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College complaint alleges bizarre pattern of retaliation

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in Employment Law,Human Resources

The former public safety director at Harrisburg Area Community College has filed a complaint alleging he suffered retaliation after he engaged in protected whistle-blowing activity. The director is still employed at the college, but has been stripped of his duties, computer and vehicle, and now sits in an empty office with nothing to do.

According to the complaint, problems began for the safety director when he alerted the college president and others that the college was not in compliance with the Safe and Drug-Free Schools and Communities Act (SDSCA). Many U.S. Depart­­ment of Education grants are conditioned on SDSCA compliance.

The safety director claims that when Department of Education investigators showed up for an unannounced audit, he told them about the college’s failure to comply.

That’s also when he claims to have informed the college president, who allegedly responded in an email, “Please let me know what we need to do to alleviate your concerns … or those of the Department of Edu­­ca­­tion.” The safety director claims the “to do” in the email suggested that he should falsify safety records. He claims that the retaliation began when he refused to alter the records.

Among the accusations: The president began sending emails late in the day, requiring information by the close of business. One of the alleged requests: “Name of your successor in case you won the lottery tomorrow.”

The safety director’s attorney characterized the requests as “unprofessional, inappropriate, childish, and abusive.”

{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

Laura | Dutch Law Firm AMS October 9, 2013 at 7:18 am

Thanks for sharing! Whistleblowing is such an interesting subject these days. Interesting to read how different jurisdictions handle this complex matter. Very good post!



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