ARTICLE 1: INTRODUCTION AND PURPOSE
Green Planet Films, Inc. (the “Corporation”) requires its directors, officers, employees and volunteers to observe high standards of business and personal ethics in the conduct of their duties and responsibilities. The purpose of this policy is to encourage and enable employees and volunteers of the Corporation to report any action or suspected action taken within the Corporation that is illegal, fraudulent or in violation of any adopted policy of the Corporation, to a source within the Corporation before turning to outside parties for resolution. This policy applies to any matter which is related to the Corporation’s business and does not relate to private acts of an individual not connected to the business of the Corporation. This policy is intended to supplement but not replace the Corporation’s unlawful harassment and discrimination policy, “open door policy” and/or any other grievance procedure, and any applicable state and federal laws governing whistleblowing applicable to nonprofit and charitable organizations.
ARTICLE 2: VIOLATIONS; REPORTING IN GOOD FAITH
All board members, employees and volunteers of the Corporation are encouraged to report any action or suspected action taken within the Corporation that is illegal, fraudulent or in violation of any adopted policy of the Corporation (each, a “Violation”). Anyone reporting a Violation must act in good faith, without malice to the Corporation or any individual in the Corporation, and have reasonable grounds for believing that the information shared in the report indicates that a Violation has occurred.
ARTICLE 3: NO RETALIATION
No board member, employee or volunteer who in good faith reports a Violation or cooperates in the investigation of a Violation shall suffer harassment, retaliation or adverse employment or volunteer consequences. Any individual within the Corporation who retaliates against another individual who in good faith has reported a Violation or has cooperated in the investigation of a Violation is subject to discipline, including termination of employment or volunteer status.
If an individual believes that someone who has made a report of a Violation or who has cooperated in the investigation of a Violation is suffering from harassment, retaliation or other adverse employment or volunteer consequences, the individual should contact the Compliance Officer.
Any individual who reasonably believes he or she has been retaliated against in violation of this policy shall follow the same procedures as for filing a complaint (outlined in Article 4 below).
ARTICLE 4: REPORTING PROCESS
If an individual reasonably believes that a Violation has occurred, the individual is encouraged to share his or her questions, concerns, suggestions or complaints with any person within the Corporation who may be able to address them properly.
In most cases, the direct supervisor of an individual is the person best suited to address a concern. However, if an individual is not comfortable speaking with his or her supervisor or if he or she is not satisfied with the supervisor’s response, the individual is encouraged to speak directly to any Board Member he or she feels comfortable approaching.
ARTICLE 5: CONFIDENTIALITY
The Corporation encourages anyone reporting a Violation to identify himself or herself when making a report in order to facilitate the investigation of the Violation. However, reports may be submitted on a confidential basis by the complainant or may be submitted anonymously by mailing concerns to PO Box 815, Stonington, CT 06378. Reports of Violations or suspected Violations will be kept confidential to the extent possible, consistent with the need to conduct an adequate investigation, to comply with all applicable laws, and to cooperate with law enforcement authorities. Furthermore, the Corporation will explore anonymous allegations to the extent possible, but will weigh the prudence of continuing such investigations against the likelihood of confirming the alleged facts or circumstances from attributable sources.
ARTICLE 6: COMPLIANCE OFFICER; HANDLING REPORTED VIOLATIONS
The board member who receives a report of a Violation from the complainant is required to notify the Compliance Officer of that report, except as provided below with respect to a report relating to the Compliance Officer. The Compliance Officer will notify the complainant and acknowledge receipt of a report of Violation within five business days, but only to the extent that the complainant’s identity is disclosed or a return address is provided.
The Compliance Officer is responsible for promptly investigating all reported Violations and for causing appropriate corrective action to be taken if warranted by the investigation. The complainant will be notified about what actions will be taken, to the extent reasonably possible and consistent with any privacy or confidentiality limitations. If no further action or investigation is to follow, an explanation for the decision will be given to the complainant.
In the event the Compliance Officer is suspected of having committed a Violation, then the Violation will be reported to the Board President and the Violation will be investigated by the President under close supervision of the other Board of Directors.
Compliance Officer: Suzanne Harle, 415 377 5471
ARTICLE 7: ACCOUNTING AND AUDITING MATTERS; REPORTS
The President and Treasurer are responsible for addressing all reported concerns or complaints of Violations relating to corporate accounting practices, internal controls or auditing. Therefore, the Compliance Officer must immediate notify the President and Treasurer of any such concern or complaint.
In addition, the Compliance Officer will advise the Board President and/or the Treasurer of any other reported Violations, the current status of the investigation, and the outcome or corrective action taken at the conclusion of the investigation.
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WHEREAS, the Board deems it appropriate and in the best interests of the Corporation to adopt a written Whistleblower Policy.
Adopted by the Board of Directors at its Meeting on August 9, 2013
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My signature below indicates my receipt and understanding of this policy. I also verify that I have been provided with the opportunity to ask questions about the policy.
