Disclosure of political activities

A justified community perception of political neutrality is critical to ensuring a high level of public trust and confidence in the independence and impartiality of the VEC.

Prospective employees and other appointees are asked to disclose their political memberships and activities prior to employment.

Section 17A of the Electoral Act 2002 authorises the VEC to discriminate against a person in relation to offering employment, or appointment as a member of the Audit Committee of the VEC, on the basis of political membership or activity. This discrimination is lawful under the Equal Opportunity Act 2010

What information should be disclosed?

We ask that applicants include anything that is likely to be relevant (see below) and we will consider everything that is disclosed.

Some disclosures may not be relevant to the area or role for which an applicant is being considered, but it’s important that applicants don’t mislead the VEC when making a political disclosure.

An applicant who doesn’t complete the disclosure form will not be appointed.

In line with the guidelines issued in the Victorian Government Gazette (G 45) in 2011, applicants should declare whether they:

  1. are or have been a member of any political party in the State, Territory or Commonwealth in the past 15 years
  2. have been involved in a course of conduct within the past 15 years directed to supporting the aims of a political party or an independent candidate in a State, Territory or Federal election
  3. have held the office of councillor for a Victorian council within the past 15 years
  4. have been involved in a course of conduct directed towards supporting the political aims of a Victorian councillor or candidate within the past 15 years
  5. have publicly engaged in conduct promoting a political position in respect of an issue currently before the electorate in the election for which you are to be employed
  6. are a member of a lobby group (not being a union or professional association), which promotes a political position in respect of an issue currently before the electorate in the election for which you are to be employed.

If an applicant has not engaged in any activities listed in criteria (1) to (6), the appointment process will continue.

Any activity consistent with criteria (1) or (2) will automatically exclude the applicant from a role with the VEC.

Any activity consistent with criteria (3) to (6) will be considered in terms of the role being sought; the nature of the activity and its potential to compromise the independence and impartiality of the VEC, and the time the activity took place.

Preferred applicants will be offered the role subject to satisfactory assessment of a political disclosure. A disclosure form will be provided. The Electoral Commissioner or delegate will assess all disclosures to determine if any disclosed activities have the potential to compromise the VEC's independence and impartiality. All disclosures are confidential and are handled in accordance with the VEC's Privacy Policy

If you’re not sure whether your past or present activities may prevent you from being employed or appointed to a role, please call the key contact person nominated in the VEC employment advertisement and ask for advice.

If you disagree with the VEC’s decision, you may request to have the decision reviewed by lodging a written request to:

Electoral Commissioner
Level 11, 530 Collins Street,
Melbourne, Vic. 3000
or email complaints@vec.vic.gov.au

If the decision was made by the Commissioner's delegate, the Commissioner will review the decision. If the decision was made by the Commissioner, the matter will be referred to a member of the VEC's Audit Committee for review.

To request an external review of the decision process, or of a decision made by the VEC’s Audit Committee write to:

The Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal
GPO Box 5408
Melbourne Vic 3001
Tel: 1300 01 8228 Fax: (03) 8685 1404
Email: vcat-hrd@justice.vic.gov.au

For further information contact:

Human Resource Management
Victorian Electoral Commission
Level 11, 530 Collins St
Melbourne VIC 3000
Tel: 131 832