Mandatory compliance programs – a good idea?

Mandatory compliance programs—a good idea?

Joe Murphy – Compliance & Ethics Professional – July 2014

mandatory compliance

The development of compliance and ethics programs received a kick-start from the incentives offered by the Federal Sentencing Guidelines. Governments around the world are experimenting with incentives to move companies in this direction. But there is another school of thought that says: Just make compliance programs a legal requirement for companies (and perhaps other organizations) and automatically, the problem is solved. One prominent example is the State of California, which somehow purports to know that two hours of “interactive” training every two years is the right formula for everyone when it comes to fighting harassment.

Putting aside what could be serious First Amendment issues, when government mandates specific speech in the private sector, what are the pros and cons of mandatory compliance programs? Here are some points to consider. 

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