These Procedures have been published by Sustainability Victoria (SV) in compliance with section 58 of the Public Interest Disclosures Act 2012 (Vic) (Act).
Requests for hard copies and further information about SV's handling of complaints or disclosures may be obtained by contacting SV at email@example.com or phoning 8626 8700.
Abbreviations and key terms used in these Procedures
1. About these Procedures
2. About the Act
3. SV's internal arrangements for handling welfare management
3.1 Staff and Board members
3.2 Public Interest Disclosure Coordinator
4. Making a disclosure
4.1 What is a disclosure and who can make a disclosure?
4.2 How can a disclosure be made?
4.3 What can a disclosure be made about?
4.3.1 Improper conduct
4.3.2 Detrimental action
5. Assessment of a disclosure
5.1. If the IBAC determines the disclosure is not a public interest complaint
5.2 If the IBAC determines the disclosure is a public interest complaint
5.2.1 Notification to the discloser
5.2.2 Further actions the IBAC may take
5.2.3 Other information about investigative entities' investigations of a public interest complaint
6. Welfare management
6.1 Support available to disclosers and cooperators
6.1.1 Appointment of a welfare manager
6.2 Welfare management of persons who are the subject of public interest disclosures
6.2.1 Welfare services
6.2.3 Natural justice
6.2.4 If the allegations are wrong or unsubstantiated
6.3 If detrimental action is reported
6.4 Protections for persons making a public interest disclosure
6.4.1 Part 6 protections available to disclosers
6.4.2 Loss of protections caused by actions of the disclosers
6.4.3 Other limitations on protections afforded to disclosers
7.1 Obligation of confidentiality on SV and all individuals
7.2 Steps taken by SV to ensure confidentiality
7.2.1 Information management
7.2.2 Exemption from the FOI Act
7.2.3 Training for all staff
7.3 Limited exceptions permitted by the Act
7.4 Permitted external disclosure
7.5 Penalties apply for breach of confidentiality
8. Collating and publishing statistics
10. Verification/ Authorisation/ Approved by
The following abbreviations and key terms are used in these procedures:
Public Interest Disclosures Act 2012associate An associate of the first person is:(a) a person or entity who has an agreement, arrangement or understanding with the first person or holds any relevant financial interest in any business of the first person;(b) if the first person is a natural person, a person who is a relative of the first person;(c) if the first person is a body corporate–an entity of whom the first person is an associate within the meaning of section 11 of the Corporations Act 2001 (Cth); or an employee or officer of a related body corporate within the meaning of that Act to the first person.
An associate of the first person is:(a) a person or entity who has an agreement, arrangement or understanding with the first person or holds any relevant financial interest in any business of the first person;(b) if the first person is a natural person, a person who is a relative of the first person;(c) if the first person is a body corporate–an entity of whom the first person is an associate within the meaning of section 11 of the Corporations Act 2001 (Cth); or an employee or officer of a related body corporate within the meaning of that Act to the first person.
A person who (purports to) make(s) a complaint, allegation or disclosure (however described) under the Act.
Any complaint, concern, matter, allegation or disclosure (however described) purported to be made in accordance with Part 2 of the Act.
Independent Broad-based Anti-corruption Commission.
Act Independent Broad-based Anti-corruption Commission Act 2011 (Vic).
Any one of the bodies authorised to investigate a public interest complaint, being: the IBAC; the Victorian Ombudsman; the Chief Commissioner of Police; the VI; Judicial Commission of Victoria; the Chief Municipal Inspector; the Information Commissioner; and the Racing Integrity Commissioner.
This version of the procedures of SV, as established under section 58 of the Act.
A person who makes a public interest disclosure.
public interest disclosure
Any complaint, concern, matter, allegation or disclosure (however described) made by a natural person that shows or tends to show improper conduct or detrimental action and which is made in accordance with Part 2 of the Act.
public interest complaint
A public interest disclosure which has been determined and assessed by the IBAC to be a public interest complaint under section 26 of the Act.
