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House Sends Bill to President’s Desk to Hold Government Employees Accountable


Washington, October 12, 2017 - Rep. Tom Graves (R-GA-14) today voted for and the House passed the Dr. Chris Kirkpatrick Whistleblower Protection Act (S. 585), sending it to the president’s desk. The bill enhances whistleblower protections, increases awareness of whistleblower protections and requires punishment of supervisors who retaliate against whistleblowers.  

“By ramping up whistleblower protections, we’re encouraging individuals who witness mismanagement, waste or abuse to come forward,” said Rep. Graves. “The American people should be able to trust that public servants can speak out if their coworkers are not acting ethically and honestly. For example, if another doctor at the VA sees something wrong, such as Dr. Kirkpatrick did, that doctor should be able to flag the problems without intimidation or fear.”

The bill is named after Dr. Chris Kirkpatrick, who was a clinical psychologist at the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA). Dr. Kirkpatrick was reprimanded after reporting that some of his patients were too drugged to treat and then fired after reporting that a patient threatened him. Tragically, Dr. Kirkpatrick committed suicide shortly afterwards. A VA investigation later found that Dr. Kirkpatrick's concerns were justified.

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