Code of Ethics and Standards of Behavior
The Yasuragi Dojo is dedicated to the study and practice of Jissen Kobudo; (jissen) realistic combat (ko) ancient (budo) martial way. Collectively this art is meant to offer the practitioner a spiritual and ethical discipline within which primitive combat skill is met with classical Japanese aesthetic, moral, and ethical values. These are the priorities of our study and take precedence over practical considerations.
The Yasuragi Dojo follows the standards as published in the Budo Kensho, Nippon Budō Kyōgikai, 1987; English translation 2004. These principles outline the expected conduct for members of the Yasuragi Dojo. As well, the seven tenets of bushido, as written by Inazo Nitobe (1899) for the western reader, offer the steps to establish one's character as a martial artist (rectitude, courage, benevolence, respect, honesty, honor, and loyalty) and thus fortify the student of the Yasuragi Dojo with
The Yasuragi Dojo understands that new students, without any background in martial arts training, may not be aware of dojo specific etiquette or behaviors. It is the responsibility of the instructor to teach new students the expectations of the dojo and Jissen Kobudo respectively.
The Yasuragi Dojo expressly prohibits any discrimination of individuals based on age, sex, race, religious belief, or sexual orientation. Additionally, the Yasuragi Dojo maintains a zero tolerance for abuse of any kind or in any form (verbal, written, psychological, or physical). Any infractions shall be addressed and rectified immediately.
The Yasuragi Dojo acknowledges that in today’s society, misinterpretations, misunderstandings, and dischord occur. This policy is for those occasions, where situations occur among members, for which clarification or resolution is needed to maintain the harmony of the dojo and to give all parties an opportunity for a fair and unbiased review to equitably resolve these difficult issues.
This policy is not intended to produce a list of acceptable behaviors prescribed by the Yasuragi Dojo, as we fully believe that all members of the Dojo understand the expectations of martial artists studying Jissen Kobudo, by its very nature, is not all-encompassing.
Every member of the Yasuragi Dojo is expected to read and understand the policies and procedures explained in this document. Ignorance will not be considered reasonable defense for poor judgment or inappropriate behavior. Questions regarding acceptable behavior or interpretation of any policies in this document should be directed to the Dojo Cho before any action which might be questionable occurs.
The Yasuragi Dojo acknowledges that neither respect nor ethics can be legislated, as the first is earned and the second is learned within the context of one’s society. Both concepts, however, are understood within the Budo community.
The success of the Yasuragi Dojo is built upon the trust and confidence. Dojo members share with each other and the local, national, and international communities within which Yasuragi Dojo interacts. The Yasuragi Dojo continues to maintain its high standing because of a strong foundation of honesty and integrity during all interactions, private and public, and by reaching it's goals through honorable conduct, developing the highest quality of students, and sustaining an environment that is positive, safe, and free from all types of discrimination of abusive, offensive, or harassing behavior.
II. CODE OF ETHICS
The Yasuragi Dojo Code of Ethics is not meant to preclude a member’s personal system of beliefs or standards of behavior. Membership in the Dojo is voluntary; therefore, in choosing to accept membership one also accepts the Dojo standards of behavior and code of conduct. The Dojo believes that following these precepts promotes the harmonious interaction among students and instructors and maintains a safe training environment.
The Dojo Code of Ethics and Standards of Behavior, based on the documents referenced in the Preamble, establish the guidelines, principles, and practice of acceptable decorum of Dojo members. To be allowed to study Jissen Kobudo with the Yasuragi Dojo is a privilege, not a right.
Ethical behavior does not just happen; it is the product of clear and direct communication of expected behavior modeled by leadership and demonstrated by example. Ethics begin with etiquette. Any member’s behavior that does not support these principles will not be tolerated or attempted.
Ethical behavior is required of all members of the Dojo and is necessary for each member to remain in good standing.
All Dojo members are entrusted with the responsibility of creating an environment that allows every member to have a rewarding, positive, and safe experience while participating in Kobudo training and other Dojo related activities.
