EDMONTON – Today Marianne Ryan, Alberta’s second Public Interest Commissioner issued comments on the announcement that the Public Interest Disclosure (Whistleblower Protection) Amendment Act (the Act) will be proclaimed on March 1, 2018.
These amendments provide important changes that expand the jurisdiction of the Public Interest Commissioner and protection for whistleblowers. Changes include expanding the types of “wrongdoing” that can be investigated, providing employees a choice of either reporting wrongdoing internally, or directly to the Commissioner in the first instance, and providing public service employees the ability to obtain remedies if they suffer a reprisal. The expanded jurisdiction of the Act, now includes Members of the Legislative Assembly, Ministers, the Premier and their offices and will also include prescribed service providers who will be defined in a succeeding regulation.
“A safe and healthy workplace is fundamental to the success of an organization. These amendments offer expanded protection for whistleblowers and in doing so, promote public confidence in the administration of the public service” said Marianne Ryan, Alberta’s Public Interest Commissioner. “I look forward to these changes and believe they will encourage both employees and their organizations to embrace a workplace culture where the reporting of wrongdoing is encouraged and supported.”
Employees concerned about wrongdoing in their workplace are encouraged to contact the Public Interest Commissioner for Advice.