VA Employees' Union Calls for End to "Culture of Fear" for Whistleblowers

Monday, May 19, 2014

(Metropolitan Washington Council, AFL-CIO)The American Federation of Government Employees (AFGE) last week called on the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) to "end the culture of fear that has plagued the agency and negatively impacted veterans’ care." News broke last week that some VA management officials have been ‘gaming the system’ to artificially inflate performance statistics in their medical centers. "What is not so recent is the widespread cover-up culture that pervades the VA," said AFGE. "Front-line employees have lived in fear of blowing the whistle due to an established history of retaliation. They do not feel safe to report mismanagement." AFGE National VA Council President Alma Lee urged the agency to "take a serious look at how facility directors and managers are carrying out the mission of the VA,” adding “As the agency carries out its probe, we caution it not to target front line workers carrying out their duties as assigned, but the managers trying to change the rules and cheat veterans out of the care they deserve. VA should not be investigating itself under these circumstances.”


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