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Whistleblower Advocates Call on Nation to Stand Up for Whistleblowers

NWC highlights former FBI Director James Comey’s remarks on National Whistleblower Day 2016.

Washington, D.C. – WEBWIRE

The National Whistleblower Center (NWC) issued an action alert today asking its supporters to “Stand Up for Whistleblowers!” The campaign highlights the 2016 Whistleblower Day remarks of former FBI Director James Comey.  

Comey gave his remarks at a Whistleblower Day celebration, sponsored by the Council on Inspectors General for Integrity and Efficiency (CIGIE) on August 1, 2016.  Leaders from four federal agencies (the FBI, the Council on Inspectors General for Integrity and Efficiency, the Office of the Special Prosecutor, and the Occupational Safety and Health Administration) came together to formally acknowledge the important contributions and sacrifices made by whistleblowers.  The event kicked off with remarks from then FBI Director James Comey who acknowledged the importance of creating a culture where whistleblowers feel they can be heard.  Listen to Comey’s full remarks here.

America’s first whistleblower law was rediscovered in 2011 by NWC executive director Stephen M. Kohn. The NWC started a movement advocating for the annual celebration of Whistleblower Day. This movement garnered strong bi-partisan support in the U.S. Senate with the leadership of Senator Chuck Grassley. The CIGIE event in 2016 expanded the recognition of Whistleblower Day beyond advocacy organizations and the Senate to the executive branch. 

“In 1778, the U.S. Continental Congress, in the midst of the Revolutionary War, unanimously stood behind whistleblowers, even when high ranking officials of the new U.S. government were implicated in misconduct,” said Kohn in a statement released today. “As a nation, we must recommit to the mandate our Founding Fathers gave us on July 30, 1778, to stand behind whistleblowers,” Kohn continued.

On July 30, 1778, the Continental Congress enacted the first ever whistleblower protection law which was passed by unanimous vote: 

“That it is the duty of all persons in the service of the United States, as well as all other inhabitants thereof, to give the earliest information to Congress or any other proper authority of any misconduct, frauds or misdemeanors committed by any persons in the service of these states, which may come to their knowledge.”

The NWC’s campaign “Stand Up for Whistleblowers,” aimed at Congress and the President, asks them to uphold the traditions of “those who founded our country, and ensure that every whistleblower is protected when they step forward and expose wrongdoing.”


 James Comey
 FBI Director
 Whistleblower Day
 Whistleblower protection

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