Since mid-September, when the complaint of an intelligence community whistleblower about President Trump’s July call with Ukraine President Volodymyr Zelensky was made known to the public, we’ve been in the midst of a national conversation about the importance of whistleblowers and the protections to which intelligence community whistleblowers are entitled. I’m happy to report that the National Whistleblower Center is very engaged in this conversation and in advancing its mission of whistleblower protection.
This is a critical moment in the history of the National Whistleblower Center. The law requires federal whistleblowers with evidence of possible lawbreaking to report it through proper channels. They are protected from reprisals for these disclosures only because of a long tradition of policy makers from both parties working together in support of whistleblowing. This tradition is now at risk.
In recent days, President Trump and his allies have engaged in a series of attacks against the whistleblower who reported on the Ukraine matter. These attacks are likely to continue now that impeachment proceedings have been launched. NWC has vigorously responded, and will continue to vigorously respond, to the whistleblower attacks, while steering clear of the many non-whistleblower issues being raised in these proceedings. To keep whistleblower protections strong, we must help the public understand how whistleblowing is not a partisan issue and why the intelligence community whistleblower and other whistleblowers play a critical role in upholding democracy and the rule of law.
Every day, because of NWC’s sterling reputation for its expertise and insights on whistleblower law and procedures as well as whistleblower history, journalists seek our help with the meaning and context of the latest developments. General Counsel David Colapinto, Board Chairman Stephen Kohn and I have been asked to weigh in by major media outlets such as C-SPAN, MSNBC, NPR, Washington Post, and The Guardian. Our focus is ensuring that the particular whistleblower in question is protected from reprisal and that our cherished whistleblower laws are respected.
This moment in history is one of enormous opportunity and risk for whistleblower protections in the U.S. We are working to uphold the longstanding bipartisan support for these protections, but we need your support.