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Annual whistleblower policy notification

The University of California is committed to maintaining the highest standards of conduct in the fulfillment of its education, research, public service and patient care mission. The University's Whistleblower Policy provides multiple avenues for employees to bring forward concerns of potential employee misconduct. Faculty and staff are encouraged to bring forward concerns about possible improper governmental activity directly to their supervisor, department head, Locally Designated Official (LDO) or other appropriate university offices or officials.

The university established a systemwide, independently operated whistleblower hotline to receive calls or web-based reporting from faculty, staff, students or members of the public. The hotline allows for anonymous reporting. The hotline relays the reported concerns to appropriate university officials for processing. This hotline is staffed seven days a week, 24 hours per day and is capable of receiving reports in a number of different languages. 

The toll-free number is 1-800-403-4744. Web-based reports can be made by accessing http://universityofcalifornia.edu/hotline. More information about the whistleblower process can be found on the UC Whistleblower website and on posters displayed in various employee areas.

The California Government Code requires every state agency, including the University of California, to annually distribute to its employees a message from the California State Auditor that provides an explanation of the California Whistleblower Protection Act. Please find the 2020 message and posters attached.

 

 

Posted on Friday, June 19, 2020 at 6:56 PM

UC issues annual whistleblower notification

The University of California is committed to maintaining the highest standards of conduct in the fulfillment of its education, research, public service and patient care mission. The University's Whistleblower Policy provides multiple avenues for employees to bring forward concerns of potential employee misconduct. Faculty and staff are encouraged to bring forward concerns about possible improper governmental activity directly to their supervisor, department head, Locally Designated Official (LDO) or other appropriate university offices or officials.

The university established a systemwide, independently operated whistleblower hotline to receive calls or web-based reporting from faculty, staff, students or members of the public. The hotline allows for anonymous reporting. The hotline relays the reported concerns to appropriate university officials for processing. This hotline is staffed seven days a week, 24 hours per day and is capable of receiving reports in a number of different languages.

The toll-free number is 1-800-403-4744. Web-based reports can be made by accessing http://universityofcalifornia.edu/hotline. More information about the whistleblower process can be found on the UC Whistleblower website and on posters displayed in various employee areas. The University's whistleblower poster identifies other channels for reporting improper governmental activity, including the California State Auditor, the California Attorney General and locations for reporting fraud and abuse involving federal programs.

The California Government Code requires every state agency, including the University of California, to annually distribute to its employees a message from the California State Auditor that provides an explanation of the California Whistleblower Protection Act. Please see the 2018 message below or in the brochure at http://ucanr.edu/sites/anrstaff/files/286804.pdf.

California State Auditor Whistleblower Program

YOU CAN REPORT IMPROPER ACTS 

We are your confidential avenue for reporting improper activities by state agencies or employees. It is your responsibility, as a government employee, to report any type of fraud, waste or abuse, which ultimately protects scarce state resources. It is also your right to be free from retaliation for doing so. 

In 2017 alone, we received 2,147 allegations of wrongdoing, most of which concerned misuse of state property, improper travel expenditures, and time and attendance abuse. Whistleblower complaints through our office have triggered investigations revealing more than $576 million in wasteful spending, such as: 

  • Four psychiatrists at a state facility worked significantly fewer than 40 hours per week during a one year period. The cost of their missed work hours totaled $296,000.
  • A state official received $152,000 in improper travel expense reimbursements over a 37-month period.
  • An administrator unwisely entered into two contracts that wasted $652,919 in state managed funds and did not comply with state contracting requirements.

WE INVESTIGATE COMPLAINTS 

We report substantiated allegations to the head of the employing agency, the Legislature and the Governor. In addition, we report some of the substantiated allegations to the general public, keeping confidential the identities of the state employees involved. You can view these reports on our website at www.auditor.ca.gov/reports/investigative

WHAT TO REPORT

Pursuant to Government Code section 8547.2, subdivision (c), improper acts by a state agency or employee that should be reported to the State Auditor include:

  • Violations of state or federal law, including theft, fraud or conflict of interest;
  • Noncompliance with an executive order, Rule of Court, the State Administrative Manual, or the State Contracting Manual;
  • Misuse or waste of state resources, including property or employee time;
  • Gross misconduct, incompetence or inefficiency.

WHAT WE CAN'T INVESTIGATE

We do not have the authority to investigate either violations of internal department policies or procedures or local government agencies and employees.

WE PROTECT YOUR IDENTITY

If you report an impropriety, you are protected by the Whistleblower Protection Act, which:

  • Requires us to protect your identity (except from law enforcement);
  • Prohibits intimidation, threats or coercion by state employees that could interfere with your right to disclose improper governmental activities.

If you believe that you have been retaliated against for disclosing an improper governmental activity, you should report this immediately to one of the following agencies:

State and Court Employees

State Personnel Board 

801 Capitol Mall, MS53 

Sacramento, CA 95814

California State University Employees

Vice Chancellor of Human Resources 

401 Golden Shore

Long Beach, CA 90802 

Or contact the appointed campus administrator.

University of California (UC) Employees

Contact the locally designated official for the UC facility at which you are employed. Visit www.ucop.edu for more information.

HELPFUL TIPS WHEN FILING A COMPLAINT

Prepare Before Filing

Gather your thoughts before filing a complaint and prepare yourself to answer the following questions:

  • What is the improper activity?
  • Who acted improperly?
  • Where does that person work? 
  • How often and for how long has the activity been occurring?
  • Why has it been allowed to continue?

