Whistle-blower protection (41 U.S.C. §4712)
The federal government has implemented a pilot program for Enhancement of Employee Whistleblower Protection that is effective until January 1, 2017. This program applies to all employees working for contractors, grantees, subcontractors and sub-grantees on federal grants and contracts.
Under the program, employers may not discharge, demote, or otherwise discriminate against an employee as a reprisal for disclosing information that the employee reasonably believes is evidence of any of the following:
- Gross mismanagement of a Federal contract or grant;
- A gross waste of Federal funds;
- An abuse of authority relating to a Federal contract or grant;
- A substantial and specific danger to public health or safety; or,
- A violation of law, rule, or regulation related to a Federal contract or grant (including the competition for, or negotiation of, a contract or grant).
To qualify under the statute, the employee's disclosure must be made to:
- A Member of Congress, or a representative of a Congressional Committee;
- An Inspector General;
- The Government Accountability Office;
- A federal employee responsible for contract or grant oversight or management at the relevant agency;
- A court or grand jury; or,
- A management official or other employee of the contractor, subcontractor, grantee, or sub-grantee who has the responsibility to investigate, discover or address misconduct.
The University of Iowa is committed to fostering responsible conduct of research and maintaining a safe work environment. That commitment involves full compliance to all local, state and federal laws as well as UI policies. If you observe what you think is a specific safety issue or a deficiency in compliance with regulations, we encourage you to report your concern so that it can be investigated.