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Corporate Governance

The Commission is an executive agency established under the Public Service Act 1999 and is a non-corporate Commonwealth entity under the Public Governance, Performance and Accountability Act 2013 (PGPA Act).

The Commission was issued with a new Statement of Expectations from the Prime Minister and the Minister for Health in June 2020. The Commission responded with a Statement of Intent in June 2020. Both the Statement of Expectations and the Statement of Intent are available on our website.

The CEO is the accountable authority under the PGPA Act and is responsible for the governance and performance of the Commission. The Commission includes an Advisory Board made up of a Chair and a number of Mental Health Commissioners (as determined by the Minister from time to time), as well as the CEO as a Commissioner.

The Commission Executive is currently Ms Christine Morgan CEO, Ms Lyndall Soper Deputy – Monitoring and Reform, Dr Alison Morehead Deputy – Strategy, Ms Kim Eagle – Chief Operating Officer and Chief Financial Officer and Ms Jenny Muir – Principal Adviser Communications and Engagement (commencing July 2020).

The Executive is responsible for ensuring the Commission’s operations are efficient and effective and carried out in accordance with statutory and government requirements, including financial management, resource management, delivering outcomes against the Corporate Plan and Work Plan, people and culture management, and stakeholder engagement.

The Executive meet on a weekly basis to discuss the management of the Commission. The Commission has structures and processes in place to implement the principles and objectives of corporate governance.

The Commission’s Audit and Risk Committee is responsible for providing independent advice and assurance to the CEO on the Commission’s financial and performance reporting responsibilities, risk oversight and management, and system of internal control. Further detail on the Committee's functions, activities and members can be found under the subheading Audit and Risk Committee.

The 2019–20 Internal Audit was conducted by Walter Partners. The objective of the audit was to assess the effectiveness of the internal control framework for financial management activities, ensuring compliance with relevant Commonwealth legislation and policy requirements, including in relation to procurement, financial delegations, management of financial records, travel arrangements and credit cards. The Internal Audit Report found that the Commission’s financial processes and internal controls were operating in an efficient, effective, economical and ethical manner.

The Commission’s Charter and Operating Principles, revised in 2019-20, provides guidance to the Commissioners of the Advisory Board.

The Commission’s Accountable Authority Instructions set out appropriate controls and directions for staff in relation to requirements under the PGPA Act and relevant policies of the Australian government. The Commission operates in a shared corporate services environment provided by the Department of Health, and the Commission regularly reviews internal systems and procedures to simplify and streamline our operations and make best use of resources.

The Corporate Plan 2019–2023 and Work Plan 2019–20 were also in place to guide the work of the Commission to achieve its objectives and are available on website.

There were no significant issues reported to the Minister under paragraph 19(1)(e) of the PGPA Act that relate to non-compliance with Finance law and any action taken to remedy non-compliance.