Course Details

Full Course Name:
Diploma in Whistleblowing and Protected Disclosures

Course Dates

Next Course Commencing:
28th April 2020
Duration:
10 weeks, Tuesday evenings from 6.30 to 9.30 pm

Course Award

Award:
City Colleges Diploma

Course Fee

Classroom:
€995 (€1,095 if paying in instalments)
Online:
€895 (€995 if paying in instalments)
International/Non-EU:
Call +353 1 4160034

Learn about the protective legal framework for protected disclosures in Ireland.

CPD Hours
Recognised by The Institute of Banking and LIA for CPD Purposes

Whistleblower

Course Content

Lecture 1 – Winds of Change: Introduction of Whistleblower Legislation

The Basics:

  • What is “whistleblowing”?
  • Why is it important?
  • Why do whistleblowers need protection?

Pre-Protected Disclosures Position:

  • Sectoral Approach
  • Gaps

Winds of Change:

  • Developments in the UK
  • Initial attempt to bring in Protective Legislation
  • Recommendations of Mahon Tribunal, Nyberg Report etc.
  • Whistleblowers on the National Stage
  • Overview of the Protected Disclosures Act 2014
  • Application
  • Overview of provisions

Lecture 2 – Whistleblowing: Protected Disclosures

Who can make a Protected Disclosure?

What is a Protected Disclosure?

  • Relevant Information
  • Retrospective and Extra-territorial Effect
  • Significance of Motive


Stepped Procedure for Disclosure

  • Disclosure to Employer or other Responsible Person
  • Disclosure to Prescribed Person
  • Disclosure to Minister
  • Disclosure to Legal Adviser
  • Disclosure in other cases


Relevant case studies

Lecture 3 – Whistleblower Protections for Protected Disclosures

Protection from Dismissal

  • Unfair Dismissal under Unfair Dismissals Act
  • Interim relief pending Claim for Unfair Dismissal

Protection from Penalisation

  • What is penalisation?
  • Complaint to Workplace Relations Commission


Tort Action for suffering Detriment

  • What is “detriment”?
  • Requirement to elect cause of action


Protection from Civil Liability

  • Protection from Civil Liability
  • Possibility of Defamation Action


Protection from Criminal Liability

  • Defence to criminal prosecution

Anonymity

  • General rule
  • Exceptions
  • Right of action

Relevant case studies

Lecture 4 – Whistleblowing – Special Cases

Law Enforcement

  • Circumstances where not a protected disclosure
  • Prescribed Person


Security, Defence, International Relations and Intelligence

  • Circumstances where not a protected disclosure
  • Disclosures Recipient


Amendments of Garda Síochána Act 2005

  • Disclosures by members of An Garda Síochána
  • Ombudsman Commission


Amendment of Ombudsman (Defence Forces) Act 2004

  • Disclosures by members of the Defence Forces
  • Ombudsman for the Defence Forces


Relevant case studies

Lecture 5 – Whistleblowing Obligations on Public Service Employers etc.

• Protected Disclosure Policy

  • Requirement
  • “Protected Disclosure” Policy and “Grievance” Policy distinguished
  • Guidance on how to draft such a policy
  • Implementation


Annual Reports

  • Requirement
  • Selection of Reports


Prohibition of contracting out of protections

  • General position
  • Legislative provision


Protections in other Enactments

  • Preservation of protection
  • Amendments

Relevant case studies

Lecture 6 – Wooing the Would-Be Whistleblower or Waging a War: Incentives and Disincentives

Incentivising Whistleblowing

  • Rationale
  • Various Types of Incentive (e.g. immunity from penalisation and prosecution, financial incentives)
  • Critique

Deterring Whistleblowing

  • Role of Confidentiality
  • Role of Copyright
  • Role of Data-Protection
  • Role of Defamation

Relevant case studies

Lecture 7 – Mandatory Reporting

“Mandatory Reporting” and “Whistleblowing” distinguished

Rationale for Mandatory Reporting

Various Legal Provisions:

  • Taxes Consolidation Act 1997
  • Offences Against the State (Amendment) Act 1998
  • Criminal Justice (Theft and Fraud Offences) Act 2001
  • Safety, Health and Welfare at Work Act 2005
  • Criminal Justice Act 2011
  • Criminal Justice (Withholding of Information on Offences against Children and Vulnerable Persons) Act 2012
  • Companies Acts

Critique

Relevant case studies

Lecture 8 – Private Employers: The Case for a Whistleblower Policy

Impact of Protected Disclosures Legislation

Risk of corporate fraud/crime

  • Cause
  • Prevalence
  • Impacts

Internal whistle-blowing

  • Role in prevention
  • Role in detection
  • Role in resolving

Advantages of Policy

  • Encourages Employees
  • Contributes to Ethical Culture
  • Signals Corporate Responsibility

Disadvantages of Policy

  • Potential Misuse
  • Need for Resources

Relevant case studies

Lecture 9 – A Selection of Ireland’s Most Famous Whistleblower

An Garda Síochána; e.g. Maurice McCabe, John Wilson

Healthcare; e.g. Áras Attracta Whistleblowers

Defence Forces; Tom Clonan

Financial Sector; Eugene McErlean (AIB)

Lecture 10 – Whistle-Blowing on the International Stage

International Initiatives:

  • United Nations
  • European Union
  • Council of Europe

Common Law Initiatives

  • UK
  • Australia
  • Canada
  • New Zealand
  • US


Whistle-Blowers on the International Stage

Assessment

A pass grade on the written assignment will be required for awarding of the Diploma. A fail grade will result in a Certificate of Attendance for the course but without the Diploma being awarded.

Students must attend at least 80% of classes to graduate with either the Diploma or Certificate of Attendance unless a serious and verifiable reason for further absence is provided. If completing the course online, attendance and participation is tracked through Moodle.

The assignment/project must be handed in on the due date unless a sound reason for lateness is provided. In such instances, an extension may be awarded at the discretion of the lecturer.

Tara’s material is well prepared and she is very knowledgeable on the subject matter.  She presents the class in a professional manner while maintaining good approachability.  She is excellent at encouraging class discussion around what is a very interesting subject.

Tony Coughlan

Who Should Apply?

Those working in Human Resources including HR Consultants, Managers, Advisors and Assistants.  Those working in Industrial Relations providing representation and advice to employers and/or employees.  Those working in the Public and Private Sectors including employers, managers and employees.

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Select your Courses

Select the desired options and click the enrol button below when finished

Diploma in Whistleblowing and Protected Disclosures (Classroom)

Classroom Diploma in Whistleblowing and Protected Disclosures

tuesday

6:30 PM - 9:30 PM

Tara Murphy

€995

Diploma in Whistleblowing and Protected Disclosures (Online)

Online Diploma in Whistleblowing and Protected Disclosures

tuesday

6:30 PM - 9:30 PM

Tara Murphy

€895


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