On Wednesday, President Obama issued a Presidential Policy Directive expanding whistleblower protections to national security and intelligence community (IC) whistleblowers.
The directive is a huge step towards accountability in the intelligence community and is welcome protection for national security whistleblowers who are too often punished for reporting fraud, waste, and abuse.
POGO’s Director of Public Policy, Angela Canterbury, praised the directive in a statement:
The President deserves tremendous credit for going above and beyond his commitments to support legislation and explore ways to better protect whistleblowers. When implemented properly, this policy should provide for more balance between guarding precious rights and legitimate secrets while ensuring more disclosures of wrongdoing necessary for a more accountable IC. Today, President Obama delivered on protections for whistleblowers and taxpayers.
“Even without these reforms, we urge the Senate to take up the bill upon their return from the election recess and finally upgrade protections for civil servants outside the IC,” Canterbury said.
Now the President’s directive needs to be thoroughly implemented across the relevant agencies for it to be truly helpful to future whistleblowers.
Andre Francisco is an online producer with the Project On Government Oversight.Follow @andrefrancisco