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The Helpline That Never Was

The first linked-in profile page of Georgina Halford Hall of WBUK talked about one of her roles as “overseeing their busy helplines supporting whistleblowers” only there were no helplines and after we repeatedly pointed this fact out, the profile page was changed omitting this dishonest assertion.

This is an issue we have repeatedly raised because of the danger such dishonesty poses to whistleblowers.

This culminated two weeks ago during the awful Whistleblowing awareness event sponsored by US bounty hunter lawyers KKC. Press statements were issued from WBUK endorsed by the APPG on Whistleblowing alleging that ” The WBUK hotline had been deluged with calls from 3000 whistleblowers last year”

We pointed out the following, There is NO WBUK helpline phone number, there never has been one except for a few weeks, about three years ago as a reaction to us pointing this out yet again. Also WBUK closed for the summer of last year when they were allegedly being deluged with calls.

The Consequences.

We have worked with ten thousand whistleblowers over two decades and only 5% of all whistleblowers contact us in writing and those working with whistleblowers would know the following facts as a result of their work.

Most whistleblowers are from junior, low paid frontline roles. For example cleaners, care staff, student nurses, and so on. Many of the staff working in care settings including the NHS and Social Care do not have English as a first language and many whilst speaking English are not able to write in English well. There are also many staff with other literacy barriers working in this sector.

Whistleblowers generally have already lost trust by the time they seek support and do not trust giving their information in writing.

There is also the crucial issue of emotional support, many whistleblowers will break down in tears during their first phone call simply because of the relief of speaking to someone who understands, someone who has been through the hell of whistleblowing and come out the side and offers hope.

Behind every Whistleblower there are countless vulnerable people who are suffering abuse and neglect and are reliant on that whistleblower being heard. It is a huge responsibility working with whistleblowers because them being heard and supported can literally be the difference between of life or death, danger or safety for so many vulnerable people.

A common theme on our helpline calls will involve vulnerable people who are dying of thirst, this is a situation that may have adverse consequences in hours, it certainly is not something we would risk by asking someone to fill in a form when the whistleblower may well not be able to do so.

We have in last ten days been contacted by a number of whistleblowers who saw the Express story and they went to the WBUK site to get the hotline number, only to find there was no number. None of these whistleblowers were able to fill in a form due to literacy barriers. All these whistleblowers were from the care sector and were trying to protect vulnerable people.

Staff from low paid roles, will often have no savings, no buffer and often no family in the UK who they can turn to such as parents or grandparents. These whistleblowers risk everything they have because they care.

WBUK and others state most whistleblowers are from senior roles, this is completely untrue, most whistleblowers are from junior roles,

a nurse is more likely to blow the whistle than a doctor,

a care worker not senior management,

A teacher or classroom assistant not a headteacher.

The list is endless. WBUK and the APPG on whistleblowing are only interested in high paid, specifically those from the financial sector. A quick read of the content on both the WBUK and APPG on whistleblowing websites will confirm this. Its at the heart of the Office Of the Whistleblower law they are pushing.

If you disbar access to support to most whistleblowers trying to contact WBUK you can skew the data to fit the agenda and we know too well what the agenda is.

Those whistleblowers we speak to every day, who do not have food because they tried to save lives, keep vulnerable people safe are treated with absolute contempt by all involved with WBUK.

Yes we are angry and saddened by this and will continue to expose what is going on. In all our years doing this work we have never seen a bigger danger to whistleblowers and vulnerable people as that posed by WBUK.

We are also inspired to fight for whistleblowers whose courage and integrity are an inspiration, these whistleblowers do not live in two million pound pound houses, they have no buffer at all, they rely on foodbanks because they they did the right thing. They have lost everything and those who have aided and abetted WBUK should hang their heads in shame.