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Reduced conduct rules will be easier to enforce

ICE news

The ICE is looking to simplify its rules for professional conduct to make them more enforceable.

It wants to cut the number of rules down from the current 16 to five, which would be rigorously enforced.

The five new rules would make it clear that members should not carry out work that they are not qualified to do and must at all times have full regard for the public interest, particularly regarding health and safety. Members must also show 'due regard' for the environment and sustainability.

The rules will make clear that members are expected to 'update and broaden their professional knowledge and skills on a continuing basis' as well as give 'reasonable assistance' to the education and training of others.

The last time the ICE ethics committee took a major look at ethics was between 1993 and 1996.

The proposal for a new set of rules comes after a major re-examination of the ethics of the profession.

The study is being led by ICE past president and investigating panel chairman Tony Ridley.

His view is that there are too many rules, with many of them unenforceable and difficult to understand.

As a result they will be reduced to five basic, enforceable rules (see box). Guidance notes to explain how they are to be interpreted and applied would accompany these rules.

There will also be guidance on broader ethical issues, not necessarily directly related to the rules for professional conduct, for members, firms and other organisations.

The sub-committee is keen for member feedback on the proposals. Any comments should be sent to Paul Taylor, secretary to the ethics committee. E-mail paul. taylor@ice. org. uk.

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