New Zealand Law Society - New whistle-blowing guide for agencies and submission on PDA Act consultation

New whistle-blowing guide for agencies and submission on PDA Act consultation

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The Chief Ombudsman has published a new guide for agencies on whistle-blowing, and his submission to the State Services Commission consultation on the Protected Disclosures Act (PDA).

Guide for agencies

The new guide contains best practice for agencies’ internal policies and procedures. The chief Ombudsman has also updated a guide for people who are thinking about making a protected disclosure, and a checklist that can be given to people who are ready to blow the whistle.

This guidance can be used by both the public and private sectors.

PDA submission

The State Services Commission held a public consultation on possible reform of the PDA last year. The Chief Ombudsman made a submission, which is now available to read.

A review of the Protected Disclosures Act 2000 (PDA) has been necessary for some time,” Mr Boshier says in his introduction.

“Although New Zealand was one of the first jurisdictions to implement ‘whistleblowing’ legislation, we have not maintained best practice or implemented the statutory powers or resourcing needed by integrity bodies to ensure effective oversight. It needs to be said upfront that regulatory reform will be insufficient on its own.

“It must be accompanied by the wholesale encouragement of a ‘speak up’ culture, and cross-organisational commitment to creating a positive internal reporting culture, beyond just the report of serious wrongdoing. Much of this change needs to occur at both the system-wide and individual organisation level, in addition to the formal legislative protections for when things go wrong.”

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