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About the Ethics Officer

The Ethics Officer is appointed by Cabinet (the Commissioner in Executive Council) on the recommendation of the Minister responsible for the Public Service Act.  He is not a member of the public service and holds office during good behaviour for a term of five years.

Powers of the Ethics Officer

The Ethics Officer has broad powers to investigate.  This includes the power to summon witnesses and require them to give evidence and the power to require documents to be produced.

The Ethics Officer may, in the course of an investigation, enter any premises occupied by a department or public body.

The Ethics Officer decides whether an investigation will be done in private or in public.

A deputy head must co-operate and ensure that his or her employees co-operate in an investigation by the Ethics Officer. Failure to do so is an offence with a fine up to $10,000.

An employee must provide information requested by the Ethics Officer. Failure to do so is an offence with a fine of up to $5,000.


The current Ethics Officer is Jeffrey Schnoor, Q.C.  His appointment took effect on January 5, 2015 (and was renewed on January 5, 2020 for another five-year term).  He was called to the Manitoba Bar in 1978 and is also a member of the Law Society of Nunavut.  Prior to his retirement in 2013, Mr. Schnoor was the Deputy Minister of Justice and Deputy Attorney General for the Province of Manitoba


The Ethics Officer must, as far as practicable, protect the identity of the employee who made the disclosure, any person who is the subject of the disclosure and any witnesses.