Two individual directors have been held liable for the unfair sacking of a whistleblower for the first time. Former Chief Executive International Petroleum (IPL), Alexander Osipov was sacked in October 2014 on the grounds of lack of trust and confidence. He brought proceedings in the UK employment tribunal for unfair dismissal and four counts of victimisation including for whistleblowing. The case confirms that individual directors taking the decision to dismiss someone for making a protected disclosure under whistleblowing legislation can be held personally liable.
The Supreme Court has ruled Royal Mail employee Ms Jhuti was unfairly dismissed for blowing the whistle, not for the alleged poor performance which was based on false information that the company’s HR department had suggested was the reason for her dismissal. The landmark judgment extends the scope of whistleblower protection and suggests that employers and particularly HR departments will need to ensure they have the complete information before dismissing an employee.
District Judge Claire Gilham wins her landmark case against the Ministry of Justice at the Supreme Court. She claims she was bullied after after raising concerns over government cuts. Judges are not afforded legal protections afforded to whistleblowers under current legislation as they are classed as office holders, rather than workers, but the Supreme Court ruled that the judge, and other judicial office holders, are entitled to these same protections.
On April 16, the EU Whistleblowing Directive was passed. The EU legislation follows campaigning by the Whistleblowing International Network (WIN), of which Protect is proud to be a co-founder, and others. The ground-breaking legislation must become law across all EU members by December 2021.
British political consulting firm Cambridge Analytica Ltd combined data mining, data brokerage, and data analysis with strategic communication during the electoral processes. In March 2018, The Observer reported that the company had acquired and used personal data about Facebook users from an external researcher who had told Facebook he was collecting it for academic purposes.
The Panama Papers taken from offshore Panamanian law firm Mossack Fonesca get leaked in 2015 by an anonymous source. The documents show ways the rich exploit secretive offshore tax regimes and include national leaders are among 143 politicians, their families and close associates from around the world known to have been using offshore tax havens.
The Volkswagen emissions scandal began when the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) found Volkswagen had intentionally programmed its TDI diesel engines to activate emissions controls only during laboratory emissions testing.
The Enron Corporation scandal eventually led to the bankruptcy of the American energy company. Many Enron executives were indicted for a variety of charges and some sentenced to prison. As a consequence of the scandal, new regulations and legislation was introduced to expand the accuracy of financial reporting for public companies .
Whistleblowing charity Public Concern at Work turns 25 and changes its name to Protect, to better reflect the work it does supporting whistleblowers.
PIDA turns 20 years old but campaigners including Protect say whistleblowing law PIDA needs to be reviewed and updated.