Disruptive Fridays #7 – Whistleblowing During COVID-19

by 8 May 2020


Disruptive Fridays #7 – Whistleblowing During COVID-19




Disruption Network Lab


Berlin (DE)


Renata Avila, Joseph Farrell, Annegret Falter, Rima Sghaier, Tatiana Bazzichelli



Disruption Network Lab has launched a new weekly programme stream  called Disruptive Fridays sharing ideas for creative solutions and resistance to the isolation caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Disruptive Fridays #7 – Whistleblowing During COVID-19 focuses on the role of whistleblowers during COVID-19 and discusses the importance of exposing the truth during the pandemic.

With Renata Avila (International Human Rights Lawyer, Progressive International, ECU), Joseph Farrell (WikiLeaks Ambassador, UK), Annegret Falter (Chair WhistleblowerNetzwerk e.V., DE), Rima Sghaier (Outreach & Research Fellow, Hermes Center for Transparency and Digital Human Rights, TUN/IT), Tatiana Bazzichelli (Founder & Director, Disruption Network Lab, e. V.).

Some weeks ago a coalition of public authorities and institutions have signed a letter to protect those who report or expose the harms, abuses and wrongdoing that arise during the COVID-19 crisis.

“The COVID-19 pandemic brings into stark relief the importance of accountability and the need for regular and reliable information from our public institutions and our leaders. The people of every affected country need to know the truth about the spread of the disease both locally and internationally in order to respond effectively and help protect their communities. Fairness, transparency and cooperation are vital and never more so than during a pandemic.”

The role of whistleblowers is crucial in times of crisis to expose wrongdoing and misconducts in private and public institutions, health systems, working environments, commercial and delivery markets, and to denounce abuses of personal privacy, both on the digital sphere and the everyday life. The work of whistleblowers is central to denounce power violations and to protect the most vulnerable sectors of our society, but also whistleblowers are people at risk. They are subjects of repression and opposition before and after blowing the whistle, and often confined in isolation, imprisoned or persecuted while their civil rights are suspended.

In a moment in which governments are entitle to use extraordinary powers without proper public oversight and transparency, we need to protect whistleblowers and discuss forms of collective participation to guarantee global safety and accountability, as well as to defend the human rights and freedoms of all people.

Read more here about whistleblowers around the world that got silenced or suffered persecution during COVID-19:

Join the conversation live each Friday at 5pm on Disruption Network Lab’s website, Facebook or Twitter (@disruptberlin) and join the the conversation via #DisruptiveFridays

Watch the episode below:

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