“So you are doing tertiary education studying genders. I’ll make it easy for you to pass….there are 2,” Staffieri said in a post from November last year.
He was also questioned about a Facebook post he made on March 17 regarding an ABC report on a teacher who founded a gay pride group for students at a Western Sydney school.
“What a disgrace. Bad enough having gay, non-binary teachers, but to have them push their filth on students is a disgraceful crime. Why can’t we sack these teachers?” Staffieri posted.
Staffieri, who has been an officer for more than 35 years and is close to retirement, could lose his job or face other penalties because of the online comments.
A Victoria Police spokeswoman declined to comment on the PSC investigation, while Staffieri did not respond to requests from The Age. The Police Association also declined to comment.
In February, The Age revealed that other posts by Staffieri had infuriated Deputy Commissioner Neil Paterson, the state’s second-highest ranking officer. Staffieri was charged with a disciplinary breach in December last year over the online comments.
On June 21 last year, Paterson posted on Yammer, the force’s internal communication platform, that “Victoria Police is proud to have been recognized as a silver employer at the 2021 Australian LGBTQ+ inclusion awards.”
Staffieri responded on June 23 by posting: “Yes I agree. Great achievement. But if the public knew how much time, effort and taxpayer dollars went into this, they would also be demanding why we didn’t get a gold.”
Paterson defended the campaign and denied it had received significant public funding.
Staffieri responded: “Sir, I totally value and respect your opinion and your rank, I simply ask that you value and respect mine.”
Paterson fired a broadside back at Staffieri.
“I don’t respect or value your views as they are offensive and there is no place for those views in Victoria Police…. Either limit your comments on Yammer to comments that are respectful of everyone or consider your employment options,” Paterson posted.
Staffieri was also investigated over his public criticism of the government’s decision to cancel Australia Day and Anzac Day celebrations last year, but allow the Gay Pride March in St Kilda to proceed.
“So the next time Australians are sent out to fight a war, maybe we can send out the 8000 that marched today….and try to stop the enemy by waving feathers and brightly colored boas at them,” Staffieri posted on May 17 , 2021.
The Morning Edition newsletter is our guide to the day’s most important and interesting stories, analysis and insights. Sign up here.