Wednesday, July 18, 2012

FDA lawyers authorized spying on agency’s employees, senator says / WP

 Ellen Nakashima at the Post reports that Charles Grassley has evidence the Office of General Counsel at FDA authorized extensive spy probe of disgruntled employeess, Congressional offices and media.  This suggests authorization came from the highest levels at FDA:
"Congressional investigators said Monday that the chief counsel’s office at the Food and Drug Administration authorized wide-ranging surveillance of a group of the agency’s scientists, the first indication that the effort was sanctioned at the highest levels. 
In a letter to the FDA, Sen. Charles E. Grassley (R-Iowa) said that his staff had learned that the spying was “explicitly authorized, in writing” by the agency’s top legal office.
“The FDA’s actions represent serious impediments to the right of agency employees to make protected disclosures about waste, fraud, abuse, mismanagement, or public safety,” wrote Grassley, who demanded that the agency release a copy of the memo authorizing the surveillance and the name of the FDA official who requested it..."

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