WHEN AN EMPLOYEE BELIEVES THAT A BREACH OF ADULT PROTECTION OCCURS, ALL EMPLOYEES MUST BE AWARE OF THE FOLLOWING:
WHEN DID THE INCIDENT/ACTIVITY TAKE PLACE?
Is It happening now
Has it happened in the past
Could it happen in the future
The areas for which information is required are:
It is a criminal offence
It is a breach of a legal obligation
It is a miscarriage of justice
There is a danger to the health or safety of any individual
Someone has caused damage to the environment
There has been a deliberate covering up of information tending to show any of the above five matters
WHEN YOU SUSPECT A THERE HAS BEEN A BREACH OF ADULT PROTECTION
Do not Panic or feel intimidated
Do not become a private investigator
Do not forget there may be an innocent and/or good explanation
Do not use this procedure to pursue a personal grievance
Think about what the end result may be before you take any action
The Rectory Nursing Home requires those who suspect an abuse of:
Any, some or all residents and/or staff
An abuse of the fabric of the building
Any concerns that may lead to a potential legal situation regarding the Home, residents and others
Any matter relating to the facilities of the home
If anyone suspects any to all of the above, they should in the first instance communicate their concerns to the appropriate member of staff, either in a verbal or written form. The appropriate member of staff will then decide on any action to be taken in order to resolve the situation, ranging from no action (a staff member may misunderstand a situation) to taking criminal or civil action in regard to the abuse.
UK PUBLIC INTEREST DISCLOSURE ACT SUMMARY
The Act came into force on 2nd July 1999. It encourages people to blow the whistle about malpractice in the workplace and is designed to ensure that organisations respond by acting on the message rather than against the messenger.
The Act applies to employees blowing the whistle about crime, civil offences (including negligence, breach of contract etc.), miscarriage of justice, danger to health and safety or the environment and the cover up of any of these. It applies whether or not the information is confidential and extends to malpractice occurring in the UK and any other country or territory.
In addition to employees, it covers trainees, agency staff, contractors, home workers, every professional in the NHS. Employment law restrictions on minimum length of service and age do not apply. At present the Act does not cover the genuinely self-employed, volunteers, the army, intelligence services or police officers.
A disclosure in good faith to a manager or the employer will be protected if the whistleblower has a reasonable suspicion that the malpractice has occurred, is occurring or is likely to occur.
The Act protects disclosures made in good faith to prescribed bodies such as the Health and Safety Executive, the Financial Services Authority and the Inland Revenue, where the whistleblower has a reasonable belief that the information and their allegation(s) are substantially true.
Wider disclosures (e.g. to the police, the media, MPs, and non-prescribed regulators) are protected if, in addition to the tests for regulatory disclosures, they are reasonable in all the circumstances and they meet one of the three preconditions. Provided they are not made for personal gain, these preconditions are that the whistleblower:
reasonably believed they would be victimised if they raised the matter internally or with a designated regulator,
reasonably believed a cover-up was likely and there was no regulator; or
had already raised the matter internally or with a prescribed regulator.
An employee who makes a wide, public disclosure is more likely to be protected if there was no internal procedure set up.
Where the whistleblower is victimised in breach of the Act they can bring a claim to an employment tribunal for compensation. Awards are uncapped and based on the losses suffered. Additionally where an employee is sacked, they may apply for an interim order to keep their job.
Not all disclosures made by an employee are protected under the Act. Those that are include criminal acts, health and safety violations, breaches of legislation, and miscarriages of justice. However, such acts are only protected as long as the disclosure is made in good faith to the employer, or any other person authorised under a procedure set up by the employer for this purpose. (Disclosures can also be made to appropriate regulatory bodies, such as the Health and Safety Executive).
bullet Where an employee reasonably suspects malpractice (and this includes any crime), they will be protected from victimisation where they raise the matter in good faith with a person who is legally responsible for whistle blowing.