IONA

Whistle Blower Policy

Issued: 01/2010

The following statement describes Iona College's policy on whistle blowing and applies to all employees including full time, part time, and temporary.

Iona College is committed to the highest possible standards of ethical, moral and legal business conduct. In line with this commitment and Iona's commitment to open communication, this policy aims to provide an avenue for employees to raise concerns and reassurance that they will be protected from retaliation, harassment, reprisals or victimization for whistle blowing in good faith. If an employee feels that their anonymity is not required then they should contact the Director for Human Resources or immediate supervisor in order to file a complaint. Employees may also follow our existing grievance procedure (see Human Resources Policy #11.1 "Grievance Procedures"; or the Harassment and Discrimination Policy).

The whistle blowing policy is intended to cover serious concerns that could have a large impact on Iona College, such as actions that:

  • may lead to incorrect financial reporting;
  • are unlawful;
  • are not in line with college policy, including the Rules of Conduct (Human Resources Policy #12.2); or
  • otherwise amount to serious improper conduct or conflict of interest (Human Resources Policy #2.14).

Regular business matters that do not require anonymity should be directed to your supervisor or the Director for Human Resources and are not addressed by this policy.

The policy allows employees to remain anonymous at their option. Concerns expressed anonymously will be investigated, but consideration will be given to:

  • the seriousness of the issue raised;
  • the credibility of the concern; and
  • the likelihood of confirming the allegation from attributable sources.

Procedure

Iona College has contracted with a third party vendor to provide a "whistle blower hotline," which is managed and staffed by an outside company in order to maintain the anonymity of the complainant. Reports to the whistle blower hotline can be made in the following ways:

Employees who contact the Hotline will have the ability to remain anonymous if they choose. Please note that the information provided by you may be the basis of an internal and/or external investigation into the issue you are reporting and your anonymity will be protected to the extent possible by law. However, your identity may become known during the course of the investigation. Complaints are submitted by Lighthouse to Iona College or its designee, and may or may not be investigated at the sole discretion of Iona College.

Although the employee is not expected to prove the truth of an allegation, the employee needs to demonstrate to the person contacted that there are sufficient grounds for concern. Malicious allegations may result in disciplinary action up to and including termination of employment.

How the Complaint will be Handled

Action(s) taken will depend on the nature of the concern. Initial inquiries will be made to determine whether an investigation is appropriate, and the form that it should take. Some concerns may be resolved by agreed action without the need for investigation.

Whether reported to Iona College personnel or through the Hotline, the complainant will be given the opportunity to receive follow-up on their concern:

  • acknowledging that the concern was received;
  • possibly indicating how the matter will be dealt with;
  • telling them whether further investigations will follow.

The amount of contact between the complainant and the body investigating the concern will depend on the nature of the issue, the clarity of information provided, and whether the complainant remains accessible for follow-up. Further information may be sought from the complainant. Complainants will be able to create a password which will allow them to re-contact the Hotline and anonymously continue dialogue if they wish. Subject to legal constraints the complainant may receive information about the outcome of any investigations.

Iona College reserves the right to modify or amend this policy at any time.