VA OIG Announcement

A VA OIG announcement shows VA is clearly in a full-blown propaganda campaign to redefine its approach to whistleblower rights just in time for the coming election.

On Saturday, VA OIG released statement from Michael Missal about its commitment support the rights of whistleblowers. Apparently, the inspector general even received a recent certification from the Office of Special Counsel (OSC) to highlight its efforts.

OIG claims it is “committed to protecting the identity of any person who comes forward and reports serious allegations of criminal activity, fraud, waste, abuse, and mismanagement.”

To ensure it complies with the rights of others, OSC certified VA for its training. Somehow, this training was unable to protect the rights of whistleblowers harassed at Phoenix VA, Hines VA, Tomah VA, and practically every other VA where a crime was reported.

Apparently, in December 2015:

“OSC certified OIG for meeting our obligation to inform our employees of their rights and remedies under the prohibited personnel practice and whistleblower protection provisions of chapters 12 and 23 of Title 5. In order to obtain this certification, OIG had to meet five broad requirements, one of which included employee training. To protect whistleblowers, VA OIG employees are trained on protections and remedies guaranteed to Federal employees by the Whistleblower Protection Act, the Whistleblower Protection Enhancement Act, and related laws.”

I have talked with a few whistleblowers who think the press release was nothing more than a sham aimed at falsely proving to America that veterans are being cared for. It is total horseshit.

VA OIG ANNOUNCEMENT

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

July 30, 2016

STATEMENT FROM VA INSPECTOR GENERAL MICHAEL MISSAL

“Today is National Whistleblower Appreciation Day. We as a Nation must recognize the important role whistleblowers play in exposing serious problems and deficiencies in Government programs and operations. Only when employees, contractors, and the public come forward to report criminal activity, mismanagement, fraud, waste, or abuse can the organization’s leadership begin to take steps to address and correct any exposed problems. In many cases, employees do not have a safe internal process to report such activities within their organization. In situations such as this, employees may confidentially report their concerns to the Office of Special Counsel (OSC) or the Office of Inspector General that oversees their department or office.

“At the Veterans Affairs (VA) Office of Inspector General (OIG), we are committed to protecting the identity of any person who comes forward and reports serious allegations of criminal activity, fraud, waste, abuse, and mismanagement. As VA’s oversight agency, we will protect whistleblowers while we thoroughly investigate their concerns through all avenues available to us.

“In December 2015, OSC certified OIG for meeting our obligation to inform our employees of their rights and remedies under the prohibited personnel practice and whistleblower protection provisions of chapters 12 and 23 of Title 5. In order to obtain this certification, OIG had to meet five broad requirements, one of which included employee training. To protect whistleblowers, VA OIG employees are trained on protections and remedies guaranteed to Federal employees by the Whistleblower Protection Act, the Whistleblower Protection Enhancement Act, and related laws. OIG’s Whistleblower Protection Ombudsman program provides education about protections for current or former employees of VA, VA contractors, or VA grantees who make protected disclosures.

“We continue to work with VA and OSC to strengthen protections for whistleblowers. Providing a safe process to report issues, protecting whistleblowers and instituting changes resulting from disclosures makes VA better able to deliver services and benefits that our Nation’s veterans have earned through their military service.”

Source: https://3mc77e18jo7n1uk8m71my8ml-wpengine.netdna-ssl.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/08/VAOIG_Whistleblowers_Appr_Day.pdf

Bob White
We hear a lot about whistle blowers rights and there service to veterans with back lash from the VA, and I would agree that there should be protection for the ones coming forward to expose the abuses . All said what about the veterans who witness themselves who have been subject to abuse at the hands of Dr,s Nurses staff and others within the VA. Not much call for any help here. If a veteran feels that he or she… Read more »
James
You are exactly right and I bet dollars to donuts ? If You call the patient rep. They will below you off again or claim you were harassing them and report you to the disruptive committee to shut you up. ! You dare to complain. We’ll fix you. ! The patient rep is a VA employee decated to protect higher management. ! Shall we see if I’m right call them and or write a letter to the director and tell… Read more »
Reuben Castro Acosta

va deathcare does kill vets on wait list for the bonous $$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$

91Veteran

Put your concerns in writing, including the fact that you reported this to the Patient Advocates and have heard nothing. Take the letter to the Patient Advocate, then tell them you want a Report of Contact sent showing you brought in the letter, and ask for a copy of the Report of Contact.
If the Patient Advocate refuses to do the Report of Contact, tell them you are taking the letter to the Directors office, then do it.