Protected Disclosure Regulations 2013 (Vic) or such other regulations that might be made under the Act.
SV is required to establish and publish procedures under section 58 of the Act and ensure these procedures are readily available to members of the public as well as internally to all staff and Board members of SV.
These procedures are a resource for disclosers and potential disclosers, whether an internal Board or staff member of SV or a member of the public; essentially, any individual who wants to find out how SV will manage their welfare if they make a disclosure. In addition, these procedures cover how SV will protect other people connected to a public interest complaint from detrimental action being taken against them in reprisal for a discloser making a public interest disclosure. Such persons can include individuals who are the subject of public interest disclosures and public interest complaints; and others who are connected to public interest disclosures, such as witnesses or persons cooperating with an investigation into a public interest complaint.
These procedures form an essential part of SV's commitment to the aims and objectives of the Act. SV does not tolerate improper conduct by the organisation, its employees, officers or Board members nor the taking of reprisals against those who come forward to disclose such conduct.
SV recognises the value of transparency and accountability in its administrative and management practices, and supports the making of disclosures that reveal improper conduct or the taking of detrimental action in reprisal against persons who come forward to report such improper conduct.
SV will take all reasonable steps to protect people who make such disclosures from any detrimental action in reprisal for making the disclosures. It will also afford natural justice to the person or body who is the subject of the disclosures.
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The Act commenced operation on 10 February 2013 and was amended in March 2019. The amended (and renamed) Act commenced on 1 January 2020.
The purpose of the Act is to encourage and facilitate the making of disclosures of improper conduct and detrimental action by public officers and public bodies. It does so by providing certain protections for people who make a disclosure, or those who may suffer detrimental action in reprisal for making a disclosure. An essential component of this protection is to ensure that information connected to a public interest disclosure, including the identity of a discloser and the contents of that disclosure, are kept strictly confidential.
Public interest disclosures may be made about any of the public officers or bodies as defined in section 3 of the Act and section 6 of the IBAC Act. They include:
However, not all agencies may receive disclosures under the Act. Under the Act, SV is not a body that may receive public interest disclosures. Therefore, if you wish to make a disclosure about SV, or one of our employees, officers, staff or Board members, you should make that disclosure directly to the IBAC.
A public interest disclosure cannot be made about:
SV supports a workplace culture where the making of public interest disclosures is valued by the organisation and the right of any individual to make a public interest disclosure taken seriously.
Staff and Board members are encouraged to raise matters of concern in relation to SV, including about any staff or Board member. In particular, staff and Board members are encouraged to report known or suspected incidences of improper conduct or detrimental action in accordance with these procedures, whether such conduct or action has taken place, is suspected will take place, or is still occurring.
All staff and Board members of SV have an important role to play in supporting those who have made a legitimate disclosure in accordance with the Act. All persons must refrain from any activity that is, or could be perceived to be, victimisation or harassment of a person who makes a disclosure. Furthermore, they should protect and maintain the confidentiality of a person they know or suspect to have made a disclosure.
SV's Public Interest Disclosure Coordinator has a central role in the way the organisation deals with all public interest disclosure matters, and in particular for ensuring that the welfare of any persons connected with a public interest disclosure is properly managed.
The Public Interest Disclosure Coordinator is:
The Public Interest Disclosure Coordinator appointed by SV is: Peta Broughton, firstname.lastname@example.org, 03 8626 8735.
A disclosure may be made about two things under the Act:
The term disclosure is interpreted under the Act in the ordinary sense of the word, for example, as a "revelation" to the person receiving it. The IBAC considers that a complaint or allegation that is already in the public domain will not normally be a public interest disclosure. Such material would, for example, include matters which have already been subject to media or other public commentary.
The conduct or action being disclosed about may be one which has taken place, is still occurring, or is believed is intended to be taken or engaged in. Disclosures may also be made about conduct that occurred prior to the commencement of the Act on 10 February 2013.
