Whistleblowers are one of the most misunderstood groups of people out there. From an outsider’s perspective, it can be difficult to understand why someone would want to be a whistleblower – and that is the first problem. Whistleblowers hardly ever choose to become whistleblowers. They happen to encounter situations that, in their mind, call for a solution that will promote justice and better society. If any of the myths below resonate with you, read on to find out why it is a myth, and what the truth really is.
Myth #1: Whistleblowers are disloyal.
Oftentimes, whistleblowers are referred to as “snitches” and disloyal employees, but quite the opposite is true. Whistleblowers are oftentimes the most loyal employees at a company.
Myth #2: Whistleblowers are money-hungry.
The misconception that whistleblowers are greedy or money-hungry is common, yet completely unfounded. In fact, while whistleblowers may be able to receive a reward for their tip in some instances, the actual amount of the award is unknown until the close of the case. Weighing the difficult work involved in whistleblowing with the potential reward, it is clear that whistleblowers have a much greater motive than just money when blowing the whistle on their employer.
Myth #3: Whistleblowers are frivolous and petty.
Many people have the misconception that whistleblowers are all just disgruntled employees who are looking for a frivolous and petty way to get their employers in trouble. On the contrary, whistleblowers tend to be big picture people. They see how a single fraudulent action by a company can lead to massive harm to society, and that is what leads them to report the fraud.
Myth #4: Whistleblowers chose to become whistleblowers.
Being a whistleblower is hard. Not only is it time consuming and investigatively intense, it is also emotionally draining. Even though California has laws against employee retaliation for whistleblowing, many employers choose to ignore this law and retaliate against their employee whistleblowers anyway. Thus, a whistleblower needs to be ready to be terminated from his or her job at any time. Alternatively, employers may attempt to subtly push an employee whistleblower out of the company by demoting them, reducing their pay, increasing their hours, or harassing them.
Employee whistleblowers also need to be ready to face ridicule from the public and from future potential employers in their industry. With the boom of social media in recent years, there are more channels today than ever before for comments from the general public, including some extremely harsh and unfair comments that only someone with thick skin could handle. With all of these challenges, it is safe to say that hardly anyone sets out to be a whistleblower; rather, people become whistleblowers when they notice injustices in our society and recognize a solution to prevent these injustices from continuing into the future.
Are You Ready to be a Whistleblower?
Are you ready to finally blow the whistle on the fraudulent acts you witness your employer performing every single day? Do you fear for a future in which your employer continues to use illegal, fraudulent actions to harm innocent individuals? The attorneys at Willoughby Brod can help. Contact us online or at (800) 427-7020 today to speak with an experienced whistleblower attorney in the Santa Rosa and San Francisco area and receive a free consultation of your case.
(image courtesy of Dylan Nolte)