Canberra & Region Quakers

Quaker Integrity in Public Office Project

“The Integrity Project is about Quakers going public with our testimony to integrity. The Project, independent from politicians and other organisations, contributes to the groundswell in Australia for Integrity in Public Office and the establishment of a strong federal Integrity Commission.”

Integrity in Public Office Project

(Source: https://www.quakersaustralia.info/concerns/quakers-taking-action/integrity-public-office-project )

The Integrity Project is about Quakers going public with our testimony to integrity. It is a concern we are taking into the public realm, as Quakers have done for centuries (learn more HERE). The Project, independent from politicians and other organisations, contributes to the groundswell in Australia for Integrity in Public Office and the establishment of a strong federal Integrity Commission.

This Project was discerned and endorsed as a Quaker concern at the annual gathering,Yearly Meeting, in July 2022.

The two-year Project consists of:

  • staying informed, encouraging and supporting proposed legislation to increase integrity ion public office by contacting politicians and on social media
  • maintaining a public witness by holding a banner at Parliament House in Canberra, with the words “Show Integrity in Public Office”.

Background to the Project and updates:

The project arose from a deep frustration and concern in Quaker Wies Schuiringa, about the lack of integrity in federal and State parliaments in 2021 and the lack of repercussions for politicians when they had obviously shown a lack of integrity. The report State Capture describes non-integrity in public office well. (A 2-page report summary can be found HERE.) Also read the Quaker Peace & Legislation Committee paper on State Capture-Corrupting Democracy  HERE.

  • On 7 September 2023 the third action will be held at Parliament House in Canberra. See information on the event HERE.

  • On 9 February 2023 the second action was held at Parliament House in Canberra. See photos and videos from the recent Integrity Project action HERE.
  • On 30 November 2022 the National Anti-Corruption Commission Bill, NACC was passed by the federal parliament.
  • On the 4 August 2022, Quakers held the first action at Parliament House in Canberra. View Friends speaking about the Integrity Project here and here.

What next?

  1. The National Anti-Corruption Commission (NACC) will be established by the middle of 2023.
  2. The Integrity in Public Office Project will continue, as there are many other matters that interfere with integrity in public office and upholding democratic processes.
  3. During 2023 several Bills will be presented in parliament such as whistle blower protection, caps and real time declaration of donations to political parties and during election and referendum campaigns, truth in political advertising and campaigning, establishing an independent commission to make appointments to Commonwealth authorities.
  4. The Integrity Project will follow the above processes closely and respond via social media to support greater integrity in public office. To change the subculture in and around federal parliament takes courage and requires an “integrated pro-integrity framework”.
  5. We often draw on the analysis by “integrity experts”, such as Transparency International Australia, The Centre for Public Integrity, The Australian Democracy Network, the Australia Institute, the Accountability Roundtable
  6. The next action at Parliament House will in September 2023.

How can you get involved?

  • Print out and share this flyer about the Project.
  • When integrity in public office issues are current, contact your federal member of Parliament or senator to advocate for strong measures to uphold integrity.
  • Contact your State or Territory governments and local governments to advocate for greater integrity in public office
  • Use your social media to support and encourage greater integrity in public office.

Contact information

For more information, contact Wies Schuiringa: wies.schuiringa1@gmail.com or 0439 024 397 or @IntegrityAust.

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