A disclosure may:
The following are not public interest disclosures under the Act:
A disclosure must be made in accordance with Part 2 of the Act.
Part 2 of the Act permits disclosures to be made anonymously, orally or in writing, and need not necessarily identify the person or organisation complained about.
Disclosures must be made in private.
Generally, a verbal disclosure may be made:
Generally, the IBAC recommends that written disclosures to the IBAC be made via its online form available from https://www.ibac.vic.gov.au/re... (last accessed 1 January 2020).
Disclosures cannot be made by fax.
A disclosure made by email from an address from which the identity of the discloser cannot be ascertained will be treated as an anonymous disclosure.
A disclosure attempted or purported to be made to SV will not be a disclosure made in accordance with Part 2 of the Act (and therefore not protected), because SV is not permitted to receive disclosures. If you wish to make a disclosure about SV, please make that disclosure directly to the IBAC. For further information about how to make a disclosure to the IBAC, see https://www.ibac.vic.gov.au/reporting-corruption/how-to-make-a-complaint.
A disclosure must be about the conduct of a person, public officer or public body in their capacity as a public body or public officer as outlined in the following diagram:
A disclosure may be made about improper conduct by a public body or public officer in the performance of their functions as a public body or public officer.
Central to the notion of improper conduct is the notion of the "public trust".
There is an expectation that members of the community may rely on and trust their public bodies and officials to act honestly. The expectation is that public officers will not use their positions for personal advantage, or use the influence of their public office for improper purposes where there is a duty to act objectively and impartially.
Disclosers will need to identify that there is a link between the alleged improper conduct of a person or an organisation and their function as a public officer or a public body.
"Improper conduct" is defined in the Act to mean:
"Improper conduct" might also be the conduct of any person that:
The conduct must be serious. Less serious or trivial conduct is excluded from the definition of "improper conduct".
Corrupt conduct means any one of the following:
It is an offence under the Act for a public officer or body to take detrimental action against a discloser in reprisal for making a public interest disclosure. The public officer or body is also liable in damages for any injury, loss or damage to that other person. There are two essential components here: whether there is in fact "detrimental action", as defined by the Act, and whether that action is being taken in reprisal against a person for making or being connected with a public interest disclosure.
Detrimental actionDetrimental action as defined by the Act includes:
In addition, a person can have taken detrimental action without having taken the action itself, but just by threatening to take such action. Further, the detrimental action need not necessarily have been taken (or threatened to be taken) against a person making a public interest disclosure, but against any person connected with a public interest disclosure.
Examples of detrimental action prohibited by the Act include:
Taken in reprisal for a public interest disclosure
The person (or the person incited to take detrimental action) must take or threaten the detrimental action, because, or in the belief that the:
This belief need not be a substantial part of the reason for taking that action, it can be any part of the reason.
Disclosures about SV should only be made to the IBAC. SV is a public body that cannot receive disclosures. If SV receives a complaint, report, or allegation of improper conduct or detrimental action, the discloser will not be given the protections under the Act. To be a protected public interest disclosure, it must be made to IBAC. Accordingly, SV will advise the discloser to make their disclosure directly to the IBAC.
Once a disclosure has been notified to the IBAC, the IBAC must determine whether it is a public interest complaint. Such a determination must be made within a reasonable time after the disclosure is notified to the IBAC.
If the IBAC is of the view that the assessable disclosure is not a public interest disclosure, then it is not a 'public interest complaint'. If the IBAC is of the view that the assessable disclosure is a public interest disclosure, then it must determine that the public interest disclosure is a "public interest complaint".
If the IBAC determines the disclosure is not a public interest complaint, the IBAC must advise the discloser in writing and within a reasonable time after the determination is made, that:
In addition, if the IBAC is of the view that the disclosure, although not a public interest complaint, may be able to be dealt with by another entity, the IBAC may advise the discloser that:
The IBAC is also able to consider whether it wishes to treat the assessable disclosure as a notification made to the IBAC under the IBAC Act.
