The University’s Commitments
The university commits itself to providing an environment that supports its employees in reaching their potential. As a socially responsible employer with an international outlook, the University of Canberra strives to achieve best practice in reward and recognition, supporting work-life balance, and supporting career and professional development of its employees. We make the following commitments in the pursuit of these aims:
The university is traditionally a place where freedom of speech is respected, where free and open discussion and intellectual debate is encouraged. The university is committed to act in a manner consistent with the protection and promotion of intellectual freedom for all employees within the University of Canberra, where expressed in a manner that is consistent with an employee’s responsibilities in relation to Public Comment
set out below.
For academic employees, intellectual freedom means the right of all academic employees to pursue critical and open enquiry, and to disseminate their views in areas of their academic expertise, within the law, without fear or favour.
A safe and healthy workplace
The University of Canberra is dedicated to the provision of a safe and healthy environment for its employees. We commit ourselves to fostering an environment of inclusion, which respects the rights of others, and encourages respectful interactions between colleagues. The university will set the expected standard through the provision of relevant policies and processes, and the timely resolution of workplace issues.
The University is committed to building a diverse community which reflects the diversity of the broader society in which we live. It is essential to the achievement of this aim that all employees commit themselves to the creation of a workplace environment that is not only free from discrimination on the grounds of race, gender, religion, disability, age, political persuasion, sexual orientation or caring responsibility, but one which openly embraces such diversity.
Engagement, consultation and communication
The university views its responsibilities to consult beyond the workplace relations context. We commit to engaging with employees and the broader community, to consult on the important decisions of strategy and direction, and to communicate with staff in an open, transparent and genuine manner.
The University of Canberra encourages and values the ongoing career development of its employees. In an ever changing higher education environment, the university is committed to the development of its employees. Through learning and development opportunities, mentoring, higher duties opportunities, and other support mechanisms, the university seeks to create and foster an environment which supports ongoing career planning and development.
Remuneration, reward and recognition
The University of Canberra prides itself in offering competitive remuneration. The University supports innovative reward and recognition mechanisms with a view to recognising the efforts of employees who contribute towards the strategic objectives of the organisation. Recognition of effort and output, and the link between remuneration and performance, is fundamental to the engagement of employees in the strategic direction and success of the organisation.
The University of Canberra strives to maintain the highest ethical standards in its actions and decision-making. Every employee is expected to carry out their duties in accordance with the law, lawful and reasonable instruction, to adhere to all applicable university policies and guidelines, and the ethical standards and shared behaviours outlined in this document.
Employees are expected at all times to accept responsibility and be accountable for their own actions, behaviours and outputs, and to:
Conflict of interest
- Treat all others with dignity and respect, consistent with legislative and policy obligations and help create an environment free from discrimination, bullying and other inappropriate behaviour;
- Treat students, colleagues, and members of the public with courtesy and with respect for their rights, duties and aspirations;
- Perform official duties with care, skill, fairness and diligence and to exercise their given authority for the purposes for which that authority has been granted;
- Perform their duties professionally;
- Act consistently with their responsibilities, and in a manner that does not bring the university into disrepute; and
- Abide by all requirements established by legislation and university policy, and ensure that no unsafe areas or practices go unreported.
A conflict of interest arises from a situation where an employee or university representative has a private interest which may influence, or appear to influence, the impartial, objective and effective performance of their official duties. The employee’s private interest includes any advantage to themselves, their family or friends and persons or organisations with whom they have a relation with.
It is incumbent upon the employee with an actual or potential conflict of interest to:
Incompatible outside interests/work
- Be alert to any actual, apparent or potential conflict of interest;
- Take steps to avoid such conflict;
- Disclose to their manager or supervisor any such conflict as soon as they become aware of it;
- Comply with any decision to remedy the perceived, potential or actual conflict of interest.
No employee will engage in any position or function, paid or unpaid, which conflicts with the proper performance of the duties for which they are engaged by the university. Where the employee is unclear whether an activity is compatible with their employment, they will seek advice from their supervisor.
Subject to the relevant policy, the employee is required to notify and seek approval of their supervisor to carry out defined activities or functions outside of their employment, ensuring that the proposed activity does not conflict with the University’s interest.
Gifts and benefits
No employee will demand or accept gifts, favours, hospitality or any other benefit for themselves or their family, close relatives and friends, or persons or organisations for which they have a relationship with or interests in, which may influence or appear to influence the impartiality with which the employee carries out their duties. This does not include conventional hospitality and minor gifts can be accepted when it is clear that they would not influence the employee's impartiality or give the appearance of influencing the employee's impartiality. Where the employee is in doubt they will seek advice from their supervisor.
Where an improper gift or benefit is offered or provided, an employee will report to their supervisor as soon as possible. Such gifts will be returned, auctioned with proceeds provided to the UC Foundation Endowment, or reported to the relevant authorities, as appropriate to the circumstances.
Appropriate use of authority, resources and information
Every employee will have due regard for the appropriate use of the authority of their position, university resources and information, and not seek advantage for themselves, their friends, family or associates.
Employees are expected to manage university resources effectively, efficiently, economically, and for the purposes for which they are intended.
Employees will only disclose university information in accordance with university policy and legislative requirements, including privacy and freedom of information legislation.
Public and social media comment
In making written or oral comments which purport to represent the views or authority of the University of Canberra and which might reasonably be expected to become public, employees have a responsibility to ensure that they hold proper authority to make such public comments, and that such authority has been given to them by a person holding actual authority on behalf of the university.
Where the matter of a media statement or letter relates directly to the academic or other specialised subject area of an employee's appointment, they may use the university's name and give the title of his or her university appointment in order to establish his or her credentials.
All employees have the right to express their views publicly on any matter of public interest provided that they make clear the fact that such views are those they hold as private citizens.
Compliance with the standards and the obligation to report breaches
Employees will familiarise themselves with this charter, relevant statute law and regulations, relevant university statute and rules, enterprise agreements, the university's strategic plan, university policies and procedures (referred to hereafter as "legislation and university policy") and seek to comply with them. When in doubt, employees will at the earliest moment refer matters to the relevant senior employees for independent guidance and resolution.
In certain circumstances breaches of ethical guidelines in this document may also involve breaches of other breaches of legislation and university policy which may require action being taken by the university to remedy the situation.
If an employee becomes aware of conduct which may be inconsistent with the charter, legislation or university policy, they have a responsibility to take immediate action by raising these issues with their immediate manager.
Complaints in relation to alleged breaches of the charter will be handled utilising the Grievance Resolution Procedure
contained in the Enterprise Agreement. Where the alleged breach constitutes misconduct or serious misconduct, the relevant section of the Enterprise agreement will apply.