GAP’s International Reform program protects and defends whistleblowers at Intergovernmental Organizations (IGOs). Our experience with whistleblowers at these institutions demonstrates that although IGOs are extremely powerful, both politically and financially, their staff members, contractors and consultants lack effective protection from reprisal when reporting misconduct, corruption or fraud.
Whistleblowers at IGOs are often mistreated, dismissed, defamed, or otherwise disciplined for exposing wrongdoing. The purpose of the International Reform program is to defend these whistleblowers in judicial proceedings internal to the IGOs, give voice to their concerns, ensure investigation of their disclosures, and promote the implementation of best practice free speech protections.
GAP monitors the following institutions’ whistleblower protections:
- The World Bank
- Regional Development Banks, such as the Inter-American Development Bank, Asian Development Bank, African Development Bank, and European Bank for Reconstruction
- The United Nations
- The International Monetary Fund
Many of the most recent whistleblowers to approach GAP from IGOS come from the offices responsible for evaluating and investigating whistleblower disclosures, as well as corruption and fraud, such as the Office of Internal Oversight Services (OIOS) at the UN and the Integrity Vice Presidency (INT) at the World Bank. We believe that, as the whistleblower protection measures established at these institutions beginning in 2005 become better known, and staff members come forward with disclosures, institutional resistance to reforms that address corruption comes to bear on these departments.
GAP also monitors racial discrimination at the Multilateral Development Banks and files Freedom of Information Act requests to penetrate the secrecy surrounding IGO processes. In addition, GAP’s International Reform program promotes accountability in the international financial system and has assisted whistleblowers from insurance conglomerate American International Group (AIG) who disclosed information about Deputy Attorney General James Cole’s tenure as an Independent Consultant at AIG. GAP has also monitored corruption on the national level, including in Sri Lanka.
GAP’s International Program developed from our efforts to assist the Organization of American States (OAS) as it formulated the model whistleblower legislation necessary to implement Article III, Section 8 of the Inter-American Convention Against Corruption. This section requires member countries to create a system that protects citizens who exercise their right to freedom of expression by reporting acts of corruption and fraud. At a November 2000 OAS conference, representatives from the Central American nations signing the anti-corruption convention met and adopted GAP’s model law. Subsequently, all OAS member states adopted the model formulation.
GAP’s International Reform Director is Beatrice Edwards
GAP’s International Officer is Michael Termini