Annex 1: Help and Advice


Whistleblowing charity, who advise individuals with whistleblowing dilemmas at work 020 3117 2520

Advisory, Conciliation and Arbitration Service (ACAS)

Provide information, advice, training, conciliation and other services for employers and employees to help prevent or resolve workplace problems.
0300 123 1100 (8am-8pm Monday to Friday and 9am-1pm Saturday)

NHS Whistleblowing Helpline

Provides legally compliant, unbiased support and guidance to ensure you can act in accordance with your values. This ensures you fully understand your options and legal rights specific to your employment situation. 0800 0724 725

Citizens Advice

Provide free, independent, confidential and impartial advice to everyone on their rights and responsibilities.

Membership organisations who can provide support to registered members
with concerns

ABDO – Association of British Dispensing Opticians

Membership organisation who support the character, status and interests of dispensing opticians. 01227 733 905

AOP – Association of Optometrists

Membership organisation for optometrists and other optical professionals who protect, represent and support our members throughout their careers 020 7549 2000

FODO – The Federation of (Ophthalmic and Dispensing) Opticians

Membership organisation which represents eye care providers and registered opticians in business in the UK and Republic of Ireland. 020 7298 5151

We recognise that reporting concerns can be very stressful and upsetting.
There are services available if you are looking for a friendly listening ear:


The Samaritans provide a free and confidential listening service, 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. They do not provide advice nor do they report your concerns onwards, but sometimes just having someone to talk to that isn’t family or friends can be a tremendous help.
For more information of what to expect when you contact the Samaritans, visit:
Contact the Samaritans on: Phone: 116 123 (UK)

Other Regulators:

Professional Standards Authority (PSA)

The body responsible for overseeing nine health and care regulators (including the GOC) who regulate health and care professionals to make sure they are protecting patients and service users properly

Quality Assurance Agency (QAA)

The independent body entrusted with monitoring, and advising on, standards and quality in UK higher education.

Office of Qualifications and Examinations Regulation (Ofqual)

The Office of Qualifications and Examinations Regulation (Ofqual) regulates qualifications, examinations and assessments in England and vocational qualifications in Northern Ireland. 0300 303 3344

Regulation and Quality Improvement Authority (RQIA)

The independent body responsible for monitoring and inspecting the availability and quality of health and social care services in Northern Ireland, and encouraging improvements in the quality of those services. 02890 517 500

The Charity Commission for England and Wales

The body responsible for regulating charities in England and Wales. The General Optical Council is a registered charity. 0300 066 9197