Code of Conduct

Code of Conduct for Chair, members, assessors and observers. This Code of Conduct is based on the Code of Conduct for COT members.

Last updated: 18 November 2021

Role of the Chair

The Chair has overall responsibility for the conduct of committee business, providing leadership with regard to member's responsibilities, public service values, and the roles taken by observers and assessors.

Role of Committee members

Members have collective responsibility for the operation of this Committee. The Committee takes account of the full range of relevant factors to reach a collective conclusion on the subject.

Role of Assessors

Officials from Government Departments and Regulatory agencies attend committee meetings as assessors or policy advisors. Officials may also bring particular technical expertise, which may be requested by the committee on some occasions.

Role of Observers

Observers may not participate in the Committee's discussions, and should not attempt to influence individual Member’s views during the meeting, breaks or outside the meeting on topics that are under discussion. Observers may contribute only at the invitation of the Chair. This should be brief and the Chair will allocate the appropriate time. The Committee's discussions represent the development of its view and any comments made in developing the agreed Committee view should not be attributed to individuals. Where a subject will be considered over several meetings, observers might be asked to maintain the confidentiality of the discussion until an agreed Committee opinion is finalised. The Committee's conclusions are not finalised until completion of any necessary consultation and publication of a statement or report.

Observers and/or organisations are required to respect the work of the Committee. Observers and/or organisations must not interfere in the work of the Secretariat, or input from external invited experts, and officials from Government Departments and Agencies in any way which, in the view of the Chair, constitutes harassment and/or might hinder the work of the Committee. Observers and/or organisations must allow other observers and organisations to attend items free from interference before, during and after meeting.

Failure to observe this code of conduct may lead to exclusion of observers and/or organisations from meetings of the Committee.