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Thousands of Hanford workers lack whistleblower protections

RICHLAND, Wash. (AP) — A new report has revealed workers at a Washington state decommissioned nuclear site do not have the same whistleblower protection as other employees on Department of Energy projects.

The Tri-City Herald reports that the Office of Inspector General released the report Tuesday looking at whether the agency added protections approved by Congress to its contracts.

Officials say the inspector general looked at 30 of the department’s largest contracts and only two did not have the new requirements including the vitrification plant at the Hanford site.

Federal officials say the requirements took effect July 2013.

Officials say protections included changing the statute of limitations on reporting suspected retaliation from 90 days after employee knowledge to three years after the retaliation occurred.

Officials say they cannot change contracts without contractor agreement.

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Information from: Tri-City Herald, http://www.tri-cityherald.com

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