Sunday Read: Our Growing Movement

Jackie Garrick Recieving National Whistleblower Appreciation Day Proclaimation from 3rd Disctrict Commissioner Lumon May in Escambia County Florida on July 19, 2022.
  • The Securities Exchange Commission (“SEC”), issued a statement in honor of National Whistleblower Day, from Gurbir S. Grewal, Director, Division of Enforcement, stating that the “SEC’s whistleblower program has played a critical role in the Division of Enforcement’s ability to effectively detect wrongdoing, protect investors and the marketplace, and bring violators to justice.” And that, “t is essential to the continued vitality of our program that whistleblowers know that we will take seriously any efforts to impede or retaliate against them.” The statement celebrates the incredible success of the program, stating that “[w]hile whistleblowers’ contributions to the SEC’s mission have been invaluable, we recognize that blowing the whistle may not come without costs, both personal and professional.” And, that “[w]ith the help of these whistleblowers, the SEC brought enforcement actions ordering monetary sanctions of approximately $5 billion.” The Commission closed by saying that “Whistleblower protections are a cornerstone of the SEC’s whistleblower program and we are committed to enforcing these protections to stop efforts to impede individuals from coming forward with information.”
  • The Department of Labor (“DOL”), published a “Know Your Rights” website, which outlines whistleblower stories, and refers visitors to National Whistleblower Center’s National Whistleblower Day celebration. Specifically, the agency states that “Under federal law, workers have the right to raise concerns if they believe their rights are being violated in the workplace.” And, provided links to its online resources. The agency goes on to say “we know that many workers are not protected by their employers when they speak up and need a place to turn if they’re punished, lose their job or are simply afraid to say something directly to their employer.” And chastised employers who retaliation against employees who blow the whistle saying that these employers “not only break the law but also create unsafe, unfair work environments.” Going on to state that “[a]cts of retaliation can include reducing pay or work hours, firing or suspending workers, discipline or demotion, harassment or intimidation, and blacklisting from future hiring.” And encouraging whistleblowers to contact the DOL, providing instructions for how to report concerns.
  • In the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (“CFPB”) announcement, the agency stated that: “[t]he CFPB has welcomed whistleblower allegations since its inception and continues to take concrete steps to ensure that whistleblowers are supported and protected. More recently, [the CFPB] streamlined how tech workers can alert us to potential violations of federal consumer financial laws.” And, that “[I]n 2020, former CFPB Director Kathleen Kraninger took the important step of engaging with Congress on a proposal for legislation that would similarly authorize the CFPB to award whistleblowers who report violations of Federal consumer financial law that lead to a successful enforcement action.” This actions critical and would harmonize the CFPB program with the incredibly successful SEC and CFTC programs.
  • The United States Department of Agriculture (“USDA”) issued a statement from the Forest Service, and described National Whistleblower Day as the reflection of the “bold vision of our Founding Fathers and their uncompromising support for whistleblowers.” And that, “The USDA Whistleblower Protection Coordinator is committed to educating USDA’s workforce about whistleblower retaliation and associated protections.” The statement ends with an announcement of two new whistleblower protection training modules available to USDA employees, and links to join National Whistleblower Center’s National Whistleblower Day celebration.

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National Whistleblower Center

National Whistleblower Center

National Whistleblower Center is the leading nonprofit working with whistleblowers around the world to fight corruption and protect people and the environment.