When your California employer does something unethical or unlawful and you become aware of these wrongdoings, you may decide to “blow the whistle” and notify authorities about them. Before doing so, there are certain steps you might want to take to help protect yourself while helping make things right.
Per the Office of the Whistleblower Ombuds, many people who have worked with whistleblowers in the past recommend that today’s whistleblowers take the following three steps when calling attention to their employers’ misdeeds.
1. Decide between going public or maintaining anonymity
There are benefits and drawbacks associated with going public as a whistleblower and keeping your name private. For example, if you keep your name private and then feel as if your employer suspects you and retaliates against you because of this suspicion, you may have a hard time proving that your employer knew you were the one to sound the alarm.
2. Keep an extensive paper trail
The more evidence you compile to back up your claims, the stronger your case is going to be. Make sure to take thorough notes about everything that occurred and include dates, times and potential witnesses.
3. Blow the whistle outside of the workplace
Avoid whistleblowing using company emails or telephone lines and think twice, too, before using a company whistleblowing hotline. Any workplace communications may undergo regular monitoring. Also, some company whistleblower hotlines may tell you they are anonymous, but there may be ways for your colleagues or employers to identify you when you use them, regardless.
Taking these three tips to heart may help make the whistleblowing process easier and smoother while helping you play a key role in preventing wrongdoing.