Complain about a government official or councillor

There are various independent complaint agencies in Queensland and across Australia that will listen to and investigate your complaint about government departments and local governments.

Each agency has different roles, responsibilities and powers, so you must direct your concerns to the right one.

Find out what to do if you have a complaint about a government employee or local government councillor on this page. Or learn about making a complaint against a police officer.

Government employee behaviour and customer service issues

If you have a complaint about a government employee, you can complain directly to the relevant department or local government concerned. Or you can make your complaint online.

If you are unhappy with the response to your complaint, you can contact the Queensland Ombudsman. They will not consider your complaint unless you have tried dealing with it through the appropriate agency first.

The Queensland Ombudsman independently reviews the actions of Queensland Government agencies, local government decisions and some universities. You can read their tips for complaining to the organisation involved.

Councillor conduct

If you have a complaint about a councillor’s conduct, you can complain to the Office of the Independent Assessor. They do not deal with complaints about council decisions—only the conduct of a councillor.

The Independent Assessor will assess and, if appropriate, investigate and prosecute a disciplinary matter before the Councillor Conduct Tribunal. The Independent Assessor also prosecutes councillors criminally in the magistrates court if they commit offences under the Local Government Act 2009.

However, if a complaint is made recklessly or is known to be untrue, a complainant may also be prosecuted under the Local Government Act.

More serious complaints of corrupt conduct

You can report suspected corrupt conduct to the Crime and Corruption Commission (CCC). You do not need proof; you just need sufficient reason to believe that the corrupt conduct has occurred.

Alternatively, you may report suspected corrupt conduct to the public sector agency concerned. The CEO is then obliged to report the matter to the CCC if they have a reasonable suspicion that corrupt conduct has occurred.

Visit the CCC website for more information about how to report corrupt conduct.

Don’t make false complaints

You may be prosecuted under the Crime and Corruption Act 2001 if you make a complaint or provide information to the CCC recklessly or knowing it to be untrue. Such complaints are serious because they waste public resources and unfairly damage reputations.

More information

Find out how the government stays accountable.