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CODE OF CONDUCT
Medlife Foundation is a non-governmental organization formed for the purposes of women empowerment and child development through the course of social entrepreneurship, sustainable menstruation projects which lay their premise on sustainability, essential healthcare and environment protection.
The organization is committed towards ensuring that it’s members, interns, volunteers and third-party partners showcase their best practice and quality as well as credibility of work.
The Code of Conduct of Medlife Foundation reflects its core values and principles while also providing clear guidance on the required standards of behaviour.
- Personal and Professional Conduct
It is to be ensured by all members, interns, volunteers and ‘third-parties’ that their standard of behaviour, during work and otherwise, supports the ideals that guide Medlife Foundation.
Any form of discrimination on the basis of race, gender, religion, caste, colour, ethnicity, age, disability, sexual orientation and others is unacceptable at all costs.
Any form of behaviour that has a tendency to cause harm to children, including all kinds of abuse and neglect, is forbidden.
All those associated with the organization are expected and required to behave in a culturally sensitive manner, taking into account various diversities in ethnic groups and their thoughts.
All the members and third-parties are required to use appropriate language and appear in a manner which reflects their position positively, creating a respectable perception of Medlife Foundation.
- No involvement in illegal activities
Engagement or support towards any kind of illegal or criminal activity is highly unacceptable.
The possession, consumption or distribution of illegal substances at the work place or during work hours is strictly prohibited, including doing work under the influence of alcohol or other substances.
Exploitation of children, women or any other section of society in any manner which deviates from basic human right preservation is forbidden and will attract severe consequences.
- All individuals and groups associated with Medlife Foundation are expected to use assets, financial and other resources of the organization in a responsible and accountable manner, following all prescribed guidelines.
At Medlife Foundation, each employee’s interaction with one another and the general public shall be guided by courtesy, tact and consideration. Every employee is required to treat everyone else in the organization and others with utmost respect and responsibility.
CHILD PROTECTION POLICY
Medlife Foundation has adopted a Child Protection Policy to ensure the prevention and early detection of abuse and/or neglect of children.
Hereinafter, a child is defined as a person under the age of 18.
One of the foundation’s core values is to safeguard the children associated with the foundation, directly or indirectly, by devising and implementing policies so that everyone understands their duties and responsibilities towards the cause.
The policy aims to provide children with appropriate protection whilst they engage with Medlife Foundation in any manner and to allow the staff, interns and volunteers to make informed response to child protection issues.
Medlife Foundation is committed to the following:
- Adopting child protection guidelines through an established code of behaviour for the staff, interns and volunteers
- Safeguarding the welfare of all children by protecting them from all forms of abuse including physical, emotional and mental.
- Sharing such information about child protection and good practice with children, staff and volunteers.
- Carefully following the procedures for safer recruitment in the selection of staff and volunteers with regard to their suitability for the responsibility, especially the ones who work with children.
- Taking all suspicions and allegations of poor practice or abuse seriously and responding swiftly and appropriately.
- Revising and revisiting this policy as and when found necessary, keeping the welfare of children in mind.
CONFLICT OF INTEREST POLICY
The Conflict of Interest Policy governs the activities of the staff, interns and volunteers of Medlife Foundation. All responsible persons are required to be aware of the term of this policy and identify conflicts of interests and situations which may lead to a conflict of interest and report the same to the CEO of Medlife Foundation, as and when required.
A conflict of interest is a situation which arises when a member of the NGO has a personal or professional interest which is not in conformity with the best interests of Medlife Foundation, which may result in a personal or professional gain to such members in a position of authority at Medlife Foundation.
A conflict of interest may occur when:
- A member of the NGO, directly or indirectly, benefits financially or non-financially as a result of a decision taken or policy initiated by Medlife Foundation.
- A member of the NGO accepts a gift, in which case it can be inferred that the purpose of the gift was to influence the actions and performance of duties by the said member.
- A member seeks to obtain special/preferential treatment by Medlife Foundation.
