Millions of individuals who have done work as a contractor or subcontractor are now protected under the federal whistleblower policy. Earlier this year, the United States Congress passed a law that expanded the Whistleblower Act to include most contractors and subcontractors for the federal government. The only contractors and subcontractors not covered by the new policy are those who worked in the intelligence community. Additionally, the law prohibits the use of taxpayer dollars to reimburse companies for legal fees they incurred defending themselves from whistleblower retaliation.
The policy change was recommended due to a study that found the Department of Energy uses dramatically more contractors and subcontractors than any other federal agency. A recent increase in concerns from contractors and subcontractors at the Hanford nuclear reservation site and Savannah River Site prompted concerns.
“We’ve got an enormous contracting workforce in the federal government, and we’ve got to make sure that all of our contractors have the same whistleblower protections as the government employees they work alongside – because these folks are the ones raising the alarm on waste, fraud, and abuse of power,” said US Senator and sponsor of the bill, Claire McCaskill.
If you are a government contractor or subcontractor and believe that your employer may be violating the new Federal Whistleblower Policy, please contact Markovits, Stock & DeMarco at (614) 604-8759.