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Man faces retaliation, termination for whistleblowing VA issues

When a California company or agency is conducting its business in a substandard or unethical manner, upstanding employees may feel it is their duty to reveal these conditions. This may be especially true if taxpayer money, shareholder profits or public health and safety are at stake. While acting in the public interest, these whistleblowers run the risk of losing their jobs or facing other examples of retaliation. One man who is well known for his whistleblowing has recently lost his job for the third time.

The man published an article last year detailing fraud, abuse and waste in the Veterans Administration hospital in his state. The article described more than 30 examples of these deficiencies, and soon the hospital was listed among the worst VA hospitals in the system. Twice, the VA attempted to fire him, but the man launched successful appeals to regain his position.

Recently, the man disclosed 10 more violations, and the VA wrote a third letter of termination, dating it the day before the signing of a new VA bill protecting whistleblowers. However, they did not notify the man of his termination until the day the bill was signed. Investigations show that the VA unsuccessfully attempted to obtain a restraining order against the man, so they allegedly placed a fraudulent one in his personnel file. The termination also took place before the man could complete the process of finalizing his disability and retirement pension.

Facing retaliation from a California employer places one's whole life on hold. Like this man's situation, it may cause financial hardship, which can lead to housing issues and other serious consequences. From the earliest suspicions that one is the victim of retaliation efforts, seeking the assistance of an attorney is an advisable move.

Source:, "VA Whistleblower Could Be Homeless Soon", Michael Volpe, Jan. 23, 2018

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