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pyrotalk  
#1 Posted : Saturday, September 22, 2018 12:12:29 PM(UTC)
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HI

How would you proceed? I know a powerful division chief who takes bribes from contractors in exchanges for government contract. I dont necessarily have proof. There is anonymous fraud hotline and address which i contacted but nothing so far. Do they really work? or is it better to file a formal complain thru my agency inspector general? i do this as retribution for all the years of subpar rating appraisal where i should have deserved outstanding rating and because is the right thing to do. I talked to the union and they can help but i doubt either the union or IG will do anything. I think media outlets will expose it faster than internally but i dont know the repercussions for doing this.

Edited by user Monday, September 24, 2018 7:46:21 PM(UTC)  | Reason: Not specified

frankgonzalez  
#2 Posted : Monday, September 24, 2018 3:41:35 AM(UTC)
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Originally Posted by: pyrotalk Go to Quoted Post
HI

How would you proceed? I know a powerful division chief who takes bribes from contractors in exchanges for government contract. I dont necessarily have proof (except for the gifts and golf outings). There is anonymous fraud hotline and address which i contacted but nothing so far. Do they really work? or is it better to file a formal complain thru my agency inspector general? i do this as retribution for all the years of subpar rating appraisal where i should have deserved outstanding rating and because is the right thing to do. I talked to the union and they can help but i doubt either the union or IG will do anything. I think media outlets will expose it faster than internally but i dont know the repercussions for doing this.
Let's see...Call IG or your congresscritter and get Whistleblower protection. May still result in reprisal, but OSC can then be called for a Whistleblower complaint.

Call the media...get the retribution you are seeking (maybe!) and then get canned with ZERO whistleblower protection. You can call OSC but find you have no protections as the media is not a protected place to whistleblow.

Your choice.

You should have voted Cthulu...the greatest of all Evils
FedUpFed25x  
#3 Posted : Monday, September 24, 2018 5:04:14 AM(UTC)
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Neither the OSC nor the media will be of use. Nor will any member of Congress. And certainly the IG will do nothing.

Bottom line is that the world is filled with corrupt and evil people. This includes the Federal work force.

If this is a "powerful" division chief then they undoubtedly have the higher-ups on their side. Perhaps even your own union representatives, who may not think twice about dropping the dime on you since you have already brought this issue up to them. You have already blown any hole in a potential "anonymous" media inquiry.

Furthermore, the media really doesn't care about this kind of story. Unless you can show big dollar corruption (think multi millions) and/or juicy details (like Caligula-like parties, money spent on prostitutes, etc.) then no one will really care about a whistleblower complaint.

Even if the media gave it cursory coverage it would be old news within a day and would have zero effect. John Q. Public knows there is corruption in government and may shake their heads in disgust but quickly go about their business on to other things that interest them. In the day and age of targeted social media and on-line news, many people might not even see the story and could care less.

In this case, your division chief could easily be defended by saying he "innocently" didn't know that socializing wasn't OK and in any case, he didn't discuss any of the contract issues. End of story.

There is another factor in that you have a less-than-stellar performance record. Anything you do will make you immediately the target for removal based on poor performance. They will figure out a way to fire you in a heartbeat and you would have to spend years and tens of thousands of dollars AFTER they fire you to try and fight it. Even then, your chance of "winning" will be less than 5 percent.

If you don't like your performance ratings, take an honest look at yourself and see if there is any truth in them. If you are honestly doing the best you can at your job, then perhaps this job is not for you. Look for another position if possible and move on with your life.

Trust me - trying to fight the good fight is useless and the only person who will be hurt is you.


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Hawaiiannative on 9/25/2018(UTC)
nightchop  
#4 Posted : Monday, September 24, 2018 7:17:58 AM(UTC)

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Originally Posted by: FedUpFed25x Go to Quoted Post
Neither the OSC nor the media will be of use. Nor will any member of Congress. And certainly the IG will do nothing.



That's what you think. Election years, severity of issues, multiple agency involvement creating the appearance of systemic coverup. These are the things television series are made of. Reality is often stranger than fiction.
FedUpFed25x  
#5 Posted : Monday, September 24, 2018 11:48:59 AM(UTC)
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Originally Posted by: nightchop Go to Quoted Post
Originally Posted by: FedUpFed25x Go to Quoted Post
Neither the OSC nor the media will be of use. Nor will any member of Congress. And certainly the IG will do nothing.



That's what you think. Election years, severity of issues, multiple agency involvement creating the appearance of systemic coverup. These are the things television series are made of. Reality is often stranger than fiction.



