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Policymakers want stronger whistleblower rights

Workers should have better legal protection for filing grievances against employers or for blowing the whistle on professional wrongdoing, labour rights activists say.

The Swiss branch of Transparency International and members of parliament urged the cabinet on Thursday to beef up a draft law on whistleblower protection with better rights for job reinstatement and the creation of reporting offices.

President of the Swiss Trade Union Federation, Paul Rechsteiner, says a current version of the law does not go far enough to deter employers from dismissing, bullying or demoting employees who refuse to keep grievances private.

The law would allow for workers to be paid up to six months' salary if it can be proven they were wrongfully dismissed. Others want to bolster that law by guaranteeing whistleblowers could come back to a comparable position at the same employer or receive additional payments for damages.

"When whistleblowers don't come clean out of fear of reprisals, worthwhile insider information is lost and offences like corruption and other scheming are not discovered," said Dick Marty, a Radical Party senator from canton Ticino.

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