The recent case of Ingrid Morris gives the profession more cause for concern about the manner in which the arb conducts its affairs. Whatever the history may have been, there was no justification for the arb to disclose details of the referral before the Professional Conduct Committee decided its verdict.
In the matter of publicity, the Architects Act 1997 (Part III, 'Discipline') sets out a logical framework and sequence of actions for this part of the regulatory machinery.
Section 15 paragraph (4) states that 'the pcc shall, at appropriate intervals and in such a manner as it considers appropriate, publish: a) The names of persons whom it has found guilty of ... '.
The arb has ignored not only the Act but also the basic rights of all individuals in this country to be innocent before proven guilty. Although the case was dismissed, the real damage to Morris as an individual and as an architect is that she remains tainted through a lack of consideration by a statutory body that is supposed to be even-handed.
A public apology is the minimum one should expect and I shall look out for it.
Peter Melvin, Aldbury