The Office of Special Counsel says it has resolved a whistleblower retaliation complaint in which the employee’s reputation as a whistleblower and for cooperating with the agency IG was a factor.
The case involved a National Science Foundation employee who contended that he suffered retaliation because of the agency’s perception of him as a whistleblower. The alleged retaliation was conversion of a permanent position to a term appointment and the later decision not to continue him after that appointment expired.
OSC noted that the Whistleblower Protection Act bars retaliation not only making a protected disclosure of fraud, waste or mismanagement, but also for engaging in protected activity including cooperating with an investigation by an IG or by the OSC itself.
It said the agency agreed to provide relief to the complaining employee and require training on prohibited personnel practices for senior management and staff. “OSC did not seek disciplinary action because, in part, the responsible official(s) left federal service,” it said.