Number & cost (to ratepayers - staff time/wages & legal advice) of discrimination/ harassment claims/complaints, including sexual harassment, lodged by staff (or former staff) at the City of Bunbury

COB RESIDENT made this Freedom of Information request to City of Bunbury

Currently waiting for a response from City of Bunbury, they must respond promptly and normally no later than (details).

From: COB RESIDENT

Delivered

Dear City of Bunbury,

I am seeking information about the cost ratepayers of the City of Bunbury have incurred in relation to harassment/discrimination claims, in particular regarding the following:
1) The number of discrimination complaints (across types - ie age, race, gender, sexual harassment) lodged by employees (or former employees) against the City of Bunbury for the period 2009-2019. Please include those withdrawn, settled or still underway.
2) The total cost to the ratepayers of the City of Bunbury of the legal advice in processing those discrimination complaints for the period 2009-2019.
3) The number of non disclosure agreements that the City of Bunbury was a party to, which have been signed in the past 10 years. I am not seeking a copy only a confirmation of their existence by way of a table format for each year with a list of the case numbers.
4) The number of sexual harassment complaints lodged against the City of Bunbury in the past 5 years. Please include those withdrawn, settled or still underway.
5) A list of the total number and total percentage of how many discrimination complaints were investigated by an INTERNAL investigator (as opposed to an external investigator).
6) A list of the total number and total percentage of how many sexual harassment complaints were investigated by an INTERNAL investigator (as opposed to an external investigator).
7) Any and all documents (redacted format) that demonstrates the level of sexual harassment an employee has to endure before the City will fire the employee alleged of misconduct (this could be substantiated by redacted investigation report/s where the employee accused was fired as a result of the investigation). And, in so doing confirmation if the City has ever fired an employee for sexual harassment.
8) The amount of ratepayers money spent on legal advice for sexual harassment complaints in 2018 and 2019 respectively.
9) The amount of ratepayers money spent on staff wages in dealing with sexual harassment complaints in 2018 and 2019.
10) The amount of ratepayers money spent on wages in the format of stress leave claimed by employees of the City of Bunbury, per year, for the years 2017, 2018 and 2019 respectively.
11) Documentation that informs as to the particulars of what is standard practice at the City of Bunbury for harassment claims investigations in terms of:
a) whether audio recordings are taken of both a complainant and a respondent - i.e. redacted transcripts of several harassment complaints.
b) whether it is standard practice for the investigator to provide the complainant with the opportunity to respond to points of contention raised through the interviewing of the respondent and/or witnesses in order to supply further evidence or provide the investigator with aspects to investigate further, prior to determination of the investigation report.
c) whether the complainant is provided with a copy of the investigation report shortly after the investigation.
d) whether the complainant is usually moved position or whether the respondent is moved position.
e) the number /percentage of complainants who discontinued working at the City within 12 months of lodging a harassment complaint.
12) The number of other claims of bullying and or harassment claims by employees of the City of Bunbury, per year, for the respective years 2017, 2018 and 2019.

Yours faithfully,

SM

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From: Records Dept
City of Bunbury


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We would like to thank you for contacting the City of Bunbury.

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From: Leanne French
City of Bunbury


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Attachment FOI Application Form.pdf
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Good afternoon SM

 

I am responding to the email the City of Bunbury received on 15 May 2019
with the subject line: Freedom of Information request - Number & cost (to
ratepayers - staff time/wages & legal advice) of discrimination/
harassment claims/complaints, including sexual harassment, lodged by staff
(or former staff) at the City of Bunbury.

 

Pursuant to section 12 of the Western Australian  Freedom of Information
Act 1992, a valid access application has to:

 

(a)    Be in writing; and

(b)   Give enough information to enable the requested documents to be
identified; and

(c)    Give an address in Australia to which notices under this Act can be
sent; and

(d)   Given any other information or details required under the
regulations; and

(e)   Be lodged at an office of the agency with any application fee
payable under the regulations.

 

 

Unfortunately the current application does not comply with the
requirements of section 12. The City would like to help the applicant to
change the application so that it may be accepted as a valid application.
To this end, we invite the applicant to contact us via phone or email to
further discuss the email.  Should the applicant wish to change the
application without further consultation, please find attached a copy of
the City’s FOI application form which may be of assistance in meeting the
requirements. 

 

Alternatively, the applicant may request us to forward the email of
request to our Chief Executive Officer for a direct response. Please note,
in this instance the request will not be dealt with as an application for
access pursuant to the Freedom of Information Act 1992.

