EPAC-Sponsored Events

Punish or Engage? The Positive Option of Compliance Agreements Webinar

The Ethics Practitioners’ Association of Canada (EPAC) will host a webinar to explore “Punish or Engage? The Positive Option of Compliance Agreements.” Rather than just punish a serious failure to comply with rules, a more constructive response can be compliance agreements, which set out precise expectations about corrective actions and future behaviour. For our distinguished presenter, Robert Marleau, they are a mechanism for both enforcement and education as Lobbyist Registrar for the City of Ottawa; but the approach applies to other areas of ethical compliance too. (See below* for more about Mr. Marleau.)

The date: Friday October 27. The time: 11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. EDT (an earlier time than usual, to avoid a conflict in Ottawa with another ethics event).  Register and receive your link to the webinar. It is free to EPAC members, $40 to others ($15 to students).


*Robert Marleau received the Order of Canada in May 2017. From the Governor-General’s web site: “For his public service and for his efforts to maintain the integrity of our national institutions. Robert Marleau has dedicated his life to public service. Having served for many years as clerk of the House of Commons, he developed parliamentary practices and procedures and authored works that are considered authoritative for Canadian legislatures. As both privacy commissioner and information commissioner, he was lauded for improving the integrity of both organizations. Today, he brings his staunch impartiality and diligence to the City of Ottawa, where he serves as integrity commissioner.”

November 29 Webinar on Civil Conversations about Ethics

When: Wednesday, November 29, 2017 from 12:00 to 1:30 p.m. EDT
Cost: Free to EPAC members, $40 to others ($15 to students)
A 2017 PEW Research Center U.S. survey shows that “the overall trust in government remains near historic lows”. Surveys conducted in Canada show that Canadians report a decrease of trust in... Read more >

Webinar on the Ombudsman Function

When: Noon to 1:30 p.m., June 23, 2017
Where: On-line (Webinar)
Cost: $40 for non-members, $25 for non-member students; free to EPAC members
How does an ombudsman office compare with other functions that help an organization to be true to its values and ethics? Our webinar will be led by two EPAC members of great distinction. Gregory J.... Read more >

EPAC Webinar on Whisteblower Systems held October 13, 2016

Whistleblowing: Managing Risks, Reducing Harm, Increasing Value

The purpose of this 90-minute webinar was to introduce members of organizations of all types and sizes to Whistleblowing Systems – a Guide. Published by the CSA Group in February 2016 and available free from CSA Group Communities, this Guide reflects research into best practices worldwide and applies it to Canadian contexts and conditions. The webinar dealt with the purpose, design and implementation of systems to encourage a culture of ‘speaking up’ where reports of suspected wrongdoing are used to manage risk, reduce harm and increase value. See the slides in “Resources – Articles”.

The presenters were Prof. Robert Shepherd of Carleton University and Sandy Boucher of Grant Thornton LLP, two of the main contributors to the Guide. Prof. Shepherd teaches in Carleton’s School of Public Policy and Administration; is President of the Canadian Association of Programs in Public Administration; Past-Chair, Consortium of Universities for Evaluation Education; and author of the whistleblowing chapter of the upcoming revised version of Greene and Shugarman’s Honest Politics. Mr. Boucher is a specialist in fraud and corruption investigations. His investigator experience includes 12 years with the Royal Hong Kong Police and 17 years in the private sector.

Informal Evening Round-tables in Ottawa

When: Wednesday November 9, 2016, from 5:30 pm to 7:30 pm
Where: A Thing for Chocolate, 1262 Wellington St W, Ottawa, ON K1Y 3A5
Cost: There is no entrance fee. You will be tempted by the menu of crêpes, drinks and desserts!
What do ethics and chocolate have in common? Find out on November 9th at 5:30! EPAC successfully revived the tradition of lunch-time ethics round-tables in Ottawa in early 2015. They are continuing... Read more >

Informal Lunch-time Round-Tables in Ottawa

When: Tuesday, April 11, 2017 from 11:45am to 1:30pm
Where: Prinzo's Fine Catering at 85 O'Connor (downstairs).
Cost: Buffet lunch for $16.40 including tax.

