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Integrity Commissioner

Complaints process

As part of their commitment to accountability, the Members of Council have approved a process for investigating and reporting on complaints alleging that they have breached their obligations under the Code of Conduct for Members of Council. This process is set out in the Complaint Procedures which form part of the Code at Appendix B.

Note ‑ The Integrity Commissioner’s jurisdiction to accept complaints relates only to complaints which are made about the conduct of the sixteen Members of Council.

If your complaint is about the conduct of City Staff, it may be submitted by contacting 311.

Flowchart of the complaint process
Complaint process

  • Formal
    • Facilitated discussion
      • Successful resolution
      • Unsuccessful (may file formal complaint)
  • Informal
    • Triage
      • No jurisdiction, out of time, frivolous, no useful purpose, matter already pending
        1. No investigation
        2. Dismissal letter
      • Investigation
        • Breach
          1. Report (to Council)
          2. Council deliberates on sanctions
        • No Breach
          • Report (only to the parties)

How to request an investigation

All complaints are handled in accordance with the Complaint Procedures, Appendix B to the Code of Conduct for Members of Council.

Anyone who identifies or witnesses behaviour or activity by a Member of Council that they believe contravenes the Rules of the Code of Conduct for Members of Council may pursue the matter either through the informal or formal complaint processes set out in the Complaint Procedures.

Informal complaint procedure

Individuals are encouraged to use the informal complaint process to address behaviour or activity that they believe contravenes the Code of Conduct for Members of Council.
The informal process involves:

  1. Advising the Member that the behaviour or activity appears to contravene the Code of Conduct;
  2. Encouraging the Member to acknowledge and agree to stop the prohibited behaviour or activity and to avoid future occurrences of the prohibited behaviour or activity;
  3. Requesting the Integrity Commissioner to assist in informal discussion of the alleged complaint with the Member in an attempt to settle or resolve the issue;
  4. If applicable, confirming to the Member your satisfaction with the Member’s response; or, advising the Member of your dissatisfaction with their response.

Formal complaint procedure

Individuals who wish to make a formal complaint must do so by filling in the Formal Complaint Form and submitting it by email, fax or mail to:

Office of the Integrity Commissioner
c/o 2670 – 360 Main Street
Winnipeg, MB  R3C 3Z3
Fax: 204-943-3934

Complaints must be signed by an identifiable individual. No anonymous complaints will be considered.
If you require accommodation to submit a complaint, please contact the Integrity Commissioner.

PDF Complaint Form - English PDF Complaint Form - French

Complaints must be signed by an identifiable individual. No anonymous complaints will be considered.

Frequently asked questions

Complaints may be filed by a member of the public, Staff, Council or by Council as a whole.

No. The complaint form requires that all formal complaints be made in writing and signed by an identifiable individual. The identity of the complainant, however, will only be disclosed in circumstances where fairness requires disclosure. In some instances, the complainant’s identity will also be apparent because of the nature of the complaint. The complainant will be notified in advance if their identity is going to be disclosed.

Formal complaints may be submitted by following the process set out in the Complaint Procedures and using the Formal Complaint Form.

No. There is no cost to submitting a complaint.

No. Part A of the Complaint Procedures sets out an informal process which allows a complainant to address concerns by either contacting the Member of Council directly or by asking the Integrity Commissioner to assist in informal resolution of the alleged complaint.

Individuals are encouraged to use this process as the first means of resolving an issue. With the consent of the complainant and the Council Member who is the subject of the complaint, the Integrity Commissioner may participate in an informal resolution between the parties, acting as mediator/conciliator of the issues relating to the complaint.

No. The informal process is not a prerequisite to submitting a formal complaint.


When a formal complaint is received the Integrity Commissioner must perform a preliminary assessment to determine whether they will proceed with an investigation of the matter.