If the IBAC determines the disclosure is a public interest complaint, the IBAC must advise the discloser in writing and within a reasonable time after the determination is made, that:
Whether or not IBAC determines the disclosure to be a public interest complaint, the protections under Part 6 of the Act apply to the discloser.
Once the IBAC has determined that a disclosure is a public interest complaint, the discloser cannot withdraw that disclosure. However, under the IBAC Act, the IBAC can decide not to investigate a public interest complaint if the discloser requests that it not be investigated.
Under the IBAC Act, the IBAC may dismiss, investigate, or refer a public interest complaint.
If the IBAC dismisses a public interest complaint, then it must do so on one of the grounds specifically set out in the IBAC Act. In particular, the IBAC must dismiss a public interest complaint if the matter disclosed is a matter that neither the IBAC nor an investigating entity may investigate.
The IBAC may choose to investigate the alleged conduct if it is reasonably satisfied that it is "serious corrupt conduct".
The IBAC may also choose to refer the public interest complaint to other appropriate and relevant investigative entities.
If the IBAC or another investigative entity is conducting an investigation of a public interest complaint, it may be in contact with SV or a person about which the disclosure has been made. This will be for the purpose of conducting investigative enquiries.
SV or that person will be able to disclose information about the public interest complaint to the investigative entity without breaching the confidentiality requirements of the Act.
The relevant investigative entity may also disclose the identity of the discloser and the content of the disclosure if necessary to do so for the purposes of their investigative action. If this is the case, then SV or person to whom the information has been disclosed, is bound by the confidentiality requirements of Part 7 of the Act.
In addition, if SV is advised of the identity of the discloser, then it will be required to look after the welfare of the discloser and provide protection against possible detrimental action.
At the conclusion of its investigation, the relevant investigative entity must generally provide the discloser with information about the results of its investigation, including any action taken by the investigative entity and any recommendation by the investigative agency that action or further action be taken.
The investigative entity may provide written information about the commencement, conduct or result of an investigation, including any actions taken and any recommendation made that any action or further action be taken to the relevant principal officer. However, the investigative entity must not provide any information that is likely to lead to the identification of a discloser.
The investigative entity does not have to provide this information to either the discloser or the relevant principal officer in specified circumstances set out in the IBAC Act or the Ombudsman Act 1973 (Vic).
SV is committed to the protection of genuine disclosers against detrimental action taken in reprisal for the making of public interest disclosures.
The protection of persons making genuine public interest disclosures about improper conduct or detrimental action is essential for the effective implementation of the Act. In addition, the Act extends the need for welfare management to people who have cooperated or intend to cooperate with an investigation of a public interest complaint ("cooperators"). Persons who are the subject of allegations will also have their welfare looked after.
SV cannot receive disclosures, and therefore may not know that a person has made a public interest disclosure. Confidentiality obligations require a person who has made a public interest disclosure not to discuss the matter with any other person except with the IBAC (or another investigative entity to which the IBAC may have referred the disclosure). Therefore, SV will only be made aware that a person requires protection under the Act if that information has been provided to SV by the IBAC or the VI (when assessing whether a disclosure is a public interest complaint), or by the investigative entity investigating a public interest complaint.
Once SV has been made aware of the identity of a discloser, and any other relevant information about the public interest disclosure, SV will keep all information it receives confidential, and will manage the welfare of any relevant persons in accordance with its obligations under the Act.
SV must, where it is aware of or has been provided the identities of disclosers and cooperators, ensure they are protected from direct and indirect detrimental action being taken against them in reprisal for the public interest disclosure. SV will ensure its workplace culture supports disclosers and cooperators. Such support will extend to the relevant persons regardless of whether they are internal to the organisation (e.g., employees, Board members, other officers) or external members of the public. However, different legislative responsibilities (including those external to the Act) apply to persons internal to the organisation, and to persons who may be clients or users of SV's services. These responsibilities derive from various legislative and administrative obligations to:
Generally, for internal persons, SV will ensure a supportive work environment and respond appropriately to any reports of intimidation or harassment against these persons. For external persons, SV will take reasonable steps to provide appropriate support. SV will discuss reasonable expectations with all persons receiving welfare management in connection with a public interest disclosure.
