The Company is committed to protecting persons who report violations or breaches in accordance with Law 2/2023.
Persons who report or disclose violations are entitled to protection from retaliation provided that the following circumstances apply:
- They have reasonable grounds to believe that the information referred to is true at the time of the communication or disclosure, even if they do not provide conclusive evidence, and that the information falls within the scope of the law.
- The communication or disclosure has been made in accordance with the requirements of the law.
Acts constituting retaliation, including threats of retaliation and attempts to retaliate against persons making a communication as required by law, are expressly prohibited.
Retaliation means any act or omission that is prohibited by law, or that directly or indirectly results in unfavourable treatment that places the persons subjected to it at a particular disadvantage compared to another person in the employment or professional context, solely because of their status as whistleblowers, or because they have made a public disclosure.
By way of example, reprisals take the form of:
a) Suspension of the employment contract, dismissal or termination of the employment or statutory relationship, including non-renewal or early termination of a temporary employment contract after the probationary period, or early termination or cancellation of contracts for goods or services, imposition of any disciplinary measure, demotion or denial of promotion and any other substantial modification of working conditions and failure to convert a temporary employment contract into a permanent one, where the employee had legitimate expectations that he/she would be offered a permanent job; unless these measures were carried out in the regular exercise of managerial authority under the relevant labour or public employee statute legislation, due to circumstances, facts or proven breaches, unrelated to the submission of the communication.
b) Damages, including reputational damage, or financial loss, coercion, intimidation, harassment or ostracism.
c) Negative evaluation or references regarding job or professional performance.
d) Blacklisting or dissemination of information in a particular sectoral area, which hinders or prevents access to employment or the contracting of works or services.
e) Refusal or cancellation of a licence or permit.
f) Refusal of training.
g) Discrimination, or unfavourable or unfair treatment.
A person whose rights have been harmed as a result of its communication or disclosure after the expiry of the two-year period may request protection from the competent authority, which may, exceptionally and in a justified manner, extend the period of protection, after hearing the persons or bodies likely to be affected. Reasons shall be given for any refusal to extend the period of protection.
Administrative actions aimed at preventing or hindering the submission of communications and disclosures, as well as those that constitute reprisals or cause discrimination following the submission of such communications and disclosures under this Act, shall be null and void and shall give rise, where appropriate, to corrective disciplinary or liability measures, which may include the corresponding compensation for damages to the injured party.
During the processing of the file, the persons affected by the communication shall have the right to the presumption of innocence, the right of defence and the right of access to the file under the terms regulated in this law, as well as the same protection established for informants, preserving their identity and guaranteeing the confidentiality of the facts and data of the procedure.
The Independent Authority for the Protection of the Informant, A.A.I. may, within the framework of the sanctioning procedures that it conducts, adopt provisional measures under the terms established in article 56 of Law 39/2015, of 1 October, on the Common Administrative Procedure of Public Administrations.
Expressly excluded from the protection provided for in the law are those persons who communicate or disclose:
- Information contained in communications that have been inadmissible by any internal information channel or for any of the causes provided for in the law.
- Information linked to complaints about interpersonal conflicts or affecting only the informant and the persons to whom the communication or disclosure refers.
- Information which is already fully available to the public or which constitutes mere hearsay.
- Information which relates to acts or omissions outside the scope of the law.