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Financial Times Global Legal Hackathon Targeting Pandemic Issues Raises Interest in Whistleblowers Worldwide

Posted  May 22, 2020

In April, international business and economics newspaper The Financial Times launched a Global Legal Hackathon with a call for “organisations and individuals in the legal sector to develop solutions to problems created by the coronavirus pandemic.”  The hackathon aims to harness the collective capability, energy, and innovation of the world’s legal industry to develop multidisciplinary and technology-driven solutions that can support communities, governments and industries during this global emergency.

The Constantine Cannon whistleblower team knows that whistleblowers are critical “first responders” in many situations, and the coronavirus pandemic is no different. Constantine Cannon has challenged hackathon participants to develop solutions to protect and empower COVID-related whistleblowers.

Whistleblowers are crucial to provide information and evidence concerning misappropriation of funds and equipment as well as expose fraudulent practices. In fact, over the past few months, multiple reports of COVID-related fraud have been rampant, such as fraud in government contracting and spending, healthcare fraud, and financial and investment fraud. In particular, whistleblowers serve as indispensable tools to combat waste and abuse of public funds and increase government transparency and accountability. Harnessing the potential of whistleblowers allows society to protect those most at risk from COVID-related abusive practices and help reverse the economic downturn.

Constantine Cannon is proud to be among the hackathon’s 2,500 participants from over 70 countries and 220 different organizations. With over 50 multidisciplinary team members hailing from six different countries spanning four continents, Constantine Cannon’s challenge for hackathon participants to protect and empower whistleblowers is generating interest all over the globe.  Projects responding to the challenge range from proposed national legislation to educational outreach and promotion of accountability.

The Constantine Cannon hackathon team is lead by whistleblower attorneys Mary Inman, Eric Havian, Sarah “Poppy” Alexander, Marlene Koury, Edward Baker and Michael Ronickher.  Consistent with the multidisciplinary and collaborative nature of the hackathon, the project teams also include law school professors, a New York Times bestselling author, members of advocacy groups, journalists, graphic designers, brand strategists, public relations experts, legal advisors, and more. The pandemic has demonstrated that health and safety crises require urgent measures to shield whistleblowers from retaliation, and the hackathon projects illustrate a variety of feasible measures and solutions for this issue.

All projects responding to the challenge will be available for public view on Monday May 25, and we will make them available here. We look forward to seeing readers’ responses to our challenge and associated projects and thank our international team members for partnering with us on this exciting initiative.

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Tagged in: CC Lawyers, COVID-19, Importance of Whistleblowers,