Ethics & Values
Throughout all of our work, QED incorporates the highest standards of ethical and professional business conduct. These standards are implemented through the efforts of each QED representative working together to adhere to a corporate culture that values honesty, integrity, responsibility, accountability, and respect. This is reflected in QED’s Vision, Mission and Values:
QED conducts business in accordance with all applicable laws and regulations of our clients and in the countries in which we work. QED mandates that all of our staff consistently observe the highest standards of ethics and integrity. We have the same expectations for our consultants, partners, vendors, and all others working on QED’s behalf.
QED has established systems and processes that are designed to prevent and detect misconduct, to include corruption, fraud, human trafficking, sexual exploitation, slavery, child endangerment, waste, abuse, harassment, terrorism, or any other potential violations. These systems comply with U.S. government statutes and regulations, including the U.S. Foreign Corrupt Practices Act of 1977 and the Anti-Kickback Act of 1986, among others. QED also respects and follows agreements that the United States has ratified, such as the 1977 OECD Anti-Bribery Convention and 2005 United Nations Convention Against Corruption.
As a recipient of U.S. Government funds, QED actively supports the efforts of the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), the U.S. State Department, and other entities as they implement the President’s Open Government initiative, which USAID describes as “upholding the values of transparency, participation, and collaboration in tangible ways that benefit the American people.”
QED has a responsibility to be good stewards of our clients’ funds. Without their support, QED could not complete our global mission. To that end, QED has robust internal controls to monitor for fraud, waste, and abuse. From rigorous financial management systems which monitor program spending to thorough recruiting and human resource controls, we strive daily to ensure that we uphold our values and provide the highest quality service.
We have clear written policies and procedures for corporate processes and test against them regularly. We also have a comprehensive Code of Ethics and Business Conduct, which applies to all of our staff, consultants, and those working on our behalf. All staff must certify that they have read and will abide by, the Code, and this expectation is also communicated to our consultants and partners.
QED staff also receive regular training on critical topics, including discrimination and harassment, fraud, and human trafficking. Like other private sector and nonprofit implementers of global programs, QED is also subject to routine financial and program audits by the U.S. government and other donors. We take those a step further and perform our own internal reviews and checks to ensure compliance.
How to Report Concerns
QED expects its staff, consultants, partners, vendors and all others acting on QED’s behalf to promptly report suspected misconduct. QED’s Compliance Committee reviews all reported cases of misconduct and coordinates closely with appropriate U.S. government officials and other relevant stakeholders.
If you have credible evidence of misconduct, you may contact QED’s Business Conduct Hotline in the following ways:
All reports should include detailed information on the alleged misconduct, including who committed it, where, when, and how, if known.
Whistleblower Protection and Non-retaliation
QED does not allow retaliation in any form for honest and appropriate reporting of suspected misconduct. In addition, the United States Pilot Program for Enhancement of Employee Whistleblower Protection (41 U.S.C. 4712) protects employees who report concerns involving fraud, waste, abuse, or other violations of laws or regulations that they reasonably believe have occurred. If you feel you have been retaliated against for reporting a potential violation, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org. Intentionally dishonest or abusive reporting will be investigated and may result in disciplinary action, including termination.
When conducting inquiries into or reviews of issues, QED makes every effort to maintain confidentiality.