THE Central Highlands Regional Council has launched a new Confidential Disclosure Hotline, encouraging residents to help stamp out misconduct in the workplace.
The independently run service allows employees, residents and other stakeholders to report fraudulent, corrupt, illegal or unethical behaviour within council.
"We all want a fair and honest place to work, and in order to achieve this we need to retain a reputation of integrity by following sound and equitable business ethics,” CEO Scott Mason said.
"We pride ourselves on being a safe and secure work environment, and this hotline will help to ensure our organisation remains that way.”
Members of the public can report suspected misconduct to PKF, an independent company specialising in this kind of service, via the 24-hour free toll number 1300 149 295 or online at www.talkintegrity.com/chrc.
All disclosures are recorded in a secure management system, vetted by PKF professionals and then passed on to council's disclosure officer for investigation and action if necessary.
"The success of a resulting investigation will strongly depend on the level of information provided, so details are key,” Mr Mason said.
He strongly encouraged the reporting of any suspected professional misconduct, but highlighted the seriousness of making an allegation.
"Any reports must be made in good faith, with a reasonable belief that the accusation is true or an unacceptable risk,” he said.
"Investigations obviously take up valuable resources, so any abuse of the system will not be tolerated.”
Mr Mason said all information provided to PKF and council would remain confidential.
"Rest assured, we are committed to protecting and supporting those making disclosures,” he said.
For further information or assistance call council on 1300 242 686.
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