Netherlands: Nieuw EU akkoord over bescherming van klokkenluiders

Last Updated: 21 March 2019
Article by Jan Stappers

Op 12 maart jl. zijn Europese Commissie, het Europees Parlement en de Lidstaten het eens geworden over een nieuw EU akkoord over bescherming van klokkenluiders die schendingen van het EU recht melden. WhistleB's oprichters Gunilla Hadders en Karin Henriksson zien deze beslissing als een bevestiging van alles wat WhistleB voor ogen had bij oprichting in 2011.

"Vanaf het begin zagen we onze onderneming als een Europese aanbieder van klokkenluidersystemen. Dit betekent dat we ons ervan verzekeren dat ons systeem in lijn is met de meest recente trends en regelgeving. Zonder de strengste niveaus van data veiligheid is het onmogelijk vertrouwen te creëren in het klokkenluidersysteem. Dit zou ertoe leiden dat onze klanten niet de meldingen ontvangen die zo waardevol zijn voor ze. De gevoelige informatie die ontvangen wordt via het klokkenluiderskanaal moet absoluut beschermd worden," zegt Gunilla Hadders.

Een persbericht van de Europese Commissie meldt het volgende:

Het nieuwe EU akkoord over bescherming van klokkenluiders bestrijkt een brede reeks gebieden van EU-recht, waaronder de bestrijding van witwassen, vennootschapsbelasting, gegevensbescherming, de bescherming van de financiële belangen van de Unie, voedsel- en productveiligheid, milieubescherming en nucleaire veiligheid. Bovendien staat het lidstaten vrij om deze regels ook op andere gebieden toe te passen. De Commissie moedigt lidstaten aan om brede kaders voor de bescherming van klokkenluiders in te voeren die op dezelfde beginselen zijn gebaseerd.

  • Duidelijke rapportageprocedures en -verplichtingen voor werkgevers: het nieuwe EU akkoord over bescherming van klokkenluiders zal zorgen voor een systeem van veilige kanalen om misstanden te melden, zowel binnen een organisatie als aan overheidsinstanties.
  • Veilige kanalen voor het melden van misstanden: het nieuwe EU akkoord over bescherming van klokkenluiders bepaalt dat klokkenluiders worden aangemoedigd om misstanden eerst intern te melden, wanneer de inbreuk die zij onder de aandacht willen brengen binnen hun eigen organisatie doeltreffend kan worden aangepakt en zij niet het risico op vergelding lopen. Zij mogen zich ook direct tot de bevoegde autoriteiten wenden wanneer zij daartoe in het concrete geval aanleiding zien. Wanneer na hun melding bij de autoriteiten geen passende maatregelen zijn genomen of wanneer er een dreigend of manifest gevaar voor het algemeen belang bestaat of wanneer melding aan de autoriteiten geen zin zou hebben, bijvoorbeeld omdat de autoriteiten de pleger van het strafbare feit de hand boven het hoofd houden, kunnen klokkenluiders tot openbaarmaking overgaan, bijvoorbeeld via de media. Dit zal ervoor zorgen dat klokkenluiders beschermd zijn wanneer zij als bronnen voor onderzoeksjournalistiek fungeren.
  • Voorkomen van vergelding en effectieve bescherming: de regels van het nieuwe EU akkoord over bescherming van klokkenluiders zullen klokkenluiders beschermen tegen ontslag, demotie en andere vormen van vergelding. Ook zullen zij de nationale autoriteiten ertoe verplichten burgers te informeren over de procedures en de bescherming op het gebied van klokkenluiden. Klokkenluiders zullen ook beschermd zijn in het kader van gerechtelijke procedures.

Věra Jourová, commissaris voor Justitie, Consumentenzaken en Gendergelijkheid: "Door Dieselgate, de Panama Papers en de onthullingen in verband met Cambridge Analytica is goed tot ons doorgedrongen hoe belangrijk klokkenluiders zijn om onrechtmatige activiteiten aan het licht te brengen die zowel het algemeen belang als ons welzijn schaden. Wij moeten de dappere mensen die onrechtmatige activiteiten aan de kaak stellen, ondersteunen en beschermen. Ik ben verheugd dat wij een evenwichtig systeem hebben bereikt dat werkgevers aanmoedigt om problemen intern op te lossen, maar ook klokkenluiders in staat stelt om zich zonder angst voor vergelding tot overheidsinstanties te richten".

Wat is de volgende stap?

Dit voorlopige EU akkoord over bescherming van klokkenluiders moet nu formeel goedgekeurd worden door zowel het Europees Parlement als de Raad.

WhistleB biedt een meertalig klokkenluiderssysteem, gebaseerd op de Algemene Verordening Gegevensbescherming (AVG). "We zijn erg blij bij te kunnen dragen aan transparantie, door het tegengaan van corruptie andere misstanden in de EU," zegt Karin Henriksson.

WhistleB zal op korte termijn het nieuwste klantonderzoek publiceren over klokkenluiden binnen organisaties. Registreer hier voor het ontvangen van een exemplaar van dit onderzoek en/of voor deelname aan het gerelateerde webinar op 9 april 2019 om 10.00 uur CET.

The content of this article is intended to provide a general guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought about your specific circumstances.

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