Sorry, Nightchop, but this isn't what I "think" ... it's what I know based on my own experiences. I've filed OSC/IG etc. on high-ranking employees and absolutely nothing was done. During an election year, no less. It even had a blip of media coverage resulting in exactly one (1) Senator's follow-up. All that amounted to was a letter from the Senator to the Agency head, with their standard b.s. reply.

Unless it involves multi-millions of dollars and some sort of sordid element, the media could care less. Same goes for TV/entertainment industry.
nightchop  
#6 Posted : Monday, September 24, 2018 1:28:12 PM(UTC)

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If what you're saying is true, then why do agencies spend so much time and money trying to cover things up? Why bother sweeping your dirt under the rug if there are no consequences? Doesn't make sense.
FedUpFed25x  
#7 Posted : Monday, September 24, 2018 3:05:51 PM(UTC)
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Because Federal Managers have the Agency's legal team available to them for free.

There is no additional cost to the agency to get at least one of their legal eagles to dissect the issues, figure out loopholes, come up with "plausible" reasons that a regulation or policy was ignored, and even plead for a mere wrist-slap if someone "accidently" violates the law. Remember, the government lawyers' job is to take care of their client, which is the Agency and its leaders. And not all of them are as well-versed as they need to be on specific issues, or are willing to play along because it's good for their own careers.

(True story: I once had an agency attorney tell me that it was OK for employees to attend political fundraising events in official Agency uniforms w/logos. Guess they never heard of the Hatch Act. Or else a higher-up wanted to support the political fundraiser and probably told the attorney to "Find a way to Yes!")

In the whistleblower instance I am referring to, there was blatant law-breaking and the lawyers were on it like flies on cr@p figuring out how to minimize the damage and maximize the ways they could discredit me (and others) as well as retaliate. In fact, they even retaliated against one of the agencies own lawyers when they decided to stand up with the rest of us and throw down the gauntlet.

As I said, the world is full of corrupt and evil people. Sure there are plenty of good people, but most are ground down when trying to fight against a massive bureaucracy.

nightchop  
#8 Posted : Monday, September 24, 2018 3:43:21 PM(UTC)

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Why would one need a legal team if they aren't doing anything wrong? If they are doing something wrong, why do they need to consult legal if there are no repercussions for their wrongdoing? All the channels to remedy these situations are, according to you, a waste of time. So isn't it also a waste of time to involve legal in something that you aren't going to get in trouble for anyway?

Edited by user Monday, September 24, 2018 3:44:23 PM(UTC)  | Reason: Not specified

GWPDA  
#9 Posted : Monday, September 24, 2018 7:20:57 PM(UTC)
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You would be well advised to take Frank Gonzalez' advice.
pyrotalk  
#10 Posted : Monday, September 24, 2018 7:42:43 PM(UTC)
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Originally Posted by: FedUpFed25x Go to Quoted Post

There is another factor in that you have a less-than-stellar performance record. Anything you do will make you immediately the target for removal based on poor performance. They will figure out a way to fire you in a heartbeat and you would have to spend years and tens of thousands of dollars AFTER they fire you to try and fight it. Even then, your chance of "winning" will be less than 5 percent.

If you don't like your performance ratings, take an honest look at yourself and see if there is any truth in them. If you are honestly doing the best you can at your job, then perhaps this job is not for you. Look for another position if possible and move on with your life.


What do you consider "less-than-stellar"? the old system had a score 5-1 (Outstanding/Very Good/Satisfactory/Needs Improvement/ Unsatisfactory- poor) I was given 4 (very good). Though I believe i deserved better. So the odds are still in my favor.
Why would an agency spend millions of dollar setting up fraud hotline, process, protocols and whistleblower protection for nothing. And like you said, sweep everything under the rug. I still believe justice should prevail.

Now, if i could befriend someone more powerful. it will be much easy. I know couple of them who hate this chief. But what's in it for them?

Edited by user Monday, September 24, 2018 7:45:27 PM(UTC)  | Reason: Not specified

frankgonzalez  
#11 Posted : Tuesday, September 25, 2018 3:10:09 AM(UTC)
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Originally Posted by: pyrotalk Go to Quoted Post
Originally Posted by: FedUpFed25x Go to Quoted Post

There is another factor in that you have a less-than-stellar performance record. Anything you do will make you immediately the target for removal based on poor performance. They will figure out a way to fire you in a heartbeat and you would have to spend years and tens of thousands of dollars AFTER they fire you to try and fight it. Even then, your chance of "winning" will be less than 5 percent.

