(5) There is always some risk involved in whistleblowing. If the employee is fully convinced of his good intentions and serves good cause for society he should go ahead with whistle blowing. The risks of whistle blowing can be ill treatment, withdrawal of perks, transfer, difficult work and task and lastly termination. In some countries there is protection from termination to whistleblowers. However this only helps to retain job. The management can always harass or trouble an employee without termination. It is difficult to work in any company by going against the management. 3.5.2 Wrong Types of Whistleblowers There are certain types of whistleblowers who do it on false accusations and with ill intentions. Such employees should not be protected. PAGE 23
WHISTLEBLOWERS: ARE THEY A HERO OR A TRAITOR TO ORGANIZATIONS Following instances show how freedom of speech is misutilized by the whistleblowers: (1) In case of disclosing business secrecy, inventions, future plans and some specific specialized practices which may be confidential and of exclusive company usage. (2) Whenever an employee remarks are irrelevant to the organizations work and product. (3) In case of wrong accusations which cannot be proved and which are made in vengeance only end up demoralizing the employees. (4) When an employee is complaining against transfer, demotion or discharge when such action is taken on the basis of routine performance appraisal. 3.5.3 Precautions Before Whistleblowing Whistle blowing has consequences of moral, legal, personal, economic, family and career demands. It is a serious step with definite consequences. Hence before blowing the whistle an employee should take following precautions: (i) Be clear about your intentions and likely consequences. Go ahead only if you are convinced that the situation warrants whistle blowing. (ii) Compile documents to support your case. Do not depend upon hearsay. (iii) Allegations should be stated appropriately with documents and to be sent to the right person/ position. (iv) Preferably take the internal route. If this does not work then try external route. (v) Whistle blowing can be done openly or anonymously. If identity is disclosed are should be prepared to face the consequences. (vi) Decide if it is appropriate to take action immediately after sometime later or during the service. PAGE 24
WHISTLEBLOWERS: ARE THEY A HERO OR A TRAITOR TO ORGANIZATIONS (vii) Consult a lawyer about possible legal battle and defence mechanism. 3.5.4 Actions to Prevent External Whistle Blowing Employers should organize grievance redressal systems. This will help employees to come forward with grievances. The committee will attend the grievance and resolve them with the help of top management. The external whistleblowing also can be taken up by the grievance committee.
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- Fall '16