WASHINGTON, DC – Today, Congresswoman Jackie Speier (CA-14) and her Co-Chairs on the bipartisan House Whistleblower Protection Caucus, House Committee on Oversight and Reform Chair Carolyn B. Maloney (NY-12) and Congresswoman Kathleen Rice (NY-4), were joined by Reps. André Carson (IN-07), Ed Case (HI-01), Stephen F. Lynch (MA-08), and Eleanor Holmes Norton (DC-At large) to introduce a resolution declaring July 30, 2021 as National Whistleblower Appreciation Day.
National Whistleblower Appreciation Day reminds Americans of the important role whistleblowers have played in our history, dating back to our nation’s founding. July 30, 2021 marks the 243rd anniversary of the first whistleblower legislation introduced by the Continental Congress. That law encouraged all government employees and citizens to provide information on “misconduct, frauds or misdemeanors.”
“Over a year into the COVID-19 pandemic, we have seen time and again that whistleblowers serve as the moral compass for our country while saving over $2.2 billion in taxpayer dollars in fiscal year 2020 alone,” Rep. Speier said. “From exposing appallingly inadequate protections for our frontline workers to uncovering fraudulent spending of taxpayer funds, we have relied on these heroic individuals willing to face almost certain retribution and retaliation in order to do what is right. Whistleblowers deserve our utmost respect and protection.”
“I am honored to cosponsor this resolution for National Whistleblower Appreciation Day. Whistleblowers hold the federal government accountable, and being a whistleblower is a courageous act that often comes at great personal cost. As Chairwoman of the Committee on Oversight and Reform, I will continue working tirelessly to ensure that whistleblowers are heard and protected from retaliation,” Chairwoman Maloney said.
“This issue is not about politics, it is about accountability and the rule of law,” Rep. Rice said. “Many of our efforts to conduct government oversight and reform would not be possible if it weren’t for whistleblowers coming forward. The whistleblower system must be protected and preserved so brave individuals can continue to speak truth to power without fear of retaliation.”
The resolution is endorsed by the Government Accountability Project, the National Taxpayers Union, the National Whistleblower Center, the Project on Government Oversight, Public Citizen, Public Employees for Environmental Responsibility, Transparency International U.S. Office, and Whistleblowers of America.
Quotes from supporting organization are below.
“Whistleblowers are the cornerstone of government-wide efforts to protect against waste, fraud, abuse, and misuse of taxpayer dollars. They also play a critical role in calling out government officials when they abuse their power. National Taxpayers Union applauds all whistleblowers on National Whistleblower Appreciation Day, and we thank Representatives Speier, Maloney, and Rice for introducing a resolution in support of these courageous individuals,” said Andrew Lautz, Director of Federal Policy, National Taxpayers Union.
“Representatives Speier, Rice, and Maloney have long been a committed whistleblower advocates and National Whistleblower Center deeply appreciates her ongoing support of National Whistleblower Day. Representative Speier’s exemplary National Whistleblower Day speeches have always been a highlight of our program in any year that we have had the honor of her participation, which we are so grateful for again this year. Thank you, Representatives Speier, Rice, and Maloney for your continued leadership and consistent work to ensure whistleblowers are protected and recognized,” said Siri Nelson, Executive Director, National Whistleblower Center.
“With unprecedented spending and challenges from pandemics to climate change, America never has needed whistleblowers more. Ironically, the rights of federal employees blowing the whistle never have been more dysfunctional,” said Tom Devine, Legal Director, Government Accountability Project. “National Whistleblower Day should be a wakeup call finally to add credible due process for the rhetorical rights Congress unanimously has passed four times. What’s missing is access to court to enforce paper rights. Federal workers are America’s most significant whistleblowers, but they are the only major sector of America’s labor force that cannot seek justice from a jury.”
A copy of the resolution is attached to this press release.
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