SV will support disclosers and cooperators by:
In appropriate circumstances, SV will appoint a suitable welfare manager to protect a discloser or a cooperator. The following matters will be taken into consideration by SV when deciding whether to appoint a welfare manager in a particular case:
If the answer to the first question is 'yes' then the IBAC recommends the appointment of a dedicated welfare manager. If the answer to the first question is 'no' and SV can meet the needs set out in the remainder of the questions, the IBAC suggests there may be no need for a dedicated welfare manager to be appointed for that particular case.
In most circumstances, a welfare manager will only be required where a public interest complaint proceeds to investigation, but each public interest disclosure received by SV will be assessed on its own merits. In particular, a welfare manager will be appointed where SV believes that one is required to ensure that the appropriate support as set out in section 6.1 above can be provided to the discloser or cooperator.
If appointed, the welfare manager will, in addition to providing the general support set out above at section 6.1:
SV will also meet the welfare needs of a person who is the subject of a public interest disclosure. It is important to remember that until a public interest complaint is resolved, the information about the person is only an allegation.
SV will make a decision about whether or when the subject of a disclosure will be informed about a public interest disclosure involving an allegation made against him or her. It is possible that the subject of the disclosure may never be told about the disclosure if it is not determined to be a public interest complaint, or if a decision is made to dismiss the disclosure. This may also depend on the stage at which the relevant investigative entity actually informs SV of the identity of the subject of a disclosure.
The Act limits the disclosure of information about the content of an assessable disclosure and the identity of the discloser to certain specified circumstances set out in Part 7 of the Act. SV may give information about the disclosure to the subject of the disclosure if it is directed or authorised to do so by the investigative entity investigating the public interest complaint, or for the purpose of taking action with respect to the conduct alleged, including disciplinary action.
Investigative entities may also inform the subject of the public interest complaint in the course of their investigation for the purposes of conducting that investigation, or any actions that they propose to take as a result of the investigation.
A person the subject of a disclosure who is made aware of their status as such may have a welfare manager appointed by SV, or be referred to SV's employee assistance program for welfare assistance. Alternatively, the Public Interest Disclosure Coordinator will provide support and advice to a person the subject of a disclosure, particularly in relation to their rights and obligations under the Act, these procedures, and any other relevant law or code of conduct. SV will consider each matter on a case by case basis, taking into account the information it has been provided by the investigative entity and the person's particular circumstances.
Consistent with SV's confidentiality obligations under the Act as outlined in these procedures, the fact that a disclosure has been made, any information received from the IBAC or another investigative entity and the identities of persons involved will not be divulged.
SV will take all reasonable steps to ensure the confidentiality of the subject of a disclosure at all times. Where the disclosure is dismissed or investigations do not substantiate the allegations made against the person, the fact that the investigation was undertaken, its results, and the identity of the person subject of the disclosure (to the extent that SV has been provided that information by an investigative entity) will still be kept confidential by SV.
SV will afford natural justice to the subject of a disclosure prior to any decision being made about the allegations. If the matter has been investigated by an investigative entity, then the investigative entity will be responsible for ensuring consultations with the subject include the provision of natural justice to him or her. The IBAC has noted that affording a subject of a disclosure natural justice in this context means that if a decision is to be made about their conduct this person has the right to:
SV will give its full support to a person who is the subject of a disclosure where the allegations contained in a disclosure are wrong or unsubstantiated. In those circumstances, SV and any investigative entity involved will ensure that there are no adverse consequences for this person arising out of the disclosure or its investigation. This is particularly crucial in a situation where there has been publicly disclosed information identifying the subject, but also where such information has become well-known across SV and the subject is a staff or Board member of SV.
