New CSW Conduct Policy

CSW Board of Managers voted on November 21st to accept a conduct policy for members and guests when participating in CSW/ACS events. A copy of the policy is included here, and will be updated in the Capital Chemist to the “About Us” section .

Conduct Policy for the Chemical Society of Washington


The Chemical Society of Washington (CSW), which is a local section of the American Chemical Society (ACS), aims to provide an inclusive environment where members and guests can conduct business and/or participate in activities in the absence of any type of discrimination or harassment. CSW does not tolerate discrimination or harassment on the basis of age, color, ethnicity, race, nationality, disability, gender, gender expression, gender identity, sexual orientation, religious affiliation or belief, political affiliation or ideology, or marital or family status.  All CSW members and guests are expected to comply with this conduct policyat all times while they are participating in any matters associated with ACS or CSW. These matters may include but are not limited to communications (electronic or social media), meetings (board, dinner, or local), outreach activities, and any other CSW sponsored events.


The Chemical Society of Washington defines discrimination as any unjust decision or treatment that involves an imbalance in benefits, educational opportunities, mentorship, employment, evaluation, professional opportunities, or retaliation directed towards any category of people listed above.

The Chemical Society of Washington defines harassment as a type of discrimination that consists of a single intense and severe act OR multiple persistent or pervasive acts, which are abusive, demeaning, offensive, or that a reasonable person would find unwanted or unwelcome. An act of conduct constitutes harassment when 1) it becomes a counterproductive condition of a benefit, education, employment, evaluation, or professional opportunity or 2) the conduct is severe or pervasive enough to create an environment that a reasonable person would consider the conduct to be abusive, hostile, or intimidating.

The Chemical Society of Washington defines sexual harassment as any behavior, comment, gesture, or treatment that is of sexual nature and is obviously unwanted or unwelcome.

Procedures and Actions

In the event that a member or guest of CSW has become a witness to or victim of discrimination and/or harassment, that person is encouraged to record the date, time, location of event, nature of the incident, individuals involved, witnesses, and any additional information that they may deem important.

This information should be reported to local section officials,[1] including any member of the CSW Board of Managers (BOM), or the CSW email contact ([email protected]) who are required to then report violations to all members of the CSW Executive Committee. Members of the CSW BOM are also required to report any observed incidences of discrimination and/or harassment to the Executive Committee. The Executive Committee must then meet to review the discrimination and/or harassment claim within 30 days of notification and communicate with the claimant both the date and location of the review if the claimant and any supporting witness would like to attend. [2, 3]  In cases of alleged persistent and/or serious violations of this conduct policy, the executive committee shall review the evidence and shall take such actions as may be deemed appropriate, including but not limited to, requiring volunteers to leave their volunteer position(s); precluding volunteers from serving in CSW volunteer roles in the future; precluding meeting attendees from attending future CSW meetings and sponsored events. CSW reserves the right to pursue additional measures as it may determine are appropriate. The ACS Secretary and General Counsel will be informed of all conduct policy investigations and reserves the right to assume responsibility over an investigation as appropriate.  Before being subject to disciplinary action(s), the accused shall be afforded the opportunity to respond to charges and present witnesses in accordance with due process requirements of the Constitution and Bylaws of ACS.

[1] An up to date list of CSW local section officials can be found on the CSW website at

[2] If any member of the CSW Executive Committee is involved the conduct claim in any way (victim, accused, or witness) they will be ineligible from being part of the investigation. Thus, a suitable replacement to participate in the investigation will be determined by the remaining eligible members of the Executive Committee.

[3] All reporting and investigations of conduct policy violations will be kept confidential. Any required disclosures of person(s) or details regarding the event, in compliance with CSW or ACS bylaws, will require notification to all affected person(s).