Know your rights : Trivial Complaints




Do you know what should happen if a trivial, one-off allegation is raised by a colleague about you?

Under PD2018_031 (Managing Misconduct PD), an initial review must be undertaken to determine if a disciplinary pathway should in fact occur.

Under clause 2.2 of the Managing Misconduct PD, where an initial review of the allegation indicates that the matter does not involve a misconduct issue (eg is assessed as a low level, low risk grievance or Code of Conduct issue, a performance issue etc), this outcome is to be clearly documented and the provisions of this Policy Directive are no longer applicable. Any further action appropriate to the circumstances should be taken in accordance with any other relevant policies. For example, if the issue raised is a workplace matter by a staff member which is causing them concern or distress (e.g. interpersonal conflict, the way work is allocated or managed, a perceived unfairness in the workplace), this should be dealt with as a grievance, rather than a disciplinary matter.

There are a variety of policy options and processes available other than a disciplinary approach. It is vitally important that a one-off minor matter is dealt with appropriately and fairly. Escalating a low-level allegation to a disciplinary process is unnecessary and tends to cause greater harm to the long-term working relationship of those involved and distress to all concerned.


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