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Whistleblower Protection

The Farm Credit Administration Office of Inspector General is committed to providing information about prohibitions on retaliation against people who make protected disclosures of wrongdoing. This page describes the rights and remedies for those who have made, or are considering making, a protected disclosure.

What is whistleblowing?

The word “whistleblowing” is commonly used to describe the reporting of wrongdoing.
In the context of protected disclosures under the Whistleblower Protection Act, a “whistleblower” discloses information he or she reasonably believes shows any of the following: 

How are whistleblowers protected?

The Whistleblower Protection Act provides protection for whistleblowers, and these protections were augmented in 2012 by the Whistleblower Protection Enhancement Act.

FCA employees

Any FCA employee or applicant for an FCA position is protected against negative employment actions taken in retaliation for making protected disclosures of wrongdoing.

FCA is prohibited by federal law from taking an unfavorable personnel action against an employee in retaliation for any of the following:

See the Office of Special Counsel’s publication, “Know Your Rights When Reporting Wrongs,” for more information.

For information about the rights of FCA employees and job applicants, see FCA’s EEO and Diversity page.

FCA contractors

Whistleblower protections are also available to federal contractors. For more information about these protections, see 41 U.S.C. § 4712.

An FCA contractor may not be discharged, demoted, or otherwise discriminated against as a reprisal for making a protected disclosure to a person or entity listed in 41 U.S.C. § 4712(a)(2) of information that the contractor reasonably believes shows any of the following:

What can I do if I have been a victim of retaliation?

You may report an act of retaliation to the following offices:

Phone: (703) 883-4316 or (800) 437-7322 toll-free

Email: fca-ig-hotline@rcn.com

Fax: (703) 883-4059

Mail: 

Farm Credit Administration
Office of Inspector General
1501 Farm Credit Drive
McLean, VA 22102-5090

Note: The law does not permit an OIG employee to act as a legal representative, agent, or advocate for FCA whistleblowers. If you have questions about your specific personal circumstances, it may be advisable to seek assistance from outside counsel.

Send complaints (including forms OSC-11, OSC-12, and OSC-13) to the following address:

U.S. Office of Special Counsel
Complaints Examining Unit
1730 M Street NW, Suite 218
Washington, DC 20036-4505

You may also submit a complaint via the Office of Special Counsel website.

Whistleblower protections and nondisclosure policies, forms, or agreements

The Whistleblower Protection Enhancement Act of 2012 strengthens the protections for federal employees who disclose evidence of waste, fraud, or abuse. The act requires that any nondisclosure policy, form, or agreement include this statement:

These provisions are consistent with and do not supersede, conflict with, or otherwise alter the employee obligations, rights, or liabilities created by existing statute or Executive order relating to (1) classified information, (2) communications to Congress, (3) the reporting to an Inspector General of a violation of any law, rule, or regulation, or mismanagement, a gross waste of funds, an abuse of authority, or a substantial and specific danger to public health or safety, or (4) any other whistleblower protection. The definitions, requirements, obligations, rights, sanctions, and liabilities created by controlling Executive orders and statutory provisions are incorporated into this [nondisclosure policy, form, or] agreement and are controlling.

Nondisclosure agreements that do not include this language may be enforced as long as agencies give employees notice of the statement.

Controlling executive orders and statutory provisions are as follows:

 

Page posted: March 23, 2018