Finland still lacking a proper law

Finland has cultivated an image as a world leader on the principles of government transparency and accountability. Yet, it still lacks a designated law to protect whistleblowers and clear channels for whistleblowers to disclose wrongdoing.

In June 2016 a working group empaneled by Finland’s Justice Ministry concluded that current laws are “to some extent fragmented and often indiscernible.” Specifically, the group said it is unclear how whistleblower protections are implemented and by whom, that workplaces and authorities have not discussed the forms or duration of retaliation protection, and that tools are not always in place to protect employees.

The system is so weak that the group found the only way to “protect” whistleblowers in certain cases has been simply to suspend an investigation.

Despite these findings, the Ministry’s working group said current systems are “fairly good where whistleblowers are subject to retaliation.” The group said it did not see an “immediate need” for a separate whistleblower law.

Change of Direction activists have engaged with Finnish officials and will begin a public and media campaign in 2017 toward convincing lawmakers to pass a strong whistleblower law to correct the serious problems that officials admit exist.