Section 7 of the Formal Complaint Procedures says:

If the Integrity Commissioner is of the opinion that:

  1. the conduct complained about is not within the Integrity Commissioner’s jurisdiction to investigate; or
  2. the complaint is frivolous, vexatious, or not made in good faith; or
  3. there are no grounds or insufficient grounds for an investigation, or that it is unlikely that the complaint will succeed; or
  4. an investigation would serve no useful purpose;

the Integrity Commissioner shall not conduct an investigation and, where this becomes apparent in the course of an investigation, shall terminate the investigation.

The Integrity Commissioner also has the discretion to deal with a formal complaint without conducting an investigation if they see an opportunity for a successful resolution.

The Integrity Commissioner will not accept complaints relating to incidents which occurred before February 22, 2017.
Complaints must generally be made:

  1. within 60 days after the date of the conduct giving rise to the complaint.

The Integrity Commissioner has discretion to accept a complaint after the expiry of this time limit, as outlined in s.5 of the Formal Complaint Procedure.

In a municipal election year, the Integrity Commissioner will not accept any complaints during the campaign period.  The “campaign period” is defined as follows:

  1. in a general election begins on May 1 in the year of the election and ends on the start of the new term of Council as defined in Section 18(1) of The City of Winnipeg Charter; and
  2. in an election to fill a vacancy, begins on the day when the senior election officer receives the direction from the City Clerk to hold the election and ends on the start of the term as defined in section 18(2) of The City of Winnipeg Charter.

The Complaint Procedures set out the following process for investigating complaints:

  • the Integrity Commissioner:
    1. provides the Member whose conduct is in question with the details of the complaint and any supporting material;
    2. requests that the Member provide a written response to the complaint and any supporting material within ten days;
    3. provides a copy of the Member’s response to the complainant with a request that the complainant provide any further reply within ten days;
    4. provides a copy of that further reply, if any, to the Member.
  • the Integrity Commissioner may seek information from anyone relevant to the complaint and may receive such information either in person or in writing;
  • the Integrity Commissioner may ask to speak to anyone, or access and examine any documents including electronic materials and may enter any City work location, relevant to the complaint for the purpose of investigation and potential resolution of the complaint;
  • the Integrity Commissioner may make interim reports to Council where necessary and as required to address any instances of interference, obstruction, delay or retaliation encountered during the investigation.

No.  The Integrity Commissioner does not have the authority to investigate complaints about City employees or staff who work in the offices of Members of Council.

Staff who work in the offices of Members of Council are required as part of their employment, to acknowledge that they will be governed by the requirements of the Code of Conduct for Members of Council. They are regulated by their respective employers who are the Members of Council.

If the Integrity Commissioner decides that there has been no breach of the Code they will provide a report to the Member of Council about whom the complaint was made and the complainant, advising of that determination and will generally not report publicly to Council about the matter except as part of an annual report.

Where the Integrity Commissioner finds that the complaint has been sustained either in whole or in part, the Integrity Commissioner shall report to Council publicly, outlining their findings and any recommended corrective sanctions.

The complainant will be provided with a copy of the Integrity Commissioner’s report to Council when the report is placed on the agenda for the meeting at which the report is to be considered.

When Council receives a report from the Integrity Commissioner following an investigation, it must consider and act on that report forthwith. Council has the option to impose sanctions based on the recommendations of the Integrity Commissioner.

The Code of Conduct lists the following sanctions for misconduct:

  1. the Member may be reprimanded;
  2. the Member may be required to make a public apology;
  3. the Member may be requested to return a gift or benefit or, reimburse the donor for the value of the gift or benefit;
  4. the Member may be removed from a committee; and/or
  5. the Mayor may remove the Member from his or her position as Chair of a committee.

The Integrity Commissioner can be reached by email at: or by telephone at (204) 954-0752.

Please contact the Integrity Commissioner by email at or by telephone at (204) 954-0752

If a person is not satisfied with the process the Integrity Commissioner has followed, they may bring the matter to the attention of the Manitoba Ombudsman:

The Ombudsman is not, however, an appeal mechanism for reviewing the Integrity Commissioner’s decisions.

Last update: November 10, 2023

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