Federal Whistleblower Protection Enhancement Act Becomes Law
Washington, D.C. November 27, 2012. President Barack Obama
signed into law today the Whistleblower Protection Enhancement Act (WPEA).
Whistleblower attorneys working pro bono with the NWC played an instrumental
role in passing this Act. NWC's Executive Director Stephen Kohn testified
before the Senate Homeland Security Committee and David Colapinto testified
before the House Government Oversight hearing in support of the bill.
The bill contains important advances including an expanded
definition of "protected disclosure" and permits whistleblowers to collect
compensatory damages. Kohn and Colapinto
worked for over two years to successfully block three "poison pills" that had
been inserted into the law. These "poison pills" would have permitted the MSPB
to summarily dismiss cases without a hearing, repealed existing protections for
FBI whistleblowers and permitted the executive branch to fire whistleblowers
for reporting "minor" violations of law.
"The bill contains important reforms, but federal employee
still lack most of the basic rights available to whistleblowers in the private
sector. We hope that President Obama and Congress will continue their efforts
to ensure federal employees are fully protected during the next Congress." Kohn
said. "This is a small but meaningful
Pursuant to this Act, its new provisions will become
effective in thirty days.
Click this link to view a copy of the WPEA.