What can you do if your CEO violated ethics and has a conflict of interest?

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What can you do if your CEO violated ethics and has a conflict of interest?

My CEO has asked other people in my organization if they smelled pot in my office, she told 1 person multiple times that she wanted her to go into my office and say it smells like pot, she would not as my office didn’t smell. The CEO hired a new employee and a couple weeks after her start she came to my office and

said it smelled like pot. The CEO had me go take a drug test and I could not work for over 2 days while waiting on the results. The results came back negative and I am back at work. I do not know if this is something I should be concerned about, it was clearly unethical for her to talk to others and suggest them to say it. I have no way to file a grievance as she is the HR rep as well which is a huge conflict of interest as well there are only 7 employees in our organization and a board of directors. I am just not sure if this is something I should complain about.

Asked on February 13, 2019 under Employment Labor Law, Alaska

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 3 years ago | Contributor

The law doesn't enforce ethics--only legal or contractual duties. And it does not address "conflicts of interest" in terms of a person in a business wearing more "hats" (having more or conflicting responsibilities) than she should. Legally, she did nothing wrong: if she believes an employee may be using drgs, she can discuss that with other employees to see if they can corroborate it and she can have the suspect employee be drug tested. What she did may be improper in some way, but there is no legal recourse for you, unfortunately.


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