Here is what you need to know and what you should be considering:
- The new laws are designed to encourage whistleblowers to speak up without fear. People can make *protected disclosures* about a range of misconduct.
- The amended laws apply to disclosures made on or after 1 July 2019, however, they can also relate to conduct that occurred before this date.
- Protection now extends to include third parties – e.g. individuals who supply goods or services to the organisation (and their employees), associates of the organisation and relatives/dependents.
- Penalties apply for breaching the confidentiality of a whistleblower’s identity, or for victimising or threatening them.
- Mandatory requirements now apply for public companies and most large private companies to have a whistleblower policy.
- If your business already has a policy in place make sure it is compliant with the new laws.
- If you’re putting together a policy, make sure it clearly explains how and to whom protected disclosures can be made, how investigations will be conducted, how whistleblowers will be protected, treated and supported.
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