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Hall v. Department of Labor

ELR Citation: 37 ELR 20046
Nos. No. 05-9512, (10th Cir., 02/13/2007)

The court upheld a U.S. Department of Labor administrative review board decision dismissing a civilian chemist's complaint that his former employer—the U.S. Army—violated the employee protection provisions of several environmental statutes and retaliated against him by creating a hostile work environment that resulted in the chemist's resignation. The chemist alleged that after he reported environmental and safety concerns to the Army and outside agencies, the Army retaliated against him by reinvestigating and recommending revocation of his security clearance, requiring him to undergo unnecessary mental health and fitness-for-duty exams, subjecting him to hostile comments and policies in the workplace, unfairly lowering his performance evaluations and threatening disciplinary action against him, and interfering with his work in an effort to stymie completion of his assignments. However, the board's conclusion that there was no retaliatory motive on the part of the Army is supported by direct and circumstantial evidence. Nor did the board misconstrue the chemists' complaint or the law of constructive discharge. In addition, the board correctly ruled that it lacked the authority to review the Army's security clearance decisions.