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Inside Internal Controls

News and discussion on implementing risk management

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whistleblowing

Whistleblower protection: Employers need to create a speak-up environment

It is incumbent on Canadian employers to take whatever steps they can to implement systems that would allow whistleblowers to step forward without fear, and speak-up without punishment.

 

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Bill 141 – Proposed amendments to the Act respecting the Autorité des marchés financiers with regard to whistleblowing

Following the example of the Ontario Securities Commission, the Authority implemented a whistleblower program in June 2016. Contrary to Ontario, Quebec’s program does not give financial awards to whistleblowers, but it does guarantee a framework that ensures confidentiality and protects whistleblowers against reprisals. However, no legislative amendment guaranteeing these protections has been introduced until now.

 

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Whistleblowers: The AMF will not offer any reward

On February 18, 2016, after a thorough and rigorous analysis which included closely monitoring the rewards-based whistleblower programs offered by the U.S. and Ontario, the Autorité des marchés financiers (the AMF) announced that it does not intend to offer financial rewards to whistleblowers. Instead, the AMF wishes to promote a whistleblower program that builds on existing measures.

 

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Ethics and business conduct

The ethical standards of a company are driven from the top. The ethics policy should be recommended by the president, ratified by the board and rolled out to the company with appropriate explanations and training. Implementing and consistently following a top-down ethics policy—with input from all levels—will help employees, customers, stakeholders and others who interact with the company to understand and relate to the company’s intentions.

 

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Slaw: The state of whistleblowing in Canada

Whistleblowing occurs when employees reveal corporate wrongdoing, usually in their organization, to law enforcement. Unfortunately, it is common for whistleblowers to experience demotion, dismissal and otherwise negative treatment from their employers after they disclose the malfeasance or corruption. In order to deal with this serious issue, some companies have created codes of ethics to ensure that their directors, officers and employees are aware of and adhere to standards of conduct that ensure the company performs and is represented in an honest and responsible manner.

 

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