About the Office of the Gene Technology Regulator
OGTR Service Charter
This Service Charter outlines the commitment of the Office of the Gene Technology Regulator (OGTR) to provide quality services to the public and users of Australia’s scheme for gene technology regulation. The Charter also outlines the steps available should there be any shortfall in these standards.
The Office of the Gene Technology Regulator (OGTR) provides administrative support to the Gene Technology Regulator (the Regulator) in the performance of his functions under the Gene Technology Act 2000
(the Act). The Act, which came into force on 21 June 2001, represents the Australian Government component of Australia’s nationally consistent scheme for the regulation of gene technology. Each State and Territory has enacted, or is enacting, corresponding legislation.
The OGTR is located in Canberra and comprises scientific, legal, professional, administrative and monitoring and compliance staff who are committed to keeping up to date with developments in research and regulation around the world. We are a business unit of the Australian Government Department of Health and Ageing.
Our role and functions
In administering the Act, the Regulator is responsible for protecting the health and safety of people and the environment by identifying risks posed by or as a result of gene technology, and by managing those risks through regulating certain dealings with genetically modified organisms (GMOs). ‘Dealings’ with GMOs include conducting experiments, making, developing, producing, breeding, propagating, growing, importing, transporting or disposing of GMOs. The Regulator also accredits organisations to conduct work with GMOs, certifies containment facilities used for dealings conducted under the Act, and conducts monitoring and compliance activities.
The Regulator is committed to maintaining sound working relationships and consults widely on key decisions with expert advisory committees, State and Territory governments, the Australian Government Environment Minister, other regulatory authorities, and the community. This consultation process is critical to maintaining the effectiveness, credibility and responsiveness of the regulatory scheme.
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OGTR complies with the Australian Public Service Values and Code of Conduct in all aspects of its business. In addition, we value:
- professionalism; through integrity, objectivity, excellence, commitment, and consistency
- accountability; through open and transparent processes
- achievement; through effective, efficient and flexible work practices which are focussed on delivering timely outcomes
- respect for each other and our stakeholders; through open and effective communication and quality service.
Our service delivery
OGTR staff are committed to delivering high-quality service and to being courteous, considerate, impartial, consistent, honest, ethical and professional. You can expect OGTR staff to:
- support the Regulator to meet the statutory responsibilities and timeframes set out in the Gene Technology Act 2000
- provide relevant and easy to understand responses to letters and emails in a timely manner
- return phone calls within two working days
- provide contact details in written correspondence
- provide background information and reasons for decisions on request
- endeavour to refer you to the appropriate organisation should your enquiry be outside the OGTR’s scope
- endeavour to provide all relevant public information on our website (www.ogtr.gov.au)
- align their practices with the ethical principles articulated in the National Framework for the Development of Ethical Principles in Gene Technology
- respect your rights to privacy and confidentiality.
Monitoring and Compliance staff acknowledge all emails and return phone calls within two working days, and treat reports of incidents or suspected breaches with the highest priority.
To ensure that we meet the needs of our clients we undertake service delivery surveys against the standards of customer service outlined in this Service Charter. Feedback is very important and is used for continuous improvement to meet the expectations in the scheme. The following link provides information about an OGTR client satisfaction survey conducted in 2008.
This Service Charter has been reviewed in light of the results of the Online Service Delivery Survey and future reviews will be conducted at three year intervals
EXECUTIVE SUMMARY - Report on the Findings of the July 2008 Online Service Delivery Survey - Office of the Gene Technology Regulator. (Prepared by ORIMA Research P/L)
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What to expect from the OGTR
OGTR staff are committed to maintaining quality service standards to achieve stakeholder satisfaction and place a high value on:
- treating you with courtesy at all times
- listening and responding to all matters of concern
- providing explanations of our processes and requirements in a form you can understand
- being objective in our dealings with you
- keeping our discussions with you confidential
- offering face-to-face meetings to facilitate communication
For effective service and communication, we encourage you to:
- treat our staff with courtesy and respect
- allow us sufficient time to respond to your requests
- respond to our requests for information accurately and in a timely manner
- be open and honest to further strengthen relationships
- understand and abide by any legal requirements and other obligations under the Act concerning gene technology and dealings with GMOs.
Should the OGTR fail to meet these service charter standards, or you experience any difficulties with our operations, please:
- try to resolve this with the staff member you are dealing with
- Ask to talk to the staff member's manager if you are not satisfied with the staff member's response or if our service commitments are not being met.
- ask to speak to the staff member’s manager if you are not satisfied with the response
- make a written complaint to the Regulator.
If you are not satisfied with the Regulator’s response you may raise your concerns with the nearest Office of the Commonwealth Ombudsman by phoning 1800 133 057, by writing to the Ombudsman at GPO Box 442 Canberra City ACT 2601 or by sending a fax to (02) 6249 7829.
We are interested in your views about our service and our Service Charter. If you would like to make any suggestions for improvements, please contact us at email@example.com
, by phone on (freecall) 1800 181 030 or by fax on (02) 6271 4202.
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