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Speak Up For Science: Support Whistleblowers and the March for Science
If you’re a potential science whistleblower seeking legal advice, a supporter of truth-telling looking to defend scientific integrity, or someone who wants to learn more about the value of evidence-based science in today’s post-truth environment, we are calling you to action.
In the week after the March for Science, the Government Accountability Project is asking you to help us shift the paradigm around whistleblowing and create a culture of support by TAKING ACTION. You can:
Leave a written testimonial HERE with any social media handles (e.g., Facebook, Twitter). Share why you support whistleblowers. Then we will share these affirmations on the GAP website, GAP’s Facebook page, and our @GovAcctProj Twitter account;
Tweet to @GovAcctProj using the hashtag #TeamTruth and tell us why whistleblowers are important to you. Help build the movement by @ing five friends and ask them to share their own reasons. Make the campaign go viral! We’ll retweet you.
Post a picture of yourself on Facebook holding the hashtag #TeamTruth along with your reason for why whistleblowers are important to you. Then tag five friends and ask them to do the same.
If you are a science whistleblower, or a potential science whistleblower, get in touch with us! We have an intake form HERE.
GAP will be compiling the testimonials into a permanent section of the website. It will serve as an expression of gratitude for the whistleblowers who have spoken up in the past and as an inspiration for those whistleblowers who will stand up for all of us in the future.
GALLERY OF WHISTLEBLOWERS
Rick Piltz served as a long-time senior associate in the coordination office of the U.S. Climate Change Science Program. During the George W. Bush Administration, Mr. Piltz became aware that White House officials were improperly censoring scientific program reports on global warming intended for the public and Congress--editing out scientific findings on the strong human impact on climate change. Mr. Piltz decided to leave the government, and contacted GAP to release copies of the edited reports to The New York Times that documented the actual hand-editing by White House official Philip Cooney – a lawyer and former climate team leader with the American Petroleum Institute. The disclosures sparked a media frenzy that resulted in Cooney's resignation, who found a job at ExxonMobil days later.
Dr. Susan Wood, who served as FDA Assistant Commissioner for Women’s Health for five years, concluded in 2005 that Bush administration politics, rather than safety or efficacy concerns, was tying up the approval of Plan-B (the “morning-after pill”). Dr. Wood resigned from her position in protest and spoke our forcefully that FDA science was being held captive by the “pro-life movement,” sharing her story across the country and voicing her concerns over the state of public health policy.
USDA veterinarian Dr. Dean Wyatt reported horrendous, unlawful instances of animal abuse at slaughterhouses in Oklahoma and Vermont, including the shackling and bleeding out of conscious pigs and allowing livestock to be trampled and killed while unloaded from trucks. His disclosures prompted the shut down of one of the plants and reforms to the federal inspection program.
Engineer Walt Tamosaitis raised concerns about serious technical flaws at the Department of Energy’s Waste Treatment Plant at the Hanford nuclear site. These flaws, if unaddressed, could have resulted in a nuclear accident on the scale of Fukushima. Dr. Tamosaitis’s disclosures, validated by independent investigations, resulted in stopping the multi-million dollar project pending resolution of those concerns.
Dr. James Hansen has been the pioneer scientist warning about potential apocalyptic effects of global warming. Former head of NASA's Goddard Institute for Space Studies, Hansen blew the whistle on NASA officials' and the Bush Administration's attempts to silence him from speaking out about the dangers of global warming. His research helped spark international conferences and treaties and warned us that without a social overhaul to reduce carbon emissions, earth will reach a tipping point beyond which it is too late to stop many of the effects of climate change.
FDA safety researcher Dr. David Graham’s research showed that the painkiller Vioxx had caused 88,000 to 139,000 heart attacks, with a 30 to 40% fatality rate. Dr. Graham went to Congress after the FDA attempted to suppress his findings. His disclosures resulted in Merck pulling Vioxx off the shelves and exposed FDA bias in favor of the pharmaceutical industry over the science.