III. STANDARDS OF BEHAVIOR
Standards of behavior set forth in this document shall be applicable to every member, i.e. Dojo Cho, Sensei, Sempai, Deshi or any visiting instructor of the Yasuragi Dojo.
Any individual appointed to an official capacity shall exemplify the highest ethical standards, meet all requirements as specified herein, and represent the Yasuragi Dojo mission in a professional and collegiate manner. Leadership roles in Dojo are positions of trust, responsibility and service, and are never to be considered positions of privilege.
Dojo members in leadership positions, instructors or individuals having significant authority within the organization to set the standards of ethics and etiquette within the Yasuragi Dojo, have the added responsibility of demonstrating through their actions the importance of appropriate behavior especially on matters of safety.
Anyone appointed to an official capacity, and/ or Dojo members who are testing for the rank of Sandan or above, or individuals who wish to actively teach Jissen Kobudo. must submit a background check upon request by the Dojo Cho and be granted approval by Dojo Cho and Kan Cho.
Standards for Members in Leadership Positions:
The Yasuragi Dojo prides itself in developing and promoting the highest quality of leadership and training. In the current environment of scrutiny of leaders and coaches in the athletic community, The Yasuragi Dojo is proactive in establishing standards for its members that engender public confidence and trust in the Dojo quality of Kobudo training as well as the protection of all members both minor and adult from any inappropriate action or activity perceived or actual.
The following requirements shall be applicable to anyone in a leadership capacity in any affiliated Dojo organization whether nationally or internationally, i.e. dojo managers, instructors and any member serving on Board of Advisors or in appointed positions.
Recent events in the martial arts and amateur athletics communities have created awareness that sexual exploitation has greatly damaged the teacher/coach and student relationship. The Dojo is being proactive in its deterrence of any potential situations that might arise in the future. In this effort anyone in a leadership position will:
1. Approach all relationships with other members in a mature and honest fashion. Sexual relationships between consenting adults is not our concern. Sexual exploitation is our concern. However, sexual relationships between instructors, leaders and/or coaches and their students or dojo members are strictly forbidden, regardless of whether the student or dojo member has reached the legal age of consent.
2. Never use rank, status, contingencies of favor, or any other superiority ploy to build an intimate sexual relationship with another member. Such a relationship would be considered predatory in nature and is therefore strictly forbidden. Instructors, leaders or coaches will not encourage, develop, and/or participate in intimate, personal, “special”, and/or unprofessional relationships with students and/or their families wherein a sexual relationship is the outcome.
3. Never solicit or engage in any behavior that could be considered “grooming” or seen as potentially having sexual activity as an eventual outcome with any student or member, regardless if they are adults or minors.
4. At all times present him/her-self to be above reproach and exemplary of the qualities of excellence of the Yasuragi Dojo. All unforeseen or uninitiated situations of concern arising outside the leader’s control, e.g. a student initiating unsolicited advances, shall be immediately directed to the Dojo Cho for action and resolution.
Dojo members shall not engage in activities actual or perceived as conflicts of interest while acting in an official capacity for the Yasuragi Dojo.
It is unethical for any Dojo member at any time:
- to achieve personal gain by using Dojo services, a position of office or any authority explicit, implicit or inherent or associated with an elected or appointed position in the Yasuragi Dojo;
- to incur any debt for or in the name of the Dojo that is unsubstantiated, unauthorized, unnecessary and/or unreasonable; or,
- to participate in any decision making within the Yasuragi Dojo that could result in an immediate or future personal gain, either monetary or status enhancement in nature.
- Any individual may request a clarification from the Dojo Cho for any requirement listed above or similar topics not specifically listed.
V. IMPLEMENTATION AND ENFORCEMENT OF THE CODE
Implementation of the Dojo Code of Ethics depends on voluntary compliance, peer involvement, support, and participation of all members.
For activities alleging criminal behavior, legal recourse for the complainant are given priority and the appropriate law enforcement (local, state, or federal authority) immediately contacted by the Dojo Cho.
