“After trying, and failing, to protect human health by calling attention to the tumors caused by bifenthrin, the EPA pesticide assessor had several requests to be appointed to relevant committees denied, a development they felt was retaliation for raising concerns about the pesticide. Several other EPA scientists who worked on pesticides spoke of being passed over for positions on committees, which are necessary for professional advancement, after they attempted to call attention to evidence of hazards presented by the chemicals.
Tim Whitehouse, executive director of Public Employees for Environmental Responsibility, an organization that represents whistleblowers at public agencies on issues of environmental ethics and scientific integrity, said that the group has recently received several similar reports from people working within the EPA’s pesticide division. “Current and former employees have been reaching out to us in increasing numbers and expressing concerns about the office culture at OPP and the fact that if scientists speak out about their concerns, they will not last long in that division,” said Whitehouse, who described the working conditions in the division of the EPA as very difficult. “Morale has been bad, and it’s getting steadily worse over the years.””