- A member seeks to make use of the NGOs confidential information as well as personal data collected for his/her own benefit, superseding the general interests of the NGO.
- A member uses the personal information of the donors and persons associated with the NGO for his/her own financial gains, thereby defying the principles set forth by the NGO.
The aforementioned instances are not exhaustive but only illustrative in nature.
- All members of Medlife Foundation are duty-bound to disclose any ongoing or potential conflict of interest as soon as the same becomes known to them.
- For each interest disclosed, the NGO will determine whether a conflict of interest exists or not. In a case where a conflict of interest exists, the NGO will further enquire into the matter and take appropriate action.
- In such an instance where it is found that a member has failed to disclose an ongoing or potential conflict of interest, the member shall be provided with an opportunity to explain the alleged failure to disclose the same. After careful deliberation, required and appropriate disciplinary as well as corrective measures shall be taken.
DATA PROTECTION POLICY
- Medlife Foundation is committed to using data responsibly in order to uphold and safeguard the lives of individuals, groups and organization with which we work.
- The NGO recognizes that people have rights with regards to the information related to them and that the foundation owes a duty towards them to uphold those rights.
- This policy applies to all personal data processed by Medlife Foundation and the foundation takes responsibility for its compliance with the Data Protection Policy set forth.
- All data processed by the NGO would only be done on lawful bases such as legal obligation, consent, essential interests, and/or public tasks.
- The NGO shall ensure that personal data which is collected is adequate, relevant and limited to what is necessary in relation to the purposes for which it is processed.
- Further, to ensure that the personal data collected is kept for no longer than necessary, an archival/ removal policy shall be put into place to consider what data must be retained for how long.
- In such a case where there is a breach of security leading to the destruction, loss or unauthorized access/ disclosure of personal data, the NGO will be prompt in assessing the risk to people’s rights and seek legal remedies, if required.
The Whistleblowing Policy of Medlife Foundation aims to reinforce the NGOs commitment to its policies, values and attitudes. The policy provides for an effective procedure for people to raise concerns with regards to instances of abuse, malpractice or professional misconduct.
The policy applies to all members of the NGO, employees and volunteers, as well as partner organizations/persons who are related to Medlife Foundation. It bestows upon the aforementioned parties the responsibility to report violations or suspected violations done by the members and partners of Medlife Foundation.
Purpose: The main purpose of this Whistleblower Policy is to encourage members of the NGO and enable them to raise serious concerns within the NGO prior to seeking solutions outside the NGO.
Good Faith: No person who in good faith reports a violation shall suffer harassment, retaliation or unfair treatment. Any member of the NGO who retaliates against the ‘whistleblower’, who has reported a violation in good faith, is subject to face consequences which may extend upto termination of employment. Any person who is reporting a violation or a suspected violation is required to be doing so in good faith which ought to be supported by reasonable grounds for believing that the information disclosed indicates a violation of the values and policies of the NGO or the law.
Confidentiality: Members, volunteers or partners who raise concerns regarding violations will be accorded protection from victimization, or any other hostile behaviour. The identity of the individual raising such concern will be kept confidential to the extent possible, consistent with the need to conduct an effective and adequate investigation. In certain cases, this may not be possible, especially when the ‘whistleblower’ ought to make a statement for the process of smooth investigation, the same shall be indicated to the person concerned prior to the revelation of his/her identity.
ANTI-BRIBERY AND CORRUPTION POLICY
Medlife Foundation has a zero-tolerance approach towards bribery and corruption and is dedicated towards upholding all applicable laws related to the subject.
Corruption is defined as ‘the abuse of entrusted power for gain’.
Resource-diversion and misuse of power contradicts the NGOs core values and principles that guide its processes. Bribery and corruption not only have an impact of bringing bad reputation to the organization but also pose legal risks for the organization and the individuals involved.
As a non-governmental organization, working for the welfare of people, it is paramount that all individuals and groups associated with the organization (members, volunteers, interns, partners, doners, beneficiaries) act in an honest and transparent manner.