Name: Suzanne Harle Date: August 9, 2013
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APPENDIX A: WHISTLEBLOWER REPORTING FORM
GREEN PLANET FILMS, INC. WHISTLEBLOWER REPORTING FORM
The purpose of this form is to provide a mechanism to encourage reporting of any action or suspected action taken within Green Planet Films, Inc. (the “Corporation) that is illegal, fraudulent, unethical or in violation of any adopted policy of the Corporation in a safe environment. Anyone reporting a violation must act in good faith, without malice to the Corporation or any individual, and have reasonable grounds for believing that a violation occurred.
NO ONE WHO IN GOOD FAITH MAKES A REPORT OR COOPERATES IN THE INVESTIGATION OF A VIOLATION SHALL SUFFER HARASSMENT, RETALIATION, OR ADVERSE EMPLOYMENT CONSEQUENCES.
Is this the first time you are filing a report for the improper conduct?
____ No, please state the date(s) or approximate date(s) of your previous report(s).
Name of Person Filing Report*
*You are not required to provide your name and may retain anonymity. If you choose to provide your name, it will remain confidential whenever possible. Providing your name may facilitate the investigation of the misconduct. Anyone filing an anonymous report will not be updated as to the progress of the investigation, but do understand that investigations are taken seriously and will be addressed. Making a complaint does not automatically shield you from consequences of your own involvement in unlawful or improper conduct. However, full and frank admissions may be considered in deciding disciplinary actions.
Name of Person(s) Subject to this Complaint
**If this person is not an employee of the Corporation, please list his or her position or relationship to the Corporation (e.g., Board Member, Volunteer).
Please include as much detail as possible to enable a thorough investigation of the matter. Please go beyond the question prompts and the lines provided if necessary to adequately describe the matter.
What act occurred and how do you believe it was fraudulent, illegal, or inappropriate?
If applicable - please describe the nature of any injury or damage sustained.
When and where did the misconduct occur? (Please indicate if the actions were committed over a period of time)
What do you believe enabled the act(s) to occur? E.g.: a lack of controls, circumvention of controls, or collusion with other individuals? Are you aware of any motives for the misconduct?
Does the misconduct involve the participation of people external to the Corporation?
Are there any witnesses that can confirm the misconduct?
EVIDENCE: Please attach a copy or original of any supporting documents or other evidence in your possession, if any. DO NOT ATTEMPT TO OBTAIN more evidence. You are a reporting party and not an investigator of the misconduct.
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APPENDIX B: COMPLAINT REVIEW POLICY
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ARTICLE I: INTRODUCTION
In accordance with Corporation’s Whistleblower Policy (the “Policy”), this Complaint Review Policy sets forth procedures to be followed by the Corporation upon receipt of a complaint covered under the Policy.
ARTICLE II: COMPLIANCE OFFICER
[Except as provided in Article VI,] the Compliance Officer is responsible for promptly investigating all complaints. If warranted by the investigation, the Compliance Officer will, in consultation with the Board of Directors and, if necessary, legal counsel, cause appropriate corrective action to be taken. In the event that a complaint concerns the Compliance Officer, the complaint shall be investigated by the Board President under close supervision of the Board of Directors.
ARTICLE III: COMPLAINT REVIEW PROCEDURE
The Compliance Officer will notify the complainant and acknowledge receipt of a complaint within five business days, but only to the extent that the complainant’s identity is disclosed or a return address is provided.
The Compliance Officer will make initial inquiries in consultation with legal counsel, if necessary, to determine whether further investigation is necessary or appropriate. The Compliance Officer will manage any subsequent investigation, and may request the assistance of legal counsel or other parties as he or she deems necessary or appropriate.
The Compliance Officer, or his or her designee, will fully investigate the complaint, meeting separately with the complainant and with others who either are named in the complaint or who may have knowledge of the facts set forth in the complaint. The Compliance Officer will explore anonymous complaints to the extent possible, but will weigh the prudence of continuing such investigations against the likelihood of confirming the alleged facts or circumstances from attributable sources.
Upon completion of the investigation, the complainant will be notified about what actions will be taken, to the extent reasonably possible and consistent with any privacy or confidentiality limitations. If no
further action or investigation is to follow, an explanation for the decision will be given to the complainant.
ARTICLE IV: CONFIDENTIALITY
Complaints and their investigation will be kept confidential to the extent possible, consistent with the need to conduct an adequate investigation, to comply with all applicable laws, and to cooperate with law enforcement authorities.
ARTICLE V: REPORT TO THE BOARD OF DIRECTORS
Within five business days of receiving a complaint, the Compliance Officer shall cause a report to be sent to the Board of Directors containing the following information:
- The allegations made by the complainant and how they were reported to the Corporation.
- All relevant facts related to the allegations.
- The current status of the investigation and how it was or will be conducted, including witnesses interviewed and documents reviewed.
- The outcome or corrective action taken or to be taken at the conclusion of the investigation. If no further action or investigation is to follow, an explanation for the decision will be included.
Thereafter, and until the allegations have been resolved, the Compliance Officer shall submit updated reports at least every ten business days, or sooner if requested by Board of Directors.