NCUA employees, former employees, and applicants for NCUA positions are protected against negative personnel actions taken in reprisal for making protected disclosures under the Whistleblower Protection Act, as amended, 5 U.S.C. § 2302(b)(8). Additionally, NCUA contractors, subcontractors, grantees, and subgrantees are protected against whistleblower reprisal under 41 U.S.C. § 4712.
Disclosures are “protected” when they are based on the complainant’s reasonable belief that there are violations of a law, rule, or regulation; gross mismanagement; gross waste of funds; abuse of authority; or a substantial and specific danger to public health or safety.
If an adverse personnel action has been taken or threatened against you in reprisal for making a disclosure of wrongdoing to your supervisor, to the OIG, Congress, or elsewhere, you may submit a complaint by calling the OIG Hotline at 703.518.6357 or 800.778.4806, or by sending an email to firstname.lastname@example.org. The OIG will review your complaint and let you know whether it is appropriate for the OIG to investigate or whether it should be referred elsewhere. If you are an NCUA employee, former employee, or applicant, you also may file a complaint with the U.S. Office of Special Counsel (opens new window). The Office of Special Counsel (OSC) has the ability to pursue corrective action on your behalf before the Merit Systems Protection Board. For more information about the OSC, click here (opens new window).
For allegations of reprisal regarding EEO matters, please visit the NCUA's Workplace Resolutions webpage.
Protecting Whistleblowers with Access to Classified Information
Under Presidential Policy Directive 19, if an NCUA official has denied your application for a security clearance or revoked your security clearance, and you believe it was in reprisal for whistleblowing, you may request a review by the OIG, which may result in the agency taking corrective actions to remedy the reprisal. Additional procedures and protections are described here (opens new window).
Nondisclosure Agreements for NCUA Employees
As a result of the Whistleblower Protection Enhancement Act of 2012, the following statement must be incorporated into any nondisclosure policy, form, or agreement between the NCUA and its employees (except this does not apply to confidentiality clauses in settlement agreements that restrict disclosure of the terms and conditions of the settlement):
These provisions are consistent with and do not supersede, conflict with, or otherwise alter the employee obligations, rights, or liabilities created by existing statute or Executive Order relating to: (1) classified information, (2) communications to Congress, (3) the reporting to an Inspector General of a violation of any law, rule, or regulation, or mismanagement, a gross waste of funds, an abuse of authority, or a substantial and specific danger to public health or safety, or (4) any other whistleblower protection. The definitions, requirements, obligations, rights, sanctions, and liabilities created by controlling Executive Orders and statutory provisions are incorporated into this agreement and are controlling.
As of 2018, the "controlling Executive Orders and statutory provisions" referenced above include the following:
- Sections 7(c) and 8H of the Inspector General Act of 1978 (5 U.S.C. app.) (relating to disclosures to an Inspector General, the Inspectors General of the Intelligence Community, and Congress)
- Executive Order No. 13526 (prescribing a uniform system for classifying, safeguarding, and declassifying national-security information)
- Section 7211 of title 5, United States Code (governing disclosures to Congress)
- Section 1034 of title 10, United States Code, as amended by the Military Whistleblower Protection Act (governing disclosure to Congress by members of the military)
- Section 2302(b)(8) of title 5, United States Code, as amended by the Whistleblower Protection Act of 1989 (governing disclosures of illegality, waste, fraud, abuse, or public health or safety threats)
- Intelligence Identities Protection Act of 1982 (50 U.S.C. 421 et seq.) (governing disclosures that could expose confidential government agents)
- Statutes that protect against disclosures that may compromise national security, including sections 641, 793, 794, 798, and 952 of title 18, United States Code, and section 4(b) of the Subversive Activities Control Act of 1950 (50 U.S.C. 783(b))
Whistleblower Protection for Non-NCUA Employees
Pursuant to 41 U.S.C. § 4712, if you are an employee of an NCUA contractor, subcontractor, grantee, subgrantee, or a personal services contractor who believes you have been reprised against for making a protected whistleblower disclosure, please contact the OIG to investigate your complaint. Please note that the OSC does not investigate non-federal employee whistleblower reprisal. A complaint may not be brought more than 3 years after the date on which the alleged reprisal took place. The agency head may order various corrective actions and if no order is issued, the complainant may bring action against the contractor or grantee in federal district court. Click here (opens new window) for additional information about the investigative and remedy processes.
In addition, the following provision is incorporated into all agreements and contracts between the NCUA and its contractors:
Contractor agrees that it will inform its employees and subcontractors in writing and in the predominant native language of its workforce of the rights and remedies provided under 41 U.S.C. § 4712 on whistleblower protections.