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Appeal Court case threatens workers ability to speak up against injustice – Kong v Gulf International Bank (UK) Ltd – Protect Press Release

Court of Appeal to determine whether you can dismiss a whistleblower for the way they behave rather than the fact that they’ve blown the whistle [CA-2021-001961 Kong v Gulf International Bank (UK) Ltd] This week on Thursday 26 May 2022 the Court of Appeal will hear a test case on whistleblowing law, in which whistleblowing ... Read more

Protect’s Statement on the Queen’s Speech 2022

Protect is disappointed that the Government’s new legislative program fails to address the weaknesses in whistleblowing protection with the absence of an Employment Bill.  The UK has fallen behind international best practice and it is time to “level up” legal protections for whistleblowers. However, we welcome the introduction of the second Economic Crime Bill as … Read more

Mary Robinson MP Introduces Whistleblowing Bill to Parliament – Protect statement

It is widely acknowledged that reform to the UK’s whistleblowing law, the Public Interest Disclosure Act (PIDA 1998) is long overdue. PIDA has been the blueprint for much of the world’s whistleblowing legislation, but almost 25 years later, urgent reform is needed to reflect the modern workplace and keep pace with international best practice. Protect ... Read more

NI Whistleblower paid £1.25 million by DAERA – Protect calls for NI Civil Service to review whistleblowing arrangements

On Sunday 24 April 2022, it was revealed that a Northern Irish whistleblower, Dr Tamara Bronckaers, has been paid £1.25 million in compensation by the Department of Agriculture, Environment and Rural Affairs (DAERA). Believed to be one of the biggest whistleblower settlements in Northern Irish history the agreement follows a long and exhausting fight for ... Read more

Protect’s Grace Wilkin to run Copenhagen Marathon to support our work

Protect's Business Support Executive, Grace Wilkin, will be running the Copenhagen Marathon on 15 May 2022 to raise money for our work protecting whistleblowers. Grace said "I wanted to do this to support Protect because I believe that employees have the right to be listened to at work, without fear of repercussions, so that concerns ... Read more

PM and Chancellor fined over Partygate – Protect calls for new whistleblowing culture in government

It was announced yesterday that the Prime Minister and Chancellor will both be fined for breaking the law by attending a Downing Street party during COVID-19 lockdown. At Protect we are stunned by these events. We rightly expect our political leaders to follow the laws they pass and abide by the rule of law.   The fact ... Read more

Protect launches “Preventing Whistleblowing Victimisation: A guide for employers”

We have developed a new guide in response to queries from employers about how they should respond to the victimisation of whistleblowers, or, better yet, prevent it from happening in the first place.  “Preventing Whistleblowing Victimisation: A practical guide for employers” sets out insightful advice for employers of all sizes and across all sectors on how to prevent retaliation against whistleblowers in their organisations. It ... Read more

Protect calls for independent review of speak up in the NHS after horrifying findings of Ockenden Review

We are shocked and saddened at what the Ockenden Rreview has uncovered at Shrewsbury and Telford NHS Trust.   The review found hundreds of avoidable deaths within the trust’s maternity services after analysing the experiences of 1500 families between 2000 and 2019. Some families lost more than one child in separate incidents.     It also revealed a ... Read more

Protect’s Head of Policy interviewed on BBC about Ockenden Review

Protect's Head of Policy, Andrew Pepper-Parsons, was interviewed by BBC Shropshire about the shocking findings of the Ockenden Review into NHS Shrewsbury and Telford. He detailed the scale of abuse of whistleblowers in the UK and how this can have horrendous impacts on public safety and workplace conditions. He also discussed what needs to change ... Read more

‘Tackling Corruption – Is Whistleblowing the first line of defence?

