The Peach

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Sunday, December 26, 2004

Breaking News: Feds Won't Protect NIH Whistleblower

In what The Peach finds to be a blow to uncovering questionable and scandalous behavior by scientists and doctors at NIH, Administrative Judge Raphael Ben-Ami has ruled that Jonathan Fishbein, the man who blew the whistle on flawed NIH AIDS research, can not seek protection from firing under the Whistleblowere Protection Act. Ben-Ami argued that, because of Fishbein's special consultant status, the U.S. Merit Systems Protection Board lacks authority to consider his claims of discrimination or retaliation. NIH is stating that Fishbein is being fired because of poor performance and that his allegations are coming from a "disgruntled" employee.

There are a couple of problems The Peach is having with NIH's actions here. Doesn't it seem conveniently appropriate that Fishbein's firing comes at a time when NIH is coming under repeated attacks and scrutiny? And who would vigilantly go after him to make sure he didn't receive the protection he requested? The laundry list of questions NIH must answer just keeps getting longer.

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