Government Accountability ~ Code of Conduct.

 

Holding Government to account is a subject most are unaware of and most simply accept government can do what they like. Below are the Parliamentary Service Codes of Conduct for the Commonwealth. Constitution Watch compels you to hold those to account that breach their code of conduct when providing services to you as an Australian Citizen or Subject of Her Majesty. When experiencing poor service attitudes from the employees of the Commonwealth and once those employees are aware you are aware of their code of conduct, their behaviour will immediately change due to the reprecussions of termination of employment through to reductions in salary. Should you be holding government employees to account  the change in government towards you will be noticeable to you in the future once they are aware of your knowledge in this area

 

 

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3  Objects of this Act

                   The main objects of this Act are:

                     (d)  to establish rights and obligations of Parliamentary Service employees.

 

6  Engagement of employees in a Department

             (1)  All people engaged on behalf of the Commonwealth as employees to perform functions in a Department must be engaged under this Act, or under the authority of another Act.

 

10  Parliamentary Service Values

Ethical

             (2)  The Parliamentary Service demonstrates leadership, is trustworthy, and acts with integrity, in all that it does.

Respectful

             (3)  The Parliamentary Service respects the Parliament and all people, including their rights and their heritage.

Accountable

             (4)  The Parliamentary Service performs its functions with probity and is openly accountable for its actions to the Parliament and the Australian community.

Impartial

             (5)  The Parliamentary Service is non‑partisan and provides advice that is frank, honest, timely and based on the best available evidence.

 

13  The Parliamentary Service Code of Conduct

             (1)  A Parliamentary Service employee must behave honestly and with integrity in connection with Parliamentary Service employment.

             (2)  A Parliamentary Service employee must act with care and diligence in connection with Parliamentary Service employment.

             (3)  A Parliamentary Service employee, when acting in connection with Parliamentary Service employment, must treat everyone with respect and courtesy, and without harassment.

             (4)  A Parliamentary Service employee, when acting in connection with Parliamentary Service employment, must comply with all applicable Australian laws. For this purpose, Australian law means:

                     (a)  any Act (including this Act), or any instrument having effect under an Act; or

                     (b)  any law of a State or Territory, including any instrument having effect under such a law.

             (5)  A Parliamentary Service employee must comply with any lawful and reasonable direction given by someone in the Department in which he or she is employed who has authority to give the direction.

             (7)  A Parliamentary Service employee must:

                     (a)  take reasonable steps to avoid any conflict of interest (real or apparent) in connection with the employee’s Parliamentary Service employment; and

                     (b)  disclose details of any material personal interest of the employee in connection with the employee’s Parliamentary Service employment.

             (8)  A Parliamentary Service employee must use the resources of the Commonwealth in a proper manner and for a proper purpose.

             (9)  A Parliamentary Service employee must not provide false or misleading information in response to a request for information that is made for official purposes in connection with the employee’s Parliamentary Service employment.

           (10)  A Parliamentary Service employee must not improperly use inside information or the employee’s duties, status, power or authority:

                     (a)  to gain, or seek to gain, a benefit or an advantage for the employee or any other person; or

                     (b)  to cause, or seek to cause, detriment to the Department in which the employee is employed, the Commonwealth or any other person.

           (11)  A Parliamentary Service employee must at all times behave in a way that upholds:

                     (a)  the Parliamentary Service Values and Parliamentary Service Employment Principles; and

                     (b)  the integrity and good reputation of the Department in which he or she is employed and the Parliamentary Service.

           (13)  A Parliamentary Service employee must comply with any other conduct requirement that is made by either House of the Parliament or by determinations.

14  Secretaries and statutory office holders bound by Code of Conduct

             (1)  Secretaries are bound by the Code of Conduct in the same way as Parliamentary Service employees.

             (2)  Statutory office holders are bound by the Code of Conduct, subject to any determinations made under subsection (2A).

          (2A)  The determinations may make provision in relation to the extent to which statutory office holders are bound by the Code of Conduct.

Note:          The determinations may make provision with respect to different statutory office holders or different classes of statutory office holders (see subsection 33(3A) of the Acts Interpretation Act 1901).

             (3)  In this section:

statutory office holder means a person who holds any office or appointment under this Act, being an office or appointment that is prescribed by the determinations for the purposes of this definition.

15  Breaches of the Code of Conduct

Sanctions that may be imposed

             (1)  A Secretary may impose the following sanctions on a Parliamentary Service employee in the relevant Department who is found (under procedures established under subsection (3) of this section or subsection 48A(2)) to have breached the Code of Conduct:

                     (a)  termination of employment;

                     (b)  reduction in classification;

                     (c)  re‑assignment of duties;

                     (d)  reduction in salary;

                     (e)  deductions from salary, by way of fine;

                      (f)  a reprimand.

Note:          See sections 29 and 38 in relation to terminating a Parliamentary Service employee’s employment.

             (2)  The determinations may prescribe limitations on the power of a Secretary to impose sanctions under subsection (1).

Providing false or misleading information etc. in connection with engagement as a Parliamentary Service employee

          (2A)  A person who is, or was, a Parliamentary Service employee is taken to have breached the Code of Conduct if the person is found (under procedures established under subsection (3) of this section or subsection 48A(2)) to have, before being engaged as a Parliamentary Service employee:

                     (a)  knowingly provided false or misleading information to another Parliamentary Service employee, or to a person acting on behalf of the Commonwealth; or

                     (b)  wilfully failed to disclose to another Parliamentary Service employee, or to a person acting on behalf of the Commonwealth, information that the person knew, or ought reasonably to have known, was relevant; or

                     (c)  otherwise failed to behave honestly and with integrity;

in connection with the person’s engagement as a Parliamentary Service employee.

Note:          If the person is a Parliamentary Service employee at the time a finding referred to in paragraph (2A)(a), (b) or (c) is made in relation to the person, the Secretary of the Department in which the person is employed may impose sanctions on the person as permitted by subsection (1).

Procedures for determining whether Parliamentary Service employee, or former Parliamentary Service employee, has breached the Code of Conduct etc.

             (3)  A Secretary must establish written procedures in accordance with this section for determining:

                     (a)  whether a Parliamentary Service employee, or a former Parliamentary Service employee, in the relevant Department has breached the Code of Conduct (including by engaging in conduct referred to in subsection (2A)); and

                     (b)  the sanction (if any) that is to be imposed under subsection (1) on a Parliamentary Service employee in the relevant Department who is found to have breached the Code of Conduct (including by engaging in conduct referred to in subsection (2A)).

             (4)  The procedures:

                     (a)  must comply with basic procedural requirements set out in directions issued by the Commissioner under subsection (6); and

                     (b)  must have due regard to procedural fairness.

             (5)  In addition, and without affecting subsection (4), the procedures may be different for:

                     (a)  different categories of Parliamentary Service employees or former Parliamentary Service employees; or

                     (b)  Parliamentary Service employees, or former Parliamentary Service employees, who:

                              (i)  have been convicted of an offence against a Commonwealth, State or Territory law in respect of conduct that is alleged to constitute a breach of the Code of Conduct; or

                             (ii)  have been found to have committed such an offence but no conviction is recorded.

             (6)  The Commissioner must, by legislative instrument, issue directions for the purposes of paragraph (4)(a).

             (7)  A Secretary must ensure that the procedures established under subsection (3) are made publicly available.

             (8)  Procedures established under subsection (3) are not legislative instruments.

 


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