ASM Events Code of Conduct
The American Society for Microbiology (“ASM”) is the main forum for microbial sciences that considers and debates scientific issues in an orderly, respectful and fair manner. The ASM is committed to providing an environment that encourages the free expression and exchange of scientific ideas and promotes equal opportunities and respectful treatment for all participants. All participants are expected to treat others with respect and consideration, follow venue rules and alert ASM staff or security of any dangerous situations or anyone in distress.
ASM prohibits and will not tolerate any form of harassment or bullying at its events, whether the event is in person or virtual.
Harassment is unwanted and unwelcome attention or other conduct that creates an environment where a reasonable person would feel unwelcome, intimidated, excluded or abused. Harassment based on gender, race, religion, national origin, age, marital status, personal appearance, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, family responsibilities, genetic information, disability, matriculation, political affiliation and any other personal characteristic is strictly prohibited.
ASM will investigate all complaints of harassment, and investigations will be conducted in an unbiased manner, within 1 year of the event. Violation of this code of conduct may result in the participant being asked to leave the event at which the incident occurred, without warning or refund; being barred from attending ASM events in the future; and, if relevant, being barred from or revocation of membership in the ASM. Event security and local police may be contacted in the event violators pose an imminent threat to others or are disrupting the event. If an ASM staff member is found to be in violation, the ASM Headquarters Employment Policy (Prohibition Against Sexual and Other Harassment and Discrimination) will be followed. Action regarding an ASM staff member may result in termination of employment. This policy applies to all attendees, speakers, exhibitors, contractors, volunteers and guests at ASM events. If a participant experiences or witnesses harassment, he/she should contact ASM staff (ASM staff are identifiable by their ASM Staff name badge) as soon as possible or contact security if they feel unsafe. Individuals may also report complaints via 866-209-5916 or www.ethcomp.com/asm. All complaints will be responded to promptly and treated seriously and, to the extent possible, confidentially. Complaints that require broader investigation will be handled by ASM’s Ethics Committee. ASM expressly forbids any retaliation against individuals for reporting harassment.
In the event that an individual knowingly provides false information regarding an alleged violation of the ASM Events Code of Conduct Policy, ASM may address such actions as a breach of the Code of Ethics and Conduct.
ASM Events Code of Conduct: Reporting and Response Process
If a participant experiences or witnesses harassment as described in ASM’s Events Code of Conduct, they should contact ASM staff (identifiable by ASM staff badge) to report the incident. If at any time a participant feels unsafe, they should contact meeting venue security immediately. If the participant is unsure that the incident was in violation of the ASM’s Events Code of Conduct, they may inquire first from an ASM staff member before filing a formal complaint.
The following information should be provided when reporting a harassment incident:
- Name and contact information of participant.
- Name and contact information of any witnesses.
- Identifying information (e.g. name, badge number, physical appearance) of the individual(s) who are accused of the harassment.
- The specific action or behavior that was in violation of the ASM Events Code of Conduct.
- The date and approximate time of the incident.
- The location and circumstances surrounding the incident.
ASM will accept and investigate all complaints of harassment and investigations will be conducted in an unbiased manner. All complaints will be responded to promptly and treated seriously and, to the extent possible, confidentially. Complaints found to state a potential violation of the Events Code of Conduct will be referred to ASM’s Ethics Committee for adjudication.