Ethics Helpline

(248) 422 5517

"Ethical communication" simply refers to the practice of conveying honest information in a manner that is not intended to be misleading. In other words, the information should be presented within a context that ensures that the information is not misleading as a result of being conveyed in a sort of vacuum.

Ethical communication is fundamental to responsible thinking, decision making, and the development of relationships and communities within and across contexts, cultures, channels, and media. Moreover, ethical communication enhances human worth and dignity by fostering truthfulness, fairness, responsibility, personal integrity, and respect for self and others. We believe that unethical communication threatens the quality of all communication and consequently the well-being of individuals and the society in which we live. Therefore the Public Officers’ Ethics Commission endorses and is committed to practicing the following principles of ethical communication.


  • Advocate truthfulness, accuracy, honesty, and reason as essential to the integrity of communication
  • Endorse freedom of expression, diversity of perspective, and tolerance of dissent to achieve the informed and responsible decision making fundamental to a civil society.¢.
  • Strive to understand and respect other communicators before evaluating and responding to their messages
  • Promote access to communication resources and opportunities as necessary to fulfill human potential and contribute to the well-being of families, communities and society.
  • Promote communication climates of caring and mutual understanding that respect the unique needs and characteristic of individual communicators.
  • Condemn communication that degrades individuals and humanity through distortion, intimidation, coercion, violence and through the expression of intolerance and hatred.
  • Being committed to the courageous expression of personal convictions in pursuit of fairness and justice.
  • Advocate sharing information, opinions, and feelings when facing significant choices while also respecting privacy and confidentiality.
  • Accept responsibility for the short and long-term consequences for our own communication and expect the same of others.


Customers, management and employees all appreciate honest and ethical practices. Business ethics are vital because they help maintain a great reputation, help avoid significant financial and legal issues, and they ultimately benefit everyone involved.

Communication used to undermine relationships or encourage social immorality is unethical communication. The exact definitions of these depend on the ethics system of your culture, but most people agree that ethical communication builds positive relationships, while unethical communication impairs them.

Stories and jokes are prime examples of communication that have the potential to offend the recipients. Any topic to which others may be sensitive should be avoided in business communication, including religion and political issues, to avoid offending others and possibly committing a violation of communications ethics.



About the POEC

To administer and enforce the Public Officers’ Ethics Act which comprises of the code of conduct and ethics for public officers and declarations of income, assets and liabilities for designated public officers.