James

Yes. A paper trail is the only way to do it and retain copies of everything or they will blow it off and say they don’t know anything about it. !

I believe it has to be sent to more than one person ? Like your congressman !

namnibor
Office of Special Flakes must have produced a new prize in their breakfast cereal box that was a super secret whistle decoder ring in which it was redefined as a Whistle Blower Protection Training Certificate Decoder Ring. They are blowing it hard but hardly nobody at the VA can hear it because nobody at VA is actually listening. Plausible Deniability and legal goobly-gook protecting their evil asses or….a$$et$ so POTUS can tout how GREAT the VA is doing….you know, all… Read more »
Iratevet24601

@ namnibor The whistle ain’t all they’re blowing.

Shannon

Oh, that is perfect! I just spit my coffee!

Cantigny
>> anyone else sick and tired of the VA “redefining” the very laws and rules they are to follow? I call horseshit on this as well. (no offense intended towards all horses) yep, been tired of it for years, like you and everyone else on these veteran blogs. VA can start with adhering to “Title 38—United States Code Veterans’ Benefits”. when was the last time a VA doctor actually helped any veteran to document medical condition(s) to help veteran obtain… Read more »
91Veteran
Speaking of assets, perhaps Ben can check his contacts and see if there is a Congressional hearing coming up soon in which they want to ask the VA about whistle blowers, and settlements they have recently paid to whistle blowers. I have been seeing more comment about whistle blowers at Phoenix, including Brandon Coleman and one other there that got their jobs back, and that settlements were paid. A settlement would be typical when a whistle blowers case is found… Read more »
redturtle984
I am delighted that a branch of VA is going to oversee the integrity of another branch of VA whose mission it is to protect VA employees from nrutal retaliation by VA emoloyees. Except against veterans, retaliation of VA on VA is brutal and quick. Retaliation against veterans is as brutal and quick. Vets get no office of whistleblower protection. of e two groups most likely to suicide, vets are off the charts. Is this equation balanced? Nope. Is it… Read more »
Iratevet24601

Bovine Faecal matter alert, has VA started gardening cause the fertilizer is being spread thick. I agree, what about us? They will happily retaliate against us, DBC.

redturtle984
There is zero question that DBC proceedings are designed to harm a veteran. Period. I have multille FOIA minutes from DBC meetings and it is beyond jaw dropping. It reads like something out of Dukes Of Hazard except for there is more than one Boss Hog. VA is keenly aware of this. OIG in 2013 flatly stated there are so many vets now flagged that VA itself has no idea how many there are. Yet, VA persons who blow the… Read more »
James
When they reported me to the disruptive committee. I contacted every agency OSC and other’s. They all passed the buck . even Bob McDonald’s office kept sending the inquires right back to Denver to answer.? They in turn let the very employee making the allegations answer the inquires. ! Or they make up the B.S.. Write us a letter of what happened and now it should read and as will file it. ! Hell they received it so many time.… Read more »
Erika
Turtle, Do lik reading the truth, besides the way you put it is always a good laugh! Seriously, yeah, these Illegal DBC Committees designed to further cause medical harm and harassment to veterans speaking up advocating for either their health, their spouse health, or just plain wrong medical care, wrong medication given, wrong reading on labs, radiology exams and such has to stop! I would be interested how many Suicides n DBC FLags on vets?? mhmm correlation?? I would say… Read more »
James
The disruptive committee is illegal and these employees are not qualified to act as accuser. Prosicuter. Judge. Jury and executioner. ! Not only are they not qualified. They are breaking the law. By punishing veterans at will and taking away any and all rights. Such as a fair trial. Veterans civil. Constitutional and human rights. ! Seems. No one really cares or those who have legal training would. Go after this illegal committee and shut them down. ! This Is… Read more »
Crazy elf
I believe this is more B/S being handed down by those on top. Everyone agrees, nothing will change. The foxes are guarding the hen house. Dr. Cyclops, Dr. Frankenstien and Nurse Ratchet are still alive and well at VA! Many VA employees do their best to throw their brothers and sisters under the bus. That, in itself, is a disgrace to all Americans. IMO, The only way this will work is IF an outside law enforcement agency were to protect… Read more »
Dina Padilla
UNIONS WILL NOT PROTECT THE the union employees on whistle blowing because the unions are with the employer such as the VA. Too many civilian injured workers with unions who blew the whistle were not only not protected but the unions aided and abetted in getting rid of the whistle blower. Even filing complaints will end up in arbitration where the arbiters too, will protect the employer. Looking in a union /employer contract, the union & the employer sign it… Read more »
Cantigny

