European Parliament calls for strengthening ECB’s whistle-blower protection and for publication of data on staff composition at ECB, two long-standing IPSO requests

22. February 2021 Press Info 0

In its resolution of 10 February 2021 on the ECB’s 2020 Annual Report, two of the European Parliament’s calls on the ECB are aligned with two of IPSO’s long-standing requests:

  1. To adapt the ECB’s whistleblowing policy and Staff Rules to further protect whistle-blowers, and to enable them to report concerns without fear of retaliation, all while preserving their anonymity. 
    This corresponds to a request from IPSO as the ECB’s whistle-blower policy does not provide the protection provided for in the Whistleblower Directive EU 2019/1937, and which all Member States have transformed into national law. Since the ECB creates its own employment law under the prevailing interpretation of its independence, the ECB’s whistle-blower policy lacks these protections. Last not least, the governance framework of the ECB makes the ECB both the defendant and the judge for any measures concerning whistle-blowers.
  2. The ECB’s annual report does not include data on the number of employees, the composition of the workforce (internal and external) by different types of contracts, of staff structure by gender, type of employment or any disability. Furthermore, the annual report is silent on occupational health and safety measures, or cooperation with staff representatives and trade unions. However, such data should be provided for by Directive 2014/95/EU on non-financial reporting for companies of the size of the ECB. 
    The European Parliament resolution, aligned with a request from IPSO, asks for the publication of these data on the situation of employees. The fact that the ECB, while being an independent institution, lacks any transparency regarding the situation of its employees, should no longer be tolerated in IPSO’s views.

IPSO welcomes the resolution of the European Parliament on the ECB’s 2020 Annual Report and will continue to push for these two important actions to be fully implemented in the ECB.