Proposal for a Directive on the protection of persons reporting on breaches of EU law

Author (Corporate)
Series Details COM (2018) 218
Publication Date 23/04/2018
Content Type


Legislative proposal published by the European Commission in April 2018 aimed at strengthening whistleblower protection across the European Union (EU).

Further information:

The draft law aims to establish safe channels for reporting both within an organisation and to public authorities. It should also protect whistleblowers (whistle-blowers) against dismissal, demotion and other forms of retaliation and require national authorities to inform citizens and provide training for public authorities on how to deal with whistleblowers.

A Communication on strengthening whistleblower protectiong at EU level was published together with the legislative proposal. The Commission adopted it on 23 April 2018. The European Parliament's relevant committee adopted a negotiating position on 27 November and the Member States' ambassadors adopted a general approach on behalf of the Council of the European Union on 25 January 2019. An informal agreement between the co-legislators was reached on 12 March. The Parliament endorsed it on 16 April and the formal adoption by the Council took place on 7 October.

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Commentary and Analysis
EBU: News, 23/04/2018: Whistleblower Directive: European Commission takes 'important step' but improvement on public reporting yet to be made
Transparency International: Press Release, 23/04/2018: New EU proposals for whistleblower protection is a bold step in the right direction
Bloomberg, 01/05/2018: How the EU Can Help Protect Whistleblowers
EurActiv, 19/11/2018: Why Europe should back a robust whistleblowers directive
EUObserver, 21/11/2018: EU parliament vote strengthens whistleblower protection
Whistleblower Protection Blog, 24/01/2019: The EU should follow the U.S. lead on whistleblowers — protect insiders by allowing them to report crimes directly to outside agencies
Social Europe, 07/03/2019: Whistleblowers directive still needs to change
Transparency International: Press Release, 12/03/2019: Historic day for whistleblowers as EU agrees pathbreaking legislation
EBU: Press Release, 16/04/2019: Whistleblowers better protected but public reporting still limited
EU Law Analysis, 23/04/2019: New EU Directive on Whistleblower Protection
Transparency International: Press Release, 07/10/2019: EU countries’ chance to lead on whistleblower protection

The Guardian, 16/04/2018: EU moves to bring in whistleblower protection law
Reuters, 23/04/2018: EU moves to protect whistleblowers
EUObserver, 23/04/2018: European Commission proposes whistleblower protection law
Irish Times, 23/04/2018: Commission promises EU-wide protection to whistleblowers
EurActiv, 24/04/2018: Caution needed in transposing whistleblowing and trade secrets directives
Politico, 16/01/2019: EU countries support protections for tax evasion leaks
Euronews, 24/01/2019: EU close to deal on stronger whistleblower protection
Politico, 28/02/2019: Whistleblower protection rules held up by reporting clash
Reuters, 12/03/2019: Whistleblowers to get EU-wide protection when reporting crimes
Deutsche Welle, 12/03/2019: EU protects whistleblowers with new directive
Politico, 12/03/2019: Europe agrees on protection rules for whistleblowers
BBC News, 16/04/2019: EU gives 'high-level' protection to whistleblowers
Politico, 16/04/2019: European Parliament approves new protections for whistleblowers
Deutsche Welle, 16/04/2019: European Parliament backs expanded whistleblower protection
EurActiv, 17/04/2019: European Parliament backs rules to protect whistleblowers
The Brussels Times, 07/10/2019: EU tightens whistleblower protection

EUR-Lex: SWD(2018)116: Impact assessment
EUR-Lex: SWD(2018)117: Executive summary of the impact assessment
European Parliament: Legislative Observatory: Procedure File for Proposal on protection of persons reporting on breaches of Union law
EP: Legislative Train: Adoption by the co-legislators of the proposal on the protection of persons reporting on breaches of Union law (‘whistle-blower protection proposal’)
European Commission: Press Release, 23/04/2018: Whistleblower protection: Commission sets new, EU-wide rules
European Commission: Fact Sheet, 23/04/2018: Whistleblower protection
European Parliament: Press Release, 20/11/2018: EU-wide protection and support for whistle-blowers
Council of the European Union: Press Release, 25/01/2019: Better protection of whistleblowers: Council adopts its position
European Commission: Press Release, 12/03/2019: European Commission welcomes provisional agreement to better protect whistleblowers across the EU
European Parliament: Press Release, 12/03/2019: First EU-wide protection for whistle-blowers agreed
Council of the European Union: Press Release, 15/03/2019: Better protection of whistle-blowers: Council confirms agreement with Parliament
European Parliament: Press Release, 16/04/2019: Protecting whistle-blowers: new EU-wide rules approved
Council of the European Union: Press Release, 07/10/2019: Better protection of whistle-blowers: new EU-wide rules to kick in in 2021

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