Leahy Introduces Federal Employee Access To Information Act To Protect Federal Employees From Retaliation For Filing FOIA Requests
(THURSDAY, March 18, 2021) — Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), along with Representatives Carolyn B. Maloney (D-N.Y.) and Gerald E. Connolly (D-Va.), Thursday introduced the Federal Employee Access to Information Act to ensure that federal employees are able to use the nation’s premier transparency law, the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA), without reprisal.
FOIA helps expose government wrongdoing and abuses, and Leahy believes that federal employees must be free to use FOIA in the same way as other citizens. This legislation would prohibit retaliation against federal employees for filing and pursuing FOIA requests.
Leahy is the most active and successful champion of FOIA in Congress, leading the enactment of many laws to strengthen the landmark transparency law. In 1996 Leahy was inducted into the FOIA Hall of Fame. This is Sunshine Week, observed each year to spotlight FOIA’s importance.
Leahy said: “All Americans, including federal employees, have the right to file FOIA requests and know what their government is doing. FOIA is a critical tool for exposing government wrongdoing, and federal employees should never be terminated or retaliated against for availing themselves of our nation’s premier transparency law. I’m proud to be the Senate sponsor of the Federal Employee Access to Information Act, which would prohibit retaliation against federal employees for simply pursuing FOIA requests and exercising their right to know.”
The text of the Federal Employee Access to Information Act is here.
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