Further, if the matter has been publicly disclosed by SV, the CEO will consider any request by that person to issue a statement of support setting out that the allegations were clearly wrong or unsubstantiated/for compensation/additional supported needs.
If any person reports an incident of harassment, discrimination or adverse treatment that may amount to detrimental action apparently taken in reprisal for a disclosure, the welfare manager or Public Interest Disclosure Coordinator must record details of the incident and advise the person of their rights under the Act to make a disclosure to the IBAC.
A person takes detrimental action against another person in reprisal for a public interest disclosure if:
All persons are reminded it is a criminal offence to take detrimental action against another person in reprisal for a public interest disclosure under the Act. The penalty for committing such an offence in contravention of the Act is a maximum fine of 240 penalty units ($39,652.80 from 1 January 2020, increasing 1 July every year in accordance with arrangements made under the Monetary Units Act 2004), two years’ imprisonment or both.
In addition, the taking of detrimental action in reprisal for making a disclosure can be grounds for a person to make a further disclosure with respect to that conduct. The disclosure of this allegation should be made to the IBAC as a new disclosure under Part 2 of the Act. Where the detrimental action is of a serious nature likely to amount to a criminal offence, SV will also consider reporting the matter to the police or the IBAC.
A discloser of a public interest disclosure may also:
Part 6 of the Act sets out the protections provided to persons who make a disclosure that is a 'public interest disclosure', i.e., one that is made in accordance with Part 2 of the Act. In summary, they are as follows:
The protections in Part 6 apply from the time at which the disclosure is made by the discloser. They apply even if the IBAC has determined that the public interest disclosure is not a public interest complaint.
The protections also apply to further information relating to a public interest disclosure made by the original discloser, if the further information has been provided, verbally or in writing, to:
In circumstances where the principal officer (in SV's case, this is the CEO) makes a notification in good faith to IBAC under the mandatory notification directions, the relevant principal officer will be protected from any criminal or civil liability. This is the case even if the suspicion on which the report is based turns out to be untrue or unsubstantiated.
Transfer of employees
An employee of a public service body or public entity who has made a public interest disclosure and believes on reasonable grounds that detrimental action will be, is being, or has been taken against them may request a transfer of employment.
After making a disclosure an employee can be transferred internally to another part of a public service body, or to another public service body or public entity on similar terms and conditions of employment. This can only happen if they request, or consent to, a transfer and the following other conditions apply:
The transfer can be temporary or permanent, and if the employee is moved to another public body, the employee's service in the new body is regarded as continuous with their pre-transfer service.
However, a discloser is not protected if they commit an offence under section 72 or section 73 of Act, as follows:
A discloser is not protected against legitimate management action being taken by SV in accordance with the Act.
In addition, although the discloser of a public interest disclosure is not subject to criminal or civil liability for making the disclosure, the Act specifically provides that a person remains liable for their own conduct even though the person has made a disclosure of that conduct under the Act. Therefore, the discloser will still be held liable for their own conduct that they disclose as part of making a public interest disclosure.
If the person making the disclosure is implicated in the improper conduct or detrimental action that is the subject of the disclosure
Where a discloser is implicated in improper conduct, and an investigative entity has provided the necessary information to SV, SV will protect the discloser from reprisals in accordance with the Act, any guidelines issued by IBAC and these procedures. SV acknowledges that the act of disclosing should not shield disclosers from the reasonable consequences flowing from any involvement in improper conduct. However, in some circumstances, an admission may be a mitigating factor when considering disciplinary or other action.
The management of the welfare of a discloser may become complicated when that person is implicated in misconduct, whether or not that misconduct is related to the disclosure.
