Transparency and Feedback

This policy will apply to activities and operations of CBM Australia, at all times.

Introduction

CBM Australia is committed to operating openly and transparently, while placing a high value on feedback and continuous improvement. Making CBM Australia activity and results as plain and understandable as possible leads to better outcomes for all stakeholders. In tandem with a responsive and fair complaints handling process, accountability and transparency reduces the likelihood of adverse impacts and diminished trust.

CBM Australia will share as much information as possible about its operations and impact, while balancing legal and practical limitations.

CBM Australia aligns itself to the transparency and complaints handling expectations of the Australian Charities and Not-for-Profits Commission (ACNC), of the Australian Council for International Development (ACFID) and of the Australian Government’s Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT).

Transparent information

CBM Australia openly shares on the CBM Australia website:

  • its current Strategic Plan
  • an Annual Report, which meets and seeks to exceed the requirements of ACFID and DFAT;
  • Audited Annual Financial Statements, which meet and seek to exceed the requirements of ACFID, the ACNC and all applicable accounting standards;
  • its Constitution, Board Charter and Board composition;
  • key governance policies relating to Privacy, Transparency and Feedback, Conflict of Interest, Development Activities, Safeguarding and Prevention of Sexual Exploitation, Abuse and Harassment; and
  • its Code of Conduct.

Historic annual and financial reporting is available on the CBM Australia website covering at least the prior 10 years.
CBM Australia is open to all requests for information. Most requests can be dealt with by directing enquirers to existing publically available information. If a request requires significant resource allocation in order to respond, CBM Australia will consider its stewardship stance; including the interests of primary stakeholders and supporters. CBM Australia will only consider bona fide requests for information; being requests which are not frivolous, excessive or abusive.

What information is not able to be shared?

CBM Australia will not share information that breaches or compromises:

  • privacy;
  • confidentiality;
  • safety and security; including for partners, their staff and associates;
  • the integrity of internal communications and business development.

Feedback valued

CBM Australia places a high value on receiving feedback and commits to listening, responding to and reviewing any comments or complaints from any stakeholder or other member of the public. This includes encouraging all our partners to have a feedback/complaints mechanism in place to receive and be supported to deal with comment or concerns raised outside of Australia regarding CBM programs, in accordance with the CBM Programme Feedback and Complaints Policy 2019.

On the CBM Australia website, clear and easily understandable information is given about how people can give feedback or make complaint. Confidentiality is maintained throughout all contact regarding the feedback or complaint, except as required in order to respond quickly and fairly. Anonymity can be preserved, while it may not then be possible to provide a remedy to the individual concerned. When CBM Australia reviews and analyses complaint information generally within the organisation, in order to maximise learning and improvement, identifying personal information is removed to the fullest extent possible.

CBM Australia takes special care to facilitate feedback/complaints from children and vulnerable adults. Contact can be made and maintained by a friend or advocate of any complainant on their behalf.

CBM Australia will make every reasonable effort to investigate all the relevant circumstances and information available surrounding a received complaint. The level of investigation will be determined by the seriousness and frequency of the complaint made. A complaint will not be dealt with by any employee or representative of CBM Australia who is implicated in the complaint.

CBM Australia responds to complaints as soon as possible, and within 3 business days of receiving them. The intent is to resolve any complaint as quickly as possible, and within 30 days unless there are exceptional circumstances. If a complaint is not resolved within 30 days, CBM Australia will still inform the complainant of progress and keep them informed every 14 days following.

CBM Australia consistently makes clear the option, and mechanism, to refer a complaint to ACFID, including for concerns relating to CBM Australia’s compliance with the ACFID Code of Conduct.

These mechanisms, and a triage Process document that supports CBM Australia staff in implementing this Policy, apply to feedback or complaints generated external to the organisation. Internal concerns and processes are covered by other carefully managed Standards within CBM Australia. Processes in place are conscious of the interplay between this Policy, and CBM Australia’s Whistleblowing Policy, Safeguarding Policy and Prevention of Sexual Exploitation, Abuse and Harassment Policy.

The Board and management of CBM Australia are fully committed to the principles of this policy. Any breach of strategic significance or any material risk associated with this policy will be reported to the Board in a timely manner.