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Policies and Procedures

The Keilim Policy Toolkit makes reference to both policies and procedures.

Policies are the “have tos” of an organization. They articulate standards, codify agreed-upon practices and norms, and include clear statements of what an organization will do if the policies are not upheld.

Procedures are the logistical steps that put your Policy into practice and provide guidance on how your Policy is enacted. For example, a Policy might state that employees can submit complaints of harassment to your board chair. The procedures related to that Policy include ensuring that board chairs have access to the email account and know how to manage responses. Similarly, a Policy may state that those filing complaints may fill out a form, but the form itself is part of the procedures and therefore should be linked to the Policy but is not part of the Policy itself.

Policies, together with procedures, provide employees, community members, and stakeholders with a well-rounded view of the organization’s expectations, helping everyone understand the culture being strived for and what is expected of each organizational stakeholder.

A key component to your organization’s success includes a trauma-informed approach in the development and implementation of your policy. The six principles of a trauma-informed approach are: safety; trustworthiness & transparency; peer support; collaboration & mutuality; empowerment & choice; cultural, historical & gender issues. Creating a culture that is trauma-informed and aware requires ongoing education, dialogue, and intentionality in programs and operations. As you work through Keilim, we encourage you to consider policies and procedures through a trauma-informed lens, beginning with building your Committee.