Local VA employee to speak with federal investigators - WSMV News 4

Local VA employee to speak with federal investigators

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A Hendersonville man has added his name to the list of employees who have agreed to speak with federal investigators about when he saw at VA hospitals.

Emails reveal his complaints to supervisors began well before the national scandal broke.

Though he asked to remain anonymous, the veteran is going on the record with federal investigators about his eight-month stint at the VA hospital in Nashville.

He said it is a place where patient safety is consistently ignored.

"I think certain parts of the VA have been entrenched for so long that there's resistance there to changing it, and that's where everything clashes," he said.

Last spring, this veteran, who spent seven years in active duty combat, began reporting his concerns to supervisors.

"Some of the management would say, 'How can we make this place better?' And in some of my emails I began making suggestions about how to make it better," he said. "Then I just started reporting more and more things I saw."

Instead of change, this medical supply technician said he was alienated.

"I've been called names," he said.

This week, attorney Roland Mumford helped his client join the 67 whistleblowers across the country who have already agreed to cooperate with federal investigators.

"He is disclosing numerous issues of patient care and occupational safety hazards, and nothing has been done," Mumford said. "There has been retaliation, more in the form of hazing, bullying, offering him opportunities to work at other facilities where there's not even a position for him."

Mumford has also filed two civil rights violations against the VA, claiming his client was not only retaliated against, but fellow employees criticized him for working at the VA while receiving partial disability as a veteran.

"I've been quite surprised that there have been derogatory comments and reprisals against veterans who work at the Veterans Administration," Mumford said.

Since the nationwide scandal broke last April, the veteran said he has seen the desire to change, but not much has so far.

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