Whistleblowing is the disclosure of information to the public or to the authorities, about an organisation, usually made by an employee of the organisation, which is made in good faith and in the public interest, showing objectionable misconduct or wrongdoing, which is not otherwise known or visible.   Whistleblowing could (for example) legitimately concern failure to follow health & safety procedures, or failure to ensure learners’ interests are properly safeguarded, or that the organisation is corrupt.  MAEL is, as an organisation, committed to delivering a high quality assessment service, promoting organisational accountability and maintaining public confidence.

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 This policy provides individuals in the workplace with protection from victimisation or punishment where they raise a genuine concern about misconduct or malpractice in the organisation. The policy is underpinned by the Public Interest Disclosure Act 1998, which encourages people to raise concerns about misconduct or malpractice in the workplace, in order to promote good governance and accountability in the public interest. The Act covers behaviour, which amounts to:

  • A criminal offence
  • Failure to comply with any legal obligation
  • A miscarriage of justice
  • Danger to health and safety of an individual and/or environment
  • Deliberate concealment of information about any of the above.

It is not intended that this policy be a substitute for, or an alternative to, the formal Grievance Procedure, but is designed to nurture a culture of openness and transparency within the organisation, which makes it safe and acceptable for employees and volunteers to raise, in good faith, a concern they may have about misconduct or malpractice.

If any individual has a concern which falls under any of the above grounds, they should:

  • * speak to the chief executive officer making it clear why they are concerned.  If appropriate, the MD will refer the matter to external authorities.
  • * If the conversation does not satisfy the concerns, or an acceptable action plan cannot be agreed, write to the managing director at the registered address, providing full details of the concern(s) and enclose copies of any evidence(s).
  • * a response will be forthcoming within 14 days, suggesting a solution.
  • * If this is not satisfactory a face-to-face meeting will be offered, which the whistleblower may attend with a representative.   Minutes will be taken and released to all parties.

All such proceedings must be conducted in accordance with MAEL’s confidentiality and data protection policies.

If, having followed the whistleblowing policy correctly, the issue has not been resolved, or if concerned individual(s) are still not sure how to raise concerns with their employer or someone else, advice may be sought from the independent whistleblowing charity Public Concern at Work.  You can get free, confidential advice from Public Concern at Work.   If anyone has witnessed wrongdoing at work and is unsure about what to do, a Public Concern at Work adviser can help to decide whether and/or how to raise the concern.  Contact them on 020 7404 6609 or email helpline@pcaw.co.uk or visit their website for further information: www.pcaw.co.uk. The website has guidance on whistleblowing legislation: www.pcaw.co.uk/law/uklegislation.htm.  Concerns specific to qualifications may also be discussed with Ofqual, initially contact www.ofqual.gov.uk/help-and-support/796

Anonymous allegations will not normally be considered, though the owners may do so at their discretion.

MAEL guarantees that no reprisals will be taken against any employee raising legitimate concerns in accordance with this policy.

If an employee makes an allegation in good faith, but it is not confirmed by the investigation, no action will be taken against them.   If, however, allegations are made which investigation reveals to be malicious, knowingly untrue and/or designed to cause distress or anger, it will become a disciplinary matter.



                                                                        Date of last review 13.03.2016