HC Deb 06 November 2000 vol 356 cc18-9W
Mr. Matthew Taylor

To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment, Transport and the Regions what procedures exist in his Department for a civil servant to report an action which(a) is illegal, improper or unethical, (b) is in breach of constitutional convention or a professional code, (c) may involve possible maladministration and (d) is otherwise inconsistent with the Civil Service Code. [134461]

Mr. Hill

Civil servants working in DETR have, at any time, the statutory right to express concerns under the Public Interest Disclosure Act 1998. Moreover, DETR employees also have a contractual obligation to report alleged breaches of the Civil Service Code in accordance with the procedures set out in the DETR Staff Handbook. The procedures require individuals, in the first instance, to approach a senior line manager and to ensure that evidence of criminal or unlawful activities by others are reported to the appropriate authorities. If the individual considers this to be inappropriate or they wish to take the matter further, they have the right to make a formal report to the Director of Human Resources, or other designated senior officer. It will always be assumed that the individual has made the report in good faith. A formal response will advise the individual that they have further rights to submit a written appeal to the Permanent Secretary and a further appeal to the Civil Service Commissioners.