All posts tagged Sponsorship Scandal

When I first started 10 years ago, whistleblowing was a dirty word

It has been 10 years since the Liberals’ Sponsorship Scandal and my elevation to be known as “The Whistleblower.” This was not my choice. Leadership comes in various forms. The most common is those who seek to be the leader. The least common is being forced to be a leader by representing something of importance. That is the role that I was assigned and not the role I chose.

Once identified, I had options of what to do with the label “The Whistleblower” given to me by the media during the Sponsorship Scandal. I could ignore it and fade into the background or use
it to try and make changes. The latter was my chosen route.

For the last 10 years, I have been representing whistleblowers and giving suggestions on how they might want to address their situations. The decisions are always theirs. Some, learning
what they face, have retreated and allowed corruption to continue. Fortunately, the majority have
had the courage of their convictions and have fought the good fight—usually unsuccessfully.

I have continued speaking and writing about whistleblowing—what it entails and how corruption is allowed to exist. I point out that there are only three types of participants in a corrupt situation—the abuser, the fighter (whistleblower) and the enablers.… Read the rest

Whistleblowers: Vilified for Doing the Right Thing?

The following piece was first published in the Epoch Times on March 25, 2014..

Treat whistleblowers with respect, says sponsorship scandal hero

By Epoch Times

Whistleblowers should be hailed as heroes but are all too often stigmatized, harassed, marginalized and blacklisted for life, says the former public servant who blew the whistle on the federal sponsorship scandal.

In 2004, former Public Works bureaucrat Allan Cutler triggered one of the biggest political scandals in modern Canadian history when he revealed that millions in public funds were being misdirected to Liberal-friendly advertising firms — a scandal that contributed to the Liberal party’s defeat two years later in the federal election.

Cutler was vilified, monitored, threatened, and demoted, before being finally vindicated by a 2006 inquiry into the scandal.

But Cutler’s battle has never really stopped. The stress of the ordeal damaged his health and forced him into early retirement. His reputation as a whistleblower consistently blocks him from professional and personal opportunities, he says.

“My life is totally different because of what I went through,” says Cutler, adding that many whistleblowers share a similarly traumatic experience.

“The consequences for whistleblowers range from being dead-ended in a job to being fired, to your health permanently destroyed, your self-confidence ruined, nervous breakdowns, suicide.… Read the rest

For whistleblowers, reprisals and stigmas are for life

Allan Cutler

Ever since the federal Sponsorship Scandal, Canadians have become more aware of whistleblowing and it importance. However, most remain blissfully unaware that things have not changed for whistleblowers. Even worse, the stigma sticks with them for life – even though they have done the right thing, helping all Canadians.

I became nationally known as “The Whistleblower” during the Sponsorship Scandal in 2004. The Gomery report stated that I was the only person who had attempted to stop the corruption. Without going into details, I retired early (doctor’s orders).  Due to the financial damage that was done to me, I must consult and teach. This damage has never been repaired.

I am a member of numerous not-for-profit organizations. Volunteering has time limits and I participate to different degrees with different organizations. For one of them, I submitted my name for the Board of Directors. I enjoyed the company of the people I met and looked forward to volunteering and contributing to its development and growth.

I was surprised to be contacted behalf of the Board of Directors and be told that that the Board wanted me to step aside. The Board wanted a different individual who I knew and who was a senior bureaucrat.… Read the rest