2021 Freedom to Speak Up Guardian Survey Report

This was the fifth annual survey of Freedom to Speak Up Guardians.

Their views provided invaluable insights into both the implementation of the Freedom to Speak Up Guardian role and what further support and learning was needed to truly create a culture where speaking up is business as usual. The results also revealed details about guardians’ perceptions of the barriers to speaking up, the sources of detriment for speaking up and the guardian network’s demographics.

Read the 2021 survey report

Past Annual Surveys of Freedom to Speak Up Guardians

These past survey  reports provide insights into how the Freedom to Speak Up network has evolved since 2017.

Pulse Surveys

During the COVID-19 pandemic, the importance of workers being able to speak up freely is more evident than ever.

Between April to June 2020, we carried out monthly pulse surveys of Freedom to Speak Up Guardians on our directory to find out about how speaking up was being affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.

The results showed the pandemic was having an impact on Freedom to Speak Up Guardians and their networks.

We also found that speaking up was continuing, with the percentage of respondents reporting speaking up had increased in their organisation as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic growing each month.

Third Pulse Survey

Workers continued to be encouraged to speak up. Ninety-three per cent (93%) of respondents to this survey believe workers were being encouraged to speak up – up from 72% in April.

Second Pulse survey

Speaking up to Freedom to Speak Up Guardians was continuing with a higher proportion of respondents reporting that speaking up was increasing compared to the last survey Twenty-nine per cent (29%) of respondents said there had been no change to the amount of speaking up in their organisation as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic

First Pulse survey

The survey showed that speaking up is continuing during the pandemic, and that Freedom to Speak Up guardians are adapting as a result of illness, redeployment, or social distancing. It therefore remains imperative that leaders support their Freedom to Speak Up guardians during this period of challenge and uncertainty.