Type d'édition : Papier
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Article: The whistleblowers


Docteur en droit privé et sciences criminelles, Université de Nantes, Membre du laboratoire Droit et Changement Social (UMR CNRS 6297).


To alert consists in informing about a danger in order to avoid any aggravation. When health or environment public authorities submit such an alert, it isn’t questioned nor subject to a problem of legitimacy. However, the State does not have the exclusive right to watch, and whistleblower alerts are more and more often submitted by citizens who attempt to disclose public interest information. The legal protection of these alerts by citizens is not clear so these unusual denunciations need to be legally framed. The issue is very important since human body infringement is at stake. Thus, it is necessary to acknowledge whistleblowers an individual right to alert, depending on who the information is addressed to. Individuals have a right to alert the population on behalf of the freedom of expression which gives everyone the chance to enrich public debates within the limits of abuse. But, sometimes, they have to do it, so that the alert can be regarded as the fulfillment of a duty of citizens that allows them to participate in the defense of public interest.

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