The federal program to protect private sector whistleblowers does an appallingly poor job, according to a new report from the Labor Department Office of Inspector General. The vast majority of federal investigations missed basic steps, such as interviewing witnesses, and as a result whistleblowers who are fired or blackballed after reporting violations rarely win restoration.
OSHA is charged with enforcing the whistleblower protections of 19 laws covering approximately 200 million U.S. workers. These laws cover everything from job safety to pollution control to corporate fraud.
The new Inspector General report follows a scathing Government Accountability Office review of the whistleblower program administered by the Occupational Safety & Health Administration (OSHA) issued just last month. The two reports are bookends of a devastating, top-to-bottom critique and echo calls by Public Employees for Environmental Responsibility (PEER) and other reform groups to remove the whistleblower program out from under inept OSHA management into its own bureau.
– View the PEER lawsuit seeking OSHA documents
– See how OSHA retaliates against its own whistleblowers