SORO Code of Civility

Updated September 5, 2007
Download PDF of the Code of Civility

Collectively and individually, the members of the Board of Directors of the South Robertson Neighborhoods Council agree to abide by a Code of Civility to ensure that our Neighborhood Council's business is conducted in a respectful and courteous manner, and in a way that will generate respect and credibility for our Neighborhood Council.

The freedom to express one’s views about public matters is a cornerstone of the democratic process. The South Robertson Neighborhoods Council welcomes the diverse views and opinions of our other Boardmembers and stakeholders as they relate to the issues before us. In order for these discussions to be meaningful and effective, we must treat others with respect and dignity.

By adoption of this motion, we collectively and individually agree to abide by our Code of Civility to the best of our abilities.

  1. I will conduct myself in a professional and civil manner at all times as a representative of the South Robertson Neighborhoods Council.
  2. I will treat each member of the board and members of the public with respect at all times, regardless of an individual's opinion, ethnicity, race, sexuality, age, disability, or religion.
  3. Even in the face of disagreement or differences of opinion, I will demonstrate esteem and deference for my colleagues and the public.
  4. Under no circumstances during Neighborhood Council meetings, functions, or events will I engage in or threaten to engage in any verbal or physical attack on any other individual.
  5. I will commit to communicate my ideas and points of view clearly, and allow others to do the same without interruption.
  6. I will not use language that is abusive, threatening, obscene, or slanderous, including using profanities, insults, or other disparaging remarks or gestures.
  7. Derogatory language about an individual's ethnicity, race, sexuality, age, disability, or religion is not acceptable.
  8. I will take responsibility for my own actions, and will work to fulfill my role and responsibilities as specified in the bylaws.
  9. I will commit to learn the applicable laws that govern Neighborhood Councils, including bylaws, standing rules, the Brown Act, ethics rules, city ordinances, and the City Charter, and will not knowingly violate any of the above.
  10. I will abide by the Neighborhood Council's meeting procedures or rules in order to create a safe and effective environment for conducting business.
  11. I will promote and enforce a safe meeting environment at all times. At moments when members of the public become disruptive and violate the rules of civility that we have pledged to follow, I will join my fellow board members in demanding that the persons conduct themselves in a respectful and orderly manner even if I agree with the point of view that is being expressed.
  12. I will seek to present information truthfully, and will not knowingly misrepresent, mischaracterize, or misquote information received from others.
  13. I pledge to truly listen to and hear other points of view.
  14. I will practice the art of being able to disagree without being disagreeable.
  15. If I find myself representing my personal interests before my community's interests, I will publicly disclose the differences and recuse myself from voting on such matters.
  16. I will commit to good faith efforts to resolve any grievances that come before the board as specified in the bylaws.
  17. I owe it to my fellow board members, the public, and the decision-makers who we are trying to influence to make the best possible effort to understand the issues before me. I will do my homework.