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Protected Disclosures

Public Alert - Victorian Legislation Changes

As of 11 February 2013, new legislation implementing recent integrity reforms in Victoria came into effect. In particular, the replacement of the Whistleblowers Protection Act 2001 with the Protected Disclosure Act 2012.

The reform includes the creation of the Independent Broad-based Anti-corruption Commission (IBAC), a body established to promote integrity and accountability across the Victorian public sector, the Victorian Inspectorate, whose role is to oversee both the IBAC and the Ombudsman, and the new Accountability and Oversight Parliamentary Committee, which has oversight over the Ombudsman.

What is a Protected Disclosure?

A Protected Disclosure is a complaint of corrupt or improper conduct by a public officer or body.

What is the Protected Disclosure Act?

The Protected Disclosure Act 2012 enables people to make disclosures about improper conduct within the public sector without fear of reprisal. The Act aims to ensure openness and accountability by encouraging people to make disclosures and protecting them when they do.

How does Southern Grampians Shire Council Treat Protected Disclosures?

Southern Grampians Shire Council does not tolerate corrupt or improper conduct by its employees, officers or members, nor the taking of reprisals against those who come forward to disclosure such conduct.

Employees and members of the public are encouraged to report known or suspected incidences of corrupt or improper conduct.

Southern Grampians Shire Council will take all reasonable steps to protect people who make disclosures without the fear of reprisal.

Southern Grampians Shire Council will also afford natural justice to the person who is the subject of the disclosure.

How Does Southern Grampians Shire Council Protect Persons Making a 'Protected Disclosure'?

All correspondence, phone calls and emails from persons making disclosures are referred to the Protected Disclosure Coordinator.

The Protected Disclosure Coordinator will take all necessary steps to ensure that the identity of the person making a protected disclosure and the person who is subject of the disclosure are kept confidential. Where necessary, the Protected Disclosure Coordinator will arrange for appropriate welfare support for the person making a protected disclosure.

What If I Want to Make a 'Protected Disclosure'?

Protected Disclosures may be made by employees or by members of the public.

Part 2 of the Act provides that a person may make a disclosure:

  • Orally
  • In writing
  • Electronically
  • Anonymously

Protected Disclosures may relate to corrupt or improper conduct by:

  • The organisation
  • Employees of Southern Grampians Shire Council
  • Councillors

Southern Grampians Shire Council can only address disclosures that relate to Southern Grampians Shire Council. Protected Disclosures about Councillors must be addressed by IBAC.

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