Whistleblowers need urgent protection in wake of sinking ship of Government

Australian Greens

With the NSW Government facing possible removal from office on Saturday, The Greens are calling for urgent attention on the plight of whistleblowers and stronger protection measures to be implemented rapidly in the new Parliament.

“What we know is that when government’s change, many in the public service face the sack and may be inclined to reveal the government’s dirty laundry,” Jamie Parker, MP for Balmain and spokesperson on corruption said.

“These brave individuals need greater protection under the law when they are revealing the secrets of a highly secretive government like this Liberal and Nationals coalition.

“The Greens will be treating the protection of whistleblowers as a priority issue in the next Parliament and we will be re-introducing our legislation and going all out to see it supported and passed by the Parliament,” he said.

“The object of the bill is to implement an ICAC recommendation to protect persons who lodge complaints about corrupt conduct with the ICAC, or who otherwise voluntarily give statements or documents to the ICAC, from any criminal or civil liability that might otherwise result.

“This includes liability for defamation or breach of confidentiality and the taking of disciplinary action by an employer,” he said.

“If whoever forms government is serious about supporting the fight against corruption, they must indicate their support for this Bill ahead of the election, which will give the community confidence that they can disclose information to the ICAC without risk.

“The strength of our political system often depends on the integrity of individuals who are prepared to take a stand. Enhancing protection both to public officials and private citizens who make disclosures on corruption issues is a common sense step that deserves the support of the Parliament.

“People want to see our politics cleaned up and before they head to the polls the government and opposition must make clear to the people where they stand in terms of protecting whistleblowers,” Parker said.

This effort is part of our broader Clean politics charter: https://www.jamieparker.org/cleanpoliticsnow

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