All members of NCGR are expected to abide by the Code of Ethics.
Astrologers are dedicated to the development and enhancement of the human condition through an understanding of celestial phenomena as applied to human concerns. Astrologers are committed to honesty, fairness and respect for others. Guided by the objective application of astrological technique as well as a commitment to the improvement of the human condition, astrologers seek to increase understanding and compassion world-wide. They remain acutely aware of the need to understand themselves in order to understand and help others. Astrologers are aware of the immense contribution astrology can make to human knowledge and wisdom, and accordingly encourage inquiry and an open exchange of ideas both outside and within their profession. And above all, astrologers respect the potential power they hold to affect the lives of others, and accordingly strive for the highest levels of competence and diligence.
This code applies to the activities of astrologers in their professional work, as well as in their representations and use of astrology at large.
Astrologers avoid making statements that could cause harm through confusion, misunderstanding or fear.
Astrologers provide services to the public- whether in astrology or in other disciplines- only within the boundaries of their competence based on their education, training and appropriate experience.
When consulting with colleagues, astrologers do not share the identity of the person or persons involved without prior consent. If unavoidable, they share only that information which is necessary to achieve the purposes of the consultation.
Astrologers seek permission from living subjects (such as clients, students and friends) before including confidential information in named data collections. Alternatively, astrologers use coding or other techniques to protect the identity of the subjects.
Advertising, whether paid or unpaid, includes all media, such as magazines, newspaper ads, brochures, business cards, fliers and other printed matter, direct mail promotions, directory listings, resumes, etc. Public statements include advertising as well as statements made in classes, lectures, workshops and other oral presentations, published materials, interviews and comments for use in all electronic media.
Astrologers willingly and openly reveal their sources of information, whether they be scientific, academic, experiential or mystical. Astrologers do not misrepresent their sources of information, and make every effort to verify their accuracy.
Astrologers do not make astrological statements, predictions or forecasts in the course of the solicitation of clients or students that are misleading either in their optimism or their negativity, or that are frightening or intimidating.
Astrologers maintain reasonable boundaries with their clients, with the best interests of their clients in mind.
Astrologers do not exploit recipients of their services with respect to fees, nor do they misrepresent their fees.
When engaged in teaching or writing, astrologers present astrological information accurately and with appropriate objectivity.
In research projects that involve interviews with research subjects, astrologers are careful to consider the negative impact their questions may have on the well-being of those subjects.
Astrologers realize the importance of intellectual integrity. They are aware that the improper use of copyrighted material is illegal, and that plagiarism (the presentation of another’s work as one’s own) is dishonest.
Should an astrologer be uncertain how this Ethics Code may apply in a given situation, the astrologer makes a good faith effort to consult with knowledgeable colleagues, organizational representatives, or with other appropriate authorities in order to choose a proper course of action.
Astrologers do not file or encourage the filing of ethics complaints that are frivolous and are intended to harm the respondent rather than protect the public.
An ethical dilemma is a problem that an astrologer is having in deciding on an ethically proper course of action. This could have to do with a particular situation confronting the astrologer, or with ethical conduct in general. There may be a question about interpreting a particular section of the code, about resolving a difficult ethics-related situation, or about resolving a conflict between two different sections of the code. An Ethics Resolution Coordinator (i.e., a member of the Ethics Resolution Committee) serves as a resource for resolving dilemmas. When an NCGR member is faced with an ethical dilemma, he or she may seek help from anyone, but the Coordinator will offer advice when asked. It is to be understood that such inquiries are for the NCGR member’s own information so that they can make up their own mind as to what to do. They are under no requirement to follow the Coordinator’s advice. The Coordinator is offering advice, not dictating conduct. It is also to be understood that all inquiries are considered absolutely confidential. For added assurance of confidentiality, an NCGR member may seek advice through a friend or colleague speaking on their behalf. The goal here is to help to raise the level of ethical awareness among NCGR members through open discussion of problems.
A complaint is a request for assistance from someone such as a client or student who feels there has been unethical conduct by an NCGR member. The job of the Ethics Resolution Coordinator is only to resolve complaints. He or she cannot be the one to lodge a complaint. The Coordinator is not a policeman. Generally, complaints can be of 3 types: 1) personal, 2) general, and 3) third party.
An informal complaint may be as simple as a phone call to a member of the Ethics Resolution Committee. An informal resolution may also be a simple matter of alerting the astrologer to a possible ethical problem in their work that they may not have been aware of. It can also act as a confidential warning to an astrologer about questionable ethical conduct, or a confidential deterrent to an astrologer regarding future conduct. The complainant can remain anonymous and confidentiality can be maintained for both parties.
A formal complaint begins with a letter to the Ethics Resolution Committee describing the problem and stating that this is a formal complaint. The astrologer in question is sent a copy of the letter and is asked to reply. The reply in turn is sent to the complainant. At this point the Coordinator, who may have already tried to achieve an informal resolution, once again offers to resolve the matter informally. If this fails, the Ethics Resolution Coordinator may request another round of letters from the two sides, or may move directly to arrange a formal hearing. The purpose of the hearing is to establish the validity of the complaint and the seriousness of the offense, if any. This hearing may be in person or by a conference call. The hearing will be led by the Coordinator. If requested by either party, or in serious cases, the Coordinator may establish an ad hoc committee to serve at the hearing as well. After hearing from both sides and reviewing the case, the Coordinator (with the committee if there is one) decides whether or not the astrologer in question was acting in accordance with the ethics code. If appropriate the Coordinator decides on a course of action (again with the committee if there is one), and formally recommends this to the Executive Committee for approval. The Executive Committee may defer the decision to the full board. Possible courses of action may be: a letter of concern, warning or censure, or in serious cases, revocation of certification and/or membership. Appeals can be made to the Judicial Committee described in the by-laws. Decisions of the Judicial Committee could be also be appealed as described in the by-laws.
Use the Code of Ethics as the minimum standard for ethical conduct. Use one’s common sense as a guide to the degree of seriousness of any violation of the code. Some violations can be very minor, others quite serious. Each situation must be judged on its own terms. Some questions to consider:
—Adopted Oct. 10, 1998