Public Interest Disclosures

A Public Interest Disclosure is a complaint made about corrupt or improper conduct which may relate to the conduct of the organisation, Councillors or employees.

Council does not tolerate corrupt or improper conduct by the organisation, Councillors or employees, nor do Council tolerate the taking of detrimental action against those who come forward to disclose such conduct.

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

Council will take all reasonable steps to protect people who make such disclosures from any detrimental action in reprisal for making a disclosure.  Council will also afford natural justice to the person or body who is the subject of the disclosure.

Council recognises the value of transparency and accountability in its administrative and management practices, and supports the making of disclosures that reveal improper conduct.

How do I make a Public Interest Disclosure?

Public Interest Disclosures can be made by an individual including Council staff and members of the public.

A person may make a disclosure:

  • Orally.
  • In writing.
  • Electronically or
  • Anonymously.

Disclosures regarding councillors must be made directly to the Victorian Ombudsman or Independent Broad-Based Anti-Corruption Commission (IBAC).

Disclosures should be made to:

Public Interest Disclosure Coordinator:

Jenny Woolcock - Governance and Administration Coordinator
Municipal Office – Corner Vincent & High Streets Ararat  
PO Box 246
Ararat VIC 3377
Telephone: (03) 5355 0261

Email:  jwoolcock@ararat.vic.gov.au

Disclosures regarding Councillors should be directed to:

Independent Broad-Based Anti-Corruption Commission (IBAC)
Address: IBAC, GP Box 24234, Melbourne Victoria 3000
Internet: www.ibac.vic.gov.au
Phone: 1300 735 135

How will Council protect a person making a Public Interest Disclosure?

Council will take all reasonable steps to protect a person who makes a Public Interest Disclosure.

All correspondence, phone calls and emails from persons making a Public Interest Disclosure are referred to Council's Public Interest Disclosure Coordinator.

Council's Public Interest Disclosure Coordinators will take all necessary steps to ensure the identity of the person making a disclosure and the person who is the subject of the disclosure are kept strictly confidential, unless an exemption applies under the Act.

Where necessary, welfare support for the person making a Public Interest Disclosure will be arranged.

Who do I contact?

Council has appointed a Public Interest Disclosure Coordinator to receive disclosures and be a contact point for general advice about the operation of the Act for any person wishing to make a disclosure.

To find out more about the Public Interest Disclosure, contact:

Public Interest Disclosure Coordinator

Jenny Woolcock - Governance and Administration Coordinator
Municipal Office – Corner Vincent & High Streets Ararat  
PO Box 246
Ararat VIC 3377
Telephone: (03) 5355 0261

Email: jwoolcock@ararat.vic.gov.au

Alternative Contacts

Independent Broad-Based Anti-Corruption Commission (IBAC)
Address: IBAC, GP Box 24234, Melbourne Victoria 3000
Internet: www.ibac.vic.gov.au
Phone: 1300 735 135
Note: All disclosures about Councillors should be directed to IBAC.

What happens next?

The Public Interest Disclosure Coordinator will assess the complaint and if it is determed that it may be a public interest disclosure, will notify IBAC of the disclosure within 28 days of receiving it.   The person making the complaint will be kep informed of what action has been taken in relation to the disclosure and the timeframes that apply.