International experts on whistleblowing and senior managers from Ukrainian law enforcement institutions gathered in the Ukrainian capital of Kyiv last week to discuss Ukraine’s legal and institutional framework for protecting whistleblowers. The event was supported by the European Union Advisory Mission (EUAM) Ukraine.
Whistleblowers can play a key role in exposing wrongdoing and corruption within institutions. However, as the EUAM stressed in its press release, legislation and structures need to be in place so that wrongdoing can be reported internally without fear of retribution. It is for this reason that law enforcement officials need to be equipped with the right training and tools to cooperate with and protect those who come forward with serious allegations, added the EUAM.
The EUAM is advocating for legislation to be adopted to create a stand-alone law on whistleblowing, for there to be channels available for employees to report issues, and for further awareness-raising of whistleblowing in Ukraine. The Mission is also recommending firmer procedures within institutions for following up on whistleblowing reports and training for staff in law enforcement agencies so that they are aware of what needs to be done in a whistleblowing case.
EUAM Ukraine is an unarmed, non-executive civilian mission, which aims to strengthen and support reform in Ukraine’s state law enforcement agencies. The mission provides strategic advice to the Ukrainian authorities, supported by operational activity, including training to develop sustainable, accountable and efficient security services that strengthen the rule of law.
This process is ultimately designed to restore the trust of the Ukrainian people in their civilian security services, which have been beset by allegations of corruption and malpractice. The mission is headquartered in Kyiv and has regional presences in Lviv, Kharkiv and Odesa.
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