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2302(c) Certification Process

​STEP 1: Registrati​on

To begin the certification process, please fill out the registration form​​​​ and email the form to OSC at certification@osc.gov. The registration process allows OSC to provide additional assistance to agencies seeking certification or recertification. If you have any questions regarding the program, please email the same address. Once OSC receives the completed form, we will enroll you in the program and list your agency on OSC's website.​​

STEP 2: Complete the five certification requirements

 Accordion Control

 1. Place informational po​sters at agency facilities

​Post the laws regarding Prohibited Personnel Practices (PPPs) as well as information regarding the process for making confidential disclosures to OSC. Posters containing this information should be displayed in all personnel and Equal Employment Opportunity (EEO) offices and in other prominent places throughout the agency.

The following posters are required to be posted throughout your agency and made available on your intranet in order to obtain certification:

  • “Disclosures of Wrongdoing”​​​​​: Identifies the six types of wrongdoing that can be disclosed to OSC: a violation of any law, rule, or regulation; gross mismanagement; gross waste of funds; an abuse of authority; a substantial and specific danger to public health or safety; and censorship related to scientific integrity. Outlines OSC’s process for handling disclosures

  • “Whistleblower Retaliatio​n”​: Asks, “What is whistleblower retaliation?” A federal employee authorized to take, direct others to take, recommend or approve any personnel action may not take, fail to take, or threaten (to take or fail to take) a personnel action with respect to an employee because of a protected disclosure or protected activity. Cites an example. Defines “protected ​disclosure" and "protected activity."​

  • “Prohibited Personnel Practices” (PPPs)​​​: Lists 14 prohibitions, including: whistleblower retaliation; discrimination for engaging in conduct unrelated to work performance, such as discrimination based on gender identity or sexual orientation; and hiring and promotion offenses that offend the merit system. 5 U.S.C. § 2302(b)(1)-(b)(14).

The following materials, though not required to obtain certification, are also highly recommended:

 2. Provide i​nformation about the 14 PPPs and whistleblower disclosures to new employees as part of the orientation process

​Provide, in new employee orientation packets, written materials on PPPs and whistleblower disclosures. OSC has created informational materials, including an outline of PPP rights and remedies (“Your Rights as a Federal Employee​​​” and “Your Rights as a Whistleblower​​​​​”) that can either be printed or sent via e-mail.​

 3. Provide information to current employees about the 14 PPPs and whistleblower disclosures​

​Provide to all employees on an annual basis, written materials on PPPs, whistleblower disclosures, and OSC’s role in enforcing the laws over which it has jurisdiction. Agencies should also include this information on agency websites. As noted above, OSC has developed materials that can be e-mailed to help agencies fulfill this requirement.​ We have developed a sample memo​​ ​for agencies to use for this purpose.​

 4. T​rain supervisors on the 14 PPPs and whistleblower disclosures

In consultation with OSC, train managers and supervisors on their responsibilities under the PPP and whistleblower protection provisions of Title 5. There are two required trainings—triennial training on the fourteen (14) PPPs and annual training on how to address disclosures of wrongdoing and respond to complaints of retaliation.

For the triennial training, OSC strongly recommends in-person, interactive training, especially for high-level managers and supervisors. As a resource for agencies, OSC offers dynamic speakers who are subject matter experts in the PPPs and whistleblower protections. Each OSC presentation is interactive, providing numerous examples of prohibited conduct and time for supervisors and managers to ask questions. Agencies can email OSC at certification@osc.gov to request a speaker. For the annual training (only), OSC can provide training or agencies may use a newly developed PowerPoint (PDF) to meet the statutory training requirement.

Supervisory training should be tracked to ensure that all supervisors have been trained prior to filling out the compliance form. Please note that agencies must obtain prior approval from OSC before disseminating forms or training materials created by an agency or outside entity to satisfy the training requirements of the Certification Program.

Annual Supervisory Training PowerPoint Presentation (PDF)

• PPP and Whistleblower Disclosures Training Quiz (Please contact OSC at certification@osc.gov if your agency would like to use the quiz and has over 1,000 supervisors and managers.)

 ​​​​5. ​​​​​​Display a link to OSC’s website on the agency’s website and intranet

​Provide a link from the agency’s website and​ intranet site to OSC's website (https://osc.gov).​​​


STEP​ 3: Maintain certification by completing an Annual ​Certification Checklist 

​Agencies will maintain certification by completing a quick and easy Annual Certification Checklist​ to ensure ongoing compliance.

STEP 4: Sub​​mit the compliance form (every three years)​

After completing the five requirements of the program, complete the complian​ce form​​​​ and email the form and supporting documentation to certification@osc.gov. After OSC reviews the submission and ensures satisfaction of the five requirements, we will grant the agency a certificate of compliance indicating the agency's fulfillment of the statutory obligation under section 2302(c) as well as compliance with the Dr. Chris Kirkpatrick Whistleblower Protection Act of 2017 and the NDAA. Additionally, we list certified agencies on OSC's website and report federal agencies' compliance with OSC's 2302(c) ​Certification Program annually to Congress. Agencies will request recertification by submitting a compliance form (along with supporting documentation) every three years.​​