St. Louis, Missouri—May 18, 2021 – VisionServe Alliance (VSA) announces the release of its official Code of Ethics policy which outlines expectations regarding the behavior of VSA towards its members, clients, stakeholders, and society.
Developed by the Board of Directors with assistance from the Employers Association Forum, VSA’s Code of Ethics policy is a statement of the values and standards for its staff, members and corporate partners and is tied to VSA’s Core Values of Commitment, Exceptional Leadership, Diversity, Inclusion, Innovation, and Collaboration.
“The last few years we have all witnessed many public figures whose actions have called into question what the common standards of ethical behavior are,” notes Lee Nasehi, President/CEO of VisionServe Alliance. “Based on these events, VisionServe Alliance felt compelled to clarify where we stand and to demonstrate to its members our commitment to upholding strong ethical behavior in all its activities, from internal staff to external relations from member to member.”
The Board of Directors worked in partnership with EAF Consultant Chuck Simikian through a series of brainstorming sessions, to determine eight pillars of its official code of ethics policy. “This was a team effort which started with the Membership Committee which includes board members and other VSA members,” notes Bernadette Kappen who chairs the Membership Committee. “Together with help from professional consultant, Chuck Simikian, we worked to develop the pillars of our policy which we all agreed represented what VisionServe Alliance should stand for.” After the Membership Committee’s initial work, the draft was then taken to the full Board of Directors for further revision and final approval.
The new policy was unveiled to attendees of the virtual Executive Leadership Conference April 27 – 29, 2021. The official rollout of the Code of Ethics continues with an emailed announcement to all members, corporate partners and the public.
“We feel strongly that VisionServe’s Code of Ethics will support high standards not just among our employees and board, but also our members and all conference participants,” noted Nasehi. “It emphasizes the importance of ethical behavior standards throughout all of VisionServe’s programs and will become an integral part of our annual conferences and awards process for attendees and award nominators.”
Here are some of the ways the Code of Ethics will become part of VSA’s processes:
- Renewing and joining members will review and agree to abide by the Code of Ethics policies in order to join VSA.
- Attendees at VSA’s annual conferences will review and agree to abide by the Code of Ethics policies along with a basic code of conduct to participate in the conference.
- Annual Awards descriptions will reference our Code of Ethics policies as a standard. For nominations to move forward for consideration, nominators should be able to certify to the best of their knowledge, that their nominees meet the criteria and embrace the ideals for each of the 8 pillars of VSA’s Code of Ethics.
Originally founded in 1987 as the National Council of Private Agencies for the Blind and Visually Impaired (NCPABVI) and renamed in 2008, VisionServe Alliance is a consortium of 118 nonprofits located throughout the United States and Canada that provide unique and specialized services to people who are blind or with severe vision loss. Members include organizations focusing on national advocacy and/or service issues, employment and manufacturing, adult vision rehabilitation, K-12 residential and on-line schools, early intervention and pre-school, dog guides, low vision clinics, and braille production. Members engage regional and national leaders in building a better world through services to people with vision loss by promoting leadership development, ethical management, quality services, and professional growth.