In order to serve the public interest and to uphold the Code, POARA and the Professional Planner Regulation include a legislated complaint process whereby formal complaints of alleged professional misconduct against regulated members are submitted to APPI and reviewed. This is a substantive and serious process to ensure that the Institute’s duty to the public interest is maintained. This process also ensures members are adhering to the requirements of the Code, and that members who are the subject of any formal complaint are treated fairly, in accordance with principles of natural justice.
The public or a regulated member who genuinely believes that a regulated member of APPI has acted in contravention of the Professional Code of Practice and wishes to make a formal complaint of alleged professional misconduct may do so. As noted, this is a substantive and serious process. For any person interested in APPI’s complaints and discipline process, the following key information may be helpful:
- The Institute can only receive and review complaints of alleged professional misconduct against regulated members of APPI. The Institute cannot address complaints against non regulated members, or organizations and cannot broadly investigate, review or pass judgement on particular planning outcomes, proposals, projects, policies, plans, or decisions. For a list of all APPI regulated members, visit the Member Directory.
- The complaint process, and specifically the Professional and Occupational Associations Registration Act, neither obligates nor gives APPI any authority to investigate or pursue testimony from anyone other than the complainant and the member named in the complaint.
- The process to review and adjudicate any formal complaint of alleged professional misconduct is undertaken by a designate of the APPI Discipline Committee, assisted by staff and legal counsel as appropriate, and is guided by the complaint process as statutorily defined in POARA.
- To ensure fairness and integrity, all members who are the subject of a formal complaint are afforded the full opportunity to know the allegations against them, and to respond to the complaint fully. Additionally, the disciplinary process is primarily a confidential process, except in certain circumstances where misconduct is found and disciplinary action taken as part of the outcome includes publication of a summary of the decision on a named basis.
Resolution and Education
- The Institute’s disciplinary process includes an initial review, the possibility of a full, formal review hearing, if warranted, and disciplinary action against a member if determined appropriate. The process also provides for forms of ‘consent discipline’ action – a form of alternative dispute resolution – to suitably resolve complaints, where appropriate and achievable.
- The work of the Discipline Committee is also to generate educational outcomes for members, including written articles summarizing key issues and professional practice advice, and professional development offerings intended to inform members of their ethical professional responsibilities, and best practices for professional conduct, while also assisting them with questions they may have regarding ethical practice.