Due process ensures that disciplinary decisions related to interns are not arbitrary or based in personal bias. It requires that our internship identify specific evaluative procedures that are applied to all interns, and provide appropriate appeal procedures available to all interns. All steps must be appropriately documented and implemented.
General due process guidelines are listed below:
- During the orientation period, the program’s expectations related to professional functioning are presented to the interns in writing, including the Standard Operating Procedures of LifeSkills/Pennyroyal Center and Western State Hospital. These expectations are discussed in both group and individual settings.
- Evaluation procedures are stipulated, including when and how evaluations will be conducted. Such evaluations should occur at meaningful intervals.
- The various procedures and actions involved in making decisions regarding problem behavior or concerns are articulated.
- The intern’s graduate program will be informed of any suspected difficulties with their intern, as noted in the procedures delineated below. When necessary, input on how to address such difficulties will be sought from these programs.
- A remediation plan for identified inadequacies will be instituted, including a time frame for expected remediation and consequences of not rectifying the inadequacies.
- A written procedure will be provided to the intern, which describes how the intern may appeal the program’s action. Such procedures are included in the intern handbook. The Intern Handbook is provided to interns and reviewed during orientation.
- Sufficient time will be provided for the intern to respond to any action taken by the program.
- Input will be sought from multiple professional sources when making decisions or recommendations regarding the intern’s performance.
- Documentation of the actions taken by the program and its rationale will be provided to all relevant parties. This will be done in writing.