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Our complaint procedure

If one of your staff or customers lodges a complaint against you or your business, we first check if it is covered by the law. If it is not, the complaint will not be accepted. If it is, we will write to you about the steps you need to take.

The complaint will be handled by one of our trained conciliators.

We will:

  • notify you in writing
  • send you a copy of the complaint
  • ask you for a written or verbal response
  • gather information and relevant documents from both sides
  • keep you informed of progress.

What to include in a response

In your response:

  • address the specific allegations
  • name and give contact details of any witnesses
  • include evidence or documents and any other relevant material.

What happens to a complaint?

There are three ways the complaint can be resolved.

  • The person who lodged the complaint may decide the issue is settled and withdraw their complaint. If this happens nothing more needs to be done.
  • The Equal Opportunity Commissioner may decide not to continue with the complaint because it lacks substance, is misconceived, frivolous or vexatious.
  • An agreement may be reached in conciliation.

During the process, the Equal Opportunity Commissioner:

  • must make all reasonable efforts to conciliate the complaint
  • can't make a judgement on whether discrimination, harassment or victimisation happened
  • may stop the process at any time
  • may refer the complaint to the Equal Opportunity Tribunal.

How can I speed up the process?

  • Contact us and meet with the conciliator.
  • Make available any evidence or documents.
  • Suggest relevant witnesses.
  • Seek advice from a lawyer or employers' organisation.

The conciliator can suggest ways to settle the complaint. Contact us if you need advice about how to respond to a complaint.

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