Today, the National Whistleblowers Center voiced its strong opposition to Proposed Rules submitted by the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) implementing the whistleblower provisions of the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act and encouraged citizens to take action. (See NWC November 22, 2010 press release) As reported today in the Washington Post, the Proposed Rules unlawfully restrict the ability of whistleblowers to make disclosures and reverse the progress of Dodd-Frank in exposing corporate fraud and corruption.
You do not need to believe NWC Executive Director Stephen Kohn that the “Commission is cooking the goose that can lay the golden egg,” just ask the SEC! Astonishingly, the SEC admits its rules, if approved, would actually undermine protections for whistleblowers and cause employees to withhold important information about securities violations from the SEC. The following admissions are contained in the SEC’s Proposed Rules:
* “would limit the pool of eligible whistleblowers and thereby reduce the number of potentially useful informants” Proposed Rule, p. 112;
* “discourage potential whistleblowers from coming forward” by “heightening the standards for eligibility” Proposed Rule, p. 117;
* “discourage some whistleblowers from submitting potentially useful information” Proposed Rule, p. 118;
* “result in instances in which the Commission does not receive important information regarding potential violations” Proposed Rule 118;
* “cause those persons not to come forward with information in their possession about securities law violations.” Proposed Rule, p. 118;
* “result in . . . forgone opportunities for effective enforcement action.” Proposed Rule, p. 118.
The Commission also acknowledged that its proposed procedures for filing a claim will be “burdensome and confusing” for many whistleblowers. Proposed Rule, p. 116. (See SEC Proposed Rules)
Fortunately, it is not too late for you to make a difference! The SEC is accepting public comment until December 17, 2010. With only a few weeks remaining, it is crucial that Americans make their voices heard now. These rules affect everyone: from the price you pay at the gas pump (commodities) to the integrity of your retirement accounts (securities). The citizens’ interests, not corporate prerogatives, need to be made the priority. Join the NWC in our efforts to preserve the integrity of Dodd-Frank and protect the rights of whistleblowers. Take Action Now!