Professional Membership: Entitlements and Application

As a major supporter of professionals working within the Forensic Sciences, ANZFSS is committed to the advancement of the many professionals working within this area. The ANZFSS values all members equally, with over 1400 members and Branches throughout Australia and New Zealand.

ANZFSS have introduced a Professional Member category to provide a strong, independent and informed professional voice for forensic science and forensic science practitioners.

There are two main benefits to professional membership:

  1. Recognition of the existing professional standing of the Professional Member; and,
  2. Assurance an ANZFSS Professional Member would represent a highly regarded forensic science professional, by means of satisfying a prescribed continuing professional development (CPD) program, in conjunction with an annual membership subscription.

The Professional Standards Council (Australia) defines a “professional” as someone who derived their income from their expertise or specific talents, as opposed to a hobbyist or amateur and “professionalism” as the personally held beliefs about one’s own conduct as a professional. It’s often linked to the upholding of the principles, laws, ethics and conventions of a profession as a way of practice. This goes to the core of the ANZFSS Code of Professional Practice.

Adjudication of acceptance of the professional member is supported by the candidate’s peers, and through demonstrated meeting of the CPD program activities to the ANZFSS Professional Membership Board and reinforces the member’s professional standing within the Australian forensic community. Further information on the CPD program can be found here, with Activity Codes listed here.

Entitlements

Over-arching benefits of a professional membership have been described above, though more tangible benefits will always be a feature of professional membership. These will be developed on-going as the membership program expands and grows. Currently, Professional Members in recognition of their status within the Society, shall be entitled to:

  • make reference to their Professional Member status of the ANZFSS on formal statements and business paperwork, including the use of the ANZFSS logo (e.g. Professional Member, ANZFSS);
  • an on-going on-line subscription to the Australian Journal of Forensic Sciences, (subject to remaining a financial Professional Member);
  • discounts and/or exclusive events associated with the ANZFSS biennial Symposium, as determined by the Symposium Organising Committee;
  • discounts and/or exclusive events associated with the ANZFSS; and
  • various other activities and entitlements as they are developed. These may include access to additional professional development activities, reciprocal or discounted membership to other professional bodies, and dedicated area on the website for discussion and/or containing resources.

Application

In addition to the criteria for general membership any applicant for professional membership must also complete the online Professional Membership Application (only accessible when logged in as a General or Life Member) and include at submission:

  1. The name and email address of two referees (at least one of whom must be a current Professional Member of at least 12 months’ standing), who can endorse the following for the candidate:
    • duration of experience as a professional in forensic-related field;
    • status as a person of good character, in keeping with the ANZFSS Rules of Association and Code of Professional Practice; and
    • any other attributes that would define the candidate as a professional advocate and ambassador for the ANZFSS.
  2. A brief CV summarising their professional experience relevant to forensic science (maximum four pages);
  3. A completed CPD Activity Form detailing CPD activities meeting the requirements for application, limited to three consecutive years immediately preceding the date of application. Any reference to professional development activities older than three years before the date of the application will be invalid.
  4. Application and submission of accompanying paperwork can be submitted via the online application portal.

Initial invitation period

In order to initially establish the Professional Member category, an invitation period will apply. The applicant must meet the criteria for Professional Membership specified above, however, until a body of Professional Members has been established, the requirement that at least one of the two referees is a Professional Member will be waived. This requirement may instead be met by having at least one of the two referees who is a General Member of at least five years’ standing, or a Life Member. We anticipate that this waiver will need to be in effect for at least one year.

Professional Membership Renewal

In accordance with the ANZFSS Rules of Association, professional membership is current for up to a 12-month period, from 1st July through to 30th June.

On-going professional membership incorporates both payment of an annual subscription fee, as well as fulfilment of the Continued Professional Development (CPD) program each year and requires to be evidenced every three years utilising the Record of CPD Activity.

Annual Subscription Renewal

In line with the current ANZFSS membership renewal process, Professional Members will be notified of the annual subscription renewal via email, approximately three months before the due date.  Payment is required by the due date and is subject to the rules of the Society for all membership types. Failure to pay within this time frame will result in suspension of Society membership, until arrears paid.

CPD Membership Renewal

Every three years, professional members are required to re-apply for professional member status by providing demonstrated evidence of fulfilment of CPD requirement. The CPD form and associated evidence must be received within 2 months of the annual fee renewal date.

It is the responsibility of the member to supply the required documentation. Failure to do so within the defined time frame will result in suspension of their Professional Member status until the required paperwork is submitted.

Upon acceptance of the renewal application by the Professional Membership Board, and following payment of annual fee, an email notification will be sent to the applicant confirming their acceptance.

If payment hasn’t been received, an email reminder will be sent, and acceptance into professional membership will be suspended pending receipt of payment.

Inquiries

Membership Inquiries: membership@anzfss.org

General Inquiries: executive@anzfss.org