Last week’s report from the Whistleblowing Commission has called for significantly improved protection for whistleblowers and the adoption of a statutory code of practice.

The absence of protection for job applicants is the most obvious gap that the Commission has asked the Government to fill. It would also like the statutory provisions to be simplified to make them easier to apply, as well being amended to cover an even wider range of workers.

The Commission thinks regulators could do more to encourage the adoption of effective whistleblowing policies, though it has stopped short of calling for them to be compulsory for all businesses. The best illustration of the change in culture likely to be required if its proposals are adopted comes from the draft code of practice attached to the report. The code would not only stipulate the content of policies, but require regular audits of their effectiveness. Details of the outcome of these audits would need to be published in an organisation’s annual report.

Many of the Commission’s recommendations coincide with the issues already canvassed in the Government’s call for evidence which closed on 1 November. There is clearly the political will to build on the changes to the law introduced in June. It will be interesting to see  what further measures the Government is prepared to embrace.