Seimas adopts corruption whistleblower protection law

Lithuania's parliament on Tuesday adopted a law ensuring confidentiality of persons reporting corruption and other offenses of officers and public servants. The law should take effect in January of 2019.

The law was supported by 70 parliamentarians, with nine abstentions.

Under the law, from the moment of blowing a whistle on corruption, the whistleblower should be protected against disciplinary measures, dismissal, demotion, transfer to a different work position or any other actions, such as intimidation, harassment, reprisal, reduction of salary, change of work hours, etc.

The ban on the actions would be in effect for two years after the final decision in the investigation of the information provided by the person. The law also envisages a possibility to exempt the whistleblowers who was involved in the violations but later reported them to the authorities.

Proposed in September, adoption of the law was pressed amid Lithuania's efforts to join the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD).

The Lithuanian office of the non-governmental organization Transparency International says that the law meets the key requirements for whistleblower protection, however, notes a risk of indirectly assigning the protection of such persons to prosecutors only.

Source: BNS
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