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Whistleblowing policy

10. How the Council will respond

10.1     The Monitoring Officer will acknowledge receipt of your concerns within working daysof a concern being raised and you will be sent a written response:

  • Acknowledging that the concern has been received;
  • Indicating how the Council proposes to deal with this matter and setting out clearly the roles of all the officers involved;
  • Giving an estimate of how long it may take to investigate the matter;
  • Telling you whether any enquiries will need to be made;
  • Supply you with information on staff support mechanisms.

10.2     The Monitoring Officer, in conjunction with the Corporate Governance Group will determine the most appropriate course of action to take, which may necessitate them consulting with other people, both within and outside the councils. Where appropriate, matters raised may:

  • Be investigated by the Monitoring Officer / or an investigating officer;
  • Be referred to the Police or other statutory agencies;
  • Be referred to the External Auditor;
  • Form the subject of an independent inquiry

10.3     In order to protect individuals and those against whom concerns are raised, initial enquiries will be made to decide whether an investigation is appropriate and, if so, what form it should take.  Concerns or allegations which fall within the scope of specific procedures (for example, safeguarding or discrimination issues) will normally be referred for consideration under those procedures.

10.4     Some concerns may be resolved by agreed action without the need for investigation.  If urgent action is required, this will be taken before any investigation is concluded.

1.5     The amount of contact between the investigating officer and you will depend on the nature of the matters raised, the potential difficulties involved and the clarity of the information provided.  If necessary, the investigating officer may seek further information from you.

1.6     Where a meeting is arranged, (and this can be off-site if you so wish), you can be accompanied by a trade union, a professional association representative or a friend.

1.7     The Council will take steps to minimise any difficulties which you may experience as a result of raising a concern.  For instance, if you are required to give evidence in criminal or disciplinary proceedings the Council will arrange for you to receive advice about the procedure.

1.8     The Council accepts that you need to be assured that the matter has been properly addressed. Thus, subject to any legal constraints, or practical constraints such as the complaint being made anonymously the Council will inform you of the outcome of any investigation. However, there may be situations where further information cannot be provided where the investigating officers consider that the information is sensitive or confidential.

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