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The term ‘whistleblower’ means reporting certain types of wrongdoing. In recent years, the term has become commonly associated with an individual who has witnessed something wrong at work.

As a whistleblower you’re protected by law and you should not be treated unfairly or lose your job because you ‘blow the whistle’. It is important to remember that the wrongdoing you disclose must be in the public interest, must affect other members of the general public.

You can raise your concern at any time about an incident, even if it happened in the past and you can also speak out if you believe something untoward will happen in the near future.

An employer cannot use a confidentiality clause or ‘gagging clause’ in a settlement agreement relating to a whistleblower and any attempt to do so is invalid.

You are protected as a whistleblower, by law, if you are:

  • An employee, e.g. a police officer, NHS employee, office worker, factory worker or a trainee, such as a student nurse
  • A temporary or permanent agency worker
  • A member of a Limited Liability Partnership (LLP)

What counts as whistleblowing?

You’re protected by law if you report:

  • A criminal offence, e.g. fraud
  • Someone’s health and safety is in danger
  • Risk or actual damage to the environment
  • A miscarriage of justice
  • The company is breaking the law, e.g. doesn’t have the correct insurance
  • You believe someone is covering up wrongdoing

Grievances of a personal nature, such as harassment, discrimination and bullying, whilst wrong and likely to be in breach of employment law, are not specifically covered by whistleblowing law, unless your particular case is also in the public interest.

Contact us now to find out how we can help you with advice on whistleblowing. You are in safe hands at Mander Hadley.

For more information please consult our Whistleblowing Experts: