INTERNAL PROCEDURE FOR THE RECEPTION AND HANDLING OF REPORTS SUBMITTED BY WHISTLEBLOWERS
1. CONDITIONS FOR REGISTERING REPORTS
1.1. The Whistleblower
A whistleblower is a physical person who may be a company employee, an employee whose employment came to an end when the information was obtained in the context of their employment relationship, a person who was applying for a position with the company in question when the information was obtained in the context of their application for employment. This person may also be a shareholder, associate or holder of voting rights at the company’s AGM, a member of the board of directors, management committee or board of auditors, an external or temporary worker, a contractor or subcontractor of the company or, in the case of a legal entity, a member of the board of directors, management committee or board of auditors of said contractors and subcontractors, as well as their employees.
This person acts without financial compensation and in good faith.
1.2. Contents of the report
In order to be considered admissible, a report must contain:
- The facts, information or documents which support the case where such information is available to the whistleblower and can be used to demonstrate that at least one of the following violations has occurred:
- A crime or felony.
- A threat or prejudice to the public interest.
- A violation or attempt to cover up a violation of international or European Union law.
- A violation of the law.
1.3. The Representative’s register
URBASOLAR provides whistleblowers with a special register which is used to submit all reports of wrongdoing. This register shall be maintained by the Representative, Ingrid Andoche, and shall be available for consultation at any time by members of the Works Council.
All reports must be submitted in writing by registered mail with proof of delivery, placed in an envelope marked ‘confidential’ and addressed to the direct or indirect hierarchical superior, or to the Representative, and contain precise details, information or documents intended to support the case.
The whistleblower must demonstrate their capacity to defend their claims. The Representative, if they consider it necessary, may request additional information in order to confirm that the whistleblower is someone who is authorized to submit a report in accordance with the provisions set out in point 1.1.
In exceptional circumstances where the whistleblower wishes to remain anonymous, they may still submit a report, but the said report may be considered solely on the condition that the serious nature of the case is established and that the whistleblower has provided sufficiently detailed factual evidence. It is then up to the recipient of the report to consider whether or not to take the case further.
All reports shall then be recorded by the Representative in the special register and dated.
An acknowledgement of receipt shall be sent to the whistleblower within 7 days of the date of reception of their report by registered mail. This shall state:
- The reasonable and expected period of time required to consider whether the report is admissible.
- The way in which the whistleblower will be informed of the follow-up to be undertaken with regard to their report.
1.4. Admissibility of a report
The Representative shall assess the admissibility of the report against the criteria set out in points 1.1 , 1.2 and 1.3 of this procedure.
They shall inform the whistleblower of the admissibility of their report within the deadline stated in point 1.3.
1.5. Follow-up to a submitted report
Where a report is considered admissible, the Representative shall take all necessary measures to ensure that the violation in question ceases, in particular by approaching the person able to stop the said violation.
The Representative may consult the Company’s internal departments necessary for the examination of the case and determine what measures are to be taken.
Where a report is considered admissible, information about the measures envisaged or taken to assess the accuracy of the allegations and, where applicable, to remedy the subject of the report and the reasons behind it, will be communicated in writing to the whistleblower within a reasonable timeframe not exceeding three months from the acknowledgement of receipt of the report.
If a report is not considered admissible, the Representative closes the procedure after having informed the whistleblower and the persons mentioned in the report in writing by registered mail with proof of delivery. The information relating to the report is then destroyed within two months following closure of the procedure.
2. COMPLIANCE WITH CONFIDENTIALITY REQUIREMENTS
The confidentiality and integrity of the information received in a report are guaranteed by the Company and, in particular, the identity of the whistleblower and the concerned persons as well as any third-parties mentioned in the report.
For this reason, the Representative and anyone working internally on this report must sign an extended Non-Disclosure Agreement. Furthermore, access to this information will be prohibited for all unauthorized employees.
In this way, information will only be divulged to third parties if necessary in order to handle the report, in particular to the legal authorities in certain cases. The whistleblower will then be informed of this, unless this information risks compromising the legal process.
Version updated on February 21, 2023