Find out what a protected disclosure means (also referred to as Whistleblowing) and how you can make a protected disclosure about a wrongdoing that may come to your attention in a work related context.
What is Protected Disclosure?
The Protected Disclosures Act 2014 (“the 2014 Act”) as amended by the Protected Disclosures (Amendment) Act 2022, provides a statutory framework within which workers can raise concerns regarding potential wrongdoing that have come to their attention in a work-related context.
A protected disclosure involves the disclosure of information which, in the reasonable belief of the worker making the disclosure, shows that one or more relevant wrongdoings have been committed, or are likely to be committed, and have come to the attention of the worker in a work-related context.
Interpersonal grievances exclusively affecting a person do not fall within the definition of a protected disclosure and in such instances the relevant Grievance Procedure should be consulted.
A “worker” means an individual who is or was:
- an employee;
- an independent contractor, whether or not the work / services were provided personally by the individual;
- an agency worker;
- provided with work experience under a training course or programme or with training for employment otherwise than under an employment contract;
- a shareholder of an undertaking;
- a member of the administrative, management or supervisory body of an undertaking including non-executive members; or
- a volunteer.
A worker also includes an individual who acquires information on a relevant wrongdoing during a recruitment process, and an individual who acquires information on a relevant wrongdoing during pre-contractual negotiations (other than a recruitment process).
How to make a Protected Disclosure
The Protected Disclosures Policy (Internal Workers) will apply to you if you fall within the definition of a “worker” as set out above and where the Mental Health Commission is your “employer” as defined in the 2014 Act.
The Protected Disclosures Policy (External Workers) will apply to you if you are a “worker” whose “employer”, as defined in the 2014 Act, is not the Mental Health Commission. In addition, this policy will apply if you wish to make a protected disclosure under the Health Act 2004 (as amended).
Each of the policies above, set out the process for the worker to make a disclosure, the Mental Health Commission’s processes to be adhered to when a disclosure is made, and the steps taken by the Mental Health Commission to protect the worker.
To make a protected disclosure please complete the relevant form below:
Click on the link to access the form
- You are a “worker”, and the Mental Health Commission is your “employer”-
- You are a “worker”, and the Mental Health Commission is not your “employer”
or consult the Mental Health Commission’s policies as referred to above, for further means of making a protected disclosure.
Mental Health Commission Protected Disclosure Policies
The Mental Health Commission has issued policies for both External Workers and Internal Workers which set out details on protected disclosures. Click on the link below to download the documents.
Who do I contact in the Mental Health Commission about a protected disclosure?
To contact the Mental Health Commission or for further information on protected disclosures, please contact:
Ms Joanna Macklin
Mental Health Commission
or refer to the Mental Health Commission’s policies as referred to above, for further contact details and information.
Alternatively, if you do not wish to make a protected disclosure or do not meet the relevant criteria to make a protected disclosure, you may obtain further information on the complaints section of the MHC website at the link Complaints or the Decision Support Service website at the link Complaints
The information above is a guide to some of the provisions on protected disclosures. It does not give a legal interpretation of the legislation or its provisions, so please do not rely on it for advice. For full information, please read the Health Act 2004 as amended and / or the Protected Disclosures Act 2014 as amended.
The Mental Health Commission cannot advise you on whether the disclosure you intend to make - whether to it or any other body specified in the legislation - will qualify as a protected disclosure until the disclosure is made.