What changes are being made?
An Agency Head can determine whether a person's name should not be published in the Public Service Gazette where it is necessary, on the basis of work-related or personal circumstances, to protect the person's identity.
From 1 December 2016, agencies no longer need to seek approval from the Australian Public Service Commissioner to withhold a person's name from notification in the Public Service Gazette.
Where the notification relates to a promotion that is subject to review, agencies must still notify all eligible parties of their review rights and advise the Merit Protection Commissioner that this has occurred.
What do agencies need to do?
Agencies will need to determine the specific circumstances where it would be appropriate to withhold a person's name from publication. This may include where an employee has concerns for their personal safety, as supported by a legal protection order or other evidence accepted by the Agency Head, such as medical evidence, police reports or statutory declarations.
Relevant circumstances may also include where the protection of employees' identity is necessary to maintain operational security.
What transition arrangements need to be put in place?
From 1 December 2016, a decision to withhold a person's name from publication will rest with Agency Heads. This includes decisions made prior to commencement of the new Directions that have not yet been notified.
What is the legislative basis?
- Sections 34 and 54 of the Australian Public Service Commissioner's Directions 2016.