The need to protect whistleblowers is increasingly recognised at both European and national level. In a recent public consultation done by the European Commission, an overwhelming majority of 96% of respondents agreed that we need legally binding minimum standards on whistleblower protection across the EU.
After several calls for European legislation on whistleblower protection from the European Parliament, trade unions, journalists, civil society and even European governments, now the ball is in the European Commission’s corner. They are in the process of working on a legislative proposal, so we updated our Draft directive on whistleblower protection and sent it to the Commission in order to put forward our recommendations.
Here are the standards that an EU whistleblower protection directive should include:
- Both public and private bodies should be obliged to protect whistleblowers
- Whistleblowers should be protected in all fields of EU competence
- Whistleblowers should be free to report both internally and externally
- Whistleblowers’ reports should be quickly and seriously investigated
- There should be a broad definition of protected disclosure so that whistleblowers can report on wrongdoing and reveal information that is in the public interest
- Whistleblowers should not suffer due to their disclosures
- Whistleblowers should not bear the burden of proof
- There should be sanctions for harassing whistleblowers, or their family or colleagues
- Whistleblowers should be entitled to compensation and to legal and psychological support
- Protected disclosures override secrecy regimes
- An independent Advice and Monitoring body should be created
Learn more about our work on this: