Press Release
November 17, 2021
Grassley Thanks Whistleblower Groups Led by Empower Oversight for Supporting Coalition Letter
WASHINGTON — Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Chuck Grassley (R-IA) announced in a statement submitted to the U.S. Congressional Record that the bipartisan leadership of the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence (SSCI) has agreed to changes to improve whistleblower protections in the Intelligence Authorization Act (IAA).  Grassley also thanked Empower Oversight and other whistleblower organizations for their coalition letter to SSCI urging the committee to preserve FBI whistleblower protections that the bill could have been interpreted as weakening.

Senator Grassley said in the Congressional Record:

“Mr. President, on September 23, 2021, I inserted for the record an explanation of my intent to hold the Intel Authorization Act because I was concerned with changes made to the whistleblower protections…I am happy to report that Chairman WARNER and Ranking Member RUBIO agreed to incorporate these changes into the Intel Authorization Act…I would also like to thank EMPOWER and the many whistleblower advocacy groups that wrote the Senate Intelligence Committee to show the need for these changes…As such, I urge members of the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence to support these much needed changes,”

In September, Empower Oversight led a letter from a coalition of whistleblower groups that urged the Senate to clarify certain whistleblower provisions in the IAA, because the law as previously written could have been interpreted as rolling back the improvements attained in the FBI Whistleblower Protection Enhancement Act of 2016.  

Reacting to SSCI’s agreement to the proposed changes that will improve the IAA, Empower Oversight Founder and President Jason Foster released the following statement:

“Senator Grassley’s tireless work to protect whistleblowers is unparalleled, and protecting FBI whistleblowers’ right to report misconduct to Congress is especially important in light of recent scandals. This is more evidence of the critical role and good work of whistleblower groups. We thank Senator Grassley for his continued leadership, the groups who signed the coalition letter, and SSCI leadership for being open to improving the bill with the changes suggested by Senator Grassley.”