Office of Accountability and Whistleblower Protection
What Does OAWP Investigate?
Disclosures from any individual alleging:
- Misconduct or poor performance regarding VA senior leaders; and
- Whistleblower retaliation regarding a VA supervisory employee.
What Does OAWP Refer for Investigation?
Disclosures from VA employees and applicants for VA employment alleging:
- A violation of law, rule or regulation;
- Gross waste of funds;
- Abuse of authority; and
- Substantial and specific danger to public health or safety.
OAWP directly investigates the above disclosures if they involve a VA senior leader or whistleblower retaliation by a VA supervisory employee. All other disclosures are referred for investigation to another VA investigative entity (e.g., VA’s Office of Inspector General, VA’s Office of the Medical Inspector, and VA Administrations and Staff Offices) with oversight provided by OAWP or closed-out by OAWP if they fall outside of OAWP’s investigative scope.
Examples of matters referred to another VA investigative entity by OAWP:
- Allegations of leave abuse involving a facility human resources officer: referred to the respective administration for investigation with the investigation overseen by OAWP.
- Allegations of negligent patient care: referred to VA’s Office of the Medical Inspector for investigation with the investigation overseen by OAWP.
What Falls Outside of OAWP’s Scope?
Examples of matters outside of OAWP’s investigative scope:
- Allegations involving crimes (see 38 C.F.R. § 1.204): closed-out by OAWP and transmitted to VA’s Office of Inspector General.
- Allegations involving equal employment opportunity (EEO) discrimination, EEO reprisal, sexual harassment, and hostile work environment (see VA Directive 5977): OAWP notifies the disclosing individual that they may contact VA’s Office of Resolution Management.
Learn more about the difference between OAWP, the U.S. Office of Special Counsel, VA’s Office of Inspector General, and VA’s Office of Resolution management.
Make a Disclosure to OAWP
(You do not need to disclose your identity to make a disclosure)