In Ibrahim v HCA International Ltd, an ET struck out I’s claim of detriment because of whistleblowing after he had disclosed that he had been the subject of false rumours and been treated badly by a colleague. The ET decided the disclosures were not made in the public interest but made with a view to I clearing his name. But the Court of Appeal found the ET had erred in its approach. It had dealt purely with I’s motive but not with whether I had a subjective belief that the disclosures were in the public interest and whether such belief was reasonable. However, the real point of practical interest is the CA’s observation that while the EAT had found that ‘defamation’ was capable of coming within the list of disclosures qualifying for protection under S.43B(1)(b) of the Employment Rights Act 1996 that decision remains open to challenge in the CA as it seems counter-intuitive to describe a complaint to management that someone is spreading false rumours as being in the public interest.
Defamation may not be a public interest disclosure qualifying for protection
Article by: Makbool Javaid |