The Public Interest Disclosure Act only gives rights to workers and makes no mention of any connection with existing defamation provisions. However, whistleblowers and the media may have cause to fear the use alleged wrongdoers could make of the Defamation Act 2013. Having considered the human rights context, this article examines in detail whether or not current legislation strikes a reasonable balance between the rights of whistleblowers, alleged wrongdoers and the media. The author concludes that it is in society’s interest that the balance should be tilted in favour of those who make and disseminate honest allegations even if they turn out to be unfounded. Since the media play an important role in pressing for investigations of concerns that are raised and publicising the fact that wrongdoing has occurred, they too should be protected unless malice can be established.
David Lewis, ‘Whistleblowing and the law of defamation: does the law strike a fair balance between the rights of whistleblowers, the media, and alleged wrongdoers?’ 2018 Industrial Law Journal 339.