The role of the DEOPE

The DEOPE is a statutory officer appointed by the Governor to perform the functions outlined in Part IX of the EO Act.

The DEOPE's role exists to ensure all employees in public authorities have equal opportunity in their workplace and are not subject to discrimination in employment. This role is guided by the following functions in s. 143 of the EO Act:

  • Advising and assisting public authorities to develop EEO management plans.
  • Evaluating the effectiveness of EEO management plans in achieving the objects of

    Part IX of the EO Act.
  • Reporting to the Minister on the operation of EEO management plans.

The DEOPE's authority extends to public sector entities, local governments, public universities and other authorities (including government trading enterprises, the Police Force and electorate offices). The legislative framework for public authorities is outlined in Appendix A.

The DEOPE's role is integrated with that of the Commission. While legislative responsibilities and jurisdictions are separately defined for the DEOPE and the Commission, there is considerable alignment of functions and ongoing cooperation between the offices in:

  • workforce data collection and reporting
  • program evaluation
  • professional advice and consulting
  • promotion of merit and equity in public employment.

The Commission is the accountable authority for the purposes of the Financial Management Act 2006 and provides staff, accommodation, corporate services and administrative support to the DEOPE.

The DEOPE strategic plan 2014/15 to 2016/17

The DEOPE strategic plan outlines the key strategic priorities of the DEOPE in promoting EEO for all public employees and working towards the elimination of discrimination in public employment, and sets out the activities undertaken to support the achievement of those priorities.

Strategic priorities


  1. Build and support quality practices in EEO management
  • Advise and assist public authorities in relation to EEO management plans,

    EO Act s. 143 (1) (a).
  • Evaluate the effectiveness of EEO management plans, EO Act s. 143 (1) (b).
  • Make reports and recommendations as to the operation of EEO management plans, EO Act s. 143 (1) (c) (i).
  1. Provide high quality, accurate, and timely reporting
  • Support the development and implementation of EEO data collection and reporting initiatives across sectors, EO Act s. 143 (4).
  • Report annually to the Minister on the work, activities and administration of the DEOPE functions, s. 144 (1) (a) and (b).
  • Prepare and table DEOPE annual report in Parliament, EO Act s. 144 (2).
  • Make reports and recommendations on such matters as the DEOPE thinks appropriate, EO Act s. 143 (1) (c) (ii).
  • Undertake and report on investigations where and when appropriate, EO Act

    s. 147.
  1. Advocate diversity and equal employment opportunity in public employment
  • Promote the importance and benefits of diversity in public employment.
  • Consultation with key stakeholders in the diversity arena, EO Act s. 143 (3).
  • Provide publicly available EEO support resources, EO Act s. 143 (4).

Page last updated 24 September 2015