‘In Their Own Words’ is the second report to be published as a result of my Public Integrity Survey 2018. The first report published in December 2018 dealt with the quantitative findings from a series of questions that sought to understand public officers’ views about reporting inappropriate conduct, encountered corruption and vulnerability to corruption in public administration, and awareness of my office and the Office for Public Integrity.

This report examines what public officers had to say, in their own words, about the culture and practices of the agencies within which they are employed.

It builds upon the findings in the first report and paints a picture of the human impact of inappropriate conduct. The stories are sobering and in many instances shocking

Inappropriate conduct.

Many participants described witnessing a diverse array of poor behaviour and associated conduct within their organisation or public administration.

These conduct issues have been roughly grouped into related topics. Bullying and nepotism The most frequently reported conduct was bullying and harassment.

A total of 353 participants from every agency specifically mentioned issues of bullying or harassment: The bullying, nepotism and favoritism within this organization is at a level I never expected to experience.

It really has been a very disappointing journey. A bullying culture currently still exists in this Department at a senior level So much staff bullying, promotion of friends, and people in leadership positions with very low integrity who don’t lead they bully and promote friends to protect them [redacted] would have to be the worst place where I have encountered bullying and harassment.

My manager asking me for sex There is strong bullying and harassment taking place in this Agency and many (including me) are too fearful to make a report. The Public Sector Values are not applied with any rigour eg bullying and harassment. In my experience the victim is blamed and simply further humiliated.

1. Executive ordering the following and putting together a list of staff 50 and over to target.

2. Bullying staff to take TSVPs [Targeted Voluntary Separation Packages]

3. Victimization of staff so they leave Bullying is rife in this organisation particularly from Managers. At this level I’m hesitant to report this as I think it would probably make matters worse not better.

06 December 2021

    06 December 2021