Vic public sector employees encouraged to speak up about impropriety

By Anna Macdonald

June 7, 2022

Robert Redlich
Victorian IBAC commissioner Robert Redlich. (AAP Image/James Ross)

The Victorian Independent Broad-based Anti-corruption Commission (IBAC) has released a campaign calling on Victorian public sector employees to speak up about ‘improper influence’.

The campaign, titled ‘Speak up to stop it’, includes an animated 60-second video asking employees to report incidents of improper behaviour, to protect the integrity of the sector.

Employees are being asked to report misconduct to their manager. 

Alternatively, complaints can be made to IBAC itself, although the commission has limitations in the scope of what it can investigate. IBAC has previously flagged it is resource-constrained and prioritises serious or systemic allegations of corruption or misconduct. 

IBAC commissioner Robert Redlich said employees in the public sector should be vigilant about improper conduct and report it.

“A public sector employee may be improperly influenced to make a decision through pressure, favours or gifts, or more subtly through abuse of seniority or position.

“Often a relationship can start out as professional, but over time develop into one where a person is being influenced in a way that’s not consistent with the community’s expectations — this is improper influence,” Commissioner Redlich said.

It is not the only campaign IBAC has out, with the agency releasing a separate campaign last month titled ‘You have the right not to remain silent’, targeted at the general public to encourage them to speak up about police misconduct. 

The campaign comes as IBAC is investigating allegations of corruption, including Operation Bredbo which held hearings in May to examine a police officer accused of being involved in civil debt collection while on duty. 

The commissioner noted corruption can exist not only within agencies or departments but can exist within any public institution.

“It is not just government departments or agencies that are at risk, the public sector also includes schools, hospitals, councils and more. The potential sphere of improper influence is far and wide,” commissioner Redlich said.


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