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Member Ethical Principles

After careful consideration, much deliberation, and solid legal advice, the American Board of Industrial Hygiene (ABIH) decided to develop a new, enforceable Code of Ethics for all ABIH-certified professionals, applicants, and examinees.  The American Industrial Hygiene Association (AIHA), AIHA’s Academy of Industrial Hygiene (AIH), and ACGIH® have created a set of principles that will complement the enforceable Code of Ethics for AIHA, AIH, and ACGIH, which they will share.

Though the Member Ethical Principles document was developed in cooperation with ABIH and is based on the same concepts as its newly approved and enforceable Code of Ethics (available at http://www.abih.org/members/documents.html#ethicscode), the joint principles are not enforceable; rather, the document represents shared member Ethical Principles.  These principles were available for member input and were approved by both the AIHA and ACGIH Boards of Directors.




The AIHA, ACGIH and AIH (IH Professional Associations) are nonprofit voluntary professional membership associations dedicated to the advancement of the field of industrial hygiene, and the protection of health and safety.  Therefore, the IH Professional Associations support quality professional standards and practices, and expect members to meet such standards.  In support of these important purposes, the IH Professional Associations promote ethical professional practices and strongly encourage members to understand ethical responsibilities.  As a matter of professional competence and public confidence, members are expected to conduct themselves consistent with applicable ethics standards, including those of the American Board of Industrial Hygiene (ABIH).


Accordingly, the IH Professional Associations have adopted the following member ethical principles in order to guide the members, support the profession, and protect health and safety.


I. Responsibilities to the Professional Organizations, the Profession and the Public.

A. In order to satisfy organizational and legal policies and rules, members should:

1. Comply with laws, regulations, policies, and ethical standards governing professional practice of industrial hygiene and related activities, including those of professional associations and credentialing organizations.

2. Provide accurate and truthful information to professional associations and credentialing organizations.

3. Cooperate with professional associations and credentialing organizations concerning ethics matters and the collection of information related to an ethics matter.

4. Report apparent violations of applicable professional organizations’ ethical standards to appropriate organizations and agencies upon a reasonable and clear factual basis.

5. Refrain from any public behavior that is clearly in violation of accepted professional, ethical or legal standards.

6. Promote equal opportunity and diversity in professional activities.

7. Support and disseminate the association’s ethics principles to other professionals.

II. Responsibilities to Clients, Employers, Employees and the Public.

A. In order to provide ethical professional services, members should:

1. Deliver competent services in a timely manner, and with objective and independent professional judgment in decision-making.

2. Recognize the limitations of one’s professional ability, and provide services only when qualified. The member is responsible for determining the limits of his/her own professional abilities based on education, knowledge, skills, practice experience, and other relevant considerations.

3. Provide appropriate professional referrals when unable to provide competent professional assistance.

4. Maintain and respect the confidentiality of sensitive information obtained in the course of professional or related activities unless: the information pertains to an illegal activity; a court or governmental agency lawfully directs the release of the information; the client/employer expressly authorizes the release of specific information; or, the failure to release such information would likely result in death or serious physical harm to employees and/or the public.

5. Properly use professional credentials and provide truthful and accurate representations concerning education, experience, competency and the performance of services.

6. Provide truthful and accurate representations to the public in advertising, public statements/representations, and in the preparation of estimates concerning costs, services, and expected results.

7. Recognize and respect the intellectual property rights of others, and act in an accurate, truthful, and complete manner, including activities related to professional work and research.

8. Affix or authorize the use of one’s seal, stamp or signature only when the document is prepared by the certificant/candidate or someone under his/her direction and control.

9. Refrain from business activities and practices that unlawfully restrict competition.

B. In order to satisfy organizational policies and legal requirements concerning possible conflicts of interest and similar issues, members should:

1. Disclose to clients or employers significant circumstances that could be construed as a conflict of interest, or an appearance of impropriety.

2. Avoid conduct that could cause a conflict of interest with a client, employer, employee, or the public.

3. Assure that a conflict of interest does not compromise legitimate interests of a client, employer, employee, or the public and does not influence/interfere with professional judgments.

4. Refrain from offering, or accepting inappropriate payments, gifts, or other forms of compensation or benefits in order to secure work, or that are intended to influence professional judgment.

C. In order to satisfy organizational policies and legal requirements concerning public health and safety, members should:

1. Follow appropriate health and safety procedures in the course of performing professional work to protect clients, employers, employees, and the public from conditions where injury and damage are reasonably foreseeable.

2. Inform appropriate management representatives and/or governmental bodies of violations of legal and regulatory requirements when obligated or otherwise clearly appropriate.

3. Make reasonable efforts to ensure that the results of industrial hygiene assessments are communicated to exposed populations.

Approved by the AIHA Board of Directors on May 21, 2007.


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