Confidential reporting (whistleblowing) policy

The Vale of Aylesbury Housing Trust ("the Trust") is committed to the highest possible standards of openness, probity and accountability. In line with that commitment the aim of this policy is to encourage you to assist us in tackling fraud, corruption and other malpractice within the organisation and in setting standards of ethical conduct. These are very serious issues and we are committed to tackling any malpractice within the organisation at all levels. Our aim is to provide a way for you to report any concerns about malpractice to the Trust, which you reasonably believe are in the public interest.

The types of malpractice that we are concerned about include:

  • Any fraud including tenancy fraud, financial mismanagement or corruption;
  • Any irregularities involving accounting or other financial procedures;
  • The commission of any criminal offence;
  • Any conduct which is or maybe in conflict with the organisation’s interest such as involvement with a business competitor;
  • Any dishonesty or other irregularities in dealing with customers and suppliers;
  • Conduct which endangers the health and safety of employees and others working for the organisation
  • Failure to comply with any legal or professional obligation or regulatory requirements;
  • Bribery under our Anti-fraud and corruption Policy;
  • Breach of our internal policies and procedures including our Code of Conduct
  • Unauthorised disclosure of confidential information;
  • Negligence;
  • Damage to the environment; and
  • The delibarate concealment of any of the above matters

It is not possible to come up with an exhaustive definition of what we mean by malpractice and there may well be other issues of concern which we have not listed here but would nevertheless be considered as malpractice. You are encouraged to speak up if you have any concerns.

This policy is not meant to apply to a complaint. It should be used where there are concerns about suspected danger or wrongdoing, and where you reasonably believe that disclosure of your concern is in the public interest. You should contact the confidential reporting email account: Confidential.Reporting@vaht.co.uk. Please specify on your email who you would like your concern to be referred to.

You should raise your concerns with the Company Secretary in the first instance. We will investigate all concerns that are raised, even if they are raised anonymously. The more information that you can give us, the easier it is for us to progress our investigations. We will ensure that if you give your name, the person conducting the investigation will consider putting in place procedures to protect your identity. If you raise a concern on an anonymous basis, you should be aware that this may make it impossible for us to fully investigate your concerns.

To enable us to minimise the risk of future wrongdoing, the investigator may make recommendations for change including, but not limited to:

  • A review of internal policies and procedures;
  • The provision of additional support and training for employees;
  • Carrying out additional risk assessments;
  • Re-structuring of departments or directorates; and/or
  • Disciplinary action.

While we cannot always guarantee the outcome you are seeking, we will try to deal with your concern fairly and in an appropriate way.