>>This meeting Obama had with the DAV is not going to change one damn thing. We all agree on this!

absolutely agree!

another BS smoke-n-mirror speech to prop up him and his party, even more so due to election.

Crazy elf

Here’s a new article out from “M” ‘Daily News’.

“Obama’s Final Address to Veterans Meets Rebuke from Some Vet Groups”

2 Aug. 2016 | by Dianna Cahn

Some real good “tap dancing” around the more important issues plaguing the Veterans Administration!

redturtle984
That tap dancing earned him a Peace Prize. We have a sitting President who owns a Nobel Peace Prize for his contributions to the furtherment of mankind now and is generally treated with mesiah like reverence, but he cannot seem to bring peace to the veterans who had a small and insignificant role in his Prize. Our President of Peace cannot stop the AFGE from harming loyal Americans who do the right thing. The man of world peace, in eight… Read more »
Cantigny

glad those groups rebuked!

anyone anywhere ever hear hillary, bernie, or obamo, hold anyone at VA accountable for the blatant screwing over of veterans.

each had the same evidence that Congress has and investigative journalists have presented, and the experiences of veterans, yet none of them held anyone accountable. they all blamed it on mo’ money and its the other side’s fault.

there is no other side anymore! dems/reps for most part are all the same thug party.

redturtle984
note to admin; I appreciate the effort at equality in artwork but I must take you to task on this one. My personal observations have confirmed that the VA whistleblower pictured in no way could be a VA employee. I have seen VA employees stuffing hot dogs into their faces, twinkees, Chex Mix, and muffins. Ben, I have NEVER seen a whistle in their mouths and trust me friend I have been on the ol ward long enough to be… Read more »
Ben

It was the best stock photo I could get for the article.

namnibor

VA Psychiatrist to ‘Bad VA Art’ Whistleblower: “We must contain and sedate the orally fixated whistleblower but check if those are real diamonds in that whistle before proceeding to the master shredder and tossing her in the ward” 🙂

If Ben were to make a ‘Bad VA Art” Calendar, today’s photo would be good for morale reasons alone for month of February or Valentine’s Day. 🙂

James

Ben. Should show an American indian. Crying at a VA national cemetery and VA holding a dead veteran. With a snicker. !

You known they American indian they used to protest about all the trash America throws away every day on the ground. !

Something to Rhode effects. !

Crazy elf

@Ben Krause

namnibor came up with a great idea. A “VA bad art calendar”!

What do y’all think?

FLB

Outside law enforcement protects and helps agents and third party contractors do their dirty work against veterans. I am in the sixth year of repeated terrorism (harassment and intimidation) for coming forward and writing to the VA Hotline.

James

It’s all smoke and mirrors. They know their talking out of both ends. !

Until employees are held accountable by am outside source. The corruption will continue. !

The VA Is unwilling or incapable of policing themselves. !

redturtle984
James, I admire your insights. Let me shed an idea on the reason this problem would normally be considered epidemic and precisely why it will not fix itself. opm dot gov has simple numbers on federal employment Since 1962. The AFGE, the union that represents executive branch folks at VA has been union strong since 1936. There is good news, and there is news that falls into the “oh my God when did they move the outhouse and not tell… Read more »
redturtle984

footnote: military cuts represented biggest decrease.

