Whistleblower group criticizes feds review of wrongdoing disclosure regime

Whistleblower group criticizes feds review of wrongdoing disclosure regime

content of the article

OTTAWA — An advocacy group for those exposing wrongdoing says it cannot support a new task force looking into the federal whistleblowing regime because it lacks someone with “lived experience” as an actual whistleblower.

advertising 2

content of the article

In a letter to Treasury Department President Mona Fortier, Whistleblowing Canada Research Society President Pamela Forward called the absence a “shocking omission”.

content of the article

The group, which works to raise awareness and understand the whistleblowing phenomenon, also raises concerns about the task force’s independence, given that four of the nine members are current or former employees at different levels of government.

Co-Chair Suzanne Craig is the Integrity Officer for the City of Vaughan, Ontario, while Co-Chair Mary McFadyen served as the Ombudsman and Public Interest Disclosures Officer for Saskatchewan.

Fortier appointed the task force in late November to explore ways to improve the federal disclosure process and strengthen protections and support for officers who come forward to expose wrongdoing.

advertising 3

content of the article

The Treasury Board Secretariat says many of the task force’s members, which include academics and union representatives, were selected through consultation with experts in the field and bring diverse expertise to the role.

“The review is expected to consult with a range of stakeholders and we look forward to hearing their views as this important work progresses,” said Rola Salem, a spokeswoman for the secretariat.


We apologize, but this video could not be loaded.

The review will also consider the recommendations of the 2017 report issued by the House of Commons Committee on Government Operations and Estimates, which considered testimonies from 52 witnesses, Salem said.

The task force will produce a public report with recommendations on possible changes to the public employee disclosure protection act. The panel is expected to take 12 to 18 months to complete its work.

advertising 4

content of the article

Although it disagrees with the government’s approach to the task force, the Ottawa-based whistleblowing research society agrees that an independent review is needed as the Commons Committee’s 2017 report “is now out of date”.

“Since then, there have been many new insights into the proper drafting and implementation of laws and disclosure mechanisms,” writes Forward in the letter to Fortier.

She tells the minister that the task force should also include a member with expertise in neuroscience research, as the harassment and bullying experienced by whistleblowers causes physical damage to the brain.

    Display 1


    Postmedia strives to maintain a vibrant but civilized forum for discussion and encourages all readers to share their views on our articles. Comments may take up to an hour to be moderated before they appear on the site. We ask that you keep your comments relevant and respectful. We’ve turned on email notifications – you’ll now receive an email when you get a reply to your comment, there’s an update on a comment thread you follow, or when a user you follow comments follows. For more information and details on how to customize your email settings, see our Community Guidelines.

    Leave a Reply

    Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *