Policy on Interaction with Stakeholders

Effective March 28, 2018

1. Context

1.1 As a federal government organization, the TSB has an obligation to hear the views and concerns of individuals and organizations on any matter that falls within its legislated mandate. This obligation must, however, be handled in such a manner as to ensure there is no real or perceived bias or preferential treatment. TSB Board members and managers must therefore be particularly careful in their interactions with stakeholders.

1.2 TSB Board members and managers are governed first and foremost by the Canadian Transportation Accident Investigation and Safety Board Act (CTAISB Act) and their respective terms and conditions of employment. Board members must also comply with the Conflict of Interest Act, and managers must comply with the Values and Ethics Code for the Public Sector, as well as the TSB Code of Values and Ethics. Collectively, these documents define the standards of behaviour at the TSB.

2. Definitions

2.1 "Board member" means a full-time or part-time member of the Canadian Transportation Accident Investigation and Safety Board (CTAISB) as appointed by the Governor in Council in accordance with section 4 of the CTAISB Act.

2.2 "Managers" means all persons occupying managerial positions classified in the Executive Group, persons occupying positions that involve management responsibilities who are excluded from membership in a recognized bargaining unit, persons exercising managerial duties on an interim basis, and the person occupying the TSB general counsel position.

2.3 "Stakeholder" means any person with an interest or potential interest in a safety investigation conducted by the TSB.

2.4 "Designated reviewer" means any person or organization with a substantive interest or involvement in the investigation whom the Board calls upon to review and comment on the draft investigation report in order to contribute to its completeness and accuracy.

3. Policy objective

3.1 The purpose of this policy is to summarize and clarify the interpretation of the expected standards of behaviour for TSB Board members and managers when interacting with any person with an interest or potential interest in a TSB safety investigation.

4. Policy requirements

4.1 TSB Board members and managers are expected to practise TSB core values, and they must strive at all times to act in an independent, objective and impartial manner vis-à-vis stakeholders. This obligation is not limited to ensuring there is no actual bias: it is equally important that Board members and managers interacting with any person with an interest or potential interest in a safety investigation conduct themselves in a manner that will not give rise to an appearance of bias, preferential treatment or unfairness.

4.2 Board members and managers must ensure that their activities outside work do not conflict with their TSB role or influence their deliberations or decision-making in any way.

4.3 In accordance with the Values and Ethics Code for the Public Sector, Board members and managers must not accept from a stakeholder any sponsorship, service or gift, or entertainment or hospitality not widely available to others.

4.4 Board members and managers must be careful when attending seminars, conferences and other functions not to circumvent or appear to circumvent the normal TSB investigation process by receiving information about an ongoing safety investigation or discussing the merits of any theory about the causes of an occurrence or position being taken by a stakeholder. They must also refrain from providing opinions about the outcome of an investigation or what the Board's report is likely to contain.

4.5 Discussions with stakeholders during the course of an investigation should generally be held only with the investigator-in-charge, the regional manager or senior staff.

The TSB must, however, ensure that stakeholders are provided with a reasonable opportunity to make representations to the Board or to senior management. When such requests are received, stakeholders should be encouraged to make their concerns known in writing so that the concerns can become part of the TSB's official record of the investigation.

A meeting held at the request of a stakeholder must be attended by at least two people from the TSB, and minutes or notes of it must be taken and added to the investigation record.

4.6 The Board will ensure that all designated reviewers are provided with a reasonable opportunity to make representations to the Board, and that those representations will be fully and fairly considered. All designated reviewers must be treated equally and without preference or appearance of preference. Accordingly, Board members will not meet with individual stakeholders during the designated review process.

4.7 Board members and managers must exercise good judgement when commenting publicly on, or expressing personal views about, regulators, witnesses, transportation companies and other organizations in the transportation industry.

4.8 If any Board member or manager is concerned that his or her activities, relationships, contacts or communications may lead to an appearance of bias in a TSB investigation or the related investigation report, that person must consider recusing him or herself from all activities and discussions pertaining to that investigation. Board members or the chief operating officer (COO) must inform the Chair and seek appropriate direction. Senior managers (executives and others who report directly to the COO) must inform the COO and seek appropriate direction. All other managers must inform their respective director general or director and seek appropriate direction. All recusals must be added to the investigation record.

4.9 Board members and managers may, however, speak publicly about published TSB documents such as investigation updates, investigation reports, safety advisories, safety concerns, or safety recommendations.

5. Authorities

5.1 This policy is issued under the authority of the Chair. It was approved by the Board on March 28, 2018, after consultation with the Executive Committee.

5.2 This policy will be reviewed and may be updated in response to changes in government priorities or TSB strategic direction, but at least once every 5 years.

6. Roles and responsibilities

6.1 Chair

The Chair is responsible for defining the standards of behaviour for all TSB Board members and managers with respect to their interaction with stakeholders, based upon the relevant legislation and directives issued by central agencies, and to take appropriate corrective measures when there is a breach of this policy. The Chair is also responsible for providing advice and direction to Board members and the COO on specific situations of concern that may arise.

6.2 Chief operating officer

The COO is responsible for ensuring the implementation of this policy by all executives and the general counsel, and for providing advice and direction to senior managers on specific situations of concern that may arise. The COO is also responsible for monitoring the application of this policy, investigating suspected breaches of the policy and, where required, for formulating recommendations to the Chair on the appropriate corrective measures to be taken.

6.3 Director general and directors

The director general and directors are responsible for ensuring the implementation of this policy, and for providing advice and direction to other managers within their respective area of responsibility on specific situations of concern that may arise.

6.4 Board members and managers

All Board members and managers are responsible for abiding by the provisions of this policy, for seeking advice and direction on any situation that could give the appearance of bias or preferential treatment, and, where appropriate, for recusing themselves from activities giving rise to the concerns.

6.5 Director general, Corporate Services

The director general, Corporate Services, in his or her capacity as the TSB senior official for values and ethics, is responsible for assisting the Chair and the COO in the exercise of their responsibilities.

7. References

7.1 The following acts and regulations apply:

8. Enquiries

8.1 Questions about this policy may be addressed to:

General enquiries
1-800-387-3557
1-819-994-3741
communications@bst-tsb.gc.ca

Date de modification :