Wednesday, May 31, 2006

SCOTUS Puts Parameters on Whistleblowing

In a 5-4 vote, the Supreme Court ruled that government employee whistleblowing was not fully protected speech under Sarbanes-Oxley. Opinion writer Anthony Kennedy wrote that not every word said by public employees in their jobs were protected speech; in effect concurring with the Bush administration position that alternative means of redress such as filing of civil service complaints should produce boundaries on whistle-blowing suits. Dissenter John Paul Stevens argued that the result produced an artificial boundary between employee speech and citizen speech. The case revolved around the acts and subsequent treatment of L. A. Deputy District Attorney Richard Ceballos and an unnamed L.A. Deputy Sheriff.

Whistle-blowing will continue to be a tricky topic both within and outside of accounting. The blanket condemnation of whistle-blowing which appeared to be the official position of the IMA and unoffical position of most other accountants prior to Sarbanes-Oxley probably is no longer an option; defining when whistle-blowing is appropriate and when it is inappropriate may take some insights from other professions.


Post a Comment

<< Home

My blog is worth $7,903.56.
How much is your blog worth?