Code of Conduct

The Valley Outdoor Association is dedicated to the enjoyment of outdoor activities. Maintaining an atmosphere of mutual respect and trust among our members and the volunteer organizers is key to ensuring everyone is able to enjoy our outings to the fullest. To help support this, the Club has a Code of Conduct, procedures for addressing issues, and sanctions for members who do not respect the rights of others.

Concerns regarding the Club’s Code of Conduct and its observance should be reported to the President or the Vice-President(s) and they will endeavour to respond with the utmost confidentiality.

 

 

The Code of Conduct:

  1. Respect and Integrity. Club members and guests must respect the integrity and dignity of each and every club member. Members shall maintain a companionable environment that is free of profane, sexist or sexually explicit language, threats, violence, or hurtful actions. Members are committed to making the Valley Outdoor Association an inclusive organization. The Club does not tolerate any form of harassment or bullying. We do not accept any discrimination based on race, ancestry, place of origin, colour, ethnic origin, citizenship, creed, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, age, marital status, family status or disability. As a volunteer member-driven outdoors club, we may not always be able to accommodate an individual’s disability or any capacity limitations. However, the club offers a wide variety of events and activities and we are happy to help members identify the events and activities that work for them.
  2. Safety. Outdoor activities can entail some unique risks. As a Club, we are committed to promoting practices which contribute to the safety of participants. Those taking part in Club events and activities must always be attentive to their own safety and the safety of others. They should follow the directions of their event organizer(s), and respect any Club practices and procedures intended to ensure the safety of the group and individual participants.
  3. Stewardship of Nature. All members will respect the outdoors and make allowance for others’ enjoyment of nature. ‘Leave no trace’ and environmentally sound practices should be followed during all activities.
  4. Fiscal Responsibility. Members are responsible for paying their membership dues on time and any fees associated with trips or events they have committed to, regardless of whether or not they eventually attend. Each member assumes full responsibility for any damages he or she may cause while participating in a club event. Each member is responsible for the safety and security of his or her own belongings. Members are to honour personal debts to the Club.
  5. Representation and Club Reputation. A member’s behaviour at club events and on club-related social media reflects upon our club. Members shall behave responsiblyand conduct themselves in a manner which will not damage the reputation of the Club, its activities and its members.
  6. Compliance. Members are required to abide by: all local laws; the VOA Code of Conduct, and other policies; and the policies of our venues, resorts, transportation providers and other partners. Members are responsible for providing accurate and honest information as required by the club for events and activities.

Responding to a Breach of the VOA Code of Conduct. If you are participating in a VOA trip/event and you  experience an incident in which the Club Code of Conduct is violated, report it to the trip leader immediately. The trip leader will intervene as required. The trip leader is also required to complete an incident report and send it to the President/Vice Presidents. If a violation of the Code of Conduct occurs while on a trip, a member may be asked to leave the trip/event immediately and at his/her own expense – they will not be entitled to a refund of any monies paid. When the President/Vice Presidents receive an incident report or are notified of any violation of the Code of Conduct, they will follow up and investigate. This may involve contacting and talking with other club members who were present when the incident/behaviour occurred.

Responsibility and Consequences: As a VOA member, you are ultimately responsible for observing the Club’s Code of Conduct and meeting acceptable standards of selfdiscipline and ethical conduct. Any breach of the Code of Conduct in your dealings with your fellow club members or members of the public may result in serious consequences, up to and including dismissal from the club.