Subject: File No. S7-33-10
From: Douglas Hartnett

November 4, 2010

Why on earth would it be a REQUIREMENT that someone blowing the whistle go through the wrongdoers before being able to report the wrongdoing to the appropriate authorities? The only possible answer is for the wrongdoer to be able to take action against the reporter before a report is made. That is antithetical to the concept of the whistleblower protection.

Besides, in reality whistleblowers almost always DO go to through internal channels first because they have faith (sometimes misplaced) that those responsible will take action to remedy the problem. If the company is responsible and accountable then they address the issue and there is no need for the whistleblower to go outside the company. It is only after (and in those cases where) whistleblowers learn that their faith is misplaced and nothing is going to be done to stop the wrongdoing that they go outside the organization.

This is just a cynical attempt by the companies to be able to silence whistleblowers - do not make it a requirement to use internal channels. The program will be rendered useless if you do.