All Party Parliamentary Group for Whistleblowing
A Whistleblower is defined as "a person who exposes any kind of information or activity that is deemed illegal, unethical, or not correct within an organization that is either private or public". These individuals are vulnerable to retaliation for their actions and whilst there are laws in place purposed to protect them, sometimes the laws are not adequate or effective in their practical application.
The All Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) on Whistleblowers was set up with the aim to provide stronger protection for whistleblowers.
World Whistleblower Day 2022
Today, 23 June 2022, on World Whistleblower Day, I want to say thank you to all whistleblowers who speak up, calling out wrongdoing when they see it. The bravery required to blow the whistle is immense and is recognised by all of us in the APPG for Whistleblowing.
If you name an industry, I can name a scandal brought to light by whistleblowers. Many of these scandals are ones which continue to reverberate – Child Sexual Exploitation in Rotherham and Oldham, Racism in Yorkshire Cricket, the Horizon Post Office cover-up, and many more.
This week saw the publication of a further report into the Rotherham child sexual exploitation scandal. A key contributor to the investigation that led to the arrest of the perpetrators of these horrific crimes was Jayne Senior MBE. As a whistleblower, her concerns were ignored for far too long, contributing to the continuation of abuse. Whistleblowing is synonymous with the exposure of wrongdoing by informed insiders, such as Jayne, and is recognised by organisations and governments globally as an important and positive act in the fight against crime, corruption and coverup.
Our Whistleblowing Bill, working with the recommendations drawn from our call to evidence, will champion whistleblowers across all sectors in the UK. Establishing an Office of the Whistleblower, defining a whistleblower in law, properly investigating the concerns raised, and sanctioning those who abuse whistleblowers. We will continue pressing the Government to adopt the proposal and the APPG supports the work of Baroness Kramer in the House of Lords with her Protection of Whistleblowing Bill.
Our chair, Mary Robinson MP, is proud to have presented The Whistleblowing Bill to Parliament on the 26th April 2022. This bill is both a tribute to all whistleblowers who have worked hard and risked so much to shine a light on wrongdoing, and a call to action for all organisations to take whistleblowing seriously for their benefit and societies.
This Bill Delivers:
Protection for EVERY citizen who is, has been or is perceived to be a whistleblower and those associated with the whistleblower
Mandatory minimum standards for policies and procedures and Investigations of protected disclosures
A new judicial process for deciding disputes arising from whistleblowing
Significant fines and penalties for individuals and organisations that discriminate or retaliate against whistleblowers
Dedicated helplines, Education and Support for the Public and Organisations and an ongoing Public Awareness Campaign to ensure that every citizen knows their rights and how to access them
The Whistleblowing Bill has the potential to save lives, halt corruption, and safeguard people who speak out.
Our promise is to work to identify where the law adequately fails to protect whistleblowers and, work with industry experts, whistleblowers, regulators and businesses, to recommend positive, effective and practical proposals for change. We are not only aiming to change the current legislation but also the culture and perception of whistleblowers through the work of this APPG.
Identify. Collaborate. Recommend. Change.
A foreword from our chair Mary Robinson MP.
My election as the Chair of the APPG for Whistleblowing as the Covid-19 crisis hit has further persuaded me of the importance of my role in chairing this All-Party Parliamentary Group to introduce a gold standard, world-class legislation. However, my personal interest in whistleblowing rests in my experience as a constituency MP where I am confronted with whistleblowers who have turned to me as a last resort. I have seen first hand the impact of the failure of organisations to address genuine concerns and their response toward the whistleblower. This is just unacceptable.
Mary Robinson MP, Registered Chair of this APPG
I have agreed with my co-chairs and other members of the APPG a work-plan that allows us to continue the excellent work of my predecessor Stephen Kerr. The secretariat will be organising a further call to evidence so that I can read and hear the experience, views and opinions of whistleblowers and organisations from across all of the sectors. We will continue to interview regulators, professional bodies and trade unions inviting them to share their experience of whistleblowing and encourage their feedback on the proposals put forward in the report for an Office for the Whistleblower. We plan to release a number of short reports this year with some interim findings and a full report next year setting out the conclusions of the call to evidence.
As Parliamentarians, we will be tabling questions to the government and looking for opportunities to schedule debates. We will also be supporting new Bills supporting root and branch reform of existing legislation as part of our commitment to protect whistleblowers.
I would like to use this opportunity to pay tribute to all front line NHS, social care and all other essential workers for their commitment and for continuing to speak up when they see wrongdoing. This crisis has shown us all that whistleblowing is more important than ever if we are going to combat not only Covid-19 but crime, corruption and cover-up.
Our National Whistleblowing survey has LAUNCHED!
The study is being conducted by the Centre for Financial and Corporate Integrity (CFCI) at Coventry University in collaboration with WhistleblowersUK and a report will be provided to the All Party Parliamentary Group for Whistleblowing (APPG).
The aim of this study is to gather evidence from as wide an audience as possible across all sectors with regards to the efficiency of whistleblowing protection in the UK .The results of the survey will also be made available to the public through relevant academic publications. The APPG will assess this report and use the results to inform their recommendations for new legislation that will improve whistleblowers' protection in the UK. These recommendations will be available in an interim APPG report planned for March 2021.
Our Survey is currently under maintenance please come back for the relaunch!