Dear Leader Schumer and Leader McConnell:
The undersigned civil society organizations urge you to allow the full Senate to consider and vote on pending nominations to all three vacancies on the Merit Systems Protection Board (MSPB), which serves millions of federal employees as the primary adjudicative agency for worker claims of whistleblower retaliation and other prohibited personnel practices.
While this letter does not take a position for or against specific Board nominations, we are united in our advocacy of whistleblower protections as a crucial safeguard against waste, fraud, and misconduct in government. That is why we are alarmed by the fact that since January 2017, the Board has been unable to perform critical functions and responsibilities due to the unfilled vacancies preventing a statutorily-required quorum of Senate-confirmed Members. These Board responsibilities include providing relief to whistleblowers, issuing final rulings, promulgating new regulations to address changes in the law, and overseeing U.S. Office of Personnel Management rules and activities. As a result, government whistleblowers waiting for Board review of their retaliation claims remain in limbo while the largest-ever backlog of more than 3,500 cases continues to grow.
We urge you to go beyond these abstract descriptions to consider the devastating impact … Read More