Corruption on the part of any Medlife Foundation member, intern, volunteer or third-party, in the course of their engagement with the NGO, is strictly prohibited.
No individual associated with Medlife Foundation shall pay a bribe, or offer to pay a bribe, nor shall they accept a bribe or offer to accept a bribe, during their involvement in any activities conducted by the organization.
The NGO shall ensure that all members, interns, volunteers and third-party are made aware of the anti-bribery and corruption policy.
All members of Medlife Foundation shall strive towards developing a corruption aware workforce and foster an organizational structure where corruption is not acceptable.
For the purposes of reporting instances or alleged instances of corruption in the organization, a “whistleblower policy” shall be set up providing individuals with a mechanism for reporting abuse of power, and to encourage such reporting.
Members of Medlife Foundation who are found to be engaged in corrupt activities will be subject to disciplinary action, which could lead upto termination of employment.
DIVERSITY AND INCLUSION POLICY
The purpose of this policy is to formally establish Medlife Foundation’s commitment towards tackling all forms of discrimination and inequality in the workplace and the services provided by the organization. Medlife Foundation seeks to promote equality of opportunity and prevention of all forms of unlawful or unfair discrimination, victimization and harassment.
Medlife Foundation is devoted towards creating and safeguarding an inclusive environment, where discrimination on any grounds is challenged and equality of opportunity is promoted. The organization will ensure that during and through the course of appointment, no individual will experience discriminatory practice or barriers to inclusion.
Medlife Foundation is dedicated to work towards the elimination of discrimination on the basis of gender, religion, caste, colour, creed, age, disability, sexual orientation and the like. Discrimination of any kind, within the organization will attract heavy sanctions since the same is against the ethos of Medlife Foundation and what it seeks to do for the welfare of the society.
The NGOs policy is to ensure that no employee, intern, volunteer or third-party member faces discriminatory behaviour on any of the aforementioned grounds. Employees and others associated with the organization will be provided with equal opportunities as Medlife Foundation seeks to create a representative environment which is responsive to all communities with which it works, ensuring that all have a chance to succeed in their work.
All associated with Medlife Foundation are required to adhere to this policy at all times.
Failure in doing so may result in disciplinary action.
SEXUAL HARRASMENT POLICY
Medlife Foundation is committed towards creating and ensuring an enabling, dignified and equitable work environment for every employee. The NGO believes that all employees should be able to work together in an environment free of exploitation, harassment and violence.
This Sexual Harrasment Policy is in compliance with the Sexual Harassment at Workplace (Prevention, Prohibition and Redressal) Act, 2013.
The purpose of the policy is to define sexual harassment in the organization and create a mechanism for redressal of complaints.
Sexual harassment, according to the 2013 Act, is defined as ‘such unwelcome sexually determined behaviour, whether directly or by implication, such as: physical contact and advances, a demand or request for sexual favours, sexually coloured remarks, showing pornography, and any other unwelcome physical, verbal or non-verbal conduct of sexual nature.’
Internal Complaints Committee
The Internal Complaints Committee shall be set up for the lodging of sexual harassment complaints within the organization. It will be headed by a senior woman employee of the organization who shall be presiding the committee, and shall consist of all other necessary members. In an instance where there is an unavailability of a senior woman employee, a senior woman employee for some other organization shall be appointed as the presiding officer.
An ‘aggrieved’ woman will be required to bring any matter of complaint of sexual harassment at workplace before the internal complaints committee. Upon receival of a complaint, the committee will investigate into the matter and, upon hearing both the sides, advance recommendations on the issue within 60 days.
If the aggrieved person is dissatisfied by the recommendations or non-implementation of the recommendations of the committee, they are entitled to appeal for the same in the Internal Complaints Committee upon exhaustion of 90 days since the advancement of recommendations.
If, during the course of investigation, the Committee finds that the allegations put forth by the complainant are malicious in nature or that the complainant has produced false evidences, it may recommend the management to take strict actions against the complainant, including but not limited to termination of employment and any other action as deemed fit.<br>
Last Updated – 1 Jan 2023