James
Sounds like too many chief’s and not enough Indians. ! My wife hates Donald trump. I don’t agree with things Donald has said. But I also don’t like what other politicians say. Talking out of both ends. ! Donald don’t give two cents what other politicians say. Even his own party ! That tells me no one is going to bull shit him and get sway with it. ! If he’s elected he’s. Going to get the same treatment Obama… Read more »
Anna Chacko
The VA has the potential (I mean potential which may or may not be actualized) to be the finest healthcare organization in the world. Currently, they are a disgrace not just to us veterans but to the human race. The talk about revamping VAOIG is more of the same sanctimonious drivel. It appears that the VA regularly trots out handbooks and mission statements and directives only to give them something to do. They do nothing to follow their own mandates.… Read more »
James
First ? Thank you for trying to help veterans. ! Yes. The VA is all about higher management and the veterans are the least of their concerns. ! What he did is the VA way. They do it everyday ignore the problems. Put them on the back burner and forget about them. ! Thinking the veterans and employees will drop or give up trying. ! If the VA wants to continue doing the wrong thing for veterans and employees. Then… Read more »
redturtle984

“Potential” is the difference between the way it is and the way it can be. VA has demonstrated potential for generations.

namnibor

A “potential” fart is one I can choose to release into the wild when and where I please unless it’s “potentially” not really a fart after all. —-The grey and brown areas of ‘potential’ when applied to the rear-end of the VA Meat Grinder’s scatological wasteland.

namnibor

Also known as: Potential Wasted. The brown edition.

Craig Northacker

Was this taken from duffel blog? Reminds me of an O-3 who came up with a drug amnesty program, then busted the one young soldier who refused to listen to reason and turned himself in – only to find out “amnesty” in this case meant a felony conviction and time in Leavenworth.

Craig Files
. I am a loyal Democrat and veteran. THE VA HOSPITALS ARE COMPROMISED. THE MONEY DOES NOT GET TO THE VETS. IT IS RUN LIKE A CORPORATE BANKRUPTY WHERE THE VETS ARE LAST TO SEE THE MONEY. It is also run at best like a bad charity or like a bank that used bailout money to pay themselves big bonuses. The rating system is obsolete and an appeal is averaging 4 years. There is a lawsuit occurring right now where… Read more »
James
Who are the lawyer’s. I would like to call them. I want to tell them my story of how they lied for fourty year’s about my record’s being destroyed in the saint Louis fire in 73 ! When in fact they lied and had them ALL along and just lied to get out of having to pay the disability payments. And how I had to suffer all those year’s without care hand not knowing I had a TBI. Failure to… Read more »
Margo Royer
This is identical to what is happening to medical administrators in the Army Reserves, and to Federal Army Civilian employees, and, ironically, RIGHT NEXT DOOR to the Altoona VA. Since the 316th Expeditionary Support Command Command Executive Officer, Mr. Kenneth Walter held a Town Hall Conference meeting in February 2015 openly admitting the theft military medical and VA funding in sending Federal emploees to psychiatric evaluations verses paying a severence packet during downsizing of Federal positions. It is STEALING hope… Read more »
91Veteran
I have heard of these “sent for a psychiatric evaluation” cases being used in the military, often to get a thorn out of someone’s side, but I never heard of it used on the federal civilian side. Clearly who you are speaking of learned of it in the military. As for being sent for an evaluation, those in the military don’t have much choice given it is usually an order. I cannot see how a civilian can be forced to… Read more »
redturtle984
About a year or so prior to the Roseburg DBC flagging me with a false felony accusation, a doctor that just resigned from Roseburg was on television. He said that the minute he questioned Senior Staff they referred him internally to a psychiatric review. He said in the medical profession that the referal was meant to kill a career and he was fuming mad. The newspaper took up the story and found other doctors and nurses also referred this way.… Read more »
James
So. Anyone that disagrees with higher management is reconsidered crazy. ! VA management is completely out of control and their minds. Lock them all up. ! I had 4 teen age grandchildren here and they think that they know everything and I told them. You think just because all four of you come up with something in your heads. That you think other people can’t see right through it. ! Your wrong. Experience will trump your crazy thoughts. Their mouths… Read more »
James

Our jails should be full of federal employees. ! Don’t build new jails just let the veterans out of the hospital’s hand clinics and lock the employees inside. !
And in order to get out let Donald trump vent them. !

