed. (If the SCEPP has recommended either a public censure or probation, the respondent shall have seven days to submit a final written disputation which the Expanded Committee will review before such action is taken.) A refusal by the respondent to accept the Committee’s decision will result in a recommendation of expulsion.
In the event the Expanded Committee recommends a formal action (stipulated resignation, suspension, or expulsion): the respondent shall have a sixty (60) day period from the date of the mailing of the notice of the decision of the NYAAP Expanded Committee within which to appeal through the President of NYAAP to the membership at the next scheduled business meeting or at a special meeting called to discuss the matter (but no longer than four months after the mailing of the notice). The appeal will come in a letter explaining its rationale to the President of NYAAP, who will bring it before the full membership. The members will first decide on the basis of preliminary discussion whether to hear the case as a committee of the whole. The decision to hear an appeal must be approved by a two-thirds majority of the NYAAP. If the membership declines to hear the appeal, the Expanded Committee’s decision will be ratified and final. A respondent’s refusal to accept that decision will result in expulsion.
If the NYAAP agrees to hear an appeal, then it must be party to all the relevant documents, distributed in advance to those who will commit themselves to full participation in all meetings necessary to resolve the case, be open to presentations by the complainant and the respondent (each with counsel if desired), have ample time for full hearings and supplementary meetings, and will then make a final determination by majority vote of those present at the final meeting who have participated fully.