If you don't like your performance ratings, take an honest look at yourself and see if there is any truth in them. If you are honestly doing the best you can at your job, then perhaps this job is not for you. Look for another position if possible and move on with your life.


What do you consider "less-than-stellar"? the old system had a score 5-1 (Outstanding/Very Good/Satisfactory/Needs Improvement/ Unsatisfactory- poor) I was given 4 (very good). Though I believe i deserved better. So the odds are still in my favor.
Why would an agency spend millions of dollar setting up fraud hotline, process, protocols and whistleblower protection for nothing. And like you said, sweep everything under the rug. I still believe justice should prevail.

Now, if i could befriend someone more powerful. it will be much easy. I know couple of them who hate this chief. But what's in it for them?
let's see...you said initially "subpar rating appraisal" (sic) which means less than average or Meets or Satisfactory. A "4" in the rating scale you provided is not subpar, but simply less than you considered your performance to be rated at.

If this is how you understand words, I'd have a friend help you with your complaint as words have specific meanings, and if you misuse them, it is easy to dismiss or discount your claims by pointing out that what you said was simply inaccurate or false (such as your claim a "4" is a subpar appraisal). Once you are discounted as not knowing what you are talking about, the general claim is then easily dismissed and not looked into further.

You should have voted Cthulu...the greatest of all Evils
Hawaiiannative  
#12 Posted : Tuesday, September 25, 2018 5:42:05 PM(UTC)
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Sure, go ahead. Good luck. It will probably implode your career, but it sounds like you are in the crapper anyway. Don't expect much.
Surprise  
#13 Posted : Wednesday, September 26, 2018 7:34:59 PM(UTC)

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For consideration by Pyrotalk.

The Omaha World-Herald conducted a three-year investigation of aircraft maintenance deficiencies within the 55th Wing at Offutt AFB, NE. The story, published in June 2018, was based on factual data obtained through the Freedom of Information Act. The three-part series, "IN-FLIGHT EMERGENCY", corroborated an earlier 2008 whistleblower disclosure to Congress. Follow this link: http://www.omaha.com/new...e-bd8f-b28269dd152b.html

In 2011, the whistleblower reached an out-of-court settlement with the Agency, which was overseen by the Merit System Protection Board. Follow this link: https://www.whistleblowe...rris-prevails-settlement

This time around (June 2018) there was no whistleblower for the Agency to attack. This time, the news was based solely on a good old-fashioned journalistic investigation by reporter Steve Liewer. Despite thousands of pages of maintenance documents showing disturbing trends in “In-flight mishaps”, the Agency, to include the Secretary of the Air Force, claim that everything is fine. “Nebraska's leaders in Congress press Air Force for answers on Offutt's aging recon planes”. Follow this link: https://www.omaha.com/ne...b7b284caa5.html#comments

I have concluded that the IG, the OSC and the Department of Defense performed investigations, but their investigations appear to be for the purpose of damage control while shielding senior leaders; even at the needless risk of death to our soldiers. The situation is best summed up by an editorial cartoon published on July 19, 2018, by Jeff Koterba of the Omaha World-Herald. Follow this link: https://www.omaha.com/op...4-a6e5-b106064b3874.html

Having been through this experience, I am compelled to rewrite one sentence from my original 2008 disclosure to Congress. “It is less stressful to let someone die than it is to endure the harassment, intimidation, reprisal, backstabbing, threats, sleepless nights, depression, isolation, and a lifetime of worker/management tensions that result from blowing-the-whistle.”

If one of these highly valued aircraft fall from the sky, my records, and those obtained by the Omaha World-Herald, will be made available to the surviving family members.

FYI: Two former 55th Wing Commanders with intimate knowledge of the substandard maintenance practices have been promoted to the rank of Major General. One of them is currently the Air Force Chief of Safety, Maj. General John T Rauch. Another former General, Don Bacon, is now a Congressman in the state of Nebraska.
DroneBee  
#14 Posted : Saturday, October 06, 2018 12:06:50 AM(UTC)

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If you complain, you will be fired. Your boss will get promoted, or moved - your boss will NOT lose her job.