91Veteran
I agree Ben and also call horseshit. “We as a nation must recognize the important role whistle blowers play”? Are you kidding me? The nation is way ahead of these buffoons and recognizes it, but cannot understand why those responsible for upholding the law have ignored that. Recall during Bush’s term when whistle blowers had great credibility in the media and on the left What absolute drivel this is. Whistle blowers are not playing any kind of role, but are… Read more »
joeaveragevet
The VA whistle blower protection plan (WBPP) is as follows: 1. After the whistleblowers unemployment benefits run out, and the VA benefits are cut, the VA will refer the whistleblowers to homeless shelters, giving them priority over Veterans, in some cases. 2. The VA will provide “begging” cards for ex employee whistleblowers which state, “Ex tVA employee..please help”., so that whistle blowers can beat out Veterans who have to print their own, “Homeless Veteran needs help” signs. 3. Disabled whistleblowers… Read more »
redturtle984

Wait a minute! What about process?

I think that adding an appeal would be nice.

All appeals should be sent to the regional VA Senior Staff for review. Where do
I sign up?

Crazy elf
How many here remember the “Khaki Mafia”? Which was many high ranking NCO’s in the military years ago. The “Sargent Major of the US Army” was given a ‘dishonorable discharge’ for his role in this “group”! I wonder how many of them are in high places in VA? It seems to me, this agency is being run like the mafia. I believe ‘redturtle984’ eluded to this a while ago. Saying VA was as the Catholic Church. If VA wishes to… Read more »
lifeofriley94

If you read the article it actually explains what was certified. The education of the OIG employees. It says nothing that the policy is the will follow the established security procedures only the VA OIG personnel received awareness training and education on the policy.

keep the double speak in mind. It will help to perform “close read” of what the VA is shelling out.

bill
You guys and gals need to know, if you already don’t that all these abuses are NO ACCIDENT ! The VA is hiring doctors and nurses straight out of the Gestapo SS and the are trying to make sure that these doctors and nurses share their agenda ! After having been a member of the system for 38 years and 100 percent disabled vet for 20 years I After being followed by ex marines, attacked breaking my hand by ex… Read more »
james gallegos
No these are not accidental, The VA knows exactly what they are doing. That the problem instead of following the Laws and Rules they do what ever they want to and that is higher Managements fault. That is why it is so important to get rid of all mid-level and higher Management. These VA employee’s just do not care about anything to do with veterans. Its all about themselves. They want total control and if you don’t like it, they… Read more »
bill

Exactly right James Gallegos! Absolutely right !!

james gallegos
The VA secretary stated it was nearly impossible to fire employee’s and the new law was needed to get rid of bad employee’s. I just wonder who is going to be the one to find out who these bad employee’s are and who’s going to turn them in. We know that manager’s will not turn each other in. Someone has to be the top dog and that person needs to be held accountable if people are not fired or demoted.… Read more »
bill

we need to have a march and protest in Washington DC and a list of grievances of VA procedures and practices that must be changed. Otherwise the VA will never change ! It will be business as usual screwing up vets lives for no reason !

james gallegos
That has been brought up before and I agree. Its seems all other facets of citizens have done something to protest. The only group that I have not seen in public, is a large group of veterans. If we do not speak out by the Hundreds or thousands we will not be heard. We all were brave enough to join the military and possibly be put into harms way and just did it. For the life of me, I can… Read more »
bill

So why don’t we start planning a march, not all of us are capable either physically or monetarily but if we don’t do anything nothing will happen for the better !

james gallegos

good question, I have a tbi and I’m not a good spoke person.

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