Your right to complain
We support your right to complain. You can complain about either:
- the conduct or actions of individual AFP appointees
- our practices and procedures.
A complaint can be made even in circumstances where:
- the conduct or actions of the appointee occurred outside Australia
- the appointee was off-duty and their conduct breaches AFP professional standards
- the complainant cannot fully identify the AFP appointee concerned.
Complaints are dealt with depending on their seriousness and the issues involved:
- Minor complaints are managed by our Workplace Issues and Complaints Resolution (WICR) team.
- Serious misconduct and corruption matters are investigated by our Professional Standards (PRS) team.
- Serious corruption-related complaints are referred by PRS to the National Anti-Corruption Commission (NACC) for appropriate action. The NACC makes a determination on whether it, or PRS will investigate the corrupt conduct.
How to complain
Lodge your complaint directly with us by:
- filling out our Complaints form
- calling+61 2 5126 8323 (answering service only)
- visiting a police station in the Australian Capital Territory (ACT)
- mailing our Workplace Issues Complaints Resolution Team, GPO Box 401, Canberra City ACT 2601.
If your complaint relates to a national police check email our Criminal Records team at AFP-NationalPoliceChecks@mail2.converga.com.au.
After your complaint is lodged
Our Workplace Issues and Complaints Resolution team will assess your complaint. We may contact you if we need more information or clarification.
If your complaint is accepted for investigation, we will:
- give you an overview of the complaints process
- keep you updated about your complaint's progress
- give you an approximate timeframe for resolution.
Unreasonable complainant conduct
You have a right to complain about our perceived failings or issues that affect you. We welcome and value your feedback but won't accept unreasonable complainant conduct.
Unreasonable complainant conduct is conduct that raises substantial health, safety, resource or equity issues for the AFP, our staff or our clients. These sorts of behaviours include:
- aggressive or abusive language
- threats of violence and harm against people and property, including threats of self-harm
- malicious complaints made to damage a person’s career or reputation
- vexatious complaints made without substantive evidence
- unreasonable demands for action that falls outside of the scope and standards of this policy
- unreasonable persistence, including refusal to accept an outcome or resolution or pursuing a closed complaint without any new information.
Under section 40YB of the Australian Federal Police Act 1979 (Cth), it's an offence for a person to give information relating to a conduct or practice issue which they know to be false.
If you make threatening or abusive statements that indicate a risk of harm or violence, we can either:
- deal with your conduct if it is within the AFP's jurisdiction
- report your conduct to the appropriate state or territory authorities, including state and territory police or other law enforcement bodies.
If you are acting unreasonably in some other way, including using inappropriate language, we may protect our staff by:
- advising you that your feedback will not be assigned to the responsible business area
- inviting you to resubmit your feedback without using inappropriate language or sentiment.