For years, National Whistleblower Center has called to “Make National Whistleblower Day Permanent!” But I am often asked: “what does that actually mean?” That is a fantastic question because making something a national holiday is no simple feat and doesn’t necessarily entail all that the name suggests. NWC has been calling to require all federal agencies to educate their employees and celebrate whistleblowers every year on July 30th – not asking for a day off. The best way to achieve this is through a congressional act or Presidential Proclamation establishing July 30th as a federal day of observance.
What is a Federal Day of Observance?
Federal days of observance are days, weeks, months, or other periods designated by the federal government for the commemoration or other observance of various events, activities, or topics. These observances differ from federal holidays. Federal employees only receive a day off work on holidays, not observances.
President Biden could issue a Presidential Proclamation establishing National Whistleblower Day as a Federal Day of Observance. The observance would include education for federal employees about the legacy and importance of whistleblowing in their branch of the government. They would also learn their legal right to report fraud, waste, and abuse within the government without being subjected to unlawful retaliation.
Congress can also enact a similar measure and could easily do so with a simple amendment.
In the United States, we have over forty days of federal observance ranging from National School Lunch Week to National Poison Prevention Day. It is time to add National Whistleblower Day to the list!
Marking National Whistleblower Day as a Federal Day of Observance is not merely ceremonial. It would demonstrate that the federal government fully supports and encourages the important contributions of whistleblowers. Whistleblowers courageously and patriotically risk their livelihoods to report fraud, corruption, and other forms of misconduct. This recognition would go a long way in eliminating the social stigma surrounding whistleblowers. It would provide much-needed assurance to those who come forward that they will be protected and that supervisors will take their concerns seriously. We owe whistleblowers this much.
You can help!
Congress and the President have the power to make this much needed recognition a reality by designating National Whistleblower Day as a Federal Day of Observance. Please Take Action today to work together as a nation to recognize the value of whistleblowing every year on July 30th.