VW Offers Amnesty To Whistleblower Employees, But Only For A Few Weeks

A week after an internal investigation – aided by company engineers – uncovered carbon emissions issues with 800,000 Volkswagen vehicles, the carmaker says it will keep the door open for employees to share any cheating within the organization – as long as they do it by the end of the month. 

Bloomberg reports that VW is offering amnesty to employees that reveal information to help further the automaker’s investigation into emissions manipulations.

Employees that come forward before Nov. 30 won’t be fired and won’t face damage claims from the automaker.

“In this process, every single day counts,” Herbert Diess, head of the VW brand, said in a letter posted to the company’s corporate intranet. “We are counting on your cooperation and knowledge as our company’s employees to get to the bottom of the diesel and CO2 issue.”

The whistleblowers amnesty is valid for staff covered by the manufacturer’s collective-bargaining agreements.

Still, the company said that criminal proceedings can’t be ruled out, and that employees may be transferred or given other responsibilities depending on the findings.

The offer comes just days after it was reported that employees tipped the manufacturer off to the carbon emissions issue uncovered last week.

According to German publication Bild am Sonntag, the carbon issue came to light after employees admitted to tampering with the data in order to reduce emissions by 30%, a goal set by former CEO Martin Winterkorn in 2013.

VW engineers allegedly tampered with tire pressure and mixed diesel with their motor oil to make them use less fuel. The deception was allegedly set in motion back in 2013 and continued until spring of this year.

“Employees have indicated in an internal investigation that there were irregularities in ascertaining fuel consumption data. How this happened is subject to ongoing proceedings,” a Volkswagen spokesman said, declining to provide further comment on the Bild report.

VW’s Open Door to Whistleblowers Closes at the End of the Month [Bloomberg]

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