What Is the Public Interest Disclosure Act?

Business Lawyer | June 22, 2023 | Written by David Letkemann

If you are wondering what the Public Interest Disclosure Act is, the dedicated employment lawyers at Linley Welwood have prepared a detailed and concise explanation to help you understand your rights and options under this law. The purpose of the Public Interest Disclosure Act (PIDA) is to provide protection for employees and former employees who report misconduct or breaches of public policy within their organization. It also sets out the procedure employers must follow when addressing these breaches.

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What is the Public Interest Disclosure Act?

PIDA was created to promote transparency, integrity, and accountability within the public sector by providing protection to employees who disclose significant and serious matters in the public interest. Often referred to as a “whistleblower” law, PIDA encourages employees to come forward without fear of reprisal if they are aware of wrongdoing within their workplace. This Act applies to most public sector entities, including government bodies, health sector organizations, and public educational institutions, among others.

How Does PIDA Work?

PIDA provides a secure channel for public sector employees to report significant wrongdoings. The different wrongdoings that are covered under PIDA include actions that are unlawful, acts that create a specific danger to the public or environment, gross mismanagement of public resources, etc.

PIDA also outlines the roles and responsibilities of the “designated officers” within an organization, who are responsible for handling disclosures, and the procedures for investigating these disclosures. When an employee makes a disclosure, they are protected by the Act. It is against the law to take detrimental action against an employee on account of their having made a disclosure or if they were suspected to have made a disclosure under PIDA.

Key Takeaways of the Public Interest Disclosure Act

The Public Interest Disclosure Act plays a critical role in fostering a culture of transparency and accountability within the public sector. It offers protections to employees who bravely disclose wrongdoings, and safeguards the public interest. It is also a tool for deterring mismanagement and corruption within public bodies.

Remember, as an employee in the public sector, you are not alone if you encounter unethical or illegal practices in your workplace. PIDA exists to protect you and ensure that such issues are addressed. If you are not sure of what to look for in an employment lawyer, our team of experienced lawyers can help guide you through the intricacies of whistleblower laws, such as PIDA.

If you believe you have witnessed wrongdoing at your workplace or have faced reprisals after making a disclosure, do not hesitate to reach out to us for legal advice. Simply schedule a consultation with us to discuss details of your situation, or dial (604) 850-6640, and we will respond to your inquiries promptly.

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