Labour Research January 2009

Law Matters

Whistleblower protected

A language teacher resigned when a manager became angry with her after she had given information to the police about a potential student.

Ms Hibbins brought a tribunal claim on grounds that she had been subjected to a detriment for whistleblowing.

A thorny legal issue arose as to whether there is protection for workers who blow the whistle about the wrongdoing of someone other than their employer.

The Employment Appeal Tribunal said that there is. Otherwise, workers would be unprotected from retribution by their employers who may fear losing business if they disclosed matters such as the client’s breach of health and safety or fraud.

Hibbins v Hesters Way Neighbourhood Project UKEAT/0275/08