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Belgium: House of Representatives adopts whistleblowing law for public sector

The House of Representatives adopted, on 8 December 2022, Bill 55K2952 on reporting channels and protection of whistleblowers reporting integrity violations in the federal public sector and the integrated police, with amendments, which partially transposes the Directive on the Protection of Persons who Report Breaches of Union Law (Directive (EU) 2019/1937) ('the Whistleblowing Directive'). In particular, the whistleblowing law aims to ensure a high level of protection for individuals who report integrity violations in the federal public sectors and the integrated police.

More specifically, the whistleblowing law sets out that the following constitutes an integrity violation:

  • the act, or the omission of an act, which constitutes a threat to the general interest or an attack on it, and which:
    • constitutes a violation of directly applicable European provisions, laws, decrees, circulars, internal rules, and internal procedures which are applicable to federal public sector bodies and their staff members;
    • involves a risk to the life, health, or safety of persons or to the environment; and/or
    • demonstrates a serious breach of professional duties or the proper management of a federal public sector entity; or
  • the act of knowingly ordering or advising to commit an integrity violation.

The whistleblowing law was published in the Official Gazette on 23 December 2023.

You can read the whistleblowing law as published in the Official Gazette here, and track its progress here, both only available in French and Dutch.