How to make a complaint and report misconduct

This information is intended to help you if you wish to/are required to make a complaint or report misconduct, have been or are being abused or harassed by clergy or Church officers, including Regional Bishops, in the Anglican Diocese of Melbourne.  If you wish to make a complaint about the Archbishop of Melbourne, please refer to Episcopal Standards.

The Anglican Diocese of Melbourne takes all complaints and allegations of misconduct seriously and has practices in place to investigate thoroughly and quickly. Our staff and volunteers are trained to deal appropriately with allegations.

We work to ensure all children, families, staff and volunteers know what to do and who to tell if they observe abuse or are a victim, and if they notice inappropriate behaviour.

Kooyoora Ltd has been appointed by the Melbourne Diocese to respond to all complaints of misconduct including sexual, physical, spiritual or emotional abuse by clergy or Church officers. Kooyoora Ltd is an independent Professional Standards company which undertakes Professional Standards work for non for profit charitable entities. The aim is to resolve complaints as quickly as possible. You can find out more about Kooyoora’s role here and the complaint process here.

The first step in making a complaint is to call the recorded information line at any time on 1800 135 246.

All information provided to this service is strictly confidential. The person taking a message on this number will ask you to give a name and your phone number or address so that Kooyoora can contact you as soon as possible. Alternatively, you can write to Kooyoora:

By email to:

or by mail to:
Director of Professional Standards
Kooyoora Ltd
PO Box 329
Canterbury VIC 3126
Mark your envelope Confidential

Duty to report

We all have a responsibility to report an allegation of abuse if we have a reasonable belief that an incident took place.  Information about these duties to report may be found here and the reporting procedure may be found here.

If an adult has a reasonable belief that an incident has occurred then they must report the incident. Factors contributing to reasonable belief may be:

    • a child states they or someone they know has been abused (noting that sometimes the child may in fact be referring to themselves)
    • behaviour consistent with that of an abuse victim is observed
    • someone else has raised a suspicion of abuse but is unwilling to report it
    • observing suspicious behaviour
    • To report concerns that are life threatening, ring Victoria Police 000
    • To contact a child protection office close to you, call a local office.

To report concerns about the immediate safety of a child after hours, call 000 or:
After Hours Child Protection Emergency Service
Ph: 13 12 78 (5.00pm – 9.00am Monday – Friday, 24 hours on weekends and public holidays).
Note: this is an emergency service for week nights, weekends and public holidays only.

Reportable conduct

It is the duty of the Head of a religious organisation to report conduct to the Commission for Children and Young People

Under the Child Wellbeing and Safety Act 2005, the relevant religious body for the Anglican Church in the Diocese of Melbourne including its parishes is the Melbourne Anglican Diocesan Corporation Ltd (the Diocesan Corporation) which legally appoints all office holders.

The Head of the Entity constituted by the Diocesan Corporation is the Archbishop of Melbourne.

The Head of the Entity has a duty under the Act to notify the Commission for Children and Young People of reportable allegations and take further specified action. The Kooyoora Office of Professional Standards has undertaken to notify on behalf of the Archbishop the Commission and take further action as may be required under the Act.

There are 5 types of ‘reportable conduct’:

  • sexual offences committed against, with or in the presence of a child
  • sexual misconduct committed against, with or in the presence of a child
  • physical violence against, with or in the presence of a child
  • any behaviour that causes significant emotional or psychological harm to a child
  • significant neglect of a child

Under these arrangements, there is one notifying body on behalf of the Diocese and its parishes, congregations and faith communities – the Kooyoora Office of Professional Standards on behalf of the head of entity – the Archbishop.

It is essential to the effective operation of these arrangements that those exercising leadership positions in parishes and like bodies strictly observe the requirements for mandatory reporting to the Director of Professional Standards at Failure to do so will put at risk due compliance with the requirements of the Child Wellbeing and Safety Act by the Diocese.