Private Organization Accreditation

Germaine Lawrence is a residential treatment center for girls ages 12-18 with complex behavioral, psychological and learning challenges.   Girls live at our programs while receiving special education, individual, family and group therapy; psychiatric and primary medical care; and a wide variety of therapeutic activities and interventions.


Family Services of the North Shore

Kathleen Whyte, Manager of Human Resources / Accreditation Coordinator

Family Services of the North Shore is about to enter our third accreditation cycle with COA. Accreditation has provided us with a framework that enables us to demonstrate accountability to our clients, our funders and our donors. There is no question that the accreditation process and COA have benefited our agency.
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Through sound administration and effective management, the MFR program achieves its vision, mission and strategic goals; assures appropriate use of resources for the good of customers; and remains responsive to the needs of the military community.

MIL-AM 6: Ethical Practice

The program earns and sustains the public trust through:

  1. honest, truthful, and responsible relationships with its stakeholders; and
  2. delivery of services in an honest, ethical, and objective manner.
Rating Indicators
Full Implementation, Outstanding Performance
A rating of (1) indicates that the programs’ practices fully meet the standard and reflect a high level of capacity.  All elements or requirements outlined in the standard are evident in practice, with rare or no exceptions; exceptions do not impact service quality or overall performance.  
Substantial Implementation, Good Performance 
A rating of (2) indicates that a programs’ infrastructure and practices are basically sound but there is room for improvement. The majority of the standards requirements have been met and the basic framework required by the standard has been implemented.  Minor inconsistencies and practices that are not fully developed are noted; however, these do not significantly impact service quality or overall performance.
Partial Implementation, Concerning Performance
A rating of (3) indicates that significant aspects of the programs’ observed infrastructure and/or practices require significant improvement. The program has not implemented the basic framework of the standard but instead has in place only part(s) of this framework. Omissions or exceptions to the practices outlined in the standard occur regularly, or practices are implemented in a cursory or haphazard manner.  Service quality or program functioning may be compromised. Capacity is at a basic level.
Unsatisfactory Implementation and Performance
A rating of (4) indicates that implementation of the standard is minimal or there is no evidence of implementation at all. The programs’ observed administration and management infrastructure and practices are weak or non-existent; or show signs of neglect, stagnation, or deterioration.

Please see Rating Guidance for additional rating examples. 

Table of Evidence

Self-Study Evidence On-Site Evidence On-Site Activities
    • Local level human subject research procedures (MIL-AM 6.03)
    • Standards of Conduct (MIL-AM 6.01, MIL-AM 6.02)
    • Documentation indicating in which states staff are licensed, when required (MIL-AM 6.02)
    • Interview:
      1. MFR program director (MIL-AM 6.03)
      2. Staff at all levels
      3. Customers
      4. Stakeholders

  • MIL-AM 6.01

    Staff adhere to the DoD standards of conduct including policies and/or procedures related to:

    1. conflict of interest;
    2. making appropriate referrals; and
    3. confidential channels for reporting suspected misconduct or questionable practices by an employee, volunteer, or contractor and the policies that protect staff from employment-related retaliation after coming forward. 

    Interpretation: The adopted policy should define what constitutes a “conflict of interest.”
    Interpretation: The confidential channels for reporting suspected misconduct may be different for contractors.

  • MIL-AM 6.02

    Professional staff are appropriately licensed, if required, and know and follow the code of ethics of their respective professions.

    NA None of the MFR program’s services require staff with professional licensure.

  • MIL-AM 6.03

    Before research is conducted involving the MFR program’s customers, the MFR program ensures:

    1. proper written authorization has been obtained; and
    2. the rights of customers are being protected in accordance with DoD and Service policy and guidelines. 

    NA Research is never conducted involving the MFR program’s customers.

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