Any further action by the Yasuragi Dojo will be held in abeyance until resolution by the law enforcement process.
For matters of a non-legal nature, it is desired that Dojo members will be able to informally and amicably resolve issues between the offended parties.
For issues, related to conduct or ethics, that are substantial or cannot be resolved informally, The Yasuragi Dojo herein establishes a process to provide a fair and equitable resolution.
Any member, who after addressing an ethics concern directly with another member with unsatisfactory results, may seek resolution through the Yasuragi Dojo. A formal submittal is required in the form of a signed, written complaint to the Dojo Cho. The complainant will cooperate fully with any and all investigations regarding the alleged ethics concern.
Any individual, Dojo member or non-member, may file an ethics complaint against a Dojo member by sending a signed written statement to the Chief Officer. Complaints shall be clearly written and provide complete details of the complaint including the issue, date, and other pertinent facts. Double jeopardy will not be sanctioned. Complaints must be filed with the Dojo Cho no later than 60 days from the alleged event.
The Chief Officer will assess the complaint. If the complaint is found to have merit, the Chief Officer will assign the case to an Ethics Committee for investigation and recommended resolution. At any time the Chief Officer may choose solely, in the interest of safety, to address the issue immediately.
The Dojo Chief Officer may convene at any time an Ethics Committee as an ad hoc committee or may designate a standing committee with the concurrence with its senior members. Whenever convened, this committee shall assist in the resolution.
Policy, procedure, and individual rights referred to the Ethics Committee are addressed in Section VI Ethics Committee. As stated earlier, this primary step may be bypassed at the direction of the Chief Officer if the violation involves illegal activity or if such intervention is feared to possibly lead to an endangering situation.
The Dojo Chief Officer has the right and responsibility, based upon information of an ethics nature that is regarded to be highly credible, to initiate and conduct an investigation without a written complaint having been filed.
VI. ETHICS COMMITTEE
The Ethics Committee is established to assist in this process and can assign a committee member to act as a consultant and/or negotiator. As stated earlier, this primary step may be bypassed if the violation involves illegal activity or if such intervention is feared to possibly lead to an endangering situation.
The Chairman of the Ethics Committee has the right and responsibility to initiate and conduct an investigation without a written complaint having been filed, based upon information of an ethics nature that is regarded by him or her to be credible. Information gathered in such an investigation or in a written complaint can be presented to the Chief Officer for disposition without informing the person or persons involved if the Chairman determines that this procedure best serves the safety of the membership and/or public involved with the Yasuragi Dojo and that the immediacy of time is essential for this safety. Due process for the respondent is served by the respondent having the right to appeal directly to the Dojo Cho.
Committee Membership and Purpose
An Ethics Committee (herein referred to as “the Committee”) may be established as an ad hoc committee or a standing committee by the Yasuragi Dojo Chief Officer to resolve disputes regarding issues of conduct or ethics involving Yasuragi Dojo members. In either case, the chairman and committee members are appointed by the Yasuragi Dojo Chief Officer. The number of committee members and the duration of service shall be defined by the Dojo Cho.
The purpose of this Committee is:
- to arbitrate disputes related to conduct and ethics within the scope of this policy in a fair, unbiased, and equitable manner;
- to implement standards of acceptable behavior and provide clear direction on conduct and ethics matters in the Dojo;
- to protect and uphold the Yasuragi Dojo reputation in all activities related to the Dojo ; and,
- to provide an avenue for fair review and arbitration of all issues brought before the Ethics Committee.
All communication regarding the request/complaint, investigation and reporting to the Yasuragi Dojo Executive Committee or the Ethics Committee shall be dealt with in a manner afforded privileged/confidential communication. All records and information (in all available formats, e.g. digital, photo, verbal, etc.) shall be kept confidential. It should be noted here that such information, although held confidential by the Dojo, does not have a protected status by law and may be vulnerable to disclosure through legal process or court order. TheYasuragi Dojo may have to make disclosures regarding the proceedings as necessary to prosecution or in litigation defense, regarding legal action between a member and the Dojo or other legal action.
