Strengthening the protection of whistleblowers

WorkerWorker.Photo: pixabay.com

The Government is strengthening the protection of whistleblowers in the Working Environment Act (arbeidsmiljøloven), according to a governmental press release.

– The Government proposes amendments to strengthen the protection of whistleblowers in Norwegian working life. The rules will now also apply to contract workers. Businesses with ten or more employees have a duty to prepare notification.

To make it safer to alert the public authorities also proposed an expanded confidentiality regarding the whistleblower’s identity.

– A better protection of whistleblowers is important. We want to facilitate that workers can report unacceptable circumstances. If workers are reluctant to report unacceptable circumstances, the law must be altered. The changes we are proposing will protect whistleblowers better by including protection of contract workers, companies with more than ten employees must have procedures have to comply, according to Minister of Labour and Social Affairs, Anniken Hauglie.

Specific changes to strengthen the protection of whistleblowers:

Hired labour should also get an alert guard. Today, the rules only apply to the company’s own employees. Hired workers should also gain knowledge of misconduct in hiring practice. They should therefore be given the same protection as the organization’s own employees when they tell.

All businesses with ten employees or more are required to have procedures in place for safeguarding notifications and alarms. Research clearly shows that whistleblowers are treated better in businesses that have routines for notification.

The authorities should have a duty of confidentiality regarding who notified them. It is always legitimate to notify the supervisors and other public authorities. Under the current regulations, it is unclear whether the whistleblower’s identity can be kept secret. The extended confidentiality regulation will make it safer to alert the public authorities.

 

Source: government.no / Norway Today

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