What is whistleblowing?
Whistleblowing is when someone suspects there is something wrong at their place of work and wants to speak up about it. This is officially called ‘making a disclosure in the public interest’ and means you are protected, as a whistleblower, by law.
What types of things can I raise as a whistleblower?
If you suspect that one of the following either has occurred or will occur:
- A criminal offence by an individual
- Damage to the environment
- Miscarriage of justice
- Someone’s health and safety is in danger
- The company isn’t obeying the law
- Any of the above activities are being ‘covered up’
How does the law protect me?
Your employer will not be able to unfairly dismiss you and you will not experience harm whilst still in employment, such as threats, disciplinary action or loss of pay.
Who can I raise my concerns with?
- Internally – firstly you should check if your company has a whistleblowing policy
- Independent third party – if you cannot raise the matter internally, you may wish to seek advice externally from a neutral advisor, such as from a solicitor
- Prescribed person – this should be the correct individual or regulatory body for the matter concerned, for example a police officer or auditing office
What is wider disclosure?
Wider disclosure is where you raise the matter on a broader scale, often on a public platform, such as to the media. In this case you are only protected by law if:
- You believe that the information you are giving is substantially true
- You have already disclosed it to your employer or prescribed person, or believe that if you do, you would suffer or the evidence would be destroyed
- You are acting in good faith and not for personal gain
Can I talk to you?
If you, or someone you know, has concerns about whistleblowing and wants to know more, call us and talk to a specialist. You don’t have to share confidential information with us, but we can help you to understand your options and the process.
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