Perceived Whistleblower in Washington State Awarded $1 Million

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Whistleblower in Washington State Awarded $1M

Whistleblower in Washington State Awarded $1M

A man who was perceived as a whistleblower has been awarded $1 million. The jury verdict, which was issued on March 26, 2015, was issued after finding that the man’s demotion was a retaliatory action by his employer. The plaintiff in the case works for the Washington State Ferry System as a carpenter shop foreman. According to the lawsuit, the plaintiff became aware of a co-worker allegedly using a state-owned vehicle to attend baseball games and practices during work hours. He reported this information to his supervisor, who said he would investigate the issue, but did not.

Another person, not the plaintiff, filed an anonymous whistleblower complaint two months later regarding the same issue. Following the complaint, the plaintiff was allegedly subject to retaliatory actions, including performance-related warnings. The co-worker reportedly using the state-owned vehicle was suspended after a year-long investigation, but the plaintiff was still demoted. The demotion was supposedly for performance issues, but the plaintiff alleges that this was retaliation. The jury agreed, and awarded the verdict in his favor after finding that his employer violated the Washington State Employee Whistleblower Protection Act.

The plaintiff filed a lawsuit under the Washington State Employee Whistleblower Protection Act. This act protects both actual and “perceived” whistleblowers, defined as “[a]n employee who is perceived by the employer as reporting, whether they did or not, alleged improper governmental action … .”) The jury found that the plaintiff was viewed as a whistleblower and suffered subsequent retaliation.