Intelligence Community Whistleblower Protections

Included in the Intelligence Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2014 (full text).

Whistleblower Provisions codified at:

50 U.S.C. § 3234 – Intelligence Community Whistleblower Act (anti-retaliation)

Intelligence Community Whistleblower Act (Urgent Disclsoures)

Inspector General Act of 1978 (as amended)

50 U.S.C. § 3341

Presidential Policy Directive 19 (Oct 10, 2012).

Sources for Intelligence Community FAQs

Disclosure of Urgent Concern Form 

Executive Order on Government Ethics

Executive Order 12731.

5 C.F.R. 2635.

Office of Government Ethics Review of 5 C.F.R. 2635.

Protections Specific to FBI Employees

5 U.S.C. 2303.

FBI regulations: 28 C.F.R. 27.

Anti-Discrimination Rights

Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964.

EEOC Employment Discrimination Complaint Process.

First Amendment Rights to Blow the Whistle

Webster v DOE, 486 U.S. 592 (1982).

Davis v Billington, 10-00036 (2014).

Sanjour v. EPA, 56 F.3d 85 (1995).

Weaver v. USIA, 87 F.3d 1429 (1996).

Hatfill v. Gonzales, 519 F. Supp. 2d 13 (2007).

Lee v. DOJ, 428 F.3d 299 (2005).

Pre-Publication Review

28 C.F.R. 17 Prepublication Clearance is covered in 17.18.

CIA Pre-Publication Review.

Snepp v. USA (CIA), 444 U.S. 507 (1980).

United States v. Marchetti, 466 F.2d 1309 (1972).

FAA v. Cooper, 132 U.S. 1441 (March 28, 2012).

Protections for National Security Contractors

American Recovery & Reinvestment Act.

Defense Contractors: 10 USC 2409.

Espionage Act

18 U.S.C. 792 – 799 (Espionage and Censorship).

The Thomas Drake Indictment (2010).

Stephen Kohn in the Guardian, A sad day for the US if the Espionage Act is used against WikiLeaks (Dec 15, 2010).

OIG Reports and Decisions

A Review of the FBI’s Response to John Roberts on 60 Minutes.

A Review of the FBI’s Actions in Connection With Allegations Raised By Contract Linguist Sibel Edmonds, Special Report, January 2005.

Report: FBI improperly got phone records from 2003 to 2006.

Important Publications

GAO Report, “Whistleblower Protection: Additional Actions Needed to Improve DOJ’s Handling of FBI Retaliation Complaints”

GAO Report “Intelligence Agencies: Personnel Practices at CIA, NSA, and DIA Compared With Those of Other Agencies”

Department of Justice Report on Regulations Protecting FBI Whistleblowers (April 2014) part 1, part 2, part 3, part 4.

Important Cases

Sanjour v. EPA (1st Amendment)

Snepp v. USA (CIA) (Pre-Publication Review)

Edmonds v. FBI (States Secret)

Edmonds v. FBI (Freedom of Infromation Act)

Weaver v. USIA (1st Amendment)

Shaffer v. DIA (Right to Counsel)

Tripp v. Executive Office of the President (Privacy Act)

Hatfill v. Gonzales (Privacy Act)

Lee v. DOJ (Privacy Act)

Turner v. Gonzales (Title VII)

Despite a warning from his superiors, FBI Special Agent Bassem Youssef answered questions at a January 12 session o the ALA Midwinter Meeting. In 2002, Youssef blew the whistle to the director of the FBI and Congress the discriminatory practices within the Bureau were undermining the effectiveness of America’s counterterrorism efforts. In this video, Youssef and Stephen Kohn discuss his case, talk about the abuse of National Security Letters following the Passage of the Patriot Act, and speak of Abu Ghraib as an example of the U.S. failure to understand Middle Eastern culture.