FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
March 19, 2012
Port Mortuary employees faced retaliation after reporting improper care of service member remains
(WASHINGTON) – The American Federation of Government Employees (AFGE) today applauded the recent actions by the U.S. Office of Special Counsel (OSC) in their investigation that uncovered intentional acts of reprisal against whistleblowers at the Department of the Air Force facilities in Dover, Del. Four employees, including AFGE members, alerted management officials to the “improper handling, processing and transport of human remains of deceased personnel and military dependents” according to OSC’s report, and were retaliated against for doing so.
“The courage, dedication and resolve of federal employees are remarkable. Even in the face of reprisal and retaliation by management officials, our civil servants did what was necessary to shed light on acts of misconduct occurring at their facility,” said AFGE National President John Gage.
OSC recommended disciplinary action be taken against the supervisors responsible for violations of the law that protect federal employees who engage in whistleblowing or other protected activities.
“OSC has come a long way since the days of Scott Bloch. This case is a testament to the risks federal employees take when blowing the whistle. Under the leadership of Special Counsel Carolyn Lerner the agency has made it a priority to protect the rights of whistleblowers,” said AFGE Assistant General Counsel of Legislation J. Ward Morrow. “It’s important that we expand whistleblower protections in the federal sector to ensure that employees at any agency know they will be protected when revealing unjust and unlawful acts.”
The American Federation of Government Employees (AFGE) is the largest federal employee union, representing 670,000 workers in the federal government and the government of the District of Columbia. For the latest AFGE news and information, follow us on Facebook and Twitter.