Transparency International Ukraine has started an information campaign “It Is not Shameful to Whistleblow on Corruption!” aimed at whistleblower protection.
The experience of the countries that have overcome petty corruption (i.e. Georgia, the USA, Japan, Singapore etc.) proves that citizens must whistleblow on corruption. Active society that informs about corrupt wrongdoings can significantly decrease petty corruption in a couple of years. Therefore, we should start with changing people’s attitude to whistleblowers.
Recent sociological researches in Ukraine showed the increasing readiness of citizens to report corruption. For example, a sociological poll for PACT Uniter on citizen awareness about CSOs and their engagement in civil society activities (October 2014) showed that 13% of respondents were ready to report corruption precedents to the police or the prosecutors' office, and 8% were ready to do this anonymously.
The problem of corruption whistleblowing is topical around the world. For instance, Latvia, Finland, the Netherlands, Iceland, Mexico and Italy are drafting specific laws to protect whistleblowers. After a similar law has been adopted in Slovenia, the number of corruption reports doubled: 55% of Slovenians easily report corruption when they witness it. In the USA the number of cases against corrupt officials has increased three times, and the total amount of reward for whistleblowers has increased fivefold. In the UK which, has one of the strongest whistleblower laws, less than 1% of citizens give bribes (it is the best result in the EU). In total, 43% of corruption cases in 40 countries were solved due to whistleblowers.
Ukraine has recently adopted a new law on corruption prevention, which partially regulates the whistleblower area; however, the law will come into action only in late April 2015. Oleksii Khmara, Executive Director of Transparency International, mentioned that the new laws were not enough to solve the problem: “Despite the new anti-corruption laws that regulate the rights and protection of whistleblowers, people still don’t know how and where to report wrongdoings and what kind of protection is guaranteed for them by law. The worst thing is that the society still has a strongly negative attitude to the fact of corruption disclosure. We have to change people’s attitude and together fight against corruption, as far as corruption is a crime.”
With the aim of changing the negative attitude of Ukrainians to whistleblowers on corruption TI Ukraine, supported by the International Renaissance Foundation, has started an informational and educational campaign “It Is not Shameful to Whistleblow on Corruption!” The campaign’s aim is to initiate a discussion within the society regarding the “whistleblower” notion, to provide citizens with the instruments for proper information on corruption wrongdoings, and to start changing Ukrainians’ attitude to whistleblowing.
We have already developed recommendations for effective whistleblowing, and instruments for corruption revealing; you can find them on the website www.anticorruption.in.ua. Please contact TI Ukraine to learn more how to inform about corruption: +38 (044) 360-52-42
Contact for media: Olga Tymchenko,
Head of Communication Department,
Transparency International Ukraine
phone: 050-352-96-18; 044 360-52-42,
м.т. 050-352-96-18, р.т. 044 -52-42,
Note: Transparency International Ukraine is a national chapter of Transparency International, anti-corruption NGO with over 90 national chapters; which works in more than 100 countries. TI Ukraine’s mission is to limit the increase of corruption in Ukraine by promoting transparency, accountability and integrity in public authorities and civil society. You can learn more about the organization’s activity on the website www.ti-ukraine.org.