The purpose of this course is to outline disclosure of disciplinary actions sometimes simply referred to as DA’s. While you may not want to share DA’s, there are situations where it is required to disclose this information which will be talked about in more detail. We will also go over who will have knowledge of the DA’s and who will be involved.
What constitutes a DA in regards to disclosure?
There are a number of different topics that fall under the category of DAs for the purpose of disclosure. The following should be considered:
- Letter’s of Counseling
- Open Investigations
- Closed Investigations
Who can speak about a DA?
The people who can speak about a DA depend entirely upon at which point the discussion is happening.
Letter of Counseling
Letters of Counseling are similar to Official Warnings and can be issued by any officer. The people who can talk about a letter of counseling are limited to the officer who issued it, the member who received it and that member’s direct coordinator. Repeat offenses will be reported to the RST or RC, who will determine if there is a need for a formal investigation.
During an Investigation
An investigation is started by a report being made to an officer or an officer directly overseeing a violation of the rules. The issuing officer will then notify all members involved and their direct coordinators of the investigation. The people who will have information that an investigation is taking place are the accuser(s), your direct coordinator, the officer who started the investigation process, and the member who is accused. While there are a lot more people involved than a letter of counseling you should only be interacting with your direct coordinator on this matter. Its also important to note that anyone involved in an investigation whether a witness, or even an accuser should not flaunt the fact that it’s an investigation out of respect for those involved.
Appeals mean that up to two more levels of the officer chain can be added to the discussion. Generally, the NC is first brought in and may include an assistant who handles arbitrations. A third appeal means that the BoD also will receive information about the DA. During this time the investigation is still open.
After an Investigation
If during an investigation there is not sufficient evidence to prove the member is guilty, the matter is closed and the accused and their direct Coordinator are notified of the results. If there was enough evidence to prove the member is guilty then the investigation would result in a judgement and disciplinary action issued.
If a members holds a position as officer then the DA is reported to that member’s supervisor as well. If the member’s supervisor feels it will affect the work or position of the member, then it can be shared with his constituents of whom he is a supervisor of.
If the member is investigated for another DA previous DA records are included.
If the DA includes a situation between two members, the accuser should not be made aware of the outcome other than “the situation is being handled.”
When are DA’s required to be disclosed?
All disciplinary actions must be disclosed when running for elected office. The disclosure period for disciplinary action last two years from the date that it was issued with an exception for extreme offenses which must be disclosed indefinitely. All DA’s included in an application will be published when applications are published to the electorate as is the standard process when running for elected office.
What happens if I don’t disclose it?
Not disclosing DA will lead to disqualification when running for elected office. It can even lead to an additional DA. It’s important to remember that not every disciplinary action will disqualify an applicant from running for elected office so don’t let it discourage you. It is up to the Election Official to determine if past disciplinary action will be a barrier to successfully performing the required duties of office. Honesty really is the best policy when it comes to DA’s.
Why should DA’s not be discussed publicly?
DA’s should not be discussed publicly out of respect for all members involved. DA’s are for teaching, not for shaming. Talking about it can complicate an appeal process and make it take longer to get a judgement which can be frustrating for all who are involved in the process. If the member is not an elected officer only the officers involved in the investigation and the member who is accused will have knowledge of the DA and their privacy should be respected.
While DA’s are not very much fun, they are very important tool MES uses to provide a fun and safe environment for us all to enjoy the games we love. Please respect others by not sharing details on previous or current investigations, appeals, or disciplinary actions.