Disclosure of wrongdoings relating to public bodies: the Québec Ombudsman welcomes its new mandate enthusiastically
Québec City, December 12, 2016 – The Act to facilitate the disclosure of wrongdoings relating to public bodies, assented to on December 9, 2016, gives the Québec Ombudsman the mandate to handle the disclosure of wrongdoings relating to any public body subject to the Act.
"I enthusiastically welcome this new mandate which is fully consistent with our mission to ensure that citizens’ rights are upheld in their interaction with public services and to strengthen the required trust in these services. The team at the Québec Ombudsman will be up to the challenge of exercising this new mandate competently and rigorously when the Act comes into force on May 1, 2017." (Claude Dussault, Acting Ombudsman)
The Act to facilitate the disclosure of wrongdoings relating to public bodies provides that any person may contact the Québec Ombudsman to disclose information that could show that a wrongdoing has been committed or is about to be committed with regard to a public body. The following may be considered wrongdoings within the meaning of section 3:
- a contravention of a Québec law, of a federal law applicable in Québec or of a regulation made under such a law
- a serious breach of the standards of ethics and professional conduct
- a misuse of funds or assets belonging to a public body
- gross mismanagement within a public body
- any act or omission that seriously compromises or may seriously compromise a person’s health or safety or the environment
- directing or counselling a person to commit a wrongdoing.
The Québec Ombudsman will also be responsible for handling complaints from people who feel they have been targeted for reprisal further to disclosure as long as the reprisal is not employment-related, in which case, the complaints will be handled by the Commission des normes, de l'équité, de la santé et de la sécurité du travail.
About the Québec Ombudsman
As Québec’s parliamentary ombudsman since 1969, the Québec Ombudsman processes complaints regarding public services with complete impartiality and independence. It is an institution independent from the Government of Québec that reports exclusively to the National Assembly.
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Carole-Anne Huot, 418-646-7143/418-925-7994