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Section 3: Accountability

The following policy and procedure is created to support the Washington State Society for Clinical Social Work (WSSCSW) board and membership with understanding the process for holding members and board members accountable for harmful acts performed against members. Corrective actions are steps that respond to member concerns or misconduct; the actions address the root causes of the conduct to prevent re-occurrence. Corrective action may include non-disciplinary steps such as counseling, training, improvement plans, restorative justice, and certificates of completion for programs completed. Corrective action may also include discipline, such as verbal warnings, written warnings, suspension from the Listserv, and dismissal from the Society. The board, an appointed board member, or a board approved outside organization hired by the member who committed the harmful act, will be responsible for ensuring that conduct standards are met and if they are not then administration of a corrective action will occur. If the member who committed the harmful act cannot afford to hire a board approved outside organization then the board will work with the member to ensure that conduct standards are met. The board and members will be held to this policy and procedure.


The concept of “just cause” discipline, which is the basis for corrective action, is typically metered out progressively, and with increasing severity if the performance or behavior is not corrected. The fundamental objective is not to discipline a member to the point of dismissal, but rather to provide the member with direction, guidance, motivation, and support to correct the deficiencies or conduct before discipline is escalated. This is the underlying concept of Progressive Discipline. 


To support compassionate and thoughtful use of the Progressive Discipline, board member consultation with NASW and/or CSWA is encouraged. To reduce a financial burden to WSSCSW, the board will utilize their memberships with NASW and CSWA to help facilitate these consultations. If a membership is no longer in existence, then the board will determine how best to move forward with receiving this support in a fiscally responsible and ethical manner. The WSSCSW is also invested in supporting the implementation of restorative justice models and training pre-disciplinary designee, board members, or outside agencies to perform investigations and make recommendations as to whether proposed discipline is reasonable and supported by evidence.


Steps of WSSCSW’s Progressive Discipline 

  1. Members who are deemed to perform harmful acts will be given a verbal warning and will work with the board and the injured party in determining which restorative actions will help heal the harm that was committed. An example of a harmful act is saying racist comments and/or excluding members from events and activities based upon the color of their skin, sexual orientation, and religious affiliation. Restorative actions may include, and not be limited to, attending relevant training sessions, participating in support groups, and/or any other such activity that the injured party and board believe would be supportive. If the injured party and board believe that the harm is egregious, then the board may progress directly to step 3.

  2. Members who persist in the same, or similar, harmful act will be given a written warning and their ability to post in the Listserv will be suspended. They will meet once more with the board and injured party to participate in restorative justice.

  3. Members who continue to perform the same or similar acts will be asked to leave the WSSCSW. Per the policy of WSSCSW, the member will not be refunded their membership fee. If they wish to return to the WSSCSW they are required to meet with the full board, a designated board member, and/or a board approved outside organization hired by the member for an interview. The interview will assess whether the person has performed work to learn and grow since they were dismissed from membership. If it is deemed that they have grown then they will be given a one-year probationary membership. If during the probationary period the member continues to perform the behaviors that originally resulted in termination, then they will be asked to permanently leave WSSCSW.


WSSCSW is responsible for creating and maintaining an internal culture that is both healthy and grounded in its ethical values. We resolve to implement restorative processes for communities of color, LGBTQ+, and members of minority status that extend beyond the current content, format, and style of this board. We resolve to be responsive to, and respectful of, the unique cultures and traditions of a given group. WSSCSW reaffirms its rejection of racism and racist ideologies and commits to doing the ongoing work of evaluating the organization for racism and oppression and implementing updated processes and policies for addressing racism and oppression.

Section 4: Meeting and/or Financial Budget Records Requests

If you need to access older meeting and/or financial budget records that are not listed on the page, please email admin@wsscsw.org and share your name and contact email. Please be sure to include the date range and the purpose of your request. Owing that our executive administrator is employed with the clinical society part-time, the board is determining what the associated fee will be to cover this additional expense. If you would like to receive paper copies of the forms, the cost of printing, postage, mileage, and the associated time it would take our executive administrator to perform these tasks will be billed to you. All bills are to be paid in full before the forms will be mailed. When making the request for paper copies please send your full name, mailing address, date range, the type of forms you’re requesting, and the reason for your request to admin@wsscsw.org. Please note that collecting historical records may take time, including scanning, formatting and transcription so time of delivery may vary. At this time we are only sending historical records electronically. An update will be forthcoming when we have capacity to send paper copies.

The monthly financial budgets and meeting minutes are reserved for current members in good standing. If you pause your membership, please remove these forms from your possession by shredding paper copies and deleting computer files. When shredding documents, please shred to the point where the document is no longer able to be reconstructed. All electronic copies of the documents must be deleted forever and the person, or any person outside of membership, must be unable to access them. All forms are to be disposed of in this manner within one day of lapsed membership.

If you would like to receive forms outside of the categories of meeting minutes and financial budgets your request will be shared with the lawyer that we are partnering with. Any associated legal fees for consultation will be billed to you in combination with the fees listed above.


Washington State Society for Clinical Social Work
PO Box 252 • Everett, WA  98206 • admin@wsscsw.org

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