Congress Slams National Security Whistleblowers Again!

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As part of a House/Senate Conference approved Tuesday, Congress passed an “Enhancement Act” for Department of Defense contractors.  These contractors already had a right to go to federal court and obtain a jury trial. 

However, this new “Enhancement Act” creates a “National Security Exception” that does not exist in the current law.  The new amendment states that whistleblower protections “shall not apply to any disclosure made by an employee of a contractor, sub-contractor, or grantee of an element of the intelligence community.” See section 827(e).

The Committee members also approved an amendment to expand protection previously only available to employees of DOD contractors to cover employees of all federal contractors. Although this is a significant step forward, this amendment also exempted the intelligence committee and has a four-year sunset provision. In other words, if Congress does not reenact it in four years it terminates.

“Exempting National security whistleblowers from all legal protections is a recipe for disaster,” stated Stephen Kohn, Executive Director of the Washington, DC based National Whistleblowers Center.

The legislation passed by a conference committee of lawmakers from both chambers is expected to go to the full Senate and House of Representatives for a final vote this week before being sent to President Barack Obama for his signature.

We need you to take swift action and urge Congress to protect National Security Whistleblowers. Please click the link above and take action. Also, pass this along to friends and whistleblower advocates. Congress must be told in strong terms that they can’t undermine whistleblower protections.

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