Report 2016-2017

Case

The Senior Officer for Disclosure at Environment and Climate Change Canada (ECCC) completed an investigation under the Public Servants Disclosure Protection Act (PSDPA) following the receipt of a disclosure of wrongdoing in the Public Sector. It was alleged that an employee had used departmental resources to conduct private business activities and had given the impression that those business activities were sanctioned by ECCC.

Findings

A thorough investigation was completed in order to establish the veracity of the allegations. Based on the findings of the investigation, the Senior Officer for Disclosure determined that the employee had committed the following wrongdoing under the PSDPA:

Serious breach of a code of conduct – paragraph 8 (e) of the PSDPA

The employee breached the conflict of interest provisions of the Environment Canada Values and Ethics Code through inappropriate use of ECCC property and electronic networks for private business activity and personal financial gain.  Given the dubious nature of the business activities in question, the reputational risk (and damage) to the Department that they occasioned and the persistent improbable justification of the employee, the breach was determined to be serious.

Recommendations

The Senior Officer for Disclosure presented three recommendations, including the immediate cessation of the activities that gave rise to the founded acts of wrongdoing and the implementation of appropriate disciplinary measures as determined by Management. These recommendations have been approved by the Deputy Minister and are in the process of being implemented.

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