Support What You Allege

We are unable to investigate allegations without support for your complaint. Therefore, please remember to include the following:

  • Description of the evidence that proves what you are saying.
  • Names and telephone numbers of knowledgeable witnesses.
  • Copies of any documents you have in your possession that support your allegation. (Please do not submit original documents, as they cannot be returned.)

Consider Providing Contact Information

You have a right to file a complaint anonymously. However, we may not be able to investigate your complaint if we cannot talk to you to confirm the information you are providing or obtain additional information. Please remember that if you identify yourself to us, we cannot reveal your identity to anyone else without your permission, except to appropriate law enforcement personnel who are conducting a criminal investigation.

Keep Your Complaint Confidential

We investigate complaints as confidentially as possible to protect both your identity as a whistleblower and our ability to gather information without interference. To protect the confidentiality of your complaint, we encourage you not to tell anyone that you filed a complaint with us.

We refer substantiated violations of law to law enforcement agencies, as appropriate.

HOW TO REPORT 

You have three ways to report information to us confidentially:

Call the Whistleblower Hotline at: 

800-952-5665 

916-322-2603 (Fax) 

(Note: The hotline is staffed Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. However, callers may leave a brief recorded message during other hours.)

Mail information to: 

Investigations 

California State Auditor 

P.O. Box 1019 

Sacramento, CA 95812

Submit a complaint online to: 

http://www.auditor.ca.gov/hotline

To view an informational webinar hosted by CalHR, visit https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9WFYLhJDOss.

 

Posted on Wednesday, July 11, 2018 at 2:32 PM
  • Author: Brian Oatman

AVP Powers announces 51 proposals invited for competitive and high-reward grants

AVP Wendy Powers announced the letters of intent (LOIs) for which principal investigators have been invited to submit full proposals to ANR's Competitive Grants Program and High-Risk/High-Reward Grants Program. The list of 51 approved projects can be found at http://ucanr.edu/sites/anrstaff/files/261626.pdf.

This year ANR received a total of 108 letters of intent — 97 for the Competitive Grants Program and 11 for the High-Risk/High-Reward Grants Program. Strategic Initiative leaders and their respective panels reviewed all letters of intent thoroughly to address the appropriateness of the proposals in addressing the goals and criteria outlined by each funding opportunity.

ANR Competitive Grants Program

The purpose of the ANR competitive grants program is to address high-priority issue areas identified by at least one of the strategic initiatives: Endemic and Invasive Pests and Diseases (EIPD), Healthy Families and Communities (HFC), Sustainable Food Systems (SFS), Sustainable Natural Ecosystems (SNE), and Water Quality, Quantity and Security (Water).

ANR Competitive Grants Program 2017 Cycle:

  • Full proposals due June 19
  • Technical peer review: mid-June – early September 2017
  • Strategic Initiative review and recommendations: end of September 2017
  • Program Council review and recommendations: October/November 2017
  • Announcement of funded grants: November/December 2017

High-Risk/High-Reward Grants Program

Given the complexity of societal problems, high-risk research is necessary to achieve gains for real progress in addressing present and emerging challenges. This program will provide funds to initiate and complete research and proof-of-concept efforts that serve as the basis for larger funding opportunities. These projects must be of a high-risk/high-reward nature that are best conducted in a controlled, research setting and, if successful, lend themselves to subsequent larger funding opportunities and/or intellectual property development.

Proposed projects must be within the scope of the ANR Strategic Vision. All ANR academics with PI status are eligible to apply. Proposals will be accepted using the same timeline as outlined for the traditional competitive grants program, but reviewed separately due to the nature of the proposal.

For questions about ANR's competitive grants program or high-risk/high-reward grants program, please contact Melanie Caruso at mmcaruso@ucanr.edu.

Nutrition Policy Institute launches Research to Action news brief

The Nutrition Policy Institute has launched a news brief called Research to Action. The publication will provide information on research, policy, news, announcements, events, articles and action items focused on nutrition and healthy communities. 

The first issue looks at the work of the National Drinking Water Alliance (NDWA). NPI is the “hub” for NDWA, which engages in and coordinates evidence-based efforts going on all over the country to improve tap water safety and access, especially for children, and to provide drinking water education and promotion. The NDWA website is a “go-to” resource for information on drinking water. 
 
Future editions of Research to Action will be sent several times per year. Please sign up for the Research to Action mailing list, and please share Research to Action with colleagues who would be interested in receiving it.

4-H calls alumni and friends to join its new network

If 4-H has touched your life, raise your hand. Visit http://4-H.org/raiseyourhand to voice your support for the California 4-H youth development program, help it win a national competition and connect with a network of 4-H alumni and friends.

You are considered alumni if you were in a 4-H Club, took part in a 4-H after-school program, served as a volunteer leader or taught a project. Friends of 4-H are also invited to raise their hands.

“Having experienced our programs first-hand, our alumni know about the positive impact of 4-H,” said Glenda Humiston, vice president of UC Agriculture and Natural Resources and a 4-H alumna.

As part of the new 4-H network being built in the 4-H Raise Your Hand campaign, members will get news about 4-H programs in California and stay in touch with a program that made a difference in their lives.

“I've raised my hand,” said Humiston, who credits 4-H with helping her become the first in her family to attend college. She later served in the Peace Corps, received a federal appointment from President Obama and now leads the statewide research and outreach arm of UC.

The National 4-H program, which currently empowers nearly 6 million youth across the country, aims to extend its reach to 10 million by 2025. It has launched a competition among states to see which ones can add the most alumni and friends to the network by June 30, 2017. A map showing the current front runners is on the registration page.

Posted on Monday, May 1, 2017 at 10:00 AM
  • Author: Jeannette Warnert
 
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Webmaster Email: jewarnert@ucanr.edu