blow the whistle (on) (someone), to

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blow the whistle

 (on someone)
1. Fig. to report someone's wrongdoing to someone (such as the police) who can stop the wrongdoing. (Alludes to blowing a whistle to attract the police.) The citizens' group blew the whistle on the street gangs by calling the police. The gangs were getting very bad. It was definitely time to blow the whistle.
2. Fig. to report legal or regulatory wrongdoing of a company, especially one's employer, to authorities. She was fired for blowing the whistle on the bank's mismanagement of accounts, but she then sued the bank.
See also: blow, whistle
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of American Idioms and Phrasal Verbs. © 2002 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.

blow the ˈwhistle (on somebody/something)

(informal) stop somebody doing something illegal or wrong by telling a person in authority about it: One of the police officers blew the whistle on his colleagues when he found out they were taking bribes. ▶ ˈwhistle-blower noun a person who informs people in authority or the public that the company they work for is doing something wrong or illegal: The company has denied a whistle-blower’s allegations of poor security.
This idiom probably comes from football, where a referee blows a whistle to stop the game when a player breaks the rules.
See also: blow, whistle
Farlex Partner Idioms Dictionary © Farlex 2017

blow the whistle

Slang
To expose a wrongdoing in the hope of bringing it to a halt: an attorney who blew the whistle on governmental corruption.
See also: blow, whistle
American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright © 2016 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

blow the whistle (on) (someone), to

To give away, to betray. This expression originally (late nineteenth century) meant ending something suddenly, as though by the blast of a whistle, but by the 1930s it had its present meaning. “Now that the whistle had been blown on his speech,” wrote P. G. Wodehouse in 1934 (Right Ho, Jeeves).
See also: blow, whistle
The Dictionary of Clichés by Christine Ammer Copyright © 2013 by Christine Ammer
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References in classic literature ?
'My faith, your pilot-house wants a clean up!' In the next breath he advised me to keep enough steam on the boiler to blow the whistle in case of any trouble.
Ms Manigault Newman suggested there was more to come, saying: "There's a lot of very corrupt things happening in the White House and I am going to blow the whistle on a lot of them."
If something bothers you is it time to blow the whistle? The term 'blow the whistle' comes from the days when the Police blew a whistle to catch a thief.
The study showed that those who speak up about small infractions are six times more likely to speak up about a major one-suggesting that ethical climates are created more likely if and when employees feel enabled to blow the whistle.
The results showed that there is no relationship between the values and intentions of the prospective teachers to blow the whistle externally, and anonymously.
Referee Chris Hague decided to blow the whistle on the feuding youngsters five minutes into the second half of the game in Prestatyn.
Given such common negative outcomes, why do certain individuals step up and decide to blow the whistle? This question has intrigued managers and researchers alike, because understanding the whistle-blowing decision-making process helps create policies and procedures resulting in the greatest ethical benefits for organizations and society.
I am elated to see in Briefs that the diocesan council in Belleville, Ill., was willing to blow the whistle on Bishop Edward Braxton (NCR, Jan.
Whistleblowers have often claimed that cash rewards or financial incentives had no impact on their decision to blow the whistle, and Miceli and Near further report that very few federal employees said that cash awards would encourage them to blow the whistle.
Lee Steege, 17, is desperate to blow the whistle after passing the nineweek FA programme.
The answer may be difficult to do but is necessary-they need to blow the whistle.
I don't want to blow the whistle on a workmate but I don't agree with what he's doing no matter how hurt he is.
It is possible to blow the whistle anonymously but you may be called upon to give evidence.
But the stranger threatens to blow the whistle unless Deirdre uses her influence to push through a dodgy planning application.
Where the hell has he been for the last thirty years and why has he waited until now to blow the whistle?