LRD Booklets October 2019

Whistleblowing - a guide to the law

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Introduction

Introduction [page 3] (320 words)

This booklet sets out the law and policy governing “whistleblowing” in the UK. Its intended audience is interested trade union reps and members ...
Open access

Chapter 1

1. Overview [ch 1: pages 3-8] (1,948 words)

In general terms, “whistleblowing” is the process of reporting or disclosing wrongdoing you believe is taking place where you work. There is no ...
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Chapter 2

2. Whistleblowing law — a summary [ch 2: page 9] (125 words)

This Chapter summarises the basic framework of whistleblowing law in the UK. Other Chapters provide more detailed information about each aspect of ...
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Sources of law [ch 2: pages 9-10] (336 words)

What disclosures are protected [ch 2: page 10] (203 words)

Who is protected [ch 2: page 10] (60 words)

Who should disclosures be made to [ch 2: pages 10-11] (250 words)

What types of claim can be brought [ch 2: page 11] (146 words)

Dismissal [ch 2: pages 11-12] (160 words)

Detriment [ch 2: page 12] (70 words)

Non-disclosure agreements [ch 2: page 12] (108 words)

Is a whistleblowing claim appropriate? [ch 2: page 12] (153 words)

Chapter 3

3. Who is protected [ch 3: page 13] (423 words)

Whistleblowing law is found in the Public Interest Disclosure Act 1998 (PIDA) and the equivalent legislation in Northern Ireland (see Chapter 2). ...
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Former workers [ch 3: page 14] (221 words)

Disclosure in previous job [ch 3: page 14] (210 words)

Agency workers [ch 3: page 15] (224 words)

Umbrella and Personal Service Companies [ch 3: page 15] (118 words)

What if there is no contract? [ch 3: pages 15-16] (168 words)

Homeworkers [ch 3: page 16] (82 words)

Job applicants [ch 3: page 16] (165 words)

Nurses and midwives in training [ch 3: page 16] (50 words)

Work experience placements [ch 3: page 16] (47 words)

Crown employees [ch 3: page 17] (35 words)

New EU Directive on Whistleblowing [ch 3: page 17] (102 words)

Does UK whistleblowing law protect someone who was about to blow the whistle but had not yet done so? [ch 3: pages 19] (739 words)

Chapter 4

4. What types of disclosures are protected [ch 4: page 20] (190 words)

To be protected, there must be a qualifying disclosure (section 43A, ERA 96), and it must be made in a particular way (sections 43C to 43H, ERA 96). ...
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What is a qualifying disclosure? [ch 4: page 20] (206 words)

Public interest [ch 4: pages 21-24] (1,668 words)

No need to show good faith [ch 4: page 24] (135 words)

Need for specific factual information [ch 4: pages 25-27] (1,199 words)

The ‘manner’ of making the disclosure [ch 4: page 27] (172 words)

Whistleblower or detective? [ch 4: page 28] (200 words)

Whistleblower or campaigner for change? [ch 4: pages 28-29] (489 words)

Chapter 5

5. Who should the disclosure be made to? [ch 5: page 30] (153 words)

Chapter 4 looked at the tests that are used to decide whether the content of a disclosure and the motivation of its maker meet the legal requirements ...
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Disclosure to the employer [ch 5: pages 30-31] (432 words)

Disclosure to a legal adviser [ch 5: page 31] (81 words)

Disclosure to a prescribed person or MP [ch 5: pages 31-32] (385 words)

Disclosure to an organisation that is not prescribed [ch 5: pages 32-33] (526 words)

Disclosure of ‘exceptionally serious’ failure [ch 5: pages 33-34] (388 words)

Gagging clauses [ch 5: page 34] (82 words)

Chapter 6

6. What types of claim can be brought [ch 6: page 35] (156 words)

This Chapter looks at the kinds of claim that can be brought in the employment tribunal to enforce rights under the Public Interest Disclosure Act 199 ...
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Automatically unfair dismissal [ch 6: pages 35-36] (459 words)

Detriment [ch 6: pages 36-38] (962 words)

Proving the claim — some key pitfalls [ch 6: pages 38-39] (403 words)

Remedies [ch 6: pages 39-40] (262 words)

Interim relief [ch 6: pages 40-41] (618 words)

Time limits [ch 6: pages 41-42] (174 words)

Chapter 7

7. Whistleblowing policies [ch 7: pages 43-44] (730 words)

There is currently no legal requirement, outside specific sectors such as financial services, for an employer to have a whistleblowing policy. Even ...
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What should a whistleblowing policy look like? [ch 7: pages 44-46] (861 words)

Chapter 8

8. Non-disclosure agreements [ch 8: pages 47-49] (1,001 words)

The use of non-disclosure agreements (NDAs) to stifle whistleblowing is a topical issue in 2019. At the time of writing, the government is under ...
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Chapter 9

9. Proposals for reform [ch 9: pages 50-51] (789 words)

As this booklet has tried to show, the Public Interest Disclosure Act 1998 (PIDA) is widely recognised as being unfit for purpose. It cannot safely ...
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New EU Directive on whistleblowing [ch 9: pages 52-54] (1,113 words)

Further information [pages 55-56] (627 words)

Copies of relevant statutes and regulations are available online at: www.legislation.gov.uk. In Northern Ireland, legislation is published on the ...
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