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For Feds "We must hold ourselves to a higher standard."

Welcome US Federal Workers - and their friends and families!
 
This page was envisioned by a young woman who reached out to me in her frustration.  She was stunned by the level of silence from her fellow Federal employees.  In our conversations, we realized that many did not realize that they CAN SPEAK OUT.  So we put up this page.  And then she quit and moved away.  On re-reading the page, it clearly serves as a good introduction to the call for Feds to "Re-Take Your Oath" on July 4th. 
("Silence is Treason" flag artwork used with permission - Many Thanks to the artist - visit his website at simonsalas.com Further use not authorized.)
 
 
We hope this page can be a tool to help move our country to a more participatory system with mutual respect among us all - where "the government" actually serves the people.  Here it is in its entirety...

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We must hold ourselves and our country to a high standard. Our future (and our children's future) will be built on the work we do now. And the decision is entirely up to each one of you.

YOUR OATH

I, [name], do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic; that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the same; that I take this obligation freely, without any mental reservation or purpose of evasion; and that I will well and faithfully discharge the duties of the office on which I am about to enter. So help me God.

WHAT DOES THIS REALLY MEAN?

Good question! Having just re-read the Constitution, it's pretty clear that our greatest obligation is to defend the First Ten Amendments to the Constitution - better known as The Bill of Rights. 

Some of the items you've heard of that are in the Bill of Rights - and that you swore to support and defend - are Freedom of Speech/Assembly/Religion/Press, Right to Bear Arms, Habeas Corpus, Search and Seizure, No Cruel and Unusual Punishment

YOUR OBLIGATION

If you are aware of acts or policies that violate the constitution, you are required to act.

BUT THERE'S MORE

As a part of the Federal Government, you are its representative in all things you do - not just 9 to 5.  If someone has a a complaint or a question, you cannot shrug it off and say "not my job". Direct people to contact their Congressman: their Representative/Senators want to hear from them! And constituent services staff are there to help people resolve problems! For some issues, the right place to contact is another Congressional Office or the Executive Branch. Sometimes, the person's issue is local; if so, help the person find the right contact.

Do not shake your head and agree when someone says "I Can't Believe the Govt does xyz"  - make it your reality that you can say, "that is an issue and I HAVE SAID (or done) SOMETHING about it" OR, if not, say "that is an issue and YOU MUST SAY SOMETHING about it".

You may or may not know that Federal Agencies are required to reply to Congressional Inquiries with great urgency. As Feds, we should treat all legitimate concerns we encounter with that same sense of urgency. Why? Because we don't work for the Federal Government - WE ARE THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT.

CAN FEDS PROTEST?

Absolutely. Read the Hatch Act links below. You can go to a protest, write letters, fax/call/email/twitter/facebook messages to your government representatives. Doing these things is part of how our system operates! We get performance appraisals and work plans every year and our elected officials should, too.


LINKS FOR FEDS (these are not endorsements of organizations or actions - these are resources you can use to learn)
THE BILL OF RIGHTS - QUICK LIST - IMAGE AND FULL TEXT - STUDY GUIDE
THE HATCH ACT  /  WHAT (less restricted) FEDS CAN DO   /  WHAT (further restricted) FEDS CAN DO (you can do most things that don't involve a political party)
Download: GAP WHISTLEBLOWER FACT SHEET (whistleblower has become a "bad word" recently - it just means "if you see something, say something!")

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