Federal employees are often given portrayed in a bad light. They are unmotivated, simply marking time until they retire. Many of the federal programs they are responsible for draw complaints regarding their expense, the amount of red-tape they generate and their lack of effectiveness.
But often these characterizations are cherry-picked and anecdotal. On the whole, much of the work of the maligned federal bureaucracy is absolutely essential. From the FAA managing the nation's air traffic control system, to the collection of taxes by the IRS, the Department of Agriculture's inspection of the food supply and the federal courts adjudication of thousands of lawsuits, and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention tracking down disease outbreaks, residents of the U.S. would see radical, and not necessarily improved, living conditions if the federal bureaucracy stopped doing its job.
And many federal employees are passionate about their jobs and the important roles their agency plays in the U.S.
And because there are real problems within many agencies and departments, the role of the whistleblower remains significant and vital. The Veterans' Affairs hospital scheduling scandal is one example and the Phoenix VA hospital as produce another problem.
A man who worked with program to assist veterans with behavioral and mental health issues alerted the public to the fact that some veterans failed to receive evaluations after coming to the hospital with suicidal thoughts.
His reward for attempting to help these veterans was to be accused of threatening another employee, being placed on administrative leave and having a program he created shut down.
He claims it was all done in retaliation for his whistleblowing. He was fortunate enough to have the opportunity to meet, along with his attorney, the VA secretary, and present his side of the problem and he hopes this meeting will help to resolve this issue.
No matter what the outcome, he noted, "I did what was right."
Kpho.com, "Whistleblower gets private meeting with VA Secretary," Donna Rossi, March 12, 2015