By Dr Minh Alexander retired consultant psychiatrist 29 March 2023
Kevin Hollinrake Tory MP was a vice chair of the much criticised Whistleblowing APPG which was set up in 2018 with money from US bounty hunting lawyers.
He has openly advocated that UK whistleblowers should be “incentivised”:
Other members of the Whistleblowing APPG have also spoken about whistleblower rewards and the APPG’s secretariat WhistleblowersUK has advocated for whistleblower rewards.
Legislation proposed by the Whistleblowing APPG shows signs that it is intended to open the door to a US bounty hunting model.
The offer of whistleblower rewards is against most ethical guidance on whistleblowing and against longstanding UK whistleblowing policy.
Kevin Hollingrake was appointed to the Department for Business, Energy and Trade as Parliamentary Under Secretary of State between 27 October 2022 and 7 February 2023.
Most recently Hollinrake was appointed Parliamentary Under Secretary of State at the Department for Business and Trade on 7 February 2023.
Shortly after, on 27 March 2023, Hollinrake’s government department announced another review of UK whistleblowing law.
Will the review be conducted professionally, impartially and follow the evidence base?
Or will it be another Tory charade of thinly disguised cronyism, boot filling and back room deals?
Given all the evidence of government misconduct in recent years, one might reasonably think that the prospect of a bounty model, that siphons obscene amounts of cash into the hands of whistleblowing industry middlemen and bounty hunting lawyers, has just become more likely.
Especially if the increasing excitation of the assorted denizens of the Whistleblowing APPG’s murky waters is anything to go by.
Don’t be optimistic of any genuine governance.
Do expect the parade of dubious celebrities, useful idiots, fake talking heads, planted articles puffing the Office of the Whistleblower and social media sock puppeteers to get worse.
That is of course, only if some further terrible government scandal does not upend all plans by this time next week, and we get another clutch of heartsink ministers.