GAP Report Calls for Overhaul of Corporate Whistleblower Laws

For Immediate Release

Contact: 

Tom Devine, GAP Legal Director
202.408.0034 ext 124, cell 240.888.4080
whistle47@aol.com
Adam Miles, GAP Legislative Representative
202.408.0034 ext 132, cell 202.276.2007
adamm@whistleblower.org

Government Accountability Project

GAP Report Calls for Overhaul of Corporate Whistleblower Laws

Report Acts as Guide for Corporate Employees

WASHINGTON - Today, the Government Accountability Project (GAP) released Running the Gauntlet: The Campaign
for Credible Corporate Whistleblower Rights.
This report surveys
the dangerous landscape of corporate whistleblower laws, and recommends strategies
for corporate whistleblowers to best protect themselves from future retaliation.

GAP Legal Director Tom
Devine, co-author of the report, explained its pressing need:
"With inspiring exceptions since 2007, a primary obstacle to helping
corporate whistleblowers has been dysfunctional legal whistleblower
protections, which lead down a treacherous gauntlet of obstacles that could
sabotage justice. But a turning point has been established in the last year
with newfound rights."

Since the last election, Congress has passed best
practices laws for specific corporate whistleblowers, including ground
transportation workers, defense contractors, and an estimated twenty million
employees connected with the manufacture or sale of 15,000 retail products.

Devine continued, "While time, and judges, will
tell if these newfound protections hold, this is a defining moment for the
future of corporate accountability. This report lays out strategies for all corporate whistleblowers, until
that day when protections are standardized, comprehensive and strong. This
report serves as a life-ring for employees stuck in the current sea of unknown
protections."

The report can be downloaded free of charge from
GAP's Web site at: http://www.whistleblower.org/doc/2008/rtgfinal.pdf

The text contrasts footnoted legal research on current
corporate whistleblowers rights as they appear in written law with the actual rights
as they are interpreted and implemented by activist judges. The report includes
appendices detailing: global best practices for whistleblower laws, text of
pending reform legislation, and an exhaustive guide to navigating the Department
of Labor administrative system to which whistleblowers have recourse under most
laws.

The report, coauthored by Tarek
Maassarani, is excerpted from a comprehensive corporate
whistleblower survival guide, Committing the Truth, scheduled for publication next
year. Devine explained, "The report is a street law course for
whistleblowers based on thirty years of painful lessons learned, an
introductory primer for practicing attorneys, and a call for order to replace
legal anarchy."

A free and independent press is essential to the health of a functioning democracy

GAP's call for reform is the context for all the
report's research, warnings and tips: The central recommendation is the enactment
of legislation that institutionalizes a coherent, uniform system of legal
rights. H.R. 4047, the Private Sector Whistleblower Streamlining Act of 2007, introduced
in the House by Representatives George Miller and Lynn Woolsey, would
institutionalize these rights for all federal health and safety laws. As the
authors conclude, "The legislation is a good housekeeping measure to
replace chaos with systematic rights reflecting modern standards."

Added Devine: "This reform is a win-win
from every perspective. All those who benefit from responsible whistleblowing
should send a message to our elected leaders demanding their commitment to this
reform, by co-sponsoring it in the House or introducing it in the Senate. It is
time for all of us to blow the whistle on America's corporate
whistleblower laws."

GAP is the nation's leading whistleblower
protection and advocacy organization. Since 1977, GAP has legally represented
thousands of whistleblowers, and provided direction to thousands more.

###

The Government Accountability Project is the nation's leading whistleblower protection organization. Through litigating whistleblower cases, publicizing concerns and developing legal reforms, GAP's mission is to protect the public interest by promoting government and corporate accountability. Founded in 1977, GAP is a non-profit, non-partisan advocacy organization based in Washington, D.C.

Share This Article

More in: