CAZA’s ethical and professional standards are what set its member institutions apart from non-accredited zoos and aquariums. CAZA members are responsible not only for the welfare of the animals in their care, but also for educating and engaging the public about the natural world and the critical role that we all can play in species conservation.
CAZA standards fall into two distinct streams: accreditation and ethics. Accreditation Standards set the operational requirements for membership. The Code of Professional Ethics sets the standard for professional and personal behaviour.
While the Code of Professional Ethics is aspirational in tone, should any member be considered in violation of the standards of behaviour it sets out, it also serves as a basis for disciplinary action. Discipline is meant to encourage positive change and contribute to the evolution of the accredited zoo and aquarium community. Under the Code, discipline can range from a letter of reprimand to suspension of membership, or outright termination of membership. The CAZA Ethics Committee investigates potential violations of the CAZA Code of Professional Ethics. The Ethics Committee is not a permanent committee of the Board but is empaneled on a case-by-case basis to deal with potential ethics violations.