By Mary Jane Wilmoth on Posted in Government WhistleblowersWashington Post reports: Trump’s lack of appointments creating intolerable backlog of cases. Washington, D.C. November 22, 2017. For years, whistleblowers have complained about the political nature of the Merit System Protections Board. Federal employees cannot have their whistleblower cases heard in federal district court, but instead must go before the MSPB, which is appointed by the President.… Continue Reading
By on Posted in FDA WhistleblowersNWC Executive Director Stephen Kohn spoke to CBS Evening News tonight about the chilling effect the FDA’s illegal whistleblower surveillance program has on employees’ willingness to report serious health and safety issues. You can TAKE ACTION to stop the government’s highly intrusive and harmful surveillance program by sending an email to your elected officials.… Continue Reading
By on Posted in FDA WhistleblowersToday, the New York Times released a groundbreaking story on the government’s secret spying program on a group of whistleblowers employed by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). Stephen M. Kohn, the Executive Director of the National Whistleblower Center and the lead attorney for the FDA whistleblowers, issued the following statement: We hope that the revelations in today’s New York… Continue Reading
By on Posted in FDA WhistleblowersLast week, the National Whistleblowers Center filed a motion for preliminary injunction under the Freedom of Information Act in U.S. District Court in DC. The motion has been filed in order to get the FDA to release all documents pertaining to their illegal surveillance of employees’ private email correspondence. NWC has a limited number of documents that show the FDA… Continue Reading
By on Posted in NewsAs reported in today's Washington Post, six current and former employees of the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) have filed a complaint against the FDA in U.S. District Court. The employees are seeking an injunction to stop the agency from illegally spying on employees' private communications to Congress and other oversight agencies.… Continue Reading
By on Posted in Government WhistleblowersIn January 2011, scandal broke out over “Project Gunrunner,” a program of the Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives agency (ATF). The intended goal of “Project Gunrunner” was to limit the flow of firearms into Mexico through close surveillance of undercover gun purchases. ATF agents encouraged gun shops to sell machinery to “straw buyers”—people who buy weapons in the US with… Continue Reading
By on Posted in Government WhistleblowersDr. Marsha Coleman-Adebayo, a member of the National Whistleblowers Center's Board of Directors and founder and leader of the No FEAR Coalition, will be present in court tomorrow, February 9, 2011, objecting her removal from the Environmental Protection Agency in January of 2009.… Continue Reading
By on Posted in Government WhistleblowersIn the forefront of this, a 23-year veteran medical doctor and Ph.D scientist at the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is on the verge of losing her job. She blew the whistle to Congress in order to protect our health and safety, threatening her whole career.… Continue Reading
By Stephen Kohn on Posted in LegislationXII: WHAT HAPPENED TO THE WHITE HOUSE?
The bottom line is that President Obama did promise, on numerous occasions, to support whistleblowers. He did specifically endorse the framework for protection set forth in the House bill.… Continue Reading
By Stephen Kohn on Posted in LegislationXI: IS FILING A NATIONAL SECURITY WHISTLEBLOWER CASE UNDER S. 372 MALPRACTICE PER SE?
Simply wasting many years and thousands of dollars in a new bureaucracy that Franz Kafka would have marveled at is not enough unto itself to say that filing a claim under the Senate provisions would constitute legal malpractice. However, Title II of S. 372 is not so benign. It is a retaliators fantasy.… Continue Reading
By Stephen Kohn on Posted in LegislationX: IF IN DOUBT - THROW OUT THE CASE!
Buried at the very end of the national security whistleblower section of S. 372 is a grant of unprecedented power to the directors of the FBI, CIA, NSA and every other intelligence agency.
These directors are authorized to have any whistleblower case summarily dismissed, with no administrative or judicial review.… Continue Reading
By Stephen Kohn on Posted in LegislationX: DUE PROCESS FOR NATIONAL SECURITY WHISTLEBLOWERS?
The national security whistleblower protection sections of S. 372 are a bad joke. They completely undermine any semblance of whistleblower rights, and ensure that no national security worker will ever prevail in a disputed whistleblower case.… Continue Reading
By Stephen Kohn on Posted in LegislationVIII: WHAT HAPPENS TO NATIONAL SECURITY WHISTLEBLOWERS?
National security whistleblowers are the biggest losers in S. 372.
The Senate Homeland Security approved a bill that, if enacted, would seriously undercut national security whistleblower rights and set terrible precedent. It would in practice constitute an anti-whistleblower law.… Continue Reading
By Stephen Kohn on Posted in LegislationThe NWC’s series "What’s Wrong With The Senate Whistleblower Bill" examining specific weaknesses in the Senate Bill will continue on Monday. If you would like more information on the Senate Bill please read NWC General Counsel David K. Colapinto’s legal analysis or visit the NWC’s Federal Employee Whistleblower Protection page. You can also read the recent press on the Senate… Continue Reading
By Stephen Kohn on Posted in LegislationVII: CAPS ON DAMAGES AND OTHER LITTLE GEMS
In addition to the problems already addressed in earlier postings, there are some smaller, yet still very important, problems that need to be addressed before the Senate votes on the final version of S. 372.… Continue Reading
By Stephen Kohn on Posted in LegislationVI: WILL ANY FEDERAL EMPLOYEES EVER HAVE THEIR CASE HEARD IN FEDERAL COURT?
The short answer to this question is virtually, none.
When read together, the numerous "poison pill" provisions inserted into S. 372 all but guarantee that very few, if any, federal employee cases will ever be removed to district court for a real trial.… Continue Reading
By Stephen Kohn on Posted in LegislationV: THE NEW SUMMARY JUDGEMENT RULE: GOLIATH FINALLY WINS!
S. 372 contains a new provision that permits the Merit Systems Protection Board to dismiss whistleblower claims under a procedural rule known as "summary judgment." See Section 118. This new rule permits the MSPB "judges" to summarily dismiss a whistleblower claim without ever conducting a hearing.… Continue Reading
By Stephen Kohn on Posted in LegislationIV: BACKSTABBING FBI WHISTLEBLOWERS: WILL THIS PROBLEM REALLY GET FIXED?
Putting it bluntly: S. 372 repeals all existing whistleblower rights for FBI employees.… Continue Reading
By Stephen Kohn on Posted in LegislationIII. HOW THE NEW "270 DAY RULE" BLOCKS COURT ACCESS FOR FEDERAL EMPLOYEES
Even if you happen to be one of the "lucky ones" whose case is eligible for a jury trial, will you ever actually have your case heard in front of a jury of your peers?
The answer is no.… Continue Reading
By Stephen Kohn on Posted in LegislationThe Senate Bill goes out of its way to reverse gains whistleblowers have won in the U.S. Supreme Court. It returns whistleblowers to the days when an employee had to demonstrate a certain level of harm or damages to obtain whistleblower protection.… Continue Reading
By Stephen Kohn on Posted in LegislationThe Senate Bill added a dangerous clause within the definition of "protected disclosure." Under this new definition, federal employees who disclose any violation of law are protected, unless their disclosure was "a minor, inadvertent violation that occurs during the conscientious carrying out of the violator's assigned duties."… Continue Reading
By on Posted in Government Whistleblowers,Legislation,NewsJust minutes ago the House of Representatives approved the Platts-Van Hollen amendment to the stimulus package granting whistleblower protection to federal employees and contractors. Thanks to your action, House members recognized the critical role whistleblowers play in oversight and accountability and the House has approved excellent whistleblower provisions contained in the former H.R. 985. The amendment was adopted on a… Continue Reading