Do not believe any "wins" you read on Fed Soup - you can look up the "wins" yourself on the EEOC website and MSPB website. Take the MSPB - there hasn't been a board in YEARS (Trump appointed a Board, but the Board is not yet in place) and all the cases are backlogged for at least three years. So, what does that mean? Say someone was fired and put in a MSPB appeal - an administrative judge (just hired off the street, a GS-14 or GS-15) decides for the agency - happened to me - the administrative judge was a prior member of my agency. You submit an appeal to the MSPB Board - but wait - there is no Board, so your appeal sits. Eventually, the Board may find in your favor (2% chance of this happening per the MSPB statistics) - some 5 years from now. What if you are the select 2% that "win"? Backpay and your job back. You've been through Hell, along with your family. It's not worth it. Just keep your job now!

The EEOC is an even WORSE fake system. OSC is a complete waste of time. IG just wants to cover the agency. I've been through all of these. Nightmare upon nightmare.

I wish I had not done the right thing and been a whistleblower; the statement is true: "It is less stressful to let someone die than it is to endure the harassment, intimidation, reprisal, backstabbing, threats, sleepless nights, depression, isolation, and a lifetime of worker/management tensions that result from blowing-the-whistle."
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Harrigan on 10/16/2018(UTC)
nightchop  
#15 Posted : Saturday, October 06, 2018 5:59:33 AM(UTC)

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Originally Posted by: DroneBee Go to Quoted Post
If you complain, you will be fired. Your boss will get promoted, or moved - your boss will NOT lose her job.



Getting a boss fired shouldn't be anyone's primary motivation for filing a complaint.
birdonamission  
#16 Posted : Sunday, October 07, 2018 8:08:43 AM(UTC)

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Originally Posted by: pyrotalk Go to Quoted Post
I dont necessarily have proof.


Next.

swimmingly  
#17 Posted : Sunday, October 07, 2018 1:52:48 PM(UTC)

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If I could do it all over again, I'd let it go. I didn't even let the cat out of the bag and had so much retaliation from letting some one know that was higher up what was going on..... That was in 2001, I'M STILL TO THIS DAY suffering and going through retaliation. Your career will never ever be the same. You won't know however you will be a marked employee with no growth at all. I went through so much mental aguish that I'm still on meds since then. Good Luck- you can't fix the federal government, it was broke before you got there.
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DroneBee on 10/7/2018(UTC), Harrigan on 10/16/2018(UTC), Pinky145 on 11/14/2018(UTC)
DroneBee  
#18 Posted : Sunday, October 07, 2018 3:14:47 PM(UTC)

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Originally Posted by: nightchop Go to Quoted Post
Originally Posted by: DroneBee Go to Quoted Post
If you complain, you will be fired. Your boss will get promoted, or moved - your boss will NOT lose her job.



Getting a boss fired shouldn't be anyone's primary motivation for filing a complaint.



I never stated that retaliation was the "primary motivation." I was stating a fact.

DroneBee  
#19 Posted : Sunday, October 07, 2018 3:20:27 PM(UTC)

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Originally Posted by: swimmingly Go to Quoted Post
If I could do it all over again, I'd let it go. I didn't even let the cat out of the bag and had so much retaliation from letting some one know that was higher up what was going on..... That was in 2001, I'M STILL TO THIS DAY suffering and going through retaliation. Your career will never ever be the same. You won't know however you will be a marked employee with no growth at all. I went through so much mental aguish that I'm still on meds since then. Good Luck- you can't fix the federal government, it was broke before you got there.


This is so true - thanks Swimmingly for sharing. Government workers are led to believe that the fake EEOC is fair - it's on every f'ing government calendar! I was a whistleblower too. Besmirched and fired because I actually did the right thing. Anyone reading this (and Swimmingly's post), if you are thinking about blowing the whistle - DON'T EVER. Just keep quiet and if ever called on the carpet, say you had no idea. 2001 to 2018 is 17 years too many to pay for a crime that the government committed. How sad and sickening for the U.S.A.

Edited by user Sunday, October 07, 2018 3:21:07 PM(UTC)  | Reason: Not specified

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Hawaiiannative  
#20 Posted : Sunday, October 07, 2018 7:24:19 PM(UTC)
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Don't expect any help from OIG, OSC, unless you have written the entire presentation, investigation, done, and handed to them wrapped in a bow. With all evidentiary documentation included.

If you turn in a vague statement, "Gee, something is wrong here". Without the entire package completed, it will be tossed.

Ah, the Office of Whistleblowing and Accountability...they do nothing, but tell your supervisor that you have requested an investigation regarding retaliation. Enough said there. You can send 50 FOIA requests, to a black hole.

Agree with Dronebee, say nothing, keep your head down, eyes forward.

I left a job after years of retaliation. Seriously, it almost killed me. I am actually enjoying my life now.
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