Conflict of Interest Policy

NORTH BELFAST HARRIERS
Conflict of Interest Policy

Introduction

This document explains North Belfast Harriers “Conflict of Interest Policy” and the steps that must be taken when an interest is declared or discovered. Each Committee Member and employees of North Belfast Harriers must adhere to this policy. Any person who does not follow this policy may be subject to disciplinary action by North Belfast Harriers

North Belfast Harriers aims to embrace a philosophy of disclosure and fosters an attitude of openness and integrity (Nolan Principles). This document explains the North Belfast Harriers “Conflict of Interest Policy” and attempts to deal with the issue in ways that are fair to Committee Members and employees and enable the organisation toe function while protecting integrity and providing unbiased advice.

Definitions

The following provides a definition of words used through out the document:

Conflict refers only to personal, established interest of the individuals covered by this policy and their immediate families, and not to philosophical or professional differences of opinion.

A Conflict of Interest would include, but not be limited to, direct or indirect interest of Committee Members or employees in:

• A company, service or product that could be affected by a decision of North Belfast Harriers;
• A company or product that is in competition with a company, service or product that could be affected by a decision of North Belfast Harriers;
• Acceptance of any gift, entertainment, services, loans or promise of future benefits from any person or organisation that might benefit because of the individuals connection with North Belfast Harriers;
• Compensation in the form or fees or salaries if such payment results directly or indirectly from the Committee Member or employee’s work with North Belfast Harriers.

Connected Person relates to significant others that may have an influence. It may include the following:

• Parents;
• Spouse or partner;
• Children and their spouse/partner;
• Grandchildren and their spouse/partner;
• Grandparents;
• Brothers and their spouse/partner; and
• Sisters and their spouse/partner.

The North Belfast Harriers Policy

It is the policy of North Belfast Harriers that no Board Member or employee while serving as an Officer of the organisation will take personal advantage of his or her role by allowing a situation to exist that may be construed as a conflict of interest.

In addition, North Belfast Harriers intends to ensure with reasonable prudence that no Board Member or employee creates the appearance of realising financial gain of any nature or amount from North Belfast Harriers actions.

It is also the intent of North Belfast Harriers to carry out activities in accordance with the highest ethical standards. Adoption of this Policy is, therefore, a reaffirmation of North Belfast Harriers intent that those holding appointed leadership positions practice the highest ethical standards and give undivided loyalty to the organisation and its goals. Any activities which do not serve the best interest of North Belfast Harriers or which favour the personal advantage of another person or organisation is inconsistent with the duties and responsibilities owed to North Belfast Harriers.

North Belfast Harriers is committed to maintaining an honest, open and well-intentioned atmosphere within the organisation. It is therefore also committed to the elimination of any fraud and to the rigorous investigation of any such cases.

Committee Members and employees of North Belfast Harriers should therefore not engage in any conduct or activity that might reasonably be interpreted as tending to adversely affect the performance of their duties.

What is a relevant interest?

An interest should be declared if an individual considers it relevant to their duties and that there is therefore a risk of it being reasonably perceived as biasing their decisions while conducting their duties. The test is whether “an external observer, knowing the facts of the situation, would reasonably think that the person might be influenced by the interest”.

It is not possible to provide a comprehensive definition of circumstances that necessarily give rise to a conflict of interest, but the following are examples of situations giving rise to perceived conflict of interest. The list is not exhaustive, and in any situation where an individual is uncertain as to the propriety of a given arrangement, advice may be sought from the Club Chairman.

General Examples

• A financial interest held by an individual (or by his or her immediate relative/s or household member/s) in an organisation. Examples of such interests are paid consultancies, paid service on a board of directors, director/shareholder in an enterprise from which North Belfast Harriers buys a service.

• Any relationship with a named organisation with which North Belfast Harriers might do business. Such interests would include: ownership, part-ownership, directorship, shareholder etc.

Individuals are not expected to quantify the extent of a financial interest, merely the fact that one exists. The presumption is always in favour of declaring an interest.

