US

Is A Manager At Philadephia VA Threatening Whistleblowers Over Twitter?

Daily Caller News Foundation logo
Jonah Bennett Contributor

On the very same day investigators arrived on the scene at the Philadelphia Department of Veterans Affairs regional office last year, a manager reportedly tweeted out threatening messages to whistleblowers.

The account that tweeted out the harassment goes by the handle @lina_g148 and may correspond to the name Lina Giampa, who works as the human resources manager for the office in Germantown, The Philadelphia Inquirer reports.

linag148

The agency is aiming to fire or suspend eight employees involved in the scandal highlighted by investigators at the inspector general’s office, who began the investigation last year.

The report uncovered a practice of manipulating the dates of claims to make it appear as though the backlog was being reduced. Investigators also found 31,000 inquiries from veterans that went unanswered for at least a year.

When informed of the tweets, Philadelphia whistleblower Kristen Ruell told The Philadelphia Inquirer, “It horrifies me. And I am praying to God she’s talking about somebody else. This has been stressful enough and to find out this kind of stuff doesn’t make me feel any better.”

A VA spokesman had little to say when pressed by The Inquirer, remarking, “The Veterans Benefits Administration (VBA) places a priority on the well-being of all employees. VBA is aware of the situation and is looking into the matter.”

Despite attempts from management to reform the office, a visit from legislators earlier in June revealed that not much had changed. (RELATED: Members Of Congress Visit Philadelphia VA Only To Find That It’s Worse Than Ever)

In response to the reports of threatening tweets being directed at whistleblowers, GOP Rep. Patrick Meehan of Pennsylvania quickly shot off a letter to Diana M. Rubens, the Philadelphia regional office director, asking for an immediate investigation.

“So it is deeply troubling to learn that employees who have spoken up about the wide-ranging mismanagement and failures at VARO could be subject to such treatment … I have met with these whistleblowers, and I have heard their stories. Their observations deserve to be taken seriously and investigated fully,” Meehan wrote.

The Germantown office serves 825,000 veterans across three states.

Follow Jonah Bennett on Twitter

Content created by The Daily Caller News Foundation is available without charge to any eligible news publisher that can provide a large audience. For licensing opportunities of our original content, please contact licensing@dailycallernewsfoundation.org.

Content created by The Daily Caller News Foundation is available without charge to any eligible news publisher that can provide a large audience. For licensing opportunities of our original content, please contact licensing@dailycallernewsfoundation.org.