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Victory for National Security and Intelligence Community Whistleblowers

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On Wednesday, President Obama issued a Presidential Policy Directive expanding whistleblower protections to national security and intelligence community (IC) whistleblowers.

The directive is a huge step towards accountability in the intelligence community and is welcome protection for national security whistleblowers who are too often punished for reporting fraud, waste, and abuse.

POGO’s Director of Public Policy, Angela Canterbury, praised the directive in a statement:

The President deserves tremendous credit for going above and beyond his commitments to support legislation and explore ways to better protect whistleblowers. When implemented properly, this policy should provide for more balance between guarding precious rights and legitimate secrets while ensuring more disclosures of wrongdoing necessary for a more accountable IC. Today, President Obama delivered on protections for whistleblowers and taxpayers.

Similar protections for national security and intelligence community employees were removed from the Whistleblower Protection Enhancement Act, which passed the House by unanimous consent. Even though that bill has been weakened, it is still worthy of passage according to Canterbury.

“Even without these reforms, we urge the Senate to take up the bill upon their return from the election recess and finally upgrade protections for civil servants outside the IC,” Canterbury said.

Now the President’s directive needs to be thoroughly implemented across the relevant agencies for it to be truly helpful to future whistleblowers.

Click here to read Canterbury’s full statement and learn more about the specifics of the directive.

See also statements by whistleblower advocates OpenTheGovernment.org and the Government Accountability Project.

By: Andre Francisco
Online Producer, POGO

andre francisco Andre Francisco is the Online Producer for the Project On Government Oversight.

Topics: Whistleblower Protections

Related Content: Intelligence

Authors: Andre Francisco

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