At Protect event, 'Tackling Corruption - Is Whistleblowing the first line of defence? held in partnership with law firm Leigh Day (February 24), delegates heard the vital role whistleblowing plays in business. Protect Chief Executive, Liz Gardiner, chairing the event, said, "Given the vital service whistleblowers provide in holding organisations and governments to account the ... Read more

Protect Impact Report shows jump in harassment cases

Our 2021 Impact Report shows a rise in harassment  - bullying, sexual harassment and discrimination - has jumped from 8% of our total Advice Line cases in 2020 to 14% in 2021. Head of Advocacy and Advice, Bob Matheson said, “Year on year we are seeing a rise in harassment cases and since 2017 there ... Read more

Protect Head of Advice & Advocacy to speak at Cork University event

Protect's Head of Advice & Advocacy Bob Matheson will join a high profile debate hosted by the University of Cork on March 2, in event 'Whistleblowing and Advocacy Groups.' Joining Bob will be John Devitt, Chief Executive of Transparency International (TI)’s chapter in Ireland and Amanda Hitt, the founder and director of the Food Integrity ... Read more

Protect team members attend Mental Health First Aid training

Protect knows better than most whistleblowing is not an easy thing to do. In our almost 30 year history, we have supported more than 45,000 whistleblowers. Many of the whistleblowers we support call us back more than once. Some cases go on for many years and are extremely traumatic. The impact on the whistleblower and ... Read more

Whistleblowers unable to report concerns about No 10 wrongdoing – Protect calls for an overhaul of whistleblowing in central government.

Sue Gray, in her much-anticipated report into parties at 10 Downing Street while the UK was in lockdown, gave this worrying conclusion on the whistleblowing culture her team found: "Some staff wanted to raise concerns about behaviours they witnessed at work but at times felt unable to do so. No member of staff should feel ... Read more

Backbench debate on the rise of ‘SLAPP lawsuits’ – a threat to freedom of expression 

A backbench debate heard that SLAPP lawsuits -  Strategic Lawsuits Against Public Participation – are having a chilling effect on freedom of expression.   Defamation claims are most identified as SLAPPS and used to silence a critic, such as a journalist, by engaging them in costly litigation, rather than because of any legal merit. Other legal ... Read more

Protect and Leigh Day to host anti-corruption panel debate

Anti-Corruption Government Tsar, John Penrose MP will join Protect and Leigh Day in panel debate 'Tackling Corruption - Is whistleblowing the first line of defence?' on Thursday 24 February. International corruption and whistleblowing lawyer, Paul Dowling, a partner at Leigh Day will join the debate to discuss legal claims used to hold organisations to account. ... Read more

Former Protect CE’s launch specialised whistleblowing law firm 

Protect has welcomed a new specialist law firm  James & West Law – The Whistleblowing Experts, established by two former Protect Chief Executives Cathy James and Francesca West.  Francesca and Cathy have been working with whistleblowers and specialising in whistleblowing law since 2005. Both worked at Protect, for 14 years each, both having a tenure ... Read more

Protect statement on Guardian story ‘Staff blow whistle on Environment Agency that ‘no longer deters polluters’

Head of Policy at Protect, Andrew Pepper-Parsons said:  “The report in today’s Guardian, 'Staff blow whistle on Environment Agency that 'no longer deters polluters' that Environment Agency cuts have left staff unable to do their jobs, and warned against speaking to the media by Environment Agency Chief Executive James Bevan, if accurate, is extremely concerning ... Read more

Protect welcomes moral pledge by Higher Education Minister to end NDAs in universities

Victims of sexual harassment in universities should no longer be silenced by Non-Disclosure Agreements (NDAs), under a new pledge backed by the government, universities and campaigners. Six university vice-chancellors invited to attend the launch have signed up to a pledge promising not to use NDAs in dealing with complaints of sexual misconduct, bullying, and other … Read more

Government Anti-Corruption Strategy acknowledges ‘failure to review whistleblowing framework due to pandemic’ 

The Government’s third update of its progress to the UK Anti-Corruption Strategy 2017-2022 has been published, and acknowledges a failure to review the whistleblowing framework is ‘due to resources being prioritised for the pandemic response.’  Launched in December 2017 the Strategy aims to support national security, prosperity and trust in institutions. It sets out a longer-term vision of anti-corruption action leading to:  reduced threats to ... Read more