Any person, member or non-member, may submit a complaint alleging improper action of a member of the Yasuragi Dojo. The complaint shall be in writing and signed by the complainant and submitted directly to the Chief Officer of the Dojo within 60 days of the alleged event. Upon receipt of a signed, written complaint, the Chief Officer shall forward the complaint to the Chairman of the Ethics Committee for further review. The Committee Chairman shall inform all parties of the process for the review and the time frames to be followed.
After a complete investigation has concluded, the committee, within a reasonable time or no later than 90 days following the completion of the investigation, shall provide an opportunity for the affected parties be heard. The Committee, after deliberation of the circumstances and facts, shall provide a recommendation to the Dojo Chief Officer in one of the following:
- Dismiss the complaint because it does not allege a violation of the Dojo Code of Ethics, lacks merit, or for other good cause as determined by the Committee; or,
- Try to resolve the non-criminal complaint to the satisfaction of the parties involved, through mediation, counsel, or advice.
The Committee will submit a complete and detailed report of the proceedings including the recommendation for the final disposition of the issue to theYasuragi Dojo Chief Officer.
If the individuals involved in this action feel that the Committee process did not adequately address the complaint, either party may request a Board of Inquiry review. Appeals are to be made directly to the Dojo Cho, within thirty (30) days. Certified mail is recommended.
The Board of Inquiry shall consist of three individuals: one Ethics Committee Member (who shall serve as the Chairman of the Review Board), one member chosen by the individual bringing the issue, and one member chosen by the individual being challenged. This Board shall investigate the issue, set the date, time and place for the hearing of both parties, conduct proceedings, provide electronic records and written documentation of the proceedings, and provide a written recommendation to the Dojo Chief Officer at the conclusion of the proceedings. Resolution, corrective action, or dismissal of the issue as determined by the Yasuragi Dojo Cho is binding on all parties.
If the Chief Officer overturns a unanimous decision of the Ethics Committee, the Committee may, at its discretion, call for a joint meeting of the Committee and Executive Board (in equal numbers). The final decision shall be by majority vote.
We are all human and make mistakes. A clear acknowledgement of error is an essential beginning to the resolution process. Once a final outcome is determined, the issue is deemed resolved and closed and shall not be a part of any future action(s) regarding any individual involved.
All records will be archived. All notes from entire proceedings, including phone call logs, notes, all letters (original and copies) and recordings from any proceeding will be kept secured by the Dojo Chief Officer. Records cannot be destroyed unless ordered by the Dojo Executive Board.
DONOR BOLL OF RIGHTS
Philanthropy is based on voluntary action for the common good. it is a tradition of giving and sharing that is primary to the quality of life. To assure that philanthropy merits the respect and trust of the general public, and that the donors and prospective donors can give full confidence in the non-profit organizations and causes they are asked to support, we declare that all donors have these rights.
- to be informed of the Yasuragi Dojo and Mission, of the way Dojo intends to use donated resources and of our capacity to use donations effectively for their intended purposes
- to be informed of the identity of those serving on Yasuragi Dojo board and to expect the board to exercise prudent judgment in those of stewardship responsibilities
- to have access to the Yasuragi Dojo most recent financial documents
- to be assured that your gifts will be used for the purposes for which they are given
- to receive appropriate acknowledgement and recognition
- to be assured that information about your donation is handled with respect and with confidentiality to the fullest extent provided by law
- to expect that all relationships with individuals representing the organizations of interest to the donor will be professional in nature
- to be informed whether those individuals seeking donations are volunteers, employees of the organization or hired solicitors
- to know that the Dojo will never your name or any other personal information with any organization outside the Dojo
- to feel free to ask questions when making a donation and to receive prompt, truthful and forthright answers
The Donor Bill of Rights was created by the American Association of Fund Raising Council, the Association for Healthcare Philanthropy, the Association of Fundraising Professionals and the Council for Advancement and Support of Education.