This leaflet provides a supplementary overview of
the Code of Ethical Standards and should be read in
conjunction with the full Code. Please familiarise yourself
with the details in the full Code as this will increase
your awareness of the standards of conduct which are
expected from you and the impact this has on how you
carry out your duties on behalf of the Council.
Why has the Council introduced
the Code of Ethical Standards
The public expect a high standard of conduct from all local
government employees. The Ethical Standards in Public Life
etc. (Scotland) Act 2000 was one of the earliest pieces of
legislation passed by the newly formed Scottish Parliament.
It introduced a new legal duty of promoting high standards
in public life which of course impacts on all public bodies.
As such councils have a legal duty to introduce codes of
conduct stating the principles and rules of conduct for the
behaviour of its councillors and officers in the performance of
their respective duties. The elected members already have a
National Code of Conduct which governs how they conduct
their duties and now employees of Stirling Council have a
similar code which provides guidance on how employees
should conduct themselves during the course of their work.
What does the Code entail
The Code sets out the minimum standards of conduct
expected from employees and incorporates “The Principles of
Public Life” identified by the Nolan Committee on Standards
in Public Life. These are: Selflessness, Integrity, Objectivity,
Accountability and Stewardship, Openness, Honesty,
Leadership, and Respect.
Employees should be aware that their behaviour during
working hours and in some cases outwith working hours will
reflect upon the Council. Employees should therefore reflect a
positive image of the Council and ensure that their behaviour
does not bring the name of Stirling Council into disrepute. > 1
The Council requires employees to adopt reasonable dress
standards related to the type of work being undertaken.
Managers will give guidance on what is required for particular
types of work.
Relationships with Elected Members, the Public
and Partner Organisations
Employees of the Council have a legal, and in some cases
a managerial responsibility to the Council and not to any
individual Councillor or party Groups. The role of the
employee is to provide advice and carry out those duties
which have been delegated/allocated to them in line with the
Council’s Standing Orders and Scheme of Delegation.
The Public and Service Users
Employees should always behave with integrity and in a
professional manner when in contact with members of the
public, service users, clients or citizens. This includes being
clear, open and honest and treating each member of the public
fairly and consistently.
The Council is committed to community planning as a
foundation for partnership working with partner organisations
in the public, private, community and voluntary sectors.
It is necessary for employees to adhere to the Council’s
governance regime and the authority under which employees
operate in terms of delegated powers in taking or contributing
to decisions when representing the Council on Partner or Joint
Every employee has a general duty to respect the
confidentiality of information that comes into their possession
in the course of their work.
Local Government employees should carry out their duties
and serve the Council and all Elected Members in a politically
neutral way and regardless of their personal political outlook.
Conflict of Interest
Private Interests - Employees must not allow any private
interest to influence their decisions at work and must not use
their positions to further their own interests or the interests
of others who do not have a right to benefit under Council
Contracts - Employees completing any procurement process
must ensure full compliance to EU Public Procurement
Directives, to Stirling Council’s Contract Standing Orders and
to Best Value legislation.
Membership of Private Clubs/Organisations or Work with
Voluntary Groups - Membership of a private club/organisation
or work with a voluntary group which might result in a conflict
of interest in relation to any aspect of employment must be
Disclosure of Information
The Council’s policy on disclosure of information is based on
the Local Government (Access to Information) Act 1985 and
the Freedom of Information ( Scotland) Act 2002 which details
the rights of members of the public to attend Council meetings
and to inspect documents and papers, respectively.
Contact with the Media
All employees should contact the Council’s Press Office
regarding any contact with the media to ensure that
communication is handled in an appropriate manner.
Confidential Procedure for Reporting Concerns
at Work (“Whistleblowing”)
If employees become aware of any wrongdoing, malpractice
or improper behaviour within the Council, the matter should
be raised in accordance with the Council’s Public Interest
Disclosure (Whistleblowing) Policy.
Rights as a Citizen
Expression of Personal Views - Employees are entitled to
express views about the Council. However, this does not
include making use of any information gained through working
for the Council. Employees in their work capacity, should
not criticise any aspect of the Council’s activities through
the media, at a public meeting or in any written or verbal
communication with members of the public.
Access to their Councillor - Employees can raise with their
Councillor any complaint which they have about the services
of the Council. However, if the complaint concerns any aspect
of their work with the Council, this should be pursued through
their line manager.
Gifts, Hospitality and Services
As a general rule, employees should not accept gifts,
gratuities or hospitality from any service user, customer,
supplier or business organisation other than a token item.
Employees should always mention any which are accepted to
the line manager and register these with the Head of Service.
The Gifts and Hospitality procedure contained in Appendix
1 of the Code of Ethical Standards should be followed in all
What happens if employees breach the Code of
Ethical Standards enforced
Breaches of the Code may be dealt with through the Council’s
disciplinary procedures which may lead to disciplinary action
being taken, up to and including dismissal.
Who can I speak to if I require
further information or clarity
about the Code of Ethical
You may contact your line
manager who will explain how
this Code impacts particular
aspects of your job, or you can
contact your HR Adviser for
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CODE OF ETHICAL STANDARDS