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Statement regarding misconduct allegations on board HMAS SUCCESS.

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Issued by Ministerial Support and Public Affairs, Department of Defence, Canberra, ACT Phone: 02 6265 3343, Fax: 02 62656946

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MSPA 202/09 Sunday, 5 July 2009


In May 2009, the Navy was made aware of allegations of misconduct by members of HMAS SUCCESS. These allegations were identified during the conduct of a proactive Navy equity and diversity health check program which had been initiated by the Commanding Officer of HMAS SUCCESS.

Four members of the ship's company were returned to Australia from Singapore as a result of the allegations.

Chief of Navy, Vice Admiral Russ Crane, said the alleged behaviours under investigation do not align to Navy values or the recently articulated signature behaviours developed by our Navy people and implemented through our New Generation Navy program. Our Navy people will not tolerate this type of behaviour.

"Once these allegations were made known, Navy acted immediately by removing those sailors allegedly involved in the matter from the ship and referring the matter to the independent Australian Defence Force Investigative Service (ADFIS) for action," VADM Crane said.

"Navy stands by its values and signature behaviours and will act swiftly and decisively to address allegations of unacceptable behaviour.”

"Navy has stringent policies and education programs in place to support Navy people who rightly demand and deserve a working environment free from unacceptable behaviour”.

"Navy is awaiting the results of the ADFIS investigation and will act as quickly as possible to address appropriate findings and recommendations particularly should disciplinary or administrative action be warranted."

Navy people are briefed regularly on their responsibility to treat others fairly and know that unacceptable behaviour will be dealt with. A regular, Navy wide, equity and diversity education program proactively reinforces these principles and immediate action is taken to address any concerns raised by individuals.

Media contact: Defence Media Liaison (02) 6265 3343 or 0408 498 664