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Federal Wall of Shame-Michael Branch, Jana Brooks, David Duke, Terry Fred, Craig Littlejohn, Sara Revell & . . .

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On May 15, 2002, President George W. Bush signed the Notification and Federal Employee Anti-discrimination and Retaliation Act of 2002. The United States federal law, popularly called the No FEAR Act, is also known as Public Law 107--174. The "No FEAR" Act was passed to discourage federal managers from engaging in unlawful discrimination and retaliation which threatens the well-being of subordinate employees and impairs the efficiency of government operations.  Today, nearly a decade since the passage of "No FEAR," employment discrimination complaints are on the rise, and "terror," which Merriam-Webster chiefly defines as "state of intense fear," encases the federal landscape.

The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) issued a press release last July citing "retaliation" was the most common discrimination charge against the federal government", our nation's largest employer.   According to the EEOC, federal employees and applicants filed 17,583 complaints of employment discrimination during fiscal year 2010, a 3.75 percent increase over the previous year.  

No FEAR complaint statistics disclose a deteriorating workplace culture at the U.S. Department of Commerce, the cabinet department which is to "promote job creation and improved living standards for all Americans."   Astoundingly, the number of "employment complaints filed against the Commerce Department" catapulted from 131 in fiscal year 2008, to 412 in fiscal year 2009, to 1102 in fiscal year 2010.   

To the detriment of the nation civil servants, who file complaints alleging federal workplace abuses, are typically left to perform critical duties in a poorly monitored and hostile environment.   As a general rule, the civil servant "whistleblower" is forsakened by federal human resources management personnel and expected to efficiently "uphold the public trust" under the supervision of, at times, a bullying, sexist and/or racist manager.  Moreover, those who blow the whistle on violations of law are often unfairly appraised, denied pay increases, suspended, terminated, or in the case of a African-American paramedic with the U.S. Army --- threatened with bodily harm.  

Rarely are responsible management officials removed from federal service for egregious oppressive or unlawful behavior.  Instead, some are seemingly "rewarded."  Take for example U.S. Department of Interior's decision to award Craig Littlejohn a pay increase days after the EEOC ruled against the Department in a discrimination lawsuit. (Pierre vs Salazar)  In this case, Littlejohn - a Chief Information Officer - reportedly referred to African-American subordinates as "monkeys" and improperly interfered with the selection process of a Black applicant who was significantly more qualified than the selectee, according to the EEOC decision.  Such negative reinforcements, like Interior's pay increase to a discriminating official, only serves to breed a bullying culture of cover-up, conspiracy, insults, isolation, racism, reprisal, hostility, and harassment in the federal sector.  

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The Coalition For Change, Inc. (C4C), an employee advocacy and support group established in 2009 to expose racism and reprisal in the federal government, recently uploaded its' "Federal Officials Wall of Shame."  The "Federal Officials Wall of Shame" serves to expose this very real problem of how Responsible Management Officials (RMOs) are creating "terror" In the federal workplace thereby, adversely impacting the mental, financial and physical health of civil servants. Many of the public officials cited on C4C's "Wall of Shame" listed below have engaged in violations of prohibited personnel practices, violations of civil rights laws, ethical violations and / or "reported acts" of racial/ethnic bullying.  Examples of bullying include: abusing the evaluation process by lying about an employee's work performance; creating unrealistic deadlines; declaring the employee "insubordinate" for failing to follow arbitrary commands; assigning the employee undesirable work as punishment; falsely criticizing the employees' work quality; and threatening the complainant's job or reputation.

The following managers and supervisors have been listed on C4C's Federal Officials Wall of Shame:

Michael Branch (Captain) - Department of Justice Bureau of Prison, former chief correctional supervisor earned the nickname "Teflon Don." According to EEOC Hearing No. 410-2010-00330X, Branch was found culpable of subjecting employee to hostile work environment because of her sex. (Brooks v. Holder)

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Jana Brooks - Commerce's former Safety and Health Specialist was found culpable of "mismanaging" asbestos conditions and "knowingly" exposing Edgar D. Lee, a Gulf War Veteran as well as other employees and contractors to unsafe dangerous levels of airborne asbestos.

David Duke -Air National Guard official who the EEOC found held records improperly labeling an African-American Management Analyst a "National Security Risk" after she filed an EEO complaint. (James v. Roche)

Terry Fred - Assitant Chief Marshal with the U.S. Marshal Service has been named as a RMO in a pending employment complaint filed by a class agent in the race discrimination class action complaint filed by African-American Marshals. (Grogan, et. al v. Mukasey)  [Terry Fred was also once arrested for drunken driving in a government owned vehicle.]

Carrie Hunnicutt - Department of Homeland Inspector reportedly destroyed trial evidence involving a class action complaint filed by African American Secret Service Agents (Moore, et. al vs Chertoff).   

Dr. Charles Peterson - National Institute of Health (NIH) employee fired an African-American scientist that exposed the "cloning" of African-American study participants without consent of the parent or guardian.   (Bonds v Leavitt N0. 09-2179)

Sara Revell - Warden of the Federal Correctional Complex, Butner North Carolina was found culpable in the harassment and retaliation of an African-American Bureau of Prison Inventory Management Specialist. (McFadden v. Holder, Jr.  EEOC 430-2009-00428X)

Ron Sacco - U.S. Postal Service supervisor who reportedly physically assaulted an employee, punched him in the chest, spit in his face, and poked him in the eye. (Mathirampuzha v. Potter)  

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Katherine Thompson - Interior's Assistant Regional Director for Business Services with the U.S. Department of Interior was found guilty of discrimination and setting an African-American female employee up to fail. (Robinson v. Salazar

 Notably, the week of May 20 -22, 2012 federal whistleblowers and Occupy Washington activists will unite on Capitol Hill to bring attention to the need for "RMO" accountability in government.

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Tanya Ward Jordan is the author of 17 STEPS: A Federal Employee's Guide For Tackling Workplace Discrimination. She serves as President and Founder of the Coalition For Change, Inc. (C4C). C4C is an proactive non-profit self-help organization (more...)
 

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