Friday, 22 February 2013

Revealed: the Lib Dem Whistleblower Procedure

Today I received information on what the Lib Dem whistleblower procedure is - including, crucially, who the official whistleblower is.

The reason this is important is because the party has apparently had an official whistleblower for years who staff and members should theoretically contact if they have been, for example, victims of the kind of harassment as is alleged to have happened in the Chris Rennard case. Unfortunately, however, it seems like almost no party members knew about this procedure - and a thorough search of the party website and other readily available sources does not reveal who the whistleblower is or how to contact them about any issues.

However, I can now reveal that the Federal Party Whistleblower is Kate Parminter, a Lib Dem peer. What's more, she is still acting as a point of contact for anyone who wishes to contact her and any names of those contacting her will be kept confidential unless express permission is given for them to be passed on.

There are no specific contact details for Kate Parminter that I am aware of other than her standard parliamentary ones - however I expect that she is likely to be monitoring all her email accounts regularly given the internal investigation that is currently going on. So if there's anyone reading this who has been a victim or who wants to speak to the whistleblower in confidence then you now know who to contact.

Alternative points of contact are, apparently, the party president, Tim Farron MP, and the Chief Executive, Tim Gordon - both of whom are also meant to be following the same confidentiality as the whistleblower is meant to.

That this information is not readily available reflects very poorly on our party which is why I am publishing it. I see no harm in publishing it and I hope that it being public will be of help to anyone needing to talk to the whistleblower or to contribute information to the investigation.

Because the sharing of this information, in my opinion, can only be for the good and cannot conceivably pose any harm to the party, I have no qualms in publishing it and will also not reveal the sources from whence I got this information just in case some people in the party object to the publishing of this. So if I am asked to take this down or to reveal where I got the information from I will have to decline to do so.

That being said, I highly doubt that that will happen. From the information I have seen, people at the top of the party are all very determined to investigate this properly and to make it possible for any potential victims of harassment or other inappropriate behaviour to come forward so I'm sure they will be publishing this information themselves soon anyway. Nevertheless, I think it's best to make it available as soon as possible.

UPDATE:

The party has announced an update of the whistleblowing procedure. An independent whistle-blowing authority, Public Concern at Work, have taken over the role of whistleblower and all existing cases from Kate Parminster and can be contacted as follows:

Ring: 020 7404 6609
Email: whistleblower@libdems.org.uk

2 comments:

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I'm indebted to Birkdale Focus for the following choice of words:

I am happy to address most contributions, even the drunken ones if they are coherent, but I am not going to engage with negative sniping from those who do not have the guts to add their names or a consistent on-line identity to their comments. Such postings will not be published.

Anonymous comments with a constructive contribution to make to the discussion, even if it is critical will continue to be posted. Libellous comments or remarks I think may be libellous will not be published.

I will also not tolerate personation so please do not add comments in the name of real people unless you are that person. If you do not like these rules then start your own blog.

Oh, and if you persist in repeating yourself despite the fact I have addressed your point I may get bored and reject your comment.

The views expressed in comments are those of the poster, not me.