The APNA Ethics Program is based on the bylaws of the association, established in 1993. This is the section of the by laws concerning Ethics:
Section 5. Censure (Warning) or Expulsion – Members of the Association may be censured or expelled for cause. Sufficient cause for such censure or expulsion from membership shall be a violation of these bylaws, any rule or practice duly adopted by the Association, or any other conduct prejudicial to the interests of the Association. Censure or expulsion shall be by the affirmative action of the majority of the Board of Directors. The Board of Directors shall have such authority and power as may be necessary to adopt rules and policies relative to the procedures to be followed to implement this section of the bylaws.
Anyone who has reason to believe and evidence to prove that a Member (Individual, Agency or Sponsor) is conducting business in a manner contrary to the Standards and Core Values of the Association can register a complaint with the Ethics Committee.
APNA maintains confidential files of all correspondence relating to the complaint. Only the parties involved and the Board of Directors are privy to the information. If a complaint is investigated by the Ethics Committee, including the dismissal of a complaint, the Ethics Chair person or Committee will report at the next regular Board Meeting; the complaint, and resulting action, will be added into the minutes. Minutes from APNA Board Meeting can be viewed by board members only. Emails or parts of e-mails received during the ethics investigation may be forwarded to the involved parties at the discretion of the Ethics Committee.
The Board of Directors shall be empowered to review, adapt and adjust policies as necessary.
Anyone wishing to register a complaint is directed to the Ethics Committee’s online Complaint Form.
APNA Executive Assistant confirms receipt and forwards the complaint to committee chair/s.
The Ethics Committee receives the Complaint Form and reviews the complaint.
The Ethics Committee contacts the member involved and may choose to send all or part of the complaint.
Agency must respond to the Ethics Committee within 10 business days of receiving the original email. If the complainant does not respond in a timely manner, lack of communication may result in further disciplinary action, including revocation of membership due to the complaint.
The Ethics Committee conducts an evaluation of all of the facts involved, which may include sharing all or part of the agency’s response with the complaining party.
Ethics Committee and the President of the Association decides if additional action is taken, which may include further contact with either or both parties involved. The Ethics Committee may recommend that the Board of Directors consider warning or revocation of the agency’s membership in the APNA.
The Ethics Committee’s goal is to resolve all complaints within thirty (30) days. While every effort will be made to conduct an unbiased review.
Listed below are some, but not all, of the possible reasons to submit a complaint to the Ethics Committee.
Unseemly conduct in interaction between a member agency or sponsor member and their client or prospective client; a Member and their current or prospective nanny or service provider; a Member and any other agency member; a Member and any other allied business in the industry.
Misuse of the proprietary information of one member agency or sponsor member by another: Theft of proprietary materials. Exact copying of verbiage in marketing or promotional material, including misuse of work product. Use of proprietary information without first receiving permission. Published material in blogs or newsletters must be properly attributed.
Abuse of the financial obligation: failure to adhere to the terms and conditions of their agency’s agreement, charging a credit card without the client’s permission, and failure to promptly refund any unauthorized charges.
Any conduct contrary to the Core Values of the organization.
APNA will not intercede or impose any penalty on any Member who is in compliance with their own contractual obligations. Each Member is responsible for creating and managing their contractual agreements with both clients and nannies or service providers. APNA will not intervene in personal disputes between members or their representatives. APNA is unable to entertain complaints against non-members.
Each member agency is responsible for creating and managing their contractual agreements with both clients and nannies or service providers. APNA will not intercede or impose any penalty on any member agency who is in compliance with their own contractual obligations.
A Complaint is registered by completing the APNA Member Complaint Form here (all are required fields):
This Complaint Form must be complete in order to register a formal complaint against a current member of the Association of Professional Nanny Agencies. All complaints against Members will be investigated by the Ethics Committee. Anonymous complaints will not be considered.
The Ethics Committee’s goal is to resolve all complaints within thirty (30) days. While every effort will be made to conduct an unbiased review, member agencies that do not respond in a timely manner may be subject to censure or revocation of membership due to non-responsiveness.
Members are expected to adhere to APNA’s high ethical standards. Violations of the organization’s ethical standards will be addressed within 10 days by the Ethics Committee Chair and Ethics Committee. The Ethics Committee carefully reviews all information submitted, and makes a recommendation as to what action should be taken to resolve the matter. The Ethics Committee will reach out to the person who registered the complaint during the process and will report to them the outcome of its investigation.
First Offense: Upon the first violation of ethical standards, the Ethics Committee would present their findings to the Board; the Member will receive a verbal warning and the violation will be documented in their file. The Ethics Committee, upon completing its investigation, may seek the recommendation of the Board if the matter is deemed a serious breach of APNA Standards or is the second offense. Any penalty imposed by the Board, up to and including termination of their membership, will be done so by a majority vote of the Board during a Board Meeting or in a telephone conference call.
Second Offense: Upon the second violation of ethical standards, the member will receive a written warning and the violation will be documented in their file. Additionally, the member may be subject to disciplinary action, up to and including termination of their membership, at the discretion of the Board.
Third Offense: Upon the third violation of ethical standards, membership will be terminated immediately.
If membership is terminated, the following actions are taken:
All marketing materials, including web sites, must be modified to reflect the change in status within 10 days after membership is revoked.
No portion of the membership annual fees will be refunded.
An expelled Member must wait two years before reapplying. The reapplication will involve a review by the Membership committee and Ethics Committee before a decision rendered by a majority vote of the Board of Directors.
The expelled Member is prohibited from attending APNA events, virtual or in person, unless reinstated according to the above.
Note: All information concerning any Member is kept strictly confidential and will not be discussed with other Members or non-board members.