2011-05-11 Overseeing Government Oversight: Financial Services Committee to "Improve" #DoddFrank Whistleblower Provisions #FinReg

The Financial Services Committee will be holding a hearing on corporate whistleblowing in the next hour. I will be live tweeting the hearing as defending the rights of citizens to engage in whistleblowing is critical to the future of the United States and the world.

The hearing called today is not being called to expand protections for whistleblowers. Rather, it is being called to roll back what little provisions were included in the Dodd-Frank Financial Reform legislation passed last year.

The National Whistleblowers Center describe the proposed improvements in their call to action:

Best described as the Madoff-Enabling Act, the proposed House Republican Amendments to the Securities Exchange Act will --

* Punish employees who disclose violations of the Acts directly to the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). It forces whistleblowers to inform corporate wrongdoers that they are violating the law before contacting law enforcement, giving the wrongdoers the opportunity to hide their misconduct from investors.
* Strip the Act of the current mandatory rewards provisions designed to encourage employees to risk their careers and expose large multi-million dollar, corporate fraud against shareholders.
* Allow corporations to use corporations to use limitless shareholder funds to oppose whistleblowers, while imposing burdensome restrictions on the rights of corporate whistleblower employee to hire their own attorneys.
* Explicitly authorize corporations to establish "employment agreements" and "codes of conduct," restricting the right of employees to notify investors or the SEC about potential fraud. Firing whistleblowers under these newly established corporate codes "shall not constitute retaliation."
* Require the SEC to notify the company that it is being investigated, tipping off the wrongdoers.

From the Financial Services Committee website, here are links to bios of all the witnesses testifying on why there needs to be changes to whistleblower provisions. Also, there's a link to a draft of the Grimm Bill, which would make these "improvements."


Mr. Robert J. Kueppers, Deputy Chief Executive Officer, Regulatory and Public Policy and Vice Chairman, Deloitte LLP

Ms. Marcia Narine, on behalf of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce

Mr. Kenneth Daly, President and CEO, National Association of Corporate Directors

Professor Geoffrey Rapp, Professor of Law, University of Toledo College of Law


Grimm Legislative Proposal (discussion draft)

Garrett Announces Subcommittee Hearing To Improve Whistleblower Provisions In Dodd-Frank

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