Switzerland is way behind other advanced nations when it comes to protecting whistleblowers. A draft law protecting whistleblowers was put forward in 2003, but Swiss legislators buried it last March, despite public pressure to introduce it. This article examines the legal situation of a Swiss whistleblower and what can be done to improve it. It is an important issue, and the Swiss government must act quickly to ensure that its law is transparent.
A Swiss whistleblower can file a complaint about suspected illegal activity by employees, customers, or suppliers. In most cases, the person reporting the activity has the right to remain anonymous. In some cases, it is possible to report the incident anonymously, but the government can investigate it if it relates to a crime. However, the majority of Swiss courts view the process of filing a complaint as too complex.
The proposed law would make it more difficult for employees to report suspected illegal activity. In addition to making whistleblowers more aware of their rights, the law also requires companies to have a hotline for reporting a complaint. A Swiss whistleblower must first report their concerns to their employer, then to the relevant authorities. However, if the official fails to take action, the employee can choose to go public.
The case of Elmer, a former chief operating officer of Julius Baer bank, is a landmark case for the whistleblowing industry. He has helped many companies avoid lawsuits by sharing sensitive information. He is one of the few people who have stood up to powerful international financial institutions. The Swiss government is trying to make a difference by helping these employees. The new whistleblower law is a step in the right direction.
The law was originally drafted in September 2014, and it was passed by the Council of States in September 2014. However, the National Council rejected it in 2015, after which the Nationalrat asked the Federal-Swiss government to make the legislation more comprehensible. It was revised in 2018 with revisions that made the draft more comprehensible. The Swiss whistleblower act consists of three stages. The first stage is typically the final stage.
The Swiss banking industry has undergone reforms, but the fact remains that the Swiss banking industry has not been fully transparent. The case of Michel Meili is a prime example of this. He was a security professional who spied on the Julius Baer bank’s employees. While Meili was a victim of wrongful dismissal, he was not jailed. His actions were criticized, and he was forced to return to the United States.
While Swiss banking secrecy is considered a thing of the past, slander laws are aggressively used to damage whistleblowers. In addition to Elmer, two other Swiss whistleblowers convicted under slander laws, Andreas Frank was convicted in the UBS tax case. Both men worked as private bankers for Julius Baer from 1994 to 2002. They were apprehensive for leaking confidential financial information to WikiLeaks.