More than 81,000 citizens call on the European Commission to protect whistleblowers

On 14 November 2017, representatives from the European Federation of Journalists, Eurocadres, the European Public Service Union (EPSU), Transparency International and WeMove.eu met with Tiina Astola, the Director General of DG Justice. They handed over the 81,000 signatures and the list of 80 organisations participating in the WhistleblowerProtection.eu platform. The platform and the petition were initiated by Eurocadres in October 2016 with the aim to push the European institutions to protect whistleblowers at the European level with a directive. During the meeting, the group highlighted the recent good news in the work for EU-wide whistleblower protection: The Parliament adopted, with a large majority, a…

Denmark: draft bill on trade secrets fails to protect journalists and their sources

The Danish Union of Journalists (DJ) criticised in a letter sent to the Danish Patent and Trademark Office on 3 November 2017, the draft bill on trade secrets which is being discussed in Denmark in order to comply with the directive 2016/943/EU ‘on the protection of undisclosed know-how and business information (trade secrets) against their unlawful acquisition, use and disclosure’, adopted by the European Parliament and Council on 8 June 2016. The Danish Union considers that the bill in its present form does not contain the necessary protection for journalists and whistleblowers in cases of trade secrets’ disclosure serving the public interest.…

The European Parliament urges the Commission to protect whistleblowers

With the adoption of Virginie Rozière‘s report today (24.10.2017) in plenary session in Strasbourg, the European Parliament is sending a strong signal to the European Commission, demanding an EU-wide legislation protecting whistleblowers across the 27 Member States. The European Federation of Journalists (EFJ) warmly thanks the Members of the European Parliament (MEP) who voted in favour of a full protection for whistleblowers. A total of 666 MEPs took part in the vote: 399 (60%) voted in favour of the report, 101 (15%) voted against and 166 (25%) abstained from voting. Proposed by Virginie Rozière (S&D), the report demands an EU-wide protection…

EFJ and EBU call on the European Parliament to adopt report on whistleblowers

The European Parliament has an opportunity to make a crucial statement tomorrow (24.10) on the protection of whistleblowers. The European Federation of Journalists (EFJ) and the European Broadcasting Union (EBU) urge Members of the European Parliament to make this a reality and adopt the report on “legitimate measures to protect whistleblowers acting in the public interest”. Both organizations have welcomed Virginie Rozière’s own-initiative report on the protection of whistleblowers. It recognizes the close link between investigative journalism, whistleblowers and their key contribution to informing the public, and stresses the importance of protecting the confidentiality of journalistic sources. The report also…

#ECPMF conference e-book: how to improve freedom of expression

The European Centre for Press and Media Freedom (ECPMF) issued an e-book with proceedings and conclusions of their recent conference, organised on 24 March in Strasbourg. Carried out with the support of the Council of the Europe (CoE), the event promoted the dialogue between the European Court of Human Rights (ECtHR) and media freedom groups, especially on the ECtHR’s recent case law relating to freedom of expression, media and journalism. The speakers at the conference presented their views on three main themes, now summed up in the e-book: defamation, privacy and the processing of personal data; investigative journalism in relation…

The Council of Europe recommends its member states to recognise ‘a right to whistleblowing’

In a resolution, followed by a recommendation adopted on 27 June 2017, the Council of Europe Parliamentary Assembly encourages the Member States to provide “adequate protection to whistleblowers” in order to better fight corruption. The European Federation of Journalists (EFJ) welcomes this resolution which recognises investigative journalism as a “public asset” and push for more recognition and support to ensure the public’s widest possible access to information. “We are glad to see that the EFJ views on the issue were heard. The voting result are impressive: it was almost unanimously voted as only one participant abstained and one voted against,…

A European directive protecting whistleblowers will be presented in the coming months promised Juncker

On May 30, European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker promised that a European directive protecting whistleblowers will be presented “in the coming months”, during an hearing with MEPs of the Committee of Inquiry into Money Laundering, Tax Avoidance and Tax Evasion (PANA). This declaration is another important step towards a protection of whistleblowers at the European level. Earlier this year, the European Commission had launched a public consultation aiming to collect information on the benefits and drawbacks of a sectorial and horizontal protection for people shading light on wrongdoings. “The European Federation of Journalists welcomed the European Commission’s public consultation. Whistleblowers became a hot topic following…

EU colloquium called on Commission to protect whistleblowers

The European Federation of Journalists (EFJ) attended on 17-18 November 2016 the second edition of EU colloquium on fundamental rights dedicated this year to media pluralism and democracy. Hosted by Frans Timmermans, the European Commission’s first vice-president said in his opening speech that “being a journalist has become one of the most dangerous professions worldwide. Being a journalist is dangerous because of the physical dangers, it’s dangerous because of all the abuse you get all the time – online and elsewhere – it’s dangerous also because you take huge risks with the sustainability of your finances since it also is…

ETUC says new research shows need for EU whistleblower protection law

The European Trade Union Confederation (ETUC) issued today a press release calling for an EU-wide whistleblower protection. The European Federation of Journalists (EFJ) is a member organisation of the ETUC and fully supports the following statement. The EFJ is encouraging individuals and organisations to sign its petition on the issue. The EU can and should do a lot more to protect workers who come forward and blow the whistle on wrongdoing. Legal protection for whistleblowers throughout  the EU is a complicated maze of protections and the various civil liability laws mean that some people may be penalised and held personally liable…

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