Reports that an independent inquiry is to be set up to investigate claims of bullying and harassment at the CSIRO have been welcomed’ by the CSIRO Staff Association.
Staff at the agency have been told in a memo that an “eminent and independent” person would inquire into claims by former staff of mistreatment at various CSIRO workplaces.
It was noted in the memo that the inquiry would not provide a mechanism for financial compensation.
Secretary of the CSIRO Staff Association, Sam Popovski said bullying was a serious issue and the Organisation was not immune to it.
Staff welcome independent inquiry
“We’ll wait to see the full detail about the independent inquiry - including the terms of reference and the people who will conduct it - before offering an informed opinion,” Mr Popovski said.
“Any initiative that aims to resolve past claims of bullying by former staff is worthy of consideration.”
He said the Association would continue to focus on the needs of existing staff by providing support and representation to its members in the workplace.
“We have a zero-tolerance policy to any behaviour that poses a risk to the physical and mental wellbeing of current CSIRO employees - that includes bullying and harassment,” Mr Popovski said.
“The Staff Association - through our organisers and workplace delegates - regularly provides advice, support and representation to members across a range of workplace issues, including bullying and harassment.
“We’ll continue to provide confidential support to members with individual grievances and seek to resolve their problems while maintaining their privacy and seek to ensure that proper investigation processes are followed and where allegations are proven those responsible are held accountable.”
Mr Popovski said while there was plenty of room for improvement, the overwhelming majority of CSIRO employees were decent, courteous and treated each other with respect.