Brandon Coleman: “Veterans didn’t sacrifice to be silenced by our own government.”
Arlington, VA – A new video released by Concerned Veterans for America (CVA) highlights VA whistleblower Brandon Coleman’s story as a clear example of what happens when the government uses the private information of citizens to silence those who speak out against it. The video comes as part of the group’s new project, Defend the First, dedicated to defending freedom of speech under the First Amendment.
In 2014, Coleman, a United States Marine Corps veteran, and former addictions therapist at the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) facility in Phoenix, came forward and raised the red flag about serious performance issues there. After blowing the whistle, he was issued a gag order and his medical records were improperly accessed by VA employees.
“People who speak up [against the government] face retaliation. My case is a prime example of that,” explains Coleman. “Veterans didn’t sacrifice to be silenced by our own government. We have to defend the First.”
Click here to watch the full video.
Earlier this week,the Office of Special Counsel (OSC) released an official press release which indicated that the merits of Brandon’s complaints were valid and that improvements were made at the Phoenix VA because he stepped forward.
In upcoming months, CVA will seek to partner with elected officials and advocates to engage in an open dialogue about the importance of freedom of speech to a free and tolerant society. The group will also act quickly to beat back any legislative or regulatory threats against free speech that are identified on a state and federal level.