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Minnesota Session Laws - 2013, Regular Session

Key: (1) language to be deleted (2) new language

CHAPTER 83--H.F.No. 542

An act

relating to state government; providing additional whistleblower protection to state employees;

amending Minnesota Statutes 2012, sections 181.931, by adding subdivisions; 181.932, subdivision 1.

BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF MINNESOTA:

Section 1.

Minnesota Statutes 2012, section 181.931, is amended by adding a subdivision to read:

Subd. 4.

Good faith.

"Good faith" means conduct that does not violate section 181.932, subdivision 3.

Sec. 2.

Minnesota Statutes 2012, section 181.931, is amended by adding a subdivision to read:

Subd. 5.

Penalize.

"Penalize" means conduct that might dissuade a reasonable employee from making or supporting a report, including post-termination conduct by an employer or conduct by an employer for the benefit of a third party.

Sec. 3.

Minnesota Statutes 2012, section 181.931, is amended by adding a subdivision to read:

Subd. 6.

Report.

"Report" means a verbal, written, or electronic communication by an employee about an actual, suspected, or planned violation of a statute, regulation, or common law, whether committed by an employer or a third party.

Sec. 4.

Minnesota Statutes 2012, section 181.932, subdivision 1, is amended to read:

Subdivision 1.

Prohibited action.

An employer shall not discharge, discipline, threaten, otherwise discriminate against, or penalize an employee regarding the employee's compensation, terms, conditions, location, or privileges of employment because:

(1) the employee, or a person acting on behalf of an employee, in good faith, reports a violation or, suspected violation, or planned violation of any federal or state law or common law or rule adopted pursuant to law to an employer or to any governmental body or law enforcement official;

(2) the employee is requested by a public body or office to participate in an investigation, hearing, inquiry;

(3) the employee refuses an employer's order to perform an action that the employee has an objective basis in fact to believe violates any state or federal law or rule or regulation adopted pursuant to law, and the employee informs the employer that the order is being refused for that reason;

(4) the employee, in good faith, reports a situation in which the quality of health care services provided by a health care facility, organization, or health care provider violates a standard established by federal or state law or a professionally recognized national clinical or ethical standard and potentially places the public at risk of harm; or

(5) a public employee communicates the findings of a scientific or technical study that the employee, in good faith, believes to be truthful and accurate, including reports to a governmental body or law enforcement official.; or

(6) an employee in the classified service of state government communicates information that the employee, in good faith, believes to be truthful and accurate, and that relates to state services, including the financing of state services, to:

(i) a legislator or the legislative auditor; or

(ii) a constitutional officer.

The disclosures protected pursuant to this section do not authorize the disclosure of data otherwise protected by law.

EFFECTIVE DATE.

This section is effective the day following final enactment.

Presented to the governor May 21, 2013

Signed by the governor May 24, 2013, 2:07 p.m.

700 State Office Building, 100 Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd., St. Paul, MN 55155 ♦ Phone: (651) 296-2868 ♦ TTY: 1-800-627-3529 ♦ Fax: (651) 296-0569