This Whistleblower Protection Policy (Policy) is underpinned by a strong commitment to building a culture in Catholic education workplaces in the Archdiocese of Melbourne that reflects sound governance and promotes ethical behaviour in the detection and management of fraudulent, corrupt or improper conduct.
This Policy provides protection to Whistleblowers by establishing a mechanism for concerns to be raised on a confidential basis without fear of reprisal.
The Policy applies to:
(a) Catholic Education Melbourne Workers; and
(b) a Worker of a School that is not comfortable reporting relevant conduct directly with the School;
who makes a report of Reportable Conduct to Catholic Education Melbourne in accordance with this Policy.
Catholic Education Melbourne recognises that there are other forms of conduct that pertain to Catholic Education Melbourne and Schools, such as misconduct of a sexual, physical or emotional nature. The appropriate management of these forms of misconduct is dealt with separately in the Catholic Education Melbourne Policy 2.20, 'Allegations of Misconduct Against Lay Employees in Catholic Education in the Archdiocese of Melbourne.'
Corruption is dishonest activity in which a Worker acts contrary to the interests of the relevant Entity and abuses their position of trust in order to achieve some personal gain or advantage for themselves or for another person or entity.
Entity includes a reference to a School and/or Catholic Education Melbourne.
Fraud is dishonest activity causing actual or potential financial loss to an Entity including theft of moneys or other property by Workers or persons external to the Entity and whether or not deception is used at the time, immediately before or immediately following the activity. It also includes the deliberate falsification, concealment, destruction or use of falsified documentation used or intended for use for a normal business purpose or the improper use of information or position.
Reportable Conduct is conduct by a person or persons connected with an Entity which, in the view of a Whistleblower acting in good faith, is:
School means a Catholic primary, secondary or special school operating within the Archdiocese of Melbourne.
Senior Management are employees of a School or Catholic Education Melbourne who have authority over the direction or management of that workplace and its employees.
School Authority includes a School’s principal, canonical administrator, congregational leadership or parish priest. For example, congregations include but are not limited to Mercy Education Limited and Edmund Rice Education Australia.
Whistleblower is a person to whom this Policy applies who reports Reportable Conduct in good faith in accordance with this Policy.
Whistleblower Investigations Officer is the person appointed (internal or external to Catholic Education Melbourne) by the Whistleblower Protection Officer to conduct an investigation into reports that are made to Catholic Education Melbourne by a Whistleblower.
Whistleblower Protection Officer is Catholic Education Melbourne’s Senior Officer, Professional Conduct, Ethics and Investigation, or such other delegated person.
Worker means an employee, contractor, consultant or volunteer of an Entity.
Catholic Education Melbourne encourages all persons covered by this Policy to report Reportable Conduct, and is committed to protecting and supporting those persons who do so.
Any person who reports Reportable Conduct under this Policy will not be personally disadvantaged by having made the report by: (a) dismissal;
(c) any form of harassment;
(d) discrimination; or
(e) current or future bias.
Inappropriate Electronic Material
A Worker brings to work a personal DVD containing image files that are sexually explicit. They download the images to their work computer and then decide to circulate some of the images to colleagues. One Worker receiving the material is offended and uses the provisions of the Whistleblower Protection Policy to report the matter confidentially, as the actions are in breach of acceptable ICT Usage policies.
Suspicious Behaviour involving School Funds
A school Worker is relieving a colleague who is on annual leave and is asked by a parent why they have not received a receipt for the last cash payment they made to the school. The replacement Worker advises that they will follow up the parent’s inquiry. The Worker is suspicious that misconduct may be occurring. They decide to report the matter confidentially and in line with the policy as suspicious and potential fraud. They contact the Whistleblower Protection Officer and provide their details, concerns and the school’s details
Whistleblower Protection Officer contact details:
Professional Conduct, Ethics & Investigation
Catholic Education Melbourne
PO Box 3
East Melbourne VIC 8002
(03) 9267 0221
Catholic Education Melbourne November 2015 (updated)
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