Loading ...
Sorry, an error occurred while loading the content.

Letter from the Office of the Inspector General of the Peace Corps

Expand Messages
  • Kevin
    Hello all: I just received a certified letter from the Office of the Inspector General of the Peace Corps. Did any of you receive such a letter? It reads: The
    Message 1 of 6 , Jun 7, 2005
    • 0 Attachment
      Hello all:

      I just received a certified letter from the Office of the Inspector
      General of the Peace Corps. Did any of you receive such a letter?

      It reads:

      The Office of the Inspector General of the Peace Corps is in the
      process of conducting a review of post-service applications by former
      Peace Corps staff and Volunteers for benefits under the Federal
      Employees Compensation Act...

      The promotion of economy and efficiency and the prevention and
      investigation of fraud, waste, and abuse is a part of our statutory
      authority and responsibility. We work closely with the Inspector
      General of the Department of Labor ...

      You do not need to respond to this communication. Any changes
      regarding your disability, current income, address, etc. should, as
      always, be immediately reported to the Office of Workers'
      Compensation Programs ...

      If you are aware of any situation in which this program may be being
      abused, please contact us immediately ... As you know the making of
      false statements, claims and factual omissions made in conjunction
      with obtaining benefits under this program carries serious criminal
      and administrative penalties under federal law.

      During the course of this review you may be contacted by an auditor,
      evaluator, or criminal investigator from this office. I thank you in
      advance for your cooperation..

      The letter was signed by Allan R. Gall, Acting Inspector General, and
      was cc'd to USDOL/OIG and USDOL/OWCP.

      While I think the OIG's efforts are laudable, I have to wonder if the
      taxpayer would be better served if the Inspector Generals expanded
      their investigation to include how well Peace Corps assists former
      Volunteers with their workers' compensation claims, how DOL treats
      claimants, how well Peace Corps and DOL promote efficiency and reduce
      waste, etc.

      I welcome your comments and questions.

      Kevin
    • Doug Hemken
      I also received one of these. Douglas Hemken Statistical Consultant Social Science Micro Lab 3218 Social Science Bldg. dehemken@wisc.edu 262-0862 ... From:
      Message 2 of 6 , Jun 7, 2005
      • 0 Attachment
        I also received one of these.

        Douglas Hemken
        Statistical Consultant
        Social Science Micro Lab
        3218 Social Science Bldg.

        dehemken@...
        262-0862

        ----- Original Message -----
        From: Kevin <rpcv@...>
        Date: Tuesday, June 7, 2005 10:48 am
        Subject: [owcp] Letter from the Office of the Inspector General of the
        Peace Corps

        > Hello all:
        >
        > I just received a certified letter from the Office of the Inspector
        > General of the Peace Corps. Did any of you receive such a letter?
        >
        > It reads:
        >
        > The Office of the Inspector General of the Peace Corps is in the
        > process of conducting a review of post-service applications by
        > former
        > Peace Corps staff and Volunteers for benefits under the Federal
        > Employees Compensation Act...
        >
        > The promotion of economy and efficiency and the prevention and
        > investigation of fraud, waste, and abuse is a part of our statutory
        > authority and responsibility. We work closely with the Inspector
        > General of the Department of Labor ...
        >
        > You do not need to respond to this communication. Any changes
        > regarding your disability, current income, address, etc. should, as
        > always, be immediately reported to the Office of Workers'
        > Compensation Programs ...
        >
        > If you are aware of any situation in which this program may be
        > being
        > abused, please contact us immediately ... As you know the making
        > of
        > false statements, claims and factual omissions made in conjunction
        > with obtaining benefits under this program carries serious criminal
        > and administrative penalties under federal law.
        >
        > During the course of this review you may be contacted by an
        > auditor,
        > evaluator, or criminal investigator from this office. I thank you
        > in
        > advance for your cooperation..
        >
        > The letter was signed by Allan R. Gall, Acting Inspector General,
        > and
        > was cc'd to USDOL/OIG and USDOL/OWCP.
        >
        > While I think the OIG's efforts are laudable, I have to wonder if
        > the
        > taxpayer would be better served if the Inspector Generals expanded
        > their investigation to include how well Peace Corps assists former
        > Volunteers with their workers' compensation claims, how DOL treats
        > claimants, how well Peace Corps and DOL promote efficiency and
        > reduce
        > waste, etc.
        >
        > I welcome your comments and questions.
        >
        > Kevin
        >
        >
        >
        >
        >
        >
        >
        >
        > Yahoo! Groups Links
        >
        >
        >
        >
        >
        >
        >
      • Heidi Fassnacht
        Kevin, I got the exact same letter. Personally, I found the letter somewhat intimidating. It is bad enough to get the letters from DOL that feel threatening,
        Message 3 of 6 , Jun 8, 2005
        • 0 Attachment
          Kevin,

          I got the exact same letter. Personally, I found the
          letter somewhat intimidating. It is bad enough to get
          the letters from DOL that feel threatening, but to get
          one like this from Peace Corps made me mad. Isn't
          anyone looking out for *our* interests? I think what
          the OIG is looking to do is reasonable, but given how
          one sided this whole struggle seems, I feel very
          frustrated that this 'investigation' seems to be
          equally one sided. I find it insulting given how many
          of us have had to deal with all of DOL's nonsense that
          they didn't say they were looking into if the system
          were working well for us, like you mentioned.

