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Considerations for employers when setting up an external whistleblowing hotline

This post is the product of an interview with Grant Stevens, Head of Sales, Expolink Europe Ltd http://expolink.co.uk/   What are the main considerations for employers when setting up an externally-managed hotline for the first time? Like any worthwhile venture, whistleblowing hotlines benefit from forethought and planning. A great deal will depend on the size … Continue Reading

SEC Clamps Down On Employee Agreements Thought to “Chill” Whistleblower Activity

The US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) recently sent letters to numerous, unnamed publicly-traded US companies requesting every nondisclosure agreement, confidentiality agreement, severance agreement, and settlement agreement the companies have entered into with employees since the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act (Dodd-Frank) was enacted, as well as any other documents related to … Continue Reading

New Obligations of Employers in the Slovak Republic in Relation to Protection of Whistleblowers

On 16 October 2014, the National Council of the Slovak Republic adopted Act No. 307/2014 Coll. on Certain Measures Related to Reporting of Anti-social Activities and on Amendment and Supplements to Certain Acts, considered the first more comprehensive regulation of whistleblowing in Slovakia. The Act came into force on 1 January 2015. The new legal … Continue Reading

Should Employers Offer Financial Incentives for Whistleblowing

This article was written for whistleblowing hotline provider Expolink http://expolink.co.uk/.   It is well known that many employees do not blow the whistle for fear of repercussions if they do (from harassment to dismissal and various poor treatment in between). So should we offer incentives to employees to follow a whistleblowing procedure, in order that health … Continue Reading

Proposed changes to UK whistleblowing regime

Hands up all those who knew that proposals had been put to the Government to make material changes to the whistleblowing legislation?   The Whistleblowing Commission, a panel of individuals with experience and expertise in both “sides” of the whistleblowing debate, has compiled 25 recommendations of varying degrees of practical significance in relation to public interest … Continue Reading

M5 or A303 – “unmanageable” public interest complainant runs out of road in UK Tribunal

It is rare that an employer wins its Tribunal case but still covers itself in so little glory as did Hampshire Police this month in its defence of a whistleblowing allegation brought by former policeman Mr Panayiotou.    Mr Panayiotou was a chap with a strong, not to say obsessive, sense of right and wrong.  He … Continue Reading

The Infosys settlement: 34 million reasons for employers to take heed

Ok, it’s the end of the year, time is short so let’s just discuss a few reasons to take heed of the much publicized investigation of the IT consulting firm Infosys Corporation (Infosys).  Recently, the US Department of Justice (DOJ) announced it had reached a settlement with the firm which included a record payment of … Continue Reading

Whistleblowing hotline compliance issues in Europe – Part 2

This is the second part of my series of posts looking at traps for the unwary when setting up a hotline for whistleblowers in your European operations.  Read Part 1.   Notifications and Authorisations  Some EU Data Privacy Authorities, for example in France, require their prior authorisation to be sought before a hotline is implemented. Many … Continue Reading

Whistle-blowing hotline compliance issues in Europe – Part 1

Corporate compliance hotlines, or whistle-blowing hotlines, enable employees to report suspicions of violations of corporate rules, financial misconduct and other infractions on a confidential and sometimes also anonymous basis. They are considered by many corporations to be necessary to support good corporate governance and an aid in the fight against bribery, corruption and financial crime. … Continue Reading

5 lessons employers can learn from the Paula Deen Scandal

1.  Mind your tongue.  Racial slurs and comments are never appropriate in the workplace and never when used by the boss.  Failing to take action when you learn of employees at any level using racial or ethnic slurs undermines efforts to create a harassment free environment and opens the door to serious liability. 2.  Pay people fairly.  … Continue Reading

House of Lords Swallows Mad Dog’s Breakfast

Back in October we suggested that the Government’s employee shareholder status proposal was a clear case of attaching too much credibility to its own publicity, and was destined to fail – ill thought-out, with insufficient consideration given to how it would actually work in practice, as opposed to party political conference cosmetics. Since then, much … Continue Reading

Are Employees Who Blow the Whistle Outside of the United States Protected From Retaliation?

The Sarbanes-Oxley Act [pdf] (“SOX”) and the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act (“Dodd-Frank Act”) both include protections for employees who blow the whistle on corporate fraud.  One question that remains unsettled is whether employees who are outside the United States can sue for retaliation if they are terminated in retaliation for reporting … Continue Reading

OSHA Launches Alternative Dispute Resolution Pilot Program for Whistleblower Complaints

Earlier this month, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration announced that it will begin offering early resolution and mediation instead of investigations in two OSHA regions to address complaints filed with the agency’s Whistleblower Protection Program. OSHA is charged with enforcing the whistleblower provisions in 22 separate statutes, including the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and … Continue Reading