The provisions of the Protected Disclosures Act 2014 protect whistleblowers. An application can be made to the Circuit Court to protect your employment rights if they to be affected by your disclosure.
However there are a number of provisions in the Act which have to be borne in mind when seeking the protection of the Court through legal proceedings. The “relevant information” that is disclosed must ,in the reasonable belief of the worker, show one or more relevant wrongdoings and have come to the attention of the worker in connection with his/her employment.
Section 5 (3) of the Act defines eight acts, which are deemed to be relevant wrongdoings. In the vast majority of disclosures a Court will normally seek, at the outset of any application for protection , to determine whether the disclosure relates to whether :
- An offence (i.e. a criminal offence) is being or likely to be committed; Or/
- The health or safety of any individual has been, is being or is likely to be endangered.
The motivation for making the disclosure is not relevant and in legal proceedings a disclosure is presumed to be a protected disclosure until the contrary is proven.
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