Protecting Public Employees from Backlash for Whistleblower Actions
Employees who work for the government are granted special protections when they report fraud or misconduct in their agency, or expose waste or safety issues. If the whistleblower is terminated, harassed or otherwise suffers retaliation for speaking up, that employee can sue for appropriate damages.
The civil litigation attorneys of Feldman Williams PA have extensive experience in whistleblower cases, including lawsuits on behalf of federal, state and local government workers.
Exercise Your Public Whistleblower Rights
If you suffered adverse employment actions after reporting violations or filing a claim, contact us today to discuss the merits of your possible lawsuit.
The Whistleblower Protection Act of 1989 covers federal employees who experience backlash for reporting wrongdoing. The Georgia Whistleblower Act of 1993 instituted parallel protections for state, county and local government employees who report abuses.
It is illegal under these whistleblower laws to retaliate against an employee who reports to regulators or publicly exposes:
- OSHA safety violations
- Environmental violations
- Employment discrimination
- Fraud, false claims or misappropriation of public funds
- Public corruption (bribes, bid rigging, etc.)
- Gross waste of funds or gross mismanagement
- Abuse of authority
- Other regulatory violations or criminal activity
Retaliation against whistleblowers may be overt and immediate, such as termination or threats after reporting a violation. Often the adverse employment actions are subtle or delayed: a transfer or reassignment; shunning or harassment in the workplace; bad performance reviews or negative job references; demotion or denial of advancement. Wrongful termination can include constructive discharge — a work environment so hostile to the whistleblower that he or she quits.
Do You Need Whistleblower Protection from Backlash?
The skilled whistleblower protection attorneys at Feldman Williams, PLLC help clients document retaliation and prepare a case for damages in a whistleblower lawsuit, such as back pay, front pay, intentional infliction of emotional distress and damage to reputation. For egregious retaliation or major threats to public safety, punitive damages may apply. Contact us today to ensure you are well protected from backlash for blowing the whistle.