 

Kind regards,

 

Leanne French

FOI Coordinator

 

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Leanne French

SENIOR GOVERNANCE & RISK OFFICER

4 Stephen Street, Bunbury WA 6230 – PO Box 21 Bunbury WA 6231

T: (08) 9792 7233 TTY: 133 677 F: (08)9792 7184

E: [3][email address] W: [4]www.bunbury.wa.gov.au

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References

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From: COB RESIDENT

Delivered

Dear Leanne French,

I will be emailing you the completed FOI form tonight so it is there on 17/5/19 with credit card details for payment of $30 fee and all the info to be considered a complete lodgement as at 17/5/19.

I do not want to do a closed door email to the CEO. The point is transparency and public access to the records held by the City of Bunbury. Every resident and ratepayer has a right to know how the money is being spent. Every resident and ratepayer has a right to know about the general business of the City of Bunbury and issues of sexual harassment and other discrimination complaints and how they are "handled" and what they cost the City in time and financial resources. I would like that information available on this website and in my mailbox.

Regards

SM

Yours sincerely,

COB RESIDENT

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From: COB RESIDENT

Delivered

Dear Leanne French,

Thank you for your email on Friday 17 May 2019 wherein you advised I needed to clarify my request and relate it back to records or documents rather than phrase it as questions asking for information. As this is my first FOI, I have taken your advice on board. I have emailed you the re-phrased FOI request direct to you, however as stated previously, I want all communications to be through this website for greatest transparency. For this reason, I am posting the re-phrased request here, which is as follows:

I request access to the following documents held by the City of Bunbury:

I am seeking documents and other records about the cost ratepayers of the City of Bunbury have incurred in relation to harassment /discrimination claims (or complaints), in particular, documents containing/regarding the following:
1) The number of discrimination complaints (across types - i.e. age, race, gender, sexual harassment) lodged by employees (or former employees) against the City of Bunbury for the period 2009-2019. Please include those withdrawn, settled or still underway.
Types of document - This could be achieved by providing redacted documents for each case that only state the date (to ascertain year) and the type of discrimination. The document type could be a redacted investigation report or an internal file note or similar.

I am seeking documents and other records about the cost ratepayers of the City of Bunbury have incurred in relation to harassment /discrimination claims (or complaints), in particular, documents containing/regarding the following:
2) The total cost to the ratepayers of the City of Bunbury of the legal advice in processing those discrimination complaints for the period 2009-2019.
Types of document - This could be achieved by providing redacted copies of legal invoices for each case that only have a portion of the case reference number or ID, and the total amount for each invoice. Everything else could be redacted.

I am seeking documents and other records about the cost ratepayers of the City of Bunbury have incurred in relation to harassment /discrimination claims (or complaints), in particular, documents containing/ regarding the following:
3) The number of non disclosure agreements that the City of Bunbury was party to, which have been signed in the past 10 years (in relation to harassment or discrimination cases only). I am not seeking a copy only a confirmation of their existence.
Types of document - The signing page of the deed of release/non disclosure agreements, redacted, blocking out names and signatures, just leaving the date. OR The invoice from lawyers who prepared the non disclosure agreements highlighting the cost of the non disclosure agreement preparation and the date and the case number or ID.

I am seeking documents and other records about the cost ratepayers of the City of Bunbury have incurred in relation to harassment /discrimination claims (or complaints), in particular, documents containing/ regarding the following:
4) The number of sexual harassment complaints lodged against the City of Bunbury in the past 5 years. Please include those withdrawn, settled or still underway.
Type of documents - Investigation reports (redacted) that only show enough information to establish it is a sexual harassment complaint, the date of complaint, and a case reference number or ID to establish the number of complaints. In the case of a withdrawn sexual harassment complaint, a redacted version of the confirmation of the withdrawal of the sexual harassment complaint. In the case of a sexual harassment complaint not yet with an investigation report, a redacted internal file note or emailed complaint or similar just showing the date and that it is a sexual harassment complaint.

I am seeking documents and other records about the cost ratepayers of the City of Bunbury have incurred in relation to harassment /discrimination claims (or complaints), in particular, documents containing/ regarding the following:
5) The total number and percentage of how many discrimination complaints listed in point 1 (2009-2019) were investigated by an internal investigator (as opposed to an external investigator).
Type of documents - Investigation reports (redacted) and/or other documents that only show enough information to establish the type of harassment complaint, the date of complaint, and a case reference number or ID to establish the number of complaints and for this point, and either the position of the internal officer investigating or detail to show it was investigated by an external provider.