Taking disciplinary or other action against a person who has made a public interest disclosure invariably creates the perception that it is being taken in reprisal for the disclosure. The CEO will make the final decision on the advice of the Public Interest Disclosure Coordinator as to whether disciplinary or other action will be taken against a discloser. Where disciplinary or other action relates to conduct that is the subject of the disclosure, the disciplinary or other action will only be taken after the disclosed matter has been appropriately dealt with. In all cases where disciplinary or other action is being contemplated, any such action will not be taken without SV ensuring that:
SV will take all reasonable steps to thoroughly document its decision-making process, including recording the reasons why the disciplinary or other action is being taken, and the reasons why the action is not being taken in retribution against the discloser for making the disclosure, so that it will be able to clearly demonstrate that the disciplinary or other action was taken for the appropriate and permitted reasons under the Act.
The discloser will be clearly informed of any action proposed to be taken, be afforded natural justice, and inform and be informed of any mitigating factors that have been taken into account. Such communications with the discloser will be made in plain English and reasonable steps to provide appropriate support will be offered where appropriate.
SV will take all reasonable steps to protect the identity of the discloser and the matters disclosed by a discloser. Maintaining confidentiality in relation to public interest disclosure matters is crucial, among other things, in ensuring detrimental actions are not taken in reprisal against a discloser.
The obligation of confidentiality extends to any person receiving a disclosure or making a disclosure. It is in the interest of the discloser to ensure he or she does not discuss any related matters other than with officers of the IBAC, another investigative entity, or other persons authorised by law.
SV will ensure all files, whether paper or electronic, are kept securely. Those files will be accessible only by the Public Interest Disclosure Coordinator.
The welfare manager will not divulge any details relating to the disclosed matter to any person other than the Public Interest Disclosure Coordinator or an investigator appropriately authorised under the Act or the IBAC Act. All meetings between any relevant persons will be conducted discreetly to protect the confidentiality of the person making a public interest disclosure.
The Freedom of Information Act 1982 (FOI Act) provides a general right of access for any person to seek documents in the possession of SV.
However, the Act provides that certain information related to public interest disclosures as contained in documents in the possession of SV will be exempt from the application of the FOI Act.
Such information excluded from the operation of the FOI Act includes:
SV is required to contact the IBAC prior to providing any document originating from the IBAC or relating to a public interest disclosure, if that document is sought under the FOI Act.
The Act makes it a crime to disclose information connected with a disclosure made in accordance with the Act. Limited exceptions to the prohibition on disclosure are specified by the Act, include circumstances such as:
The Act prohibits the inclusion of any details, in any report or recommendation, that is likely to lead to the identification of a discloser. The Act also prohibits the identification of the person who is the subject of the disclosure in any particulars included in an annual report or any reports to Parliament.
A person who has made a public interest disclosure may make further disclosure of that matter to external parties such as the media and politicians if:
Any external disclosure in accordance with the above must not contain information that might prejudice a criminal investigation or legal proceeding of which the discloser is aware and must not contain information about the investigative methods of the IBAC or the police.
The protections afforded under Part 6 of the Act will apply to this type of external disclosure.
The Act contains a number of offence provisions relating to unauthorised disclosure of information by either disclosers or persons who have received disclosures. The penalties for breaching the confidentiality required by the Act include imprisonment, fines or both.
The criminal offences set out in the Act relating to confidentiality include:
SV is required to publish information about how these procedures may be accessed in its annual reports.
These procedures will be reviewed upon significant change to the Act or the Regulations to ensure they comply with the requirements of the Act and the Regulations.
Document Change Control History
 It should be noted that some of the protections set out in the Act protecting a protected discloser are available only to the person who makes a disclosure. The IBAC has pointed out that the consequence of this is that if a person makes a disclosure by 'notifying' the agency on behalf of another individual, then it is the 'notifier' who may receive those protections, and not the person on whose behalf they have made the disclosure. The person on whose behalf the disclosure has been made will only be entitled to protections against detrimental taken against them in reprisal for the disclosure made by the notifier.
 The balance of this section of these procedures assume that SV has been provided with the relevant information from one of the investigative entities such that it is aware of the identity of the persons requiring protection and is therefore able to comply with its requirements to manage the welfare of those persons.
 Page 10 of the IBAC's Guidelines for Protected Disclosure Welfare Management, October 2016.
 Section 38A of the Act.