          Heidi




          "In the end, our society will be defined not only by what we create, but also by what we refuse to destroy." John Sawhill



          __________________________________
          Discover Yahoo!
          Stay in touch with email, IM, photo sharing and more. Check it out!
          http://discover.yahoo.com/stayintouch.html
        • Kevin
          Heidi (and Nancy and all), Maybe I m a slow learner but it wasn t until I received the OIG s letter that it dawned on me why no one in Peace Corps seems to be
          Message 4 of 6 , Jun 9, 2005
          • 0 Attachment
            Heidi (and Nancy and all),

            Maybe I'm a slow learner but it wasn't until I received the OIG's
            letter that it dawned on me why no one in Peace Corps seems to be
            willing to help RPCVs with their OWCP claims: It isn't in the
            agency's best interest, at least from a fiscal point of view. In
            fact, Peace Corps may have more of a financial incentive than OWCP
            does to have RPCVs' claims denied. That is probably one reason why
            Peace Corps Director Gaddi Vasquez opposed the legislation that
            would have created the Ombusdman position that Nancy told us about
            several months ago.

            Some other thoughts:

            I agree that the investigation is very one-sided. However, the OIG
            of Peace Corps probably lacks the jurisdiction to investigate waste,
            abuse, fraud, etc. within OWCP. We, individually or as a group,
            however, have the right to ask Congress to order a GAO investigation
            of OWCP. I'm beginning to think that my petition idea might be
            morphing in that direction. The House Committee that oversees the
            Department of Labor seems sympathetic to federal workers'
            compensations claimants, so I think a request for a such an
            investigation would be well received by the Committee. If we could
            get RPCVs from 10 different states to sign a letter to that House
            Committee and we cc'd the letter to the corresponding Senate
            Committee and each of the RPCVs' Senators and Congressmen, then the
            letter would be in the hands of a sizeable number of our elected
            representatives. Whether or not that would reach the critical mass
            needed for action remains to be seen. I'd be willing to take a stab
            at a draft letter if people think it's a good idea.

            Personally I have no major problem with the OIG's investigation as
            long as it doesn't become unduly burdensome for RPCVs. If, in fact,
            there are people who are abusing the system, then they should be
            stopped. However, I do have some concerns as well: I don't like
            people feeling intimidated by the OIG. I don't want the
            investigation to result in our having to provide additional and/or
            repetitive medical documentation. (I feel that my OWCP file
            contains current and adequate documentation to support my claim.) I
            hope the OIG did a cost benefit analysis beforehand to demonstrate
            that the investigation is likely to be cost effective (i.e., the
            amounts recovered will exceed the cost of the investigation). It is
            too bad that the OIG feels that it has to conduct the
            investigation. If OWCP were doing its job, it would be able to stop
            the scofflaws without Peace Corps intervention.

            Kevin


            --- In owcp@yahoogroups.com, Heidi Fassnacht <riverock5@y...> wrote:
            > Kevin,
            >
            > I got the exact same letter. Personally, I found the
            > letter somewhat intimidating. It is bad enough to get
            > the letters from DOL that feel threatening, but to get
            > one like this from Peace Corps made me mad. Isn't
            > anyone looking out for *our* interests? I think what
            > the OIG is looking to do is reasonable, but given how
            > one sided this whole struggle seems, I feel very
            > frustrated that this 'investigation' seems to be
            > equally one sided. I find it insulting given how many
            > of us have had to deal with all of DOL's nonsense that
            > they didn't say they were looking into if the system
            > were working well for us, like you mentioned.
            >
            > Heidi
          • Janice Williams
            Kevin Why don t youi send the president copies of your e-mail? Seems he needs a good dose of reality. Why doesn t Peace Corps support us? I m still unable
            Message 5 of 6 , Jun 15, 2005
            • 0 Attachment
              Kevin
              Why don't youi send the president copies of your e-mail? Seems he needs a
              good dose of reality. Why doesn't Peace Corps support us? I'm still unable
              to be ccepted by PC as blind in my left eye due to Peace Corps service.
              Personally I would prefer to see you contact Oprah or 60 Minutes. I
              don't think working through channels will be effective in the end. There is
              always more red tape.

              Jan Williams

              > Heidi (and Nancy and all),
              >
              > Maybe I'm a slow learner but it wasn't until I received the OIG's
              > letter that it dawned on me why no one in Peace Corps seems to be
              > willing to help RPCVs with their OWCP claims: It isn't in the
              > agency's best interest, at least from a fiscal point of view. In
              > fact, Peace Corps may have more of a financial incentive than OWCP
              > does to have RPCVs' claims denied. That is probably one reason why
              > Peace Corps Director Gaddi Vasquez opposed the legislation that
              > would have created the Ombusdman position that Nancy told us about
              > several months ago.
              >
              > Some other thoughts:
              >
              > I agree that the investigation is very one-sided. However, the OIG
              > of Peace Corps probably lacks the jurisdiction to investigate waste,
              > abuse, fraud, etc. within OWCP. We, individually or as a group,
              > however, have the right to ask Congress to order a GAO investigation
              > of OWCP. I'm beginning to think that my petition idea might be
              > morphing in that direction. The House Committee that oversees the
              > Department of Labor seems sympathetic to federal workers'
              > compensations claimants, so I think a request for a such an
              > investigation would be well received by the Committee. If we could
              > get RPCVs from 10 different states to sign a letter to that House
              > Committee and we cc'd the letter to the corresponding Senate
              