Whistleblowing is when an employee reveals information about illegal working practices in their workplace or former workplace. Unscrupulous working practices might include making employees work in shoddy conditions, cutting corners when it comes to health and safety, keeping fraudulent finances or covering up a criminal offence.

While those who “blow the whistle” are generally displaying better behaviour than those whose wrongdoing they are uncovering, this does not mean that uncovering bad working practices isn’t without its risk – whistleblowers are often persecuted or victimised following their decisions, and they are vulnerable to unfair dismissal.

If you have been dismissed or victimised after revealing incidences of wrongdoing in your workplace, JMW can represent you and fight your corner. Call us on 0345 872 6666 to discuss your situation or fill out our enquiry form and someone will get back to you.

Working practices uncovered by whistleblowing

Working practices flagged up by whistleblowing are generally illegal, dangerous, or both. The danger could be to employees, members of the public, or the reputation of a company. Examples of issues often revealed through employee whistleblowing include:

  • Criminal offences
  • Dangerous working practices
  • Employing illegal workers/untrained staff
  • Covering up wrongdoing

As an example, an employee of a hospital may blow the whistle on working practices which are putting the health of patients at risk – this could include poor cleaning standards, or something as serious as abuse.

Blowing the whistle is not simply making a complaint and if there are issues at your work which you feel could lead to serious injury or other problems then you should not feel as though you are betraying your employer by flagging them up.

How to blow the whistle

If you want to blow the whistle on illegal, dangerous or unsavoury working practices then you should ensure you disclose your information to a designated prescribed person to ensure employee rights remain in place.

A prescribed person could be the Health and Safety Executive or another regulatory body.

In certain situations employees may feel they have no choice but to report illegal working practices to the police.

How are you protected?

You cannot be dismissed from work because of whistleblowing. If this happens you can make a claim for unfair dismissal, as long as you blew the whistle because:

  • The health or safety of employees or the general public is at risk
  • A criminal offence is being committed
  • Wrongdoing is being covered up
  • Damage to the environment is a risk
  • A law is being broken

Find out more

If you have been unfairly victimised or dismissed from your role after whistleblowing for genuine reasons you are protected by law and can bring a case – contact JMW  for more information. You can call us on 0345 872 6666 or fill out our enquiry form and someone will be in touch as soon as possible.

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