Shocker! Another federal employee of the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) has been retaliated against for whistleblowing. This time, Dr. Michael Tilus, a long time Public Health Service Officer disciplined for speaking truth to power regarding abuse of children in the Indian Health Program.
As the New York Times article shows, Dr. Tilus was reprimanded for breaking the “chain of command” by reporting his grave concerns to members of Congress and others. Clearly Tilus was raising alarms for years. Had he been heard, action would have prevented sexual abuse and deaths. d8muej
The same Dr. Tilus was recognized in 2010 as an outstanding public health officer; “The PsyPAG also announced the recipient of the Outstanding Junior HSO officer was psychologist LCDR Mike Tilus, who was recognized for his outstanding work for the Indian Health Service and his leadership…” My how quickly HHS will forget those who have been great employees when they try to honor their duties and prevent harm to others. Sure is a good thing the Internet exists containing a lengthy record of Dr. Tilus’ accomplishments because you can bet your bottom dollar, HHS is creating an entire series of false personnel records through a conspiracy of higher management, recruited co-workers, outside combatants and the help of the Human Resources Department in Rockville. Note falsification of government records is a violation of federal law, which may be reported to the Office of Special Counsel (OSC).
Gee, this sounds all too familiar since Quanah Crossland Stamps, a political appointee in the Indian Health Service wrote in a letter to me when I went outside the chain of command, allegedly embarrassing the agency to report abuse of runaway and homeless children, fraud, waste, abuse of authority and dangers to public health and safety. The reprimand letter published below to Dr. Tilus has almost identical language. He too raised alarms and tried to work within the system, all to no avail. No one at HHS appears to be the least concerned with the children who are being abused and subject to substantial dangers.
The Tilus case is another perfect example of a failed federal agency where Civil Rights, No Fear and Whistleblower Protection laws have absolutely no meaning. Why train management and employees at tax payer expense if these laws which are going to be ignored? Why bother to have a Merit System Protection Board (MSPB) or special Federal Sector Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) if there will no protection of the federal service? If we can’t get federal agencies to obey the laws that protect their work force, maybe we can simply save a lot of tax payer money and accept that there are zero true employment protections for government employees. The public should have a look at the costs of litigation where HHS lost, wasting tax payer money below. Staggering how many cases are for Public Health Service and Indian Health Service!
As WW predicted along with the National Whistleblowers Center (NWC) (representing Food and Drug Administration (FDA) whistleblowers who have been subjected to brutal whistleblower retaliation), more stories of HHS operational divisions violating the rights of employees would surface. So much harm with zero comment from Secretary Sebelius to support whistleblowers who honor their duties to protect the federal interest and report fraud, waste, abuse, mismanagement and dangers to public health and safety. Maybe it is time we called for the resignation of Madame Secretary.
When you can’t trust an agency like HHS to look out for the health and welfare of children, does anyone believe food, drugs, medical devices and health care private information is safe? This is the agency that guards HIPPA! And people wonder how Penn State officials managed to cover up the sex crime scandal? Conspiracy is easy when money changes hands…
Cautionary note to Whistleblowers: Don’t ever use the Employee Assistance Program (EAP). If you do, the info along with the rest of your medical records will be sought by HHS.
Dr. Michael Tilus Letters of Grave Concern. Shockingly similar to the reports I wrote about the Runaway and Homeless Youth Program of HHS/Administration for Children and Families (ACF). Would you trust this agency to care for your child?