Whistleblower Retaliation at the Department of Veterans Affairs


The Department of Veterans Affairs has been assaulted from all sides in light of recent revelations regarding the quality of care and administration cover-ups. With the alleged misconduct so pervasive, it may seem surprising that no one came forward sooner. As public opinion about the VA and its high-level administrators just keeps getting worse, it now appears that whistleblowers who attempted to come forward about the problems at the VA may have been singled out for retaliation by their superiors.

According to the Washington Post, the federal Office of Special Counsel (OSC) has launched an investigation into widespread retaliation against whistleblowers across the country who tried to expose alleged records falsification and other fraudulent practices at the VA. The retaliatory acts included demotions, suspensions and undeserved poor performance reviews:

  • OSC believes that VA managers subjected as many as 37 would-be whistleblowers to retaliatory action.
  • The allegations involve 28 VA offices and facilities across 18 states, including Texas.

While many of these whistleblowers were allegedly targeted for bringing attention to the VA’s use of deceptive scheduling practices to disguise the delays that vets seeking treatment were forced to endure, others were reporting additional misconduct, including routine violations of treatment procedures.

While many whistleblower compensation programs do exist to provide substantial compensation to those who report malfeasance, in fact, most people do so because they believe it is the right thing to do. The VA revelations illustrate that, despite the broad legal protection whistleblowers enjoy, they still expose themselves to a significant initial risk of retaliation.


DISCLAIMER: Because of the generality of this update, the information provided herein may not be applicable in all situations and should not be acted upon without specific legal advice based on particular situations.

© Whistleblower Law for Managers | Attorney Advertising

Written by:


Whistleblower Law for Managers on:

JD Supra Readers' Choice 2016 Awards
Reporters on Deadline

"My best business intelligence, in one easy email…"

Your first step to building a free, personalized, morning email brief covering pertinent authors and topics on JD Supra:

Sign up to create your digest using LinkedIn*

*By using the service, you signify your acceptance of JD Supra's Privacy Policy.

Already signed up? Log in here

*With LinkedIn, you don't need to create a separate login to manage your free JD Supra account, and we can make suggestions based on your needs and interests. We will not post anything on LinkedIn in your name. Or, sign up using your email address.