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Beyond silence: Understanding the Evolution of Whistleblower Protection Laws from the accountancy profession’s perspective

Date: December 12, 2023 | Time: 09:00 AM - 10:30 AM

Whistleblower Report

Join IFAC and CPA Canada to explore with our experts the “what,” “why” and “how” of the new legislative landscape of whistleblower protection and identify key implementation considerations and opportunities for further enhancement.  

Whistleblowers are widely recognized for their pivotal role in exposing financial wrongdoing, economic crimes, misconduct, fraud, and corruption. It is therefore essential to have robust whistleblowing protection laws to safeguard and support their contributions, promote a culture of accountability and integrity in both the public and private sectors, and encourage the reporting of wrongdoing.   

However, a 2021 report titled "Are Whistleblowing Laws Working? A Global Study of Whistleblower Protection Litigation," conducted by the International Bar Association and the Government Accountability Project, shed light on the deficiencies and shortcomings of whistleblower laws worldwide. Despite significant multilateral instruments like the United Nations Convention against Corruption (UNCAC), the G20 Whistleblower Action Plan, or the OECD Anti-Bribery Convention, progress in strengthening whistleblower protection remains challenging. 

Recognizing the critical importance of empowering individuals to "speak up" against wrongdoing, some jurisdictions have taken steps to enhance their existing frameworks, including notable examples like the Anti-Money Laundering Act in the United States and the European Union’s Directive on the protection of whistleblowers. 

To further explore and understand the positive legislative improvements in key jurisdictions, IFAC and CPA Canada have undertaken a comprehensive review, with the aim to shed light on these advancements and understand the motivations behind them. Their new report “Understanding Whistleblower Protection Laws, Practices, Trends and Key Implementation Considerations” will be presented and discussed during an online launch event. 

The webinar will provide a platform for experts, policymakers, accountancy and legal professionals to: 

  • Discuss the role of whistleblowers and how they can help address some of the most serious issues facing society; 
  • Delve into the positive legislative improvements made for whistleblower protection in various jurisdictions and examine the motivations behind these changes;  
  • Contribute to the ongoing dialogue and identify opportunities for further enhancement; 
  • Strengthen whistleblower protection globally and foster a community dedicated to upholding accountability and integrity. 

Draft agenda (CET)

3.00pm Welcome by Pamela Steer, CPA Canada President and CEO

3.05pm Presentation of “Understanding Whistleblower Protection Laws, Practices, Trends and Key Implementation Considerations”  by Anna Myers, Executive Director, Whistleblowing International Network (WIN)  and Michele Wood-Tweel, Vice-President, Regulatory Affairs, CPA Canada

3.20pm Keynote address by Gabriela Figueiredo Dias, Chair of IESBA

3.30pm Panel discussion moderated by Scott Hanson, Director, Policy and Global Engagement, IFAC

  • Martha Monterrosa, Anti-Corruption/Legal Analyst, OECD
  • Laura Valli, Board Member of the Italian National Anticorruption Authority (ANAC) and Chair of the Network of European Authorities for Whistleblowing and Integrity (NEIWA)
  • Kieran Pender, Senior Lawyer, Human Rights Law Centre 
  • José R. Hernandez, CPA, CA, Ph.D., Chief Executive Officer, Ortus Strategies AG 
  • Anna Myers, Executive Director of WIN 

4.15pm Q&As

4.25pm Closing note by Kevin Dancey, CEO of IFAC 

4.30pm End

Read the Main Highlights of the Event and View the Full Event Recording