Investigation not required as issue already addressed by department
A disclosure alleged a department was not responding to complaints regarding the safety of children in care. The concerns were reviewed with the department and it was found the department was alive to the issues and was already addressing all of the concerns. An investigation was not initiated as it was determined the subject matter of the complaint was already appropriately being addressed by the department.
In certain circumstances, it is more efficient to make inquiries and review a disclosure with a public entity before initiating a full-scale investigation. Investigations can be time-consuming pulling government employees away from their work of delivering services to the public. In this case, our office was able to confirm quite quickly the subject-matter of the disclosure was already being addressed and a full-scale investigation was not required.
Often, due to privacy reasons, whistleblowers may be unaware of actions a department or public entity is taking in response to a complaint. Contacting a Designated Officer or the Public Interest Commissioner is an effective mechanism for employees to ensure their concerns about potential wrongdoing are being addressed.