Whistleblower Protection

AS-2585a-02/FA - November 7-8, 2002


RESOLVED: That the Academic Senate of the California State University (CSU) call on campus academic senates to work with their local administrations to review, develop, and approve campus policies on "whistle blower" protection, which

  1. In order to be consistent with the provisions of Section 8547.12(c) of the Government Code, must either defer to or mirror CSU policy as defined in Chancellor's Executive Orders 821 and 822 of May 23, 2002; and

  2. Designate an individual on campus to receive whistleblower complaints and evaluate compliance with the order. It is for the campus to decide if the individual receiving the complaint will also be the individual responsible for investigating the complaint;
and be it further

RESOLVED: That the Academic Senate CSU call on campus senates to work with their local administrations to educate faculty and staff about the existence and provisions of both the executive orders and campus policy.

RATIONALE: Whistle-blower complaints at the CSU have roughly doubled since 1999. However, in some instances of administrative, staff or faculty misconduct, those aware of the misconduct may be afraid to come forward. The California Whistleblower Protection Act establishes a procedure for responding to complaints filed under the Act and protects designated whistleblowers from retaliation. The Chancellor's executive orders were promulgated both to fulfill the requirements of the Act and to address concerns that the university was open to unnecessary legal risks. The executive order specifically indicates that "each campus president is responsible for developing and issuing a campus directive implementing" the requirements of the Order. Strong campus policies protecting whistleblowers can alleviate employee fears and enable the university to curtail wrongdoing more quickly. Experience suggests that university policies are most effective when developed and implemented in collaboration with faculty.

APPROVED UNANIMOUSLY - January 23-24, 2003

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