UMass Psychology

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To: Faculty, Staff, and Undergraduate and Graduate Student Employees

From: Juan A. Jarrett
      Assistant Vice Chancellor for Human Resources

Subject: Mandatory Ethics Requirement for All Public Employees & State
      Ethics Commission On Line Training Program

Date: March 26, 2010

The MA Legislature and Governor passed legislation, Chapter 28 of the Acts of 2009, imposing mandatory ethics education and training for all public employees.  In December 2009 UMass Amherst employees were notified of the mandatory education requirement to acknowledge receipt of the corresponding Summary of the Conflict of Interest Law prepared by the Ethics Commission.  The mandatory training requirement of the Act requires that all University employees must complete a State Ethics
Commission on-line ethics training program by April 2, 2010, and again every 2 years thereafter. University employees hired after April 2, 2010 must complete this training within 30 days of beginning University employment and again every 2 years thereafter.  The on line training program takes 15 to 30 minutes to complete.  The training consists of twenty-five hypothetical situations involving potential conflicts of interest or other violations of the state ethics law and test general ethics knowledge and the basic requirements in matters like accepting gratuities, self-dealing and nepotism, confidentiality, and post-retirement restrictions.
To access the State Ethic Commission on line training program, visit  Upon completing the on line training program you will receive a certificate of completion. Please print out the completion certificate and mail the certificate to Human Resources, Employee Service Center, Whitmore Administration Building, room 325.  You should also retain a copy for your records. You may also fax your completion certificate to 545-0483, or e-mail a scanned version of your completion certificate to

Employees who lack regular access to a computer at their worksite may use the public access workstations in the W.E.B. Dubois Learning Commons to take the on line training program, or may use workstations located in the A&F Systems Training Room located on the first floor in the Whitmore Administration Building.  The A&F System Training room will be available for drop in use on most Mondays, Wednesdays and Thursday between now and the end of April.  Employees who are unable to comply with the on line
training program requirements because of limited English fluency or reading comprehension or special needs should contact Human Resources. Employees on leaves of absence will be required to complete the on line training program when they return back to work.

Please contact Human Resources at 545-0380 if you have any questions about the mandatory on-line ethics training program requirement for public employees.  While the on line training program is comprehensive, no training can cover all of the difficult ethical issues that could be encountered.  The State Ethics Commission provides free, confidential legal advice about how the law applies in a particular situation.  I encourage you to seek legal advice from the State Ethics Commission at
617-371-9500 and/or the Division of Human Resources if you face a potential conflict of interest.

Additional information regarding this new mandatory education and training requirement may be found at the State Ethics Commissions website at and at the webpage entitled "Mandatory Education and Training Requirements for All Public Employees" at

© 2008 University of Massachusetts Amherst, Site Policies.

University of Massachusetts Amherst

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