Code of Ethics
Members of the Alberta Professional Outfitters Society (APOS) are held to a high standard of professional conduct. It is the responsibility of each APOS member to:
- understand and apply the APOS Code of Ethics;
- be familiar with all APOS policies that govern their business practices, treatment of others and general conduct;
- act in a professional manner and take steps to ensure others involved in outfitted hunting do the same; and
- cooperate in maintaining professionalism within the industry, including bringing attention to activity or behaviour that may be damaging to APOS.
In the operation of an outfitting business, a member of APOS shall:
- Not advertise outfitting services unless he is a holder or permitted user of the allocation or waterfowl privilege to be used.
- Provide a contract describing the terms and conditions for each hunt.
- Not mislead or misinform a client when discussing the features of their outfitting area or activities.
- Maintain proficiency, responsibility and professional standards.
- Ensure safety is a priority at all times during the delivery of contracted services.
- Employ competent and knowledgeable guides and maintain supervision of their activities.
- Maintain the highest practical standards in food preparation and accommodations.
- Be familiar with and adhere to the rules and regulations that pertain to hunting and outfitting in Alberta.
- Cooperate and respect the reputation and business of fellow APOS members.
- Respect the rights and activities of resident hunters.
- Be willing to make restitution when at fault for breach of contract.
- Along with their employees, respect and maintain the reputation, standards and goals of APOS and not consciously or directly attempt to harm or discredit APOS.
APOS has a Dispute Resolution Process that provides clients, landowners, employees, and other outfitters with the opportunity to file a complaint pursuant to the Code of Ethics. Complaints can be reviewed by the Ethics and Standards Review Committee. Complainants also have access to third-party mediation services through APOS.
APOS is a member of the Foundation for Administrative Justice (FOAJ).
For more information on the complaints process, please contact Sander Duffhues, Complaints Coordinator, at Sander@apos.ab.ca or 780-670-7277.
Ethics & Standards
Alberta Professional Outfitters Society members arrange and conduct thousands of successful hunts every year and the vast majority of outfitted hunts are successful for both the client and the Outfitter. When interactions and behaviours don’t meet this standard, however, the reputation of individual APOS members and the industry in Alberta as a whole can be harmed. In the unlikely event of violations of the APOS Code of Ethics or misunderstandings, APOS has a Dispute Resolution Process which ensures an expedient, fair and transparent process of resolution.
All violations of the APOS Code of Ethics may be subject to a penalty ranging from letters of reprimand, to fines, to temporary or permanent forfeiture of allocations, to the suspension or loss of an outfitter guide permit and/or guide designation.
The APOS dispute resolution process is based on the principles of natural justice which offers benefits to all involved. It is important to note that the process does not follow judicial process.
Natural justice upholds the concept of fairness – where justice should be done and is seen to be done. This concept leads to procedures that ensure the decision maker acts in good faith, without bias and grants opportunity for a hearing before a decision is made that may impact any person against whom a complaint has been made.
Specific principles of natural justice are: the right to receive notice where there may be action against a person; the right to receive reasons for action; the right to be heard (appear before disciplinary body); the opportunity to challenge or contradict information; and the right to an impartial decision maker.
The APOS Board establishes the framework of the Dispute Resolution Process, and the Ethics and Standards committee works at arm’s length to administer the process with administrative support from the APOS office.