Ethics of Whistle Blowing

Topics: Whistleblower, Whistleblower Protection Act, Ethics Pages: 12 (3297 words) Published: April 7, 2012
1Whistle Blowing2
1.1Origin of term2
1.2What is whistle blowing?2
2Types of Whistle Blowers3
3Ethical Responsibilities of Whistle Blowers3
3.3Danger Prevention3
3.4Personal Compliance3
4Benefits of Whistle Blowing4
5Drawbacks of Whistle Blowing4
6Laws for protection of Whistle Blowers5
7Protecting the Whistleblowers – Asian and European Perspectives6
8What does whistle blowing have to do with ethics?7
9How can government encourage whistle blowing?7
10 What ethical dilemmas do whistle blowing present?8
11 Cases Of Whistle Blowing In Pakistan9
11.1Case 19
11.2Case 29

Whistle Blowing

Origin of term

The term whistleblower comes from the phrase "blow the whistle," which refers to a whistle being blown by a policeman or a referee to indicate an activity that is illegal or a foul.

What is whistle blowing?
* Working in the corporate or government environment, employees are sometimes subject to see things they should not see. Such things that are unethical to society or to the corporation. An employee is then placed in a situation where the employee must decide what action should be taken. Do you report the unethical behavior to upper-management or do you just let it go to avoid risking the disciplinary action towards a co-worker, the company or at times risk losing your job. So whistle blowing is defined as: *

* An employee’s disclosure to government, the press, or upper-management authorities that the employer is engaged in unsafe or illegal activities. *
* The textbook, “Moral Issues in Business”, states whistle blowing as “an employee act of informing the public about the illegal or immoral behavior of an employer or organization.”

However many a time’s employees are reluctant to report their company or disclose information of behavior because of loyalty to the company or fear of having to deal with the matter and end up losing their job. So whistle blowing entails an ethical dilemma as the individual considering becoming a whistleblower is torn between two competing loyalties, loyalty to the corporation and loyalty to society or the law or some higher morality.

One problem is that whistleblowers nearly always experience retaliation, ranging from being fired to being vilified. Society recognizes that there is a need for whistle blowing, the need to expose corruption and wrongdoing, and legal structures have been developed to encourage and protect the whistleblower, showing that society recognizes this as a socially valuable act Whistle blowing is controversial since employees must balance organizational loyalty with the potential benefits of solving a problem by shoving the organization in the spotlight

A whistleblower is a person who reports workplace wrongdoing to the appropriate authorities or to the media, with the goal of putting an end to the wrongdoing. This could mean, for example, filing a workplace health and safety complaint, reporting inappropriate handling of hazardous waste, or reporting unethical or even criminal business practices. Whistle blowing serves the public and co-workers, but it may draw unwanted attention. Whistleblowers may be afraid to speak the truth to those who can do something about it, out of fear for their job or safety.

Types of Whistle Blowers

There are two types of whistle blowers:

* External whistle-blowers: report misconduct in an organization to outside persons and agencies like lawyers, mass media, law enforcement, or watchdog agencies.

* Internal whistle-blowers report misconduct in their organization to other employees or superiors in the same organization.

Ethical Responsibilities of Whistle Blowers

The first ethical responsibility of a potential whistleblower is to check her motivations to make sure there is not a...
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