Registering an Interest

The aim of the register is to identify those activities and interests, which individuals consider as carrying a risk of bias in the conduct of their duties. The following process is therefore carried out in order to manage conflicts of interest:

Initial Registration

On joining North Belfast Harriers the following individuals are required to complete a declaration of interest form (Annex A) and submit the original to the treasurer.

• Committee Member
• Staff Member (full or part time)

Forms will be circulated and must be completed on an annual basis. In addition, as circumstances change, individuals must update their statements by informing the secretary within 28 days of becoming aware of the change.

Annual Registration

Individuals will be required to complete declaration of interest of interest forms on an annual basis. This should take place after the AGM or whenever the individual takes office.

Limitations on Involvement at Meetings

The Chairperson of the meeting will be identified as a facilitator for conflict issues. It shall be his or her responsibility for conducting the process detailed below. The Treasurer will be identified as the alternate facilitator to act when the facilitator is unavailable or in a position of conflict his or her self.

At the beginning of every meeting, the facilitator will ask whether any individuals present perceive a possible conflict of interest on any of the agenda items for themselves or for any other individuals.

The facilitator will use his or her judgement and decide if the declaration actually constitutes an interest in the planned business of the meeting.

If viewed by the facilitator that a conflict exists, the individual will be precluded from participation in any discussion of the issue (whether oral or written) and in decision-making. The individual will be excluded from the portion of the meeting for which there is conflict by being asked to leave the meeting when the item may then be discussed.

The facilitator should ensure all details of conflict raised are recorded in the minutes of the meeting.

Annual Registration

All employees/board members must update their declarations on an annual basis via the attached form mentioned in 5.2.

Once completed must be recorded on the register of interests by the Treasurer.

The Treasurer will maintain a database of interests and provide a referral service in relation to Board Members and employees.

Declaration

It is hereby certified that this document represents a true and most up to date version of the Conflict of Interest Policy for North Belfast Harriers.

SIGNED: _______________________ Chairman

________________________ Secretary

Annex A
Declaration of Interests Form

Section A
This form is to be completed by all Committee Members and employees of North Belfast Harriers and returned to treasurer@northbelfastharriers.com Where no interests are to be disclosed, please state “Not Applicable”.

Full Name: ____________________________ Position Held: _____________________________
This forms relates solely to interests of the above named person. For their partners or close relatives, where the interest is deemed to be relevant, please complete Section B below.
Remuneration from Employment
Name of Employer Nature of Business Position Held
Details of Employment held which may be significant to, or relevant to, or bear upon the activities of North Belfast Harriers
Remuneration from self-employment
Name of Business Nature of Business Position Held
Details of self- employment held which may be significant to, or relevant to, or bear upon the activities of North Belfast Harriers
Section B
This forms relates solely to interests of the partner/spouse or relative of the named person in Section A
Full Name: ____________________________

Relationship to above person: _____________________________
Remuneration from Employment
Name of Employer Nature of Business Position Held
Details of Employment held which may be significant to, or relevant to, or bear upon the activities of North Belfast Harriers
Remuneration from self-employment
Name of Business Nature of Business Position Held
Details of self- employment held which may be significant to, or relevant to, or bear upon the activities of North Belfast Harriers

DECLARATION

I declare that, to the best of my knowledge and belief, the information I have given in this form is truthful, accurate and complete.

I undertake to notify the North Belfast Harriers in writing of any changes to this information within 28 days of any such change.

I undertake to ensure that, subject to approval of this Declaration, the interests that I have disclosed will not detrimentally affect my ability to carry out my duties as North Belfast Harriers Committee Member/employee.

In making this declaration I consent to the information contained in it being available for inspection in the Register of Interests for North Belfast Harriers.

Print Name: _______________________ Signed: _______________________

Date: _______________________ Please return to: treasurer@northbelfastharriers.com

“To give anything less than your best is to sacrifice the gift.”