Customs employees instructed to 'dob' on one another

by Iain Hopkins18 Feb 2013

According to a directive which has gone public, Customs and Border Protection staff have been told that under its new “mandatory reporting” system, they are expected to report on their colleagues' behaviour both during and outside of work hours.

The internal document specifically requests that in cases where staff observe another officer smoking marijuana, they are to report it. Another directive states that “While walking past a colleague's computer you notice the colleague looking up the details of an ex-partner on the system. Report it”, the Sydney Morning Herald reported.

From Friday, staff were told it would be “a legal mandatory requirement for all Customs and Border Protection workers to report any suspected serious misconduct”. Staff who witness “serious misconduct” and do not report it were told they would face an investigation, and could be reprimanded.

Under the new drug and alcohol testing regime set to begin from next month, staff will also be subject to random drugs and alcohol tests any time during work hours. The permissible blood alcohol limit for staff will be set at 0.02%.


  • by Don Smith 18/02/2013 3:28:43 PM

    Staff who commit to such a regime will need assurance that the employer will protect 'dobbers' against any recrimination by those who are dobbed.
    There will also have to be some thoughtful consideration given to what happens to persons who use these new requirements unfairly or maliciously. The initiative demands a high level of control. It's not one in which work colleagues will develop trust and reliance. One wonders what the long-term effects on the workplace (including quality of communication, sharing of info. etc) might be.

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