Summary: Food inspectors, advocacy groups members, and others protested proposed changes to the poultry inspection process – know as HIMP – in front of the USDA yesterday. The changes would dramatically increase the rate of birds whizzing by for inspection at plants, and move toward privatizing the inspection process – essentially allowing the poultry industry to regulate itself. GAP's Food Integrity Campaign attended yesterday's rally and has details in a recent blog post.
Mother Jones compared these proposed changes to the recent “pink slime” controversy. The fast food industry, as well as a number of grocery chains, have pulled their use of the ground beef-filler. GAP client Kit Foshee, one of the first to blow the whistle on the use of “pink slime,” has been vindicated by these decisions.
Summary: This explosive article details some of the beginnings of the NSA's secret eavesdropping, warrantless domestic communications monitoring system, named Stellar Wind, created in the months following the 9/11 attacks. The article prominently quotes two GAP clients, retired NSA analysts and whistleblowers J. Kirk Wiebe and Bill Binney.
Furthermore, the article details several troubling aspects of the private contractors – not governmental employees – who worked on the project. These serious issues include that one of the owners of a small company intimately involved with the project appeared to be unstable, and that some of the companies involved in the contracting have "extensive ties to Israel."
GAP National Security & Human Rights Director Jesselyn Radack blogged today about this eye-popping article.
Summary: GAP Food Integrity Campaign Director Amanda Hitt appeared on the radio program Straight, No Chaser, to discuss the recently passed “Ag Gag” legislation in Iowa and Utah, and similar pending legislation in other states.
Summary: Workforce magazine published a spread on whistleblowing in the workplace. It includes articles on how to become a whistleblower, and the efforts of GAP’s American Whistleblower Tour to educate the public on the importance of whistleblowing. Another article also lays out protections for whistleblowers at the Hanford nuclear site.
Key Quotes: Dana Gold, senior fellow at the not-for-profit Government Accountability Project, which supports whistle-blowers, says creating an environment where workers feel safe to speak up "is the best way to prevent problems." But, in many cases, organizations find it "more expedient to shoot the messenger," she says
The not-for-profit Government Accountability Project, based in Washington, D.C., is taking a somewhat different approach with its American Whistleblower Tour: Essential Voices for Accountability, which launched in the fall.
The tour takes whistle-blowers to colleges around the country to recount their experiences with the aim of educating "the next generation of workers about the important role whistle-blowers play," says Dana Gold, a senior fellow and organizer of the tour.
Summary: Several whistleblowers have come forward with allegations of sexual harassment, lax regulation, and political corruption at an Australian casino.
Summary: A former employee for the US Bureau of Reclamation (the water regulation agency within the Department of Interior) has filed a whistleblower complaint, claiming that recent studies of the Klamath River, which runs through Oregon and northern California, have been geared towards predetermined outcomes by political appointees.