Treasury Board of Canada Secretariat
Symbol of the Government of Canada

ARCHIVED - The Financial Administration Act: Responding to Non-compliance - Meeting the Expectations of Canadians

Warning This page has been archived.

Archived Content

Information identified as archived on the Web is for reference, research or recordkeeping purposes. It has not been altered or updated after the date of archiving. Web pages that are archived on the Web are not subject to the Government of Canada Web Standards. As per the Communications Policy of the Government of Canada, you can request alternate formats on the "Contact Us" page.

8. Conclusion

This review has provided the government with a thorough and comprehensive look at the complex issues surrounding compliance and sanctions under the FAA and related policies. While public attention has focussed on recent instances of mismanagement, it is clear that the vast majority of those charged with public sector management responsibilities carry out their duties with integrity and honesty. Comparative research also confirms that Canada is on par with other jurisdictions in the areas of criminal sanctions, debt recovery, investigations, and discipline.

Furthermore, the review has provided a better understanding of opportunities to strengthen and improve the integrated legislation, policies, and statutes that comprise the compliance framework for the FAA and set the context for managing in the Public Service.

A number of broad and important conclusions and understandings need to be emphasized:

  • The principles behind the legislative and administrative frameworks are sound. The difficulty arises from the accumulation of rules and policies, etc. This complexity contributes to confusion and errors.
  • "Mismanagement" includes a wide variety of behaviours ranging from a mistake or error, up to and including criminal activity such as theft or fraud. Regardless of where mismanagement falls on the spectrum, appropriate tools and responses are generally available.
  • Education and training at all levels of the Public Service is of paramount importance both to addressing mismanagement and to helping public service employees do their jobs properly.
  • Consistency is crucial in addressing mismanagement. Sanctions must always be applied with the primary goal of restoring compliance.
  • Managers must be held accountable for mismanagement that falls within their area of responsibility. Accountability must start from the top. This is how a shift in culture and values takes place. Good examples must be set to encourage confidence and to reinforce the trust that underlies the relationship between the Government of Canada as employer and its employees.

Recommendations flowing from this review have been incorporated in the paper entitled Management in the Government of Canada: A Commitment to Continuous Improvement. Most importantly, any response, be it carrying out investigations or taking remedial measures, should be conducted rapidly and transparently. The results must be communicated effectively in order to enhance confidence in the government's compliance framework.

The Government of Canada is changing the way it works, the way it accounts to Canadians, and the way it serves them. These changes are forging a culture of management improvement rooted in accountability, responsiveness, and innovation.

These same values are what Canadians deserve and expect from their government. This report is one of the key initiatives contributing to the government's strategy to meet those expectations and become a world‑class public service.