Whistleblowers who expose misuse of EU funds must be protected by EU law

Whistleblowers who expose misuse of EU funds must be protected by EU law, #TaxJustice, Inés Ayala Sender, Luxleaks or Panama Paper scandals, Cătălin Sorin Ivan, European Anti-Fraud Office (OLAF),

The European Parliament today backed a report urging the Commission to put forward legislative proposals that ensure whistleblowers who report misuse of EU funds are protected.

S&D Group spokesperson for budgetary control, Inés Ayala Sender, said:

“Whistleblowers play a vital role in holding multinational companies and the global elite to account. The Luxleaks or Panama Paper scandals would not have come to light if it wasn’t for brave individuals providing information on practices they thought were unjust or unethical. However, far too often it is these individuals that pay the price, not those they expose. Today the European Parliament has sent a strong message to the Commission that more needs to be done to protect whistleblowers who report the misuse of EU funds.”

S&D Group rapporteur for the report Cătălin Sorin Ivan added:

“We need to make it easier and safer for individuals to highlight the misuse of EU funds. This report not only calls for new legal protections for whistleblowers, but also for a range of measures to simplify the process of exposing the misuse of EU money. It calls for the creation of an independent information gathering and advisory body with offices in member states as well as the creation of a website where complaints can be submitted. Until this new body is established we want to see the European Anti-Fraud Office (OLAF) publish an annual report on the protection of whistleblowers in the European Union.”

Note to editors

This report relates to protection of whistleblowers exposing the misuse of EU funds. The S&D Group also wants to see wider legislation that would help protect all whistleblowers who expose unethical or illegal activity in the EU, such as those involved in exposing the Luxleaks scandal.