Image Intro


Whistleblower retaliation is when an agency official strikes back at an employee for exposing something that is believed to be wrong within the workplace. Specifically, federal law prohibits an agency official from taking or failing to take, or threatening to take any personnel action against a federal employee because that employee made a protected whistleblower disclosure.

Author Jeffrey T. McKenzie Senior Attorney


Pursuant to the Whistleblower Protection Enhancement Act of 2012, Inspector General has designated a Whistleblower Protection Coordinator to educate TVA employees about prohibitions on retaliation for protected disclosures, as well as the rights and remedies of employees against retaliation for making protected disclosures. Employees can contact the Whistleblower Protection Coordinator by contacting the Empowerline or by calling 855-882-8585.

Please note that the Whistleblower Protection Coordinator is not permitted to act as a legal representative, agent, or advocate for current or former employees.


A protected whistleblower disclosure is information that an employee reasonably believes evidences a violation of any law, rule, regulation, or exposes gross mismanagement, gross waste of funds, abuse of authority, substantial and specific danger to public health, or a substantial and specific danger to public safety. Disclosing this information is protected from reprisal or retaliation. TVA employees can make protected disclosures to their supervisor, anyone in TVA management, as well as to the OIG or oversight agencies such as the NRC. The Inspector General encourages employees to make protected disclosures to the OIG. Disclosures made to the OIG through the Empowerline are forwarded for evaluation and possible investigation or audit by OIG. When appropriate, the matter may be referred to TVA management resolving. In either case, the final disposition will be posted to the Empowerline which the employee may access using his or her report number and pin, which the employee will have been issued when making the initial disclosure.


TVA employees may make reprisal complaints to the OIG by contacting the OIG Empowerline or by calling 855-882-8585. TVA employees may also file complaints with the Office of Special Counsel (OSC), simultaneously or instead of filing with the OIG. The OSC is the only agency with jurisdiction to prosecute TVA employee reprisal cases before the Merit System Protection Board (MSPB), and the MSPB is the only authority authorized by statute to adjudicate reprisal claims against TVA by TVA employees. TVA employees can file a complaint with the OSC on-line at or by calling OSC at 800-872-9855.

If you see something that doesn't look right, say something. By doing so, you help the OIG stop fraud, waste, and abuse in its tracks! Anonymous & Confidential. The EMPOWERLINE® is a safe outlet for reporting and is available 24/7.

Call us at (855) 882-8585 or go to:   EMPOWERLINE®