Army

April 18, 2014

Whistleblower reprisal — what it is, isn’t

Sgt. 1st Class Monica O’Leary
Inspector General Office

Many people who observe or learn of wrongdoing are often afraid to report it because they fear that if the word got out, negative action would be taken against them.

In order for the office of the Inspector General, or IG, to provide assistance, it is important that the Fort Huachuca community fully understand what whistleblower reprisal is, and what it is not, before presenting an allegation of whistleblower reprisal to the office of the IG.

Whistleblower reprisal is taking or threatening an unfavorable personnel action, or withholding or threatening to withhold a favorable personnel action, because the member made, or was thought to have made, a protected communication.

A protected communication is any lawful communication to members of Congress, inspectors general, Department of Defense audit, inspection, investigation, law enforcement organization, any person in the chain of command or any other person designated pursuant to regulations or established administrative procedures to receive such communications.

Before making an allegation of whistleblower reprisal to the office of the Inspector General, or IG, ask yourself: “was an unfavorable personnel action taken or threatened?” And if so, was your command justified in their decisions as a result of the Soldier’s own actions?

Many Soldiers who make whistleblower reprisal complaints to the IG do not understand the term, or that there are certain criteria that must be met in order for the office of the IG to investigate an allegation of whistleblower reprisal. Many Soldiers who come to the IG’s office with an allegation of reprisal list the IG as their protected communication, but an IG cannot be considered a protected communication if the favorable personnel action was threatened or withheld prior to making the complaint.

As an example, Sgt. 1st Class John Doe made a congressional inquiry against his unit for abuse of authority. Once Doe’s command became aware of his request for Congressional assistance, his command relieved Doe of his platoon sergeant duties and assigned him to a different, non-leadership position. This is an example of whistleblower reprisal.

Whistleblower reprisal is not simply receiving an Article 15 or being relieved from a military course as a result of a violation of regulation, policy or law; it must be directly related to a protected communication as described above.

Those who believe they have an allegation of whistleblower reprisal, must make their complaint within 60 days of the date they became aware of the personnel action. The request for the IG to investigate an allegation of whistleblower reprisal will be declined or cannot be acted on if a protected communication was not made, an unfavorable personnel action was not taken or threatened, or the allegation is considered untimely.

Those with questions about whistleblower reprisals or other IG matters are invited to call the IG office, 533.1144.




All of this week's top headlines to your email every Friday.


 
 

 
Courtesy photo by United Kingdom Ministry of Defense

Army researchers develop pocket-sized aerial surveillance device

Courtesy photo by United Kingdom Ministry of Defense A British Soldier holds a Prox Dynamics’ PD-100 Black Hornet, a palm-sized miniature helicopter weighing only 16 grams. Researchers with the U.S. Army Natick Soldier Resear...
 
 

Active duty Service members must change Roth TSP contributions

GRAFENWOEHR, Germany — Active duty members of the Army, Air Force or Navy making dollar-amount Roth contributions to a Thrift Savings Plan account should know that these deductions will stop on Jan. 31, unless action is taken. “The Roth [Thrift Savings Plan] contributions are going from a dollar figure to a percentage of pay,” said...
 
 

IMCOM unveils plan for 2025 and beyond

SAN ANTONIO — The U.S. Army Installation Management Command released “IMCOM 2025 and Beyond,” a new campaign plan operationalizing the commanding general’s vision for the organization. This plan provides a roadmap for IMCOM’s future and serves as a change management document that focuses the command’s collective efforts, prioritizes resources and continues the exchange of informatio...
 

 
Command History Office photos

Military Intelligence – Moment in MI history

European Theater Intelligence School opened in Obermmergau Command History Office photos A German language class in session at the intelligence school Author’s Note: The Command History Office has an extensive historical docu...
 
 
2nd Lt. Lacey Roberts

Predator makes maiden flight on U.S. soil for Arizona Air National Guard

2nd Lt. Lacey Roberts The Arizona Air National Guard Predator sits on the runway awaiting taxi and takeoff for its maiden flight at Libby Army Airfield, Fort Huachuca. The sounds of cheers, applause and an occasional “woohoo...
 
 
Army Broadcasting

Army Production premieres ‘iSoldier’ newscast targeting younger Soldiers

Army Broadcasting Soldiers at Defense Media Activity-Army Broadcasting premiered the new iSoldier newscast, a new multi-media program aimed at younger Soldiers, Nov. 7. The newscast from Army Broadcasting at Fort Meade, Marylan...
 




0 Comments


Be the first to comment!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>


Directory powered by Business Directory Plugin