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A big test for the Protected Disclosures Act 2022

Updated: Jun 8



To our knowledge, there is only one publicised determination of the Employment Relations Authority (similar to the UK's ET) that refers to whistleblower retaliation under the new Protected Disclosures (Protection of Whistleblowers) Act 2022. 



It was a positive sign that the new legislation is doing its job.  The last employee to be argued out of their whistleblower protection under the old Protected Disclosures Act 2000 was ordered by the Authority to pay $6,000 (£2,800) in penalties, $4,800 of which was to be divvied up between the employee’s former colleagues at Oranga Tamariki |Ministry for Children.  Nice eh?



In the UK, lobbying for whistleblower protection legislation is well underway, but in the meantime employees have to try and make do with the abysmal Public Interest Disclosures Act 1998.  As the Post Office Horizon IT Inquiry rolls on, the general lack of whistleblower activity has not gone unnoticed.  Post Office Ltd and the NHS are typical of large organisations that trumpet their “speak up” policy, and then go on retaliate against whistleblowers who do speak up.




One swallow does not a summer make


Only a ridiculously small sample is currently available to us, to be able to say whether the PDA2022 is any good (PPK v Communication and Training Services Ltd – see the 7 November 2023 article). 


But there could be another matter involving several whistleblowers who were allegedly retaliated against, in circumstances where electoral fraud has been alleged.  It should be a good further test of the PDA2022.

 

Newstalk ZB’s Mike Hosking interviewed Allan Halse, an employment advocate who is representing the workers, and the link is here:


Domestic mainstream media is already well involved, but as usual we will focus on the employment law aspect as the story develops.

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