Congresswoman Speier believes whistleblowers are the eyes and ears that provide Congress the key insights needed to effectively oversee the federal government. Congresswoman Speier founded and co-chairs the bipartisan Whistleblower Protection Caucus which helps to elevate the important role whistleblowers play in holding the federal government accountable.
Whistleblowers with knowledge of systemic waste, fraud, and abuse of federal taxpayer dollars are encouraged to call her whistleblower hotline, at 202-226-5294.
While serving in the California State Senate, Congresswoman Speier created a whistleblower hotline that received hundreds of tips exposing government waste. These calls led to high-profile investigations of the prison system that ultimately saved tens of millions of taxpayer dollars. She also passed legislation to strengthen the California Whistleblower Protection Act to require that notice about whistleblower protections be sent annually to all state employees.
Since serving in Congress, Congresswoman Speier has reached out to whistleblowers to aid her work on the House Armed Services Committee and the Committee on Oversight and Reform. She responded to whistleblowers’ exposure of systemic quality control weaknesses in the Littoral Combat Ship program by requiring the Government Accountability Office to review both the quality control and operations and sustainment plans for the program moving forward. Congresswoman Speier also works regularly with military survivors of sexual assault, who blow the whistle on the ways their cases are ignored and marginalized, while they are often retaliated against themselves.
Congresswoman Speier has introduced resolutions to mark the historic importance of whistleblowers. For Fiscal Year (FY) 2020, she successfully advocated for House-passed federal funding ensuring Congress has sufficient resources and training to advise Legislative Branch whistleblowers through the House Office of the Whistleblower Ombudsman. Her amendment to extend whistleblower protection rights to servicemembers that exist for civilian Department of Defense employees was passed in the House version of the FY2020 National Defense Authorization Act.
Through her role on the Intelligence Committee, Congresswoman Speier has advocated for stronger protections for whistleblowers in the intelligence community. The ordeal of the Ukraine whistleblower highlighted many gaps in protections for whistleblowers and their ability to blow the whistle directly to Congress. Even whistleblowers whose complaints don’t involve national-level urgent concerns face obstacles in making their claims, and they deserve an opportunity to make their case and have their concerns heard without fear of abuse and retaliation. In the most recent Intelligence Authorization Act, she secured a provision mandating greater oversight of the intelligence community, which must examine the way it handles whistleblower claim and provide greater transparency into the process.