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WBH-12-0002 - In the Matter of John Robertson

On January 8, 2013, a Hearing Officer issued an Initial Agency Decision involving a complaint filed by John Robertson against KQ Services (KQ) under the DOE’s Contractor Employee Protection Program and its governing regulations set forth at 10 C.F.R. Part 708.  In his complaint, Mr. Robertson alleged the he was terminated in retaliation for activity protected under Part 708.  The complainant alleged that he made two disclosures pertaining to the condition of a lift gate on a KQ truck, and a third disclosure, reporting that a filing cabinet had fallen off the same lift gate.  The Hearing Officer found, with regard to the first alleged disclosure, that the complaint reported information to supervisor that the complainant knew had already been reported to the supervisor, and therefore had not made a “disclosure” as that term is used in Part 708.  With regard to the other two alleged disclosures, the Hearing Officer found that the complainant had not established, by a preponderance of the evidence, that he had in fact made the disclosures, and that one of the two alleged disclosures was not of information that would have revealed what the complainant reasonably believed to be a substantial and specific danger to employees or to public health or safety, and would therefore not have been protected under Part 708.  The Hearing Officer, therefore, denied the complaint.