Public sector whistleblowing stage 2 reforms

Closed 22 Dec 2023

Opened 16 Nov 2023

Feedback updated 26 Apr 2024

We asked

The Australian Government has conducted a public consultation on the second stage of public sector whistleblowing reforms. We released a consultation paper in November 2023 seeking views on what reforms are needed to the Public Interest Disclosure Act 2013 (Cth) (the PID Act) and related measures to ensure the public sector whistleblowing framework remains fit for purpose and accessible for public officials to report wrongdoing.

The consultation paper asked 24 questions on a wide range of matters, including how to address the underlying complexity of the scheme and what steps can be taken to provide effective and accessible protections to public sector whistleblowers.

The second stage of reforms is an opportunity to further improve the public sector whistleblowing framework. It follows on from a first stage of reforms in 2023 to deliver priority amendments to the PID Act to make immediate improvements to the public sector whistleblowing framework, ahead of the commencement of the National Anti-Corruption Commission.

You said

We received 56 submissions to this consultation. The submissions came from a range of stakeholders:

  • 9 submissions from government agencies, including one state government agency
  • 19 submissions from individuals
  • 28 submissions from organisations.

Key issues raised in the consultation included:

  • Whistleblower protections, including:
    • support for a new body to protect whistleblowers
    • expanding the circumstances in which external disclosures are protected under the PID Act
    • allowing people to access additional types of professional support and assistance in relation their disclosure
    • easier access to civil remedies as well as more types of civil remedies, particularly in relation to any failures by an agency to fulfil its duty to protect whistleblowers from reprisal.
  • Simplification or redrafting of the PID Act, including:
    • making the legislation easier to understand and navigate for whistleblowers
    • increasing consistency between the whistleblower protection frameworks that apply to public, private and not-for-profit sectors.
  • Support for a ‘no wrong doors’ approach, including:
    • increasing the types of officials within agencies who can receive protected disclosures
    • improving referral processes to ensure disclosures can be, and are, passed to an appropriate agency for consideration.

We did

We will use the responses to this consultation to inform future policy development and decisions for the second stage of public sector whistleblowing reforms.

Thank you to everyone involved in the consultation process for your time and engagement, sharing your views, information and ideas.

Published responses

View submitted responses where consent has been given to publish the response.


The Australian Government invites submissions on a consultation paper as part of the second stage of public sector whistleblowing reform.

The first stage of reforms, which commenced on 1 July 2023, amended the Public Interest Disclosure Act 2013 (Cth) (the PID Act) to deliver immediate improvements for public sector whistleblowers and support for disclosures of corrupt conduct to the National Anti-Corruption Commission (NACC). These reforms implemented 21 of the 33 recommendations from the 2016 Review of the Public Interest Disclosure Act 2013 by Mr Philip Moss AM (the Moss Review).

The second stage of reforms is an opportunity to improve the accessibility and effectiveness of the PID Act, and to consider whether additional supports for whistleblowers are needed. This includes consideration of outstanding recommendations from the Moss Review, recent parliamentary reports, external reviews and reports from stakeholders, and significant changes to the integrity landscape since the PID Act was introduced, including the establishment of the NACC.

Why we are consulting

This consultation is an opportunity to shape further reforms to the public sector whistleblowing scheme established by the PID Act. In particular, we are seeking feedback on the issues identified in the consultation paper.

We are interested in your views on what reforms are required to the PID Act and related measures to ensure the public sector whistleblowing framework remains fit for purpose and accessible for public officials to report wrongdoing.

Who we want to hear from

We welcome feedback from all interested stakeholders, including individuals, non-government organisations, government agencies, and academia.

Consultation period

  • Consultation opens: Thursday, 16 November 2023
  • Consultation closes: Friday, 22 December 2023

About this consultation

This survey contains 6 parts that relate to the issues identified in the consultation paper:

  1. About you
  2. Your views on issue 1: Making a disclosure within government
  3. Your views on issue 2: Pathways to make a disclosure outside of government
  4. Your views on issue 3: Protections and remedies under the PID Act
  5. Your views on issue 4: Oversight and integrity agencies, and consideration of a potential Whistleblower Protection Authority or Commissioner
  6. Your views on issue 5: Clarity of the PID Act

The consultation paper that accompanies this survey provides more information about the second stage reforms and details how you can have your say.

Consultation documents

How we use your information

The information you give us will help to shape the next stage of reforms to the public sector whistleblower framework. It will only be used for this purpose.

We may publish your submission, unless you request for it to remain confidential, or if we consider (for any reason) that the submission or any part of the submission should not be made public. We may redact parts of published submissions, as appropriate. You can also ask that your submission only be published anonymously.

If you advise us to publish your submission, you will be required to acknowledge and agree that you have made all reasonable efforts to:

  • clearly label material in your submission where the copyright is owned by a third party
  • ensure that the third party has consented to this material being published.

Even if you advise us to publish your submission, we reserve the right to leave unpublished any submission or part thereof, in particular if we consider that:

  • publishing a submission or part of a submission would be in breach of section 20 of the Public Interest Disclosure Act 2013
  • disclosure of information may be a public interest disclosure made under section 26 of the Public Interest Disclosure Act 2013
  • a submission breaches our submission requirements set out, in particular, contains photos, file size (larger than 25MB), or file type requirements specified.

This public consultation process is seeking views on reform to the framework and is not an appropriate forum to attempt to make a public interest disclosure.

We do not provide legal advice to the public and cannot comment on any particular public interest disclosures or on any other aspect of the PID Act, including reprisals.

Submissions may be subject to freedom of information requests, or requests from Parliament, which we will consider and respond to in line with regulatory requirements.

Contact us

If you need help to complete the online survey, please send an email and we will contact you shortly.

Attorney-General’s Department
3–5 National Circuit


  • Government
  • Legislation
  • Corruption