I am seeking documents and other records about the cost ratepayers of the City of Bunbury have incurred in relation to harassment /discrimination claims (or complaints), in particular, documents containing/ regarding the following:
6) The total number and percentage of how many sexual harassment discrimination complaints listed in point 1 (2009-2019) were investigated by an internal investigator (as opposed to an external investigator).
Type of document - Investigation reports (redacted) and/or other documents that only show enough information to establish it is a sexual harassment complaint, the date of complaint, and a case reference number or ID to establish the number of complaints and for this point, the position of the internal officer investigating or detail to show it was investigated by an external provider

I am seeking documents and other records about the cost ratepayers of the City of Bunbury have incurred in relation to harassment /discrimination claims (or complaints), in particular, documents containing/ regarding the following:
7) Any and all documents (redacted format) that demonstrates the level of sexual harassment an employee has to endure before the City will fire the employee alleged of misconduct (this could be substantiated by redacted investigation report/s where the employee accused was fired as a result of the investigation).
Type of documents - Investigation reports (redacted) that only show enough information to establish it is a sexual harassment complaint, the date of complaint, and a case reference number or ID to establish the number of complaints and the findings of the report and recommendation in terms of discipline/action to be taken.

I am seeking documents and other records about the cost ratepayers of the City of Bunbury have incurred in relation to harassment /discrimination claims (or complaints), in particular, documents containing/ regarding the following:
8) The amount of ratepayers money spent on legal advice for sexual harassment complaints in 2018 and 2019 respectively.
Type of documents - All legal services invoices (redacted) showing the amount of money spent for a sexual harassment case. Everything could be redacted except the case ref ID, and the total amount of the bill.

I am seeking documents and other records about the cost ratepayers of the City of Bunbury have incurred in relation to harassment /discrimination claims (or complaints), in particular, documents containing/ regarding the following:
9) The amount of ratepayers money spent on staff wages in dealing with sexual harassment complaints in 2018 and 2019.
Type of documents - Including but not limited to: file notes or reports on record keeping track of INTERNAL OR EXTERNAL staff time spent investigating, dealing with, keeping records of the time spent by the City on any sexual harassment case in 2018 and 2019. This would thereby include records (any invoices/reports) for private investigators (redacted) showing the total cost.

I am seeking documents and other records about the cost ratepayers of the City of Bunbury have incurred in relation to harassment /discrimination claims (or complaints), in particular, documents containing/ regarding the following:
10) The amount of ratepayers money spent on wages in the format of stress leave claimed by employees of the City of Bunbury, per year, for the years 2017, 2018 and 2019 respectively.
Type of documents - Redacted reports/file notes/payroll information, reporting to the City's insurer, or any other type of document that informs as to the amount of stress leave claimed by City employees for the years 2017, 2018 and 2019.

I am seeking documents and other records about the cost ratepayers of the City of Bunbury have incurred in relation to harassment /discrimination claims (or complaints), in particular, documents containing/ regarding the following:
11) Documentation that informs as to the particulars of what is standard practice at the City of Bunbury for harassment investigations in terms of:
a) whether audio recordings are taken of both a complainant and a respondent
b) whether it is standard practice for the investigator to provide the complainant with the opportunity to respond to points of contention raised through the interviewing of the respondent and/or witnesses in order to supply further evidence or provide the investigator with aspects to investigate further, prior to determination of the investigation report.
c) whether the complainant is provided with a copy of the investigation report shortly after the investigation.
d) whether the complainant is usually moved position or whether the respondent is moved position
e) the number/percentage of complainants who discontinued working at the City within 12 months of lodging a harassment complaint.
Type of documents - All records including redacted reports/file notes/investigation reports/outcome letters/ investigation manual for the investigating officer, letters of resignation (redacted) with dates, procedural manuals, training materials the investigator has access to or has undergone. The records should address all of the above points.

I am seeking documents and other records about the cost ratepayers of the City of Bunbury have incurred in relation to harassment /discrimination claims (or complaints), in particular, documents containing/ regarding the following:
12) The number of other claims of bullying and/or harassment claims by employees of the City of Bunbury, per year, for the respective years 2017, 2018 and 2019.
Type of document - Redacted reports/file notes, complaints, reports to the City's insurer, HR reports summarising claims, or any other type of document that informs as to the number of bullying complaints made by City employees for the years 2017, 2018 and 2019.

Yours sincerely,

COB RESIDENT

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