Code of Ethics

Code of Professional Standards

Members of the Canadian Public Relations Society, Inc. (the Society), pledge to uphold the letter and spirit of this Code of Professional Standards. Members will ensure that any breach of this Code by fellow Members is reported to the Society authorities in accordance with the Regulations of the Society. Any breaches of the Code will be dealt with at either the national or Member Society level according to the decision of the National Judicial Review Committee.

Society members shall strive to improve their individual professional proficiency and advance their knowledge and competency through continuing research and professional development. Paramount in this respect is the achievement of professional accreditation by each member which should be sought actively within seven years of joining the Society.

1. A member shall practice public relations according to the highest professional standards.

Members shall conduct their professional life in a manner that does not conflict with the public interest and the dignity of the individual, with respect for the rights of the public as contained in the Constitution of Canada and the Charter of Rights and Freedoms.

2. A member shall deal fairly and honestly with the communications media and the public.

Members shall neither propose or act to improperly influence the communications media, government bodies or the legislative process. Improper influence may include conferring gifts, privileges or benefits to influence decisions.

3. A member shall practice the highest standards of honesty, accuracy, integrity and truth, and shall not knowingly disseminate false or misleading information.

Members shall not make extravagant claims or unfair comparisons, nor assume credit for ideas and words not their own. Members shall not engage in professional or personal conduct that will bring discredit to themselves, the Society or the practice of public relations.

4. A member shall deal fairly with past or present employers / clients, with fellow practitioners, and with members of other professions.

Members shall not intentionally damage another practitioner’s practice or professional reputation. Members shall understand, respect and abide by the ethical code of other professions with whose members they may work from time to time.

5. A member shall be prepared to disclose the name of their employer or client for whom public communications are made and refrain from associating themselves with anyone that would not respect such policy.

Members shall be prepared to disclose publicly the name of their employer or client on whose behalf public communications is made. Members shall also not associate themselves with anyone claiming to represent one interest or professing to be independent or unbiased, but actually serving another or undisclosed interest.

6. A member shall protect the confidences of present, former and prospective employers/clients.

Members shall not use or disclose confidential information obtained from past or present employers / clients, without the express permission of the employers / clients, or upon the order of a court of law.

7. A member shall not represent conflicting or competing interests without the express consent of those concerned, given after a full disclosure of the facts.

Members shall not permit personal or other professional interests to conflict with those of an employer / client without fully disclosing such interests to everyone involved.

8. A member shall not guarantee specified results beyond the members capacity to achieve.

9. Members shall personally accept no fees, commissions, gifts or any other considerations for professional services from anyone except employers or clients for whom the services were specifically performed.