Local authorities up and down the UK owe it to their staff and residents to not repeat the gross mismanagement of Edinburgh Council  

Whistleblowing culture is so much more than having a policy. Reporting channels, speak up ambassadors and champions are all great to have in place.  But if there is no communication, no promotion of these channels, and most importantly - no management and Board buy in – they are effectively meaningless.  Protect has been championing whistleblowing for almost 30 years. We know the pitfalls and have seen the damage to individuals and ... Read more

EU Governments can learn a lot from PIDA over the last 25 years

Today – 17 December 2021- is the official deadline for the EU Whistleblowing Directive to be transposed by Member States. And, as the EU Whistleblowing Monitor demonstrates, it’s been a slow start with only a handful of the 27 EU countries meeting today’s deadline to implement the new requirements. Whistleblowing International Network (WIN) and Transparency ... Read more

Protect statement on West Suffolk Review

 “We welcome the long awaited West Suffolk Review – and agree the intimidating witch hunt of a whistleblower was, as the review says, ‘nothing short of disastrous, not only for the staff directly caught up in the process, but for other members of the Trust’s staff, the working environment more generally, and for the Trust’s reputation internally and externally.’   ... Read more

UK whistleblowing charity Protect appoints Julia Graham as new Trustee

 UK whistleblowing charity Protect has appointed Julia Graham, the CEO of Airmic, the UK association of insurance and risk managers as a Trustee. Julia has a background in international insurance, enterprise risk management and compliance with four decades of experience in a global insurance company and a global law firm.  She is the UK Government ... Read more

Ex-diplomat Whistleblower condemns Foreign Office Kabul evacuation – Protect statement  

The Guardian reports a former diplomat has blown the whistle on the Foreign Office claiming bureaucratic chaos, ministerial intervention, lack of planning and a short-hours culture in the department led to “people being left to die at the hands of the Taliban”. An internal inquiry was launched to investigate the evidence of Raphael Marshall when ... Read more

Read our latest newsletter – and book a place on our free EU webinar

Our latest newsletter features news and blogs and details of our training including a free to attend webinar on the EU.  Many UK organisations still wishing to adopt the latest best practice in whistleblowing, or indeed firms operational across Europe, will be ensuring they are compliant with EU Whistleblowing Directive provisions – due to be … Read more

Sexual Harassment in the Workplace debates abuse of NDAs 

The Right of Women’s Sexual Harassment in the Workplace Legal Conference (November 19) brought together legal professionals, academics, charities and NGOs on the important subject of sexual harassment: how to tackle it in our workplaces and how to support victims.   Senior Adviser and Parliamentary Officer, Rhiannon Plimmer-Craig, attended the conference.  Empowering and insightful talks were given by Helen Mott, Eleena Misra, Suzanne McKie QC, Rehanz Azib and a lively ... Read more

What will fix racism and discrimination in cricket? 

Azeem Rafiq’s passionate revelations exposing his treatment at Yorkshire County Cricket Club serve as a testament to both the institutional problems proliferating the sport, (and undoubtedly other sports) and the necessity of being able to  raise concerns and have those concerns listened to, and addressed.    Rafiq’s concerns, which included as a young 15- year-old Muslim having wine forcibly poured down his throat, continuous ... Read more

Whistleblowing report finds minimum wage complaints at lowest level in four years

A report by law firm Pinsent Masons has found whistleblower reports of national minimum wage violations fell to just 2,488 for the past year, down from 2,580 in the previous 12 months – and the lowest level in four years.   Pinsent Masons said that although extensive furlough in hospitality and retail sectors during the pandemic was partly responsible for the decline in ... Read more

Serota Review into BBC recognises role whistleblowing plays in good governance

Protect welcomes the findings of the Serota Review into editorial processes at the BBC which recognises the vital role whistleblowing plays in an organisation’s governance.    ‘The Serota Review – BBC editorial processes, governance, and culture’ commissioned by the BBC to learn from mistakes from the past, follows the Dyson report into the scandal around the Martin Bashir Panorama interview with Princess Diana. … Read more

