Ottawa, March 8, 2012 – The Public Sector Integrity Commissioner, Mario Dion, tabled his first Case Report of wrongdoing today in both Houses of Parliament. This report concluded that wrongdoing has been committed by a regional manager at Human Resources and Skills Development Canada. Commissioner Dion also identified some deficiencies within the Department itself.
The Commissioner found that the Manager responsible for four offices in the Western Canada and Territories Region committed wrongdoing as defined by the Public Servants Disclosure Protection Act. These included contraventions of the Financial Administration Act, misuse of public funds and public assets, and gross mismanagement.
“I have determined that the breadth, severity and frequency of the Manager’s wrongdoing constitute gross mismanagement in the public sector,” the Commissioner concluded. “I strongly encourage all public sector employees to read this report and understand the importance of respecting all legislation, policies, procedures and guidelines in the course of their day-to-day work and to always conduct themselves in an ethical manner.”
The Commissioner also found deficiencies on the part of the Department regarding the lack of oversight mechanisms to ensure that department and Treasury Board policies and procedures were respected.
“I have made recommendations to the chief executive concerning the measures to be taken to correct the wrongdoing,” noted the Commissioner. “I am satisfied with the chief executive’s response to my recommendations and with the measures taken to date by the Department.”
The Commissioner examined 16 different allegations concerning the Manager’s conduct and management practices brought forward by a discloser on behalf of several employees. An allegation of staffing irregularity was referred to the Public Service Commission for its own investigation. The findings are included in the gross mismanagement section of the Commissioner’s Report.
The purpose of the Public Servants Disclosure Protection Act (the Act) is to provide employees of the federal public sector with a safe means to disclose information that they believe could constitute a wrongdoing as defined in the Act. It also provides those who disclose or who participate in an investigation protection from reprisal. Reprisal complaints are investigated by the Office and referred to the Public Servants Disclosure Protection Tribunal when there are reasonable grounds to believe that reprisal has taken place. The Tribunal has the power to order appropriate corrective measures and proper disciplinary sanctions.
Please consult the report for further details.
For more information, contact:
Office of the Public Sector Integrity Commissioner of Canada