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What to expect if you report wrongdoing

If you make a report of wrongdoing to our office, an investigator from our office will contact you
within 2 business days to clarify the details of your report.

You can submit your report of wrongdoing in writing by completing our form.

Once you have submitted your report, you can expect the following from us:

Review & Assessment

We will review the information provided to determine if there is a reasonable basis to launch an investigation. This includes assessing whether, if proven, the allegations meet the threshold of wrongdoing under the law. Not all allegations will qualify as potential wrongdoing.

Your identity will be kept confidential during this process.

You will be informed of our decision to investigate your report.


Our investigations are conducted in a timely and fair manner. This includes providing any person who is the subject of an investigation with notice of the allegation and the opportunity to respond.

If your report is investigated, additional contact with you will depend on the individual circumstances of the investigation.

All investigations are completed as quickly as possible.

Report & Recommendations

Following an investigation, we will issue a report containing any findings and recommendations to the public body involved. The discloser, or person who report the wrongdoing, will also receive a summary of conclusions and findings.

If in the public interest, we may report publicly on the outcome.

Please contact our office immediately if you experience any threats or acts of retaliation because of your report or if you believe that retaliation against you may take place.

See reprisal for more information on retaliation.


For a more detailed explanation of our investigative process, please use the interactive graphic below.

Report of wrongdoing to the Ombudsperson


Assessment of the report


Decide whether to investigate


If the report meets the criteria for investigation, we will assess whether we are barred from investigating or whether there is another valid reason to decline to investigate.

The Act prevents the Ombudsperson from investigating a report that is primarily about

  • a dispute between an employee and his or her employer about the employee’s employment;
  • a matter relating to law enforcement or the conduct of members of a police force;
  • a matter relating to the prosecution of an offence; or
  • the decision making function of a court, tribunal or other statutory decision maker.

Our office may also decline to investigate in certain circumstances, such as where we do not have enough information to assess the report or where the allegations are being, or have already been, appropriately investigated through another process.

We will notify the employee before we begin an investigation. If we decide not to investigate, we will provide the employee with written reasons for our decision.

Determine when the investigation should commence


The Ombudsperson may decide to postpone an investigation in the following circumstances:

  • The Ombudsperson has identified an alleged offence related to the report of wrongdoing and made a report to law enforcement
  • The Ombudsperson considers that our office’s investigation may compromise another investigation
  • The alleged wrongdoing reported to our office is also being investigated for the prosecution of an offence

If the Ombudsperson makes a decision to postpone, the employee will be notified.



When our office makes a decision to investigate a report of wrongdoing, we will inform the employee.

Our office conducts investigations fairly and impartially. We will gather evidence to determine whether, on a balance of probabilities, wrongdoing occurred or not. Our office can obtain evidence in the manner we consider appropriate, including gathering documents and other records and interviewing witnesses under oath.

We take precautions to protect the identity of employees who make reports. Information which may identify the employee will only be disclosed with the employee’s consent or where it is essential to carry out a function under PIDA or for another lawful purpose.


Refer the report

Our office may refer a report of wrongdoing if we determine that it could be more appropriately investigated by another organization.

The report may be referred to:

  • the Designated Officer within the employee’s ministry or office, or
  • another officer of the legislature with authority over the subject matter of the report.

If we are considering referring the report, we will inform the employee and provide the employee with an opportunity to provide feedback and ask questions. If we decide to refer the report, we will notify the employee of our decision.

Discontinue Investigation

Our office may discontinue an investigation if we determine, during the course of the investigation, that further investigation is not warranted. For example, we may discontinue the investigation if we determine that another body has already adequately investigated the allegations.

If we decide to discontinue an investigation, we will provide the employee with written reasons for our decision.