In order for an IAYT member school’s yoga therapy program to be eligible to apply for accreditation and for an IAYT accredited yoga therapy program to maintain its IAYT accreditation status, the school must operate with honesty and integrity; among other things, the school must ensure an emotionally and physically safe environment for the community members of the school—including staff, faculty, students, and patients/clients—and must protect individual community members against emotional, sexual, and physical harassment/abuse that can sometimes be found in situations in which there are power imbalances or a lack of understanding of professional boundaries.
It is the responsibility of the leadership of a member school with an accredited yoga therapy training program or that is applying for accreditation or re-accreditation of its yoga therapy training program—as it may be vested in a board of directors, a school owner, and/or an administrative or academic leader or leadership team—to ensure that the school operates with honesty and integrity, and to protect all school community members from emotional, sexual, and physical harassment/abuse. To that end, these schools must establish and enforce a comprehensive code of conduct policy or policies* that address situations that may arise in relation to the school's constituencies—-including school owners/board members, school leadership, staff, faculty, students, and clients/patients—including sexual and emotional harassment/abuse situations. Additionally, a member school with an accredited yoga therapy training program or that is applying for accreditation or re-accreditation of its yoga therapy training program must make the school community aware of its code of conduct policy and provide education as to the importance of observing the code. If a school with an accredited yoga therapy training program or that is applying for accreditation or re-accreditation of its yoga therapy training program fails to develop and enforce a comprehensive code of conduct policy—and/or it appears that unethical behavior such as sexual or emotional harassment/abuse has become systemic within a school—the Accreditation Committee may take action in accordance with its policies governing accreditation, up to and including denial or revocation of accreditation.
* The key provisions of a comprehensive code of conduct policy include the following:
- Adhering to high ethical standards
- Complying with applicable laws and regulations
- Refraining from all forms of sexual, emotional, and physical harassment and threats of harassment, including verbal expressions
- Avoiding conflicts of interest
- Maintaining high standards of academic integrity
- Refraining from illegal forms of discrimination; respecting the rights and dignity of others
- Maintaining high standards of patient/client care
- Conducting business practices with honesty and integrity
- Concern for the health and safety of all community members
- Reporting suspected violations of the code; enforcement of the code
- Guaranteeing no retaliation for legitimate complaints regarding violations of the code of conduct made in good faith.