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USMWF Volunteer Handbook

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USMWF has prepared this handbook to provide you with an overview of our guiding principles. It is intended to familiarize you with important information about USMWF, as well as provide guidelines for your experience with us.

It is obviously not possible to anticipate every situation that may arise or to provide information that answers every possible question.

No organization is free from day-to-day problems, but we believe our personnel policies and practices will help resolve such problems. All of us must work together to make the organization viable and healthy. This is the only way we can provide a satisfactory experience that promotes genuine concern and respect for employees, volunteers and family member victims. If any statements in this handbook are not clear to you, please contact the Executive Director or designated representative for clarification.

Code of Conduct

We want to be recognized as a committed, empathetic group of individuals involved in making workplaces a safe place to work. In order to achieve our purpose and fulfill our mission USMWF volunteers performing duties for USMWF are to adhere to the following Code of Conduct.
The following values guide our every action. We are aware that we are judged by both by say and do. We pledge to meet or exceed these standards.
The foundation of every decision and contact we make should be ruled by our personal integrity. This exhibits our commitment to be honest and open.
This is for fellow members and anyone we interface with as contacts. We embrace individuality and have reverence for the opinions of others.
We hold ourselves to the highest level of performance. We honor innovation and teamwork. We never stop reaching for the greatest performance we are capable of attaining.
We take responsibility for our actions as individuals and USMWF members. We work together toward our goal of workplace safety, support one another and strive to never let our family members down.

What to DO and What Not to DO

Our actions give meaning to the four core values of integrity, respect, excellence, and accountability. To help ensure our actions reflect these values and to guide our volunteers in their efforts for USMWF, we have compiled a list of What to DO and What Not to DO. Obviously, we cannot cover every situation, but the following list will provide a roadmap to follow and address many of the common concerns “expressed by other volunteers”.

DO - Always remember you are representing an organization.
  • Be neat and clean
  • Show respect for all people
  • Write as professionally as possible using correct grammar, spelling and punctuation. Have someone proofread.
  • Follow laws regarding privacy, business practices and other issues. Recognize USMWF has to uphold both the state laws where you live, the Kentucky state laws where USMWF is incorporated and national laws. Ask if you have questions.
  • Express your views in a professional and objective tone.
  • Acknowledge USMWF's strengths and limitations; acknowledge there are some topics and problems that we aren't involved in.
  • Admit if you don’t know the answer to something.
  • Follow up with people; even if you aren’t able to provide them with the information they requested and offer an explanation of why you weren’t able to obtain it.
  • Be prompt in returning phone calls and written replies.
  • Ask for help from others if you feel overwhelmed or can’t get to something.
DO – be a good, and active listener.
  • Show empathy and understanding.
  • Be open minded.
  • Be sensitive.
  • Recognize everyone’s situation is different.
  • Recognize everyone grieves differently.
  • Realize you can’t fix everything or everyone’s problems.
  • Realize when there is a personality conflict. Ask someone else in USMWF to take over. Tell the person you are going to have someone else from USMWF help them as you feel someone else is better equipped to help them.
  • Return phone calls as promptly as possible.

DON’T – forget you are a member of an organization which is held accountable for its communications.
  • Don’t make formal statements about USMWF positions to other agencies or media unless you have been asked to do so by USMWF executive director. Refer these requests to the Executive Director.
  • Don’t give out personal and/or confidential information about victims and their families.
  • Don’t give out information about USMWF’s operations, finances, and distribution lists.
  • Don’t disclose any other confidential information.
  • Don’t disclose non-confidential information which is of a personal or sensitive nature.
DON’T – Forget to treat others as you would like to be treated.
  • Don’t be judgmental.
  • Don’t draw conclusions.
  • Don’t be a “know-it-all”.
  • Don’t divulge personal or confidential information about others.

Do – Remember your personal and business actions reflect on USMWF. Be a role model in all your official duties and public aspects of your personal life.
  • Act fairly, ethically and in full compliance with all relevant state, and national laws in all your dealings.
  • Refrain from any conduct involving financial misdealing, dishonesty, and criminal acts.

If you have had events or are planning one let us know and we will help out where we can.  We can, if approved, help you get business cards, documents, products and other types of assistance.