Disciplinary Policy
of the Emergency Services Chaplaincy (SA)
 

The purpose of this document is to provide ground rules for disciplinary procedures against members of the Emergency Services Chaplaincy.

Definitions:

Grievance: By our definition, a grievance is brought in by a junior member, against a senior member in presenting testimony or proof of conduct contrary to our code of conduct.

Charges: When a senior member, or member of the same standing, or a member of the public, or Emergency Services brings in testimony, and proof of conduct contrary to our code of conduct, against a junior member, or member of the same standing.

1. Disciplinary steps will be taken against members when :

a) If a members conduct is contrary to the teachings of our Lord Jesus Christ, as found in the Holy Bible.

b) If the members are found guilty of acting in any way that would go against the Code of Conduct of the E.S.C. (S.A.) and its constitution.

c) If the testimony of the member is as such, that it is damaging to the ministry of the E.S.C. (S.A.) as stipulated by the Code of Conduct.

d) If any grievance, or charges are brought in against a member, and after a thorough investigation, such a grievance or charge is found to be valid, in regards to the before mentioned points.

2. Procedures in laying a grievance or charge against a Member & the Hearing.

a) Charges or Grievances against any member of the E.S.C. (S.A.) can be made at either the Chief Chaplain of the area who should relay the charges to the chairperson of the disciplinary committee, or directly to the chairperson of the disciplinary committee being the Vice President of the E.S.C. (S.A.), or the C.E.O. or President of the E.S.C. (S.A.). These charges should be made in writing. Initial charges can be made verbally, but should also be delivered in writing within 7 (seven) days after any verbal charges. The accused will receive a copy of these charges

b) No anonymous charges or grievances will be investigated. All charges or grievances must be signed, and dated. The full detail of the person bringing in the charges, as well as the full details of the person against whom the charges are brought should be included in this written document. This should also include all contact details.

c) The person that are bringing in the charges or grievances will be contacted by an disciplinary committee member within seven (7) days after receiving the charges, confirming that the complaints has been received by the committee.

d) When charges or grievances are brought in against a member, the chairperson of the disciplinary committee being the Vice President of the E.S.C. (S.A.) or the C.E.O. or President, of the E.S.C. (S.A.), will have the power of placing such a member under immediate suspension, should they feel that such a drastic step is needed. This will be a temporary suspension, until such a time that a proper hearing can take place. This temporary suspension may not be for a time exceeding 60 (sixty) days. Such a suspension can be made verbally, but must be delivered to the suspended member in writing within 14 (fourteen) working days.

e) The hearing should take place within 60 (sixty) days after the charge or grievance against the member has been received in writing, at a time and place suitable for all parties.

f) The accused, and the person bringing the charges against the member must attend the hearings. Not attending the hearing without proper notification of a valid reason, or proof of a valid reason why the person did not attend, could result in being found guilty, and suspended, as the action of deliberately not attending the hearing will show to an admittance of guild. The opposite also being true. If the person bringing in the charges against the accused is not present at the hearing, it will show to the fact that he/she is no longer prepared to lay any charges, and the case could be withdrawn. In such a case where one of the parties involved in the case does not attend, and nothing is heard by the committee within 72 hours after the hearing, the committee will have full power to make their verdict without the persons testimony. 

g) The member against whom the charges or grievances are brought in will be called to appear before the disciplinary committee of the E.S.C. (S.A.) who will then have the proper authority to investigate the charges brought in against the member, and have the authority to discipline the accused, should they find the charges brought in as true, and valid grounds for disciplinary actions.

h) This committee will consist of three or more members of the E.S.C. (S.A.) executive committee, and/or co-opted members. The vice-president of the E.S.C. (S.A.) will chair the committee. If a female member is called in for a disciplinary hearing, a female member of the executive or a co-opted female member will also be on the committee leading the investigation.

i) During the hearing, the accused will have the opportunity to give all the relevant answers to the accusations brought in against him or her, and may call on witnesses to verify his/her testimony. This is NOT a legal hearing in which the accused will need any form a legal representation, but a biblical principal is followed, where brothers are called together to look at a way of dealing with the problem at hand.

j) The people that are bringing in the charges or grievances against the member will have the opportunity to present the evidence to the disciplinary committee, and may also call on witnesses to verify their accusations.

k) After the disciplinary committee heard all the evidence, they will make a ruling on the case presented to them. This ruling should be based on all the facts presented to them, and should be fair and just, and not contradicting the Word of God

l) All cases handled by the Disciplinary Committee will be handled with the strictest confidence, and will not become public knowledge, or public information. The only people that will have knowledge of the charges or grievances, and the outcome of the hearing, will be the disciplinary committee and the Emergence Services Chaplaincy (S.A.) executive, the person that brought in the charges, and the accused. 

3. Disciplinary steps and Guidelines.

a) Depending on the discretion of the disciplinary committee, and in taking the severity of the charges brought in against the member in consideration, the disciplinary committee will have the power of terminating the membership of a member, should the member be found guilty of the charges brought in against him/her.

b) The disciplinary committee may also choose to rather suspend a member for a certain time span, be it one (1) month, three (3) months, six (6) months, or one (1) year.

c) The disciplinary committee may also give a suspended sentence for the same time span, be it for one (1) month, three (3) months, six (6) months, or one (1) year. Meaning, that if the member should be found guilty of any other misconducts within the time of his/her suspended sentence, that the sentence as referred to in 3a, or 3b will come into immediate effect.

d) All sentencing should be delivered to the accused in writing within fourteen (14) days after the verbal sentencing has been handed down.

e) If a member has been suspended for a certain time, or if a members membership has been terminated, the member may not wear any uniform pieces registered to the Emergence Services Chaplaincy (S.A.) or at any time claim to be a registered member, or associated to the Emergency Services Chaplaincy (S.A.), until the members sentence has been carried out, and the member has been granted permission to be associated with the Emergence Services Chaplaincy (S.A.) by the disciplinary committee.

f) If a members membership has been terminated, and the member whish to return to the Emergence Services Chaplaincy (S.A.), such a person will need to submit his/her application to the disciplinary committee in writing. Two or more members of the committee will interview the person, and will go with their recommendation to the Emergence Services Chaplaincy (S.A.) executive for their approval, or rejection of the application.

g) The Emergence Services Chaplaincy (S.A.) executive will have the right to accept the person back under specifically laid down conditions for acceptance, and may also insist that the person should work under the guardianship of another chaplain for an evaluation period, should they feel the need for such a decision. Should they not feel that the person had performed to they requirement in this trail period, they may then turn down the application, or should they be satisfied with the performance of the person, they might then fully re-instate the membership of the applicant.

How can I be Better at what I Do?
Striving to excellence in God’s ministry
Isaiah 61: 1 - 3