Edinburgh, Fife & East Scotland

Whistleblowing hotline for Edinburgh City Council staff

Edinburgh City Council
Image caption Council staff will have a confidential route to raise concerns about wrong-doing and malpractice

A new whistleblowing hotline which will enable staff to raise concerns about wrong-doing is being piloted at City of Edinburgh Council.

Calls to the confidential service will be handled by an external company, with concerns logged and reported to the council's governance committee.

The firm will decide whether a concern is a minor or major disclosure.

The company will be responsible for the investigation, and will report to the governance committee.

Staff will still have the option of reporting concerns to a manager within the council, who will then be obliged to report them to the hotline company.

It will prepare quarterly and annual summary reports of issues raised, as well as independent investigative and outcome reports on staff disclosures.

Raise concerns

The scheme, which is estimated to cost £78,000 per year, is expected to be running by early next year.

The pilot project will run for one year, with a review after six months.

Bill Cook, who leads on HR issues for Edinburgh City Council's finance committee, said: "This revised policy sets out to help staff play their full role in identifying risk and malpractice.

"It's critical that staff have the right to raise concerns in the knowledge that they will be taken seriously, that these will be investigated appropriately, and confidentiality will be maintained.

"The members of the governance committee, which is chaired by an opposition councillor, will play a vital role in this, working with the hotline provider to ensure there is proper scrutiny of the issues brought to its attention."

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