1.4. Ermha adheres to a progressive discipline approach as a means of ensuring a method which is fair and responsive.

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1 PURPOSE 1.1. Ermha is committed to providing a high quality system that supports Ermha s organisational objectives, vision and mission and does so through linking those objectives with staff goals, achievements and conduct Ermha seeks to provide a system that supports an organisational culture of individual excellence, responsibility and accountability and ensures high quality service provision Ermha is committed to ensuring that employees whose conduct is not satisfactory are given every opportunity to improve, treated fairly and are consistently throughout Ermha Ermha adheres to a progressive discipline approach as a means of ensuring a method which is fair and responsive. SCOPE 2.1. All Ermha staff DEFINITIONS 3.1. Staff- for the purposes of this policy Staff refers to all people under the formal guidance and supervision of an Ermha employee, including paid employees, students and volunteers Misconduct is the breach of an ethical code where the consequences either harm or have the potential to harm. Depending on the severity or regularity, misconduct may either be addressed through Disciplinary Action Policy & Procedure, or through this policy and procedure. Examples of misconduct include, but are not limited to; repeated tardiness, failure to adhere to the Ermha dress code, poor representation of the organisation Serious misconduct is a significant breach of a code of ethics, knowingly putting someone in danger, or any instance where federal or state law is broken. Serious misconduct will be addressed exclusively through Disciplinary Action Policy & Procedure. Examples of serious misconduct include, but are not limited to; fraud, theft, assault, inappropriate sexual contact with a client, drug or alcohol use while at work Determination of action Determining action appropriate to the behaviour or conduct up to and including termination, considering the severity of the conduct, the circumstances and previous history Disciplinary action Action based on procedural fairness, used by managers to ensure a standardised approach when addressing unsatisfactory performance or misconduct by an employee Measures for disciplinary action at Ermha include: Verbal warning Measure where Supervisor tells employee that their performance or conduct is not acceptable and makes a note that this has occurred. Page 1 of 5

2 Formal written warning A letter written to an employee as a disciplinary measure, informing them that their performance or conduct is not acceptable and proceeding steps Demotion Reduction of the pay range of an employee and a change in the job duties and responsibilities Transfer Employee changes teams and/or role Suspension Temporarily prohibiting an employ from performing their duties. Suspension can be paid or unpaid depending on the circumstances Dismissal Termination of employment, initiated by Ermha Progressive discipline A process of escalation for dealing with job-related behaviour that does not meet expected performance standards. The purpose of progressive discipline is to assist the employee to understand a performance problem and provide an opportunity for improvement, if this opportunity is not utilised then an escalation in disciplinary action occurs. An example of progressive disciplinary action is: POLICY 1 st instance: Counselling or a verbal warning 2 nd instance: A written warning 3 rd instance: Suspension or demotion 4 th instance: Dismissal 4.1. Ermha will address staff misconduct via a formal and fair system. The principles of this system will ensure consideration, response, confidentiality and objectivity and ensure the continued delivery of Ermha s high quality services Ermha will provide a system for supporting staff to address performance or conduct that contravenes Ermha s principles, mission statement and/or other policies and procedures, in a way that is systematic, fair and comprehensive Ermha will ensure that staff are given the opportunity to go through a performance improvement process (see HR 305 Performance Improvement Policy and Procedure) where this is appropriate. For serious breaches of misconduct disciplinary action may be followed in the first instance Ermha will ensure that disciplinary measures employed match the seriousness of the behaviour. Deviations from the progressive discipline sequence may occur where circumstances warrant this. Page 2 of 5

3 5.1. Principles of best practice in Disciplinary Action Managers in conjunction with Manager of HR and Assets will ensure that, in all instances where disciplinary action is considered or taken, that a range of best principles and practice measures are employed. These include: Appropriate assessment and investigation is undertaken to identify key facts before any other action is taken The staff member involved is: Aware of the nature and perceived seriousness of the alleged misconduct Given an opportunity to adequately state their case at an appropriate stage within the process Given the opportunity to correct or comment on any statements made in relation to the alleged misconduct Treated in a manner consistent with the principles of natural justice, including the right to an unbiased process of judgement Advised on findings from investigation undertaken Given appropriate opportunity to respond to decision on disciplinary action prior to action being imposed Made aware of rights and appeals mechanisms Adequate documentation is kept throughout the process and securely stored Any investigation and resulting disciplinary action/s is/are completed in a timely manner, with staff member kept informed of progress Assessment and investigation into alleged misconduct Allegations of alleged misconduct will be reported to Managers. This should occur in writing however the relevant Manager with the Manager HR and Assets will assist to determine this, and in lieu of a written report will document the complaint Manager HR and Assets will, with the relevant Manager, make a preliminary assessment of any allegations of misconduct Manager HR and Assets will, should the matter warrant further investigation, advise the staff member in writing the nature of the allegations in sufficient detail as is reasonable in the circumstances. In addition the staff member will be provided with information on: The process undertaken The right to formally respond to the allegation/s The right to have a representative present at any meetings Services available to them, including the Employee Assistance Program Timeframe for providing a written response (10 days) Manager HR and Assets will, in conjunction with the CEO, notify other relevant parties such as the Police where this is necessary. Page 3 of 5

4 At the time allegations of misconduct are made, the employee may be suspended with or without pay. Suspension will occur where: The alleged misconduct is of a nature that causes serious risk to the health and safety of another person The staff member has not adequately responded to written allegations The staff member has not adequately modified their conduct, behaviour or performance Manager HR and Assets will, in conjunction with the Manager lead any investigation into serious misconduct Manager HR and Assets will schedule a meeting with the staff member. The staff member may bring external support to this meeting Manager HR and Assets will explain that the meeting may be voice recorded with the employee s consent. The employee will receive a copy of the voice recording and/or minutes from the meeting Recommendations and decision about possible disciplinary action to be taken At the conclusion of the investigation, if appropriate evidence is found to support the allegation/s, a recommendation to commence disciplinary action may be made The outcome of an investigation will be determined on a case by case basis but broadly should result in one of the following actions: No action Final written warning Performance Improvement Plan (see HR 305 Performance Improvement Policy and Procedure) Demotion Internal Transfer Dismissal Executives will be responsible for making the final decision. The following will be considered in doing so: Nature of the incident Evidence collected during the investigation Findings of investigation conducted Previous work history of the employee Nature of the employee s work role 5.4. Communication of findings and actions Manager HR and Assets will advise the staff member in writing of their determination Appeals The staff member has the right to appeal the decision (see ORG 103 Complaint and Dispute Resolution Policy and Procedure). Page 4 of 5

5 Should the disciplinary action result in dismissal, employees also have the right to investigate appeal options (see HR 326 Termination and Exit Policy and Procedure) External engagement Where deemed appropriate and at the discretion of HR and Assets or the Executive team, a suitably qualified external professional may be engaged to; Lead an investigation Review evidence and make a recommendation regarding a course of action Advise and/or counsel HR, Managers or Executive Members 5.7. Record keeping HR will ensure all documents, files, letters, transcripts and other relevant information pertaining to disciplinary action is kept on the employee file. FORMS AND ATTACHMENTS Managers Guide (underperformance and disciplinary action) RELATED DOCUMENTS ORG 103 Complaint and Dispute Resolution Policy and Procedure HR 305 Performance Improvement Policy and Procedure HR 326 Termination and Exit Policy and Procedure REFERENCES VERSION CONTROL VERSION NO. DATE APPROVED: SHORT DESCRIPTION OF AMENDMENT REVIEW DATE 1. 16/04/2014 New Policy 01/04/2015 Page 5 of 5

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