Informal Lunch-time Round-tables in Ottawa

Our lunch-time round-tables are an informal get-together for networking and ethics discussion. We hold six per year, on different days of the week.

There are no set topics and the conversation covers whatever the participants wish. This is also an opportunity to share information with participants and make announcements about any ethics-related matters or events. There is no charge except what you choose for your lunch. Non-members of EPAC are welcome too. Please notify EPAC that you are coming at service@epac-apec.ca so that we can reserve sufficient places. Put the location and date of the event in the subject line of your email, as in “February 23 Round Table Ottawa”.  Looking forward to chatting with you!


The first lunch-time Ethics Round Table of 2016 in the National Capital Region took place on January 12 – a nice mix of French cuisine and whatever participants wished to talk about. One individual, working in a university ombudsman office, declared that the majority of cases that come to their attention are due to decisions taken too quickly and inattentively; students’ difficulties with finances and interpersonal relationships are other main causes. A consultant advised that those looking for ethics contracts with the federal government should read the mandate letters to ministers for hints on how to market their skills. We were an even dozen – six first-timers – and new faces are always welcome! .


EPAC 2016 Annual General Meeting



Notice is hereby given that the 2016 Annual General Meeting of the Ethics Practitioners’ Association of Canada (EPAC) will be held on Tuesday, June 21, from noon to 2:00 p.m., in the Boiler Room, The Works Restaurant – Westboro, 326 Richmond Rd., Ottawa, Ontario, Canada.

Paid-up members of EPAC are entitled to vote at the AGM.  Non-members may also attend but cannot vote.  (Section 19 of the Association constitutional By-law)

The following documents relevant to the meeting have been or will be posted:

  • AGM Agenda 2016 (draft)
  • AGM Minutes 2015 (draft) (see Resources – Articles)
  • Financial Statements and Review Engagement Report, 2015
  • Director Candidacy Profiles (see Craig Ervine’s letter of interest in Resources – Articles)

Please register to attend, either online at service@epac-apec.ca or by mail addressed to Mr. Robert Czerny, Chair, Ethics Practitioners’ Association of Canada, Canada, c/o The Willow Group, 1485 Laperrière Avenue, Ottawa, ON, Canada, K1Z 7S8.  In order to register to participate by teleconference (at no charge), please provide an email address and a request to receive dial-in instructions.

June 2016 Webinar

Organisational Ethics and Bad Behaviour Investigations – Scorched Earth or Rebuilding?

Lawyer Kenda Murphy (Rubin Thomlinson LLP) brought insights from a proactive assessment of one organization’s harassment and discrimination policies and procedures before any type of PR or legal problem arose; and from the investigation of another organization where shortcomings became all too public. Change management consultant Margot Cameron amplified on how to evaluate constructive suggestions for change, achieve management buy-in and implement them. The slides from the webinar are now available in our Resources library.

April 2016 Webinar

“Charbonneau Commission Followup: Ethics Lessons for Quebec and Elsewhere”

See PPT slides here: Charbonneau Webinar April 2016 FINAL

The Charbonneau Commission spent four years looking into possible collusion and corruption in contracting and management of public contracts in Québec’s construction industry.  The Commission’s Report recommends better monitoring of public sector contracting, better support and protection of whistleblowers, and more internal expertise in organizations giving public contracts, such as the Transport Ministry; they also address the financing of political parties, ethical training for professionals, and the accountability of professional bodies.

Our speaker was Diane Girard, former director of EPAC and founder of RÉOQ, the Québec Organizational Ethics Network. Diane has been doing ethics training and consulting since 1997. She also teaches ethics at McGill University’s Desautels Faculty of Management.

“This was a high-quality webinar on the Charbonneau Commission. Good moderation. Interesting and topical content. Well-designed slides. Flawless interface that made audience participation easy”.  – James De Monte, Office of the Conflict of Interest Commissioner of Ontario

« Un gros merci à toute l’équipe qui a organisé le webinaire hier. J’ai vraiment aimé ce format. P.S. Je suis contente de vivre dans une province où les vilains ont plus de chance d’être arrêtés! »  – Monique Boivin, Gatineau (QC)


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