Report calls for reform of Government as public confidence in Ministers at all time low

A new report by the Committee on Standards in Public Life - “Upholding Public Standards” recognises the importance of high ethical standards to democracy and economic success.  Yet, as its polling reveals, public confidence in the conduct of Ministers is low. The Committee - which advises the PM on ethical standards, calls for central government reforms, including legislation to put ethics regulators and the codes that ... Read more

Read Protect’s latest newsletter

Our October newsletter includes blogs, why we are engaging with the Government on NDAs, why we think the Official Secrets Act needs reform to include a public interest defence and why we will be debating this with legal experts and academics next month and more….  

MP Mary Robinson asks PM to review UK whistleblowing law 

Mary Robinson MP, Chair for the APPG on Whistleblowing, called on the Prime Minister to review the UK whistleblowing law during PMQ.   She said, “The failings of Greater Manchester police, which have led to it being placed in special measures, are well documented, including the failure to record 80,000 crimes, including domestic violence and sexual offences, … Read more

Protect to co-host workshop: Civil society, national security, and breaking down barriers for Public Interest Disclosures

On 2 November, Protect’s Head of Policy Andrew Pepper-Parsons, along with Kaeten Mistry Historian, University of East Anglia, and Anna Myers, Executive Director, Whistleblowing International Network, will be hosting a workshop on Civil Society, National Security, and Breaking Down Barriers for Public Interest Disclosures bringing together other legal professionals, journalists and academics with a keen interest … Read more

Employer roundtable: Responding to whistleblowing retaliation

Protect hosted the first of two employer roundtables discussing what more can be done to protect whistleblowers against victimisation. A mixed group of employers from financial services, media, health, public sector and charity sectors came together to share best practice. The group discussed what victimisation ‘looks like’ with common forms of victimisation including impossible shift … Read more

Protect ‘highly commended’ in Law Society Awards

Protect has been highly awarded by the Law Society Excellence in Law Awards 2021. The Awards, for ‘excellence in upholding the rule of law’ during the pandemic where our Advisers saw an unprecedented rise in calls – 20% – and were able to quickly move to remote working to support whistleblowers. Our report ‘The Best … Read more

Read our latest newsletter

Our latest newsletter has been published and includes our latest activity on our campaign, Let’s Fix UK Whistleblowing Law, blogs, whistleblower feedback, and details of how to book a place on our next Masterclass on 7 October Masterclass: Handling sexual harassment & whistleblowing concerns in the workplace aimed at senior individuals including HR, Compliance, Legal … Read more

Protect ‘concerned’ Jonathan Taylor summonsed to Monaco

Authorities in Monaco have issued a summons demanding whistleblower Jonathan Taylor appear before investigating judge Ludovic Leclerc, at the Palais de Justice, in Monaco, on 11 October “for examination”. Oil industry whistleblower Jonathan Taylor –  who blew the whistle on bribery by his former employers, SBM Offshore – returned to the UK in July after being arrested and … Read more

Finance worker takes case to Court of Appeal to prove whistleblowing claim

Ms L Kong who was Head of Financial Audit, made a number of protected whistleblowing disclosures over a new investment product her employer Gulf International Bank was offering to investors. She was concerned about the regulatory compliance of the investment product, which she detailed in a draft audit report sent to the Head of Legal at her company. Her concerns (which the Bank accepted constituted protected disclosures) … Read more

Why we need employers to do more: webinar summary

Protect Chief Executive Liz Gardiner welcomed almost 100 delegates to the third in our series of webinars to promote campaign Let’s Fix UK Whistleblowing Law which had the focus on duties and standards for employers. The panel: Rav Passi, whistleblower and Protect Trustee Marina Glasgow, Deputy Chief Conciliator, ACAS Sam Bereket, National Lead Intelligence & … Read more