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Education Grievance Procedure

The International Society for Traumatic Stress Studies (ISTSS) is fully committed to conducting all activities in strict conformance with the American Psychological Association's Ethical Principles of Psychologists. ISTSS will comply with all legal and ethical responsibilities to be non-discriminatory in promotional activities, program content and in the treatment of program participants. The monitoring and assessment of compliance with these standards will be the responsibility of the Program Director in consultation with the members of the Public Information and Education Oversight Committee, the ISTSS President and the Annual Meeting Co-Chairs. 

While ISTSS goes to great lengths to assure fair treatment for all participants and attempts to anticipate problems, there will be occasional issues which come to the attention of organization staff which require intervention and/or action on the part of organization staff or an officer of ISTSS. This procedural description serves as a guideline for handling such grievances. 
 
All complaints will be handled in a timely and professional manner. Concerns or complaints will be responded to as soon as possible, or within one business day ideally. 
 
When a participant files a grievance and expects action on the complaint, in all cases organization staff will request that the participant puts his/her comments in written format. In addition, the following actions will be taken:
  1. When a participant, either orally or in written format, files a grievance and expects action on the complaint, the following actions will be taken. If the grievance concerns a speaker, the content presented by the speaker, or the style of presentation, the Program Director will then pass on the comments to the speaker and Public Information and Education Oversight Committee, assuring the confidentiality of the grieved individual. 
  2. If the grievance concerns a workshop offering, its content, level of presentation, or the facilities in which the workshop was offered, the annual meeting co-chairs will mediate and will be the final arbitrator. If the participant requests action, the annual meeting co-chairs will:
    1. attempt to move the participant to another workshop or 
    2. provide a credit for a subsequent year's workshop or 
    3. provide a partial or full refund of the workshop fee. 
  3. Actions 2b and 2c will require a written note, documenting the grievance, for record keeping purposes. The note need not be signed by the grieved individual.   
  4. If the grievance concerns ISTSS CE program, in a specific regard, the Public Information and Education Oversight will attempt to arbitrate. 
  5. Concerns or complaints regarding refund policies on registration and CE fees will be forwarded to the Executive Director for approval.  Generally, we are lenient with people who have experienced a medical crisis themselves or in their family. 
  6. Other complaints are addressed as necessary either by staff or by the ISTSS Executive Board or other ISTSS volunteer leaders.  

Contact name: Michael Hagedorn
Email: mhagedorn@istss.org
Telephone number: 847-686-2388
Address: One Parkview Plaza, Suite 800, Oakbrook Terrace, IL 60181