Members of city council, local boards and advisory committees to city council have a responsibility to the community to ensure they behave appropriately and ethically when dealing with matters that relate to their positions. This expectation aligns with the terms of our accountability and transparency policy.

Our code of conduct is in place to provide guidance and guidelines to those affected, listing rules and prohibitions that relate to:

  • business relations
  • conduct at meetings
  • conduct of a political nature
  • conduct respecting staff
  • conduct respecting representing the city
  • protection of confidential information
  • discreditable conduct
  • employment of relatives
  • failure to adhere to council policies and procedures
  • receipt of gifts and benefits
  • use of city property

If you believe someone who must operate under our code of conduct has breached the rules or has shown signs of non-compliance, please review the complaint process prior to lodging a complaint with the integrity commissioner.

Code of conduct complaint process

If you believe that a member subject to Kitchener's code of conduct has breached the code or is in non-compliance, there are two routes you can take.

Informal process
  • let the member know that their behaviour or activity appears to contravene the code of conduct and encourage them to stop the prohibited behaviour or activity

  • keep a written record of the incidents including dates, times, locations, other persons present, and any other relevant information

  • confirm to the member that you are satisfied with the response you received or advise the member of your dissatisfaction with the response

  • consider the need to pursue the matter in accordance with the formal complaint procedure, or in accordance with another applicable judicial or quasi-judicial process or complaint procedure

Formal process

If the informal approach has not worked in your opinion, or if you are uncomfortable with that approach, you may make a formal request for an investigation. The request must be in writing using the city's complaint form.

Set out reasonable and probable grounds for the allegation including evidence in support of the complaint.

File the signed and sworn form with the city clerk by mail or in person at:

The Office of the City Clerk 
2nd Floor - Kitchener City Hall 
200 King St. W. 
P.O. Box 1118 
Kitchener, ON  N2G 4G7

The clerk will forward your complaint to the integrity commissioner, who will then determine if it's within his jurisdiction.

If it is a bone fide complaint within the context of the code of conduct, the commissioner will begin a formal investigation as outlined in the code.

If it is not under the jurisdiction of the commissioner, you will be advised that it falls under another jurisdiction or legislation and provided with other options for further review.

The commissioner may also determine the complaint is frivolous and/or vexatious, which means no investigation will be held.

Once the commissioner has completed his investigation, he will report to city council on the outcome and if necessary, make recommendations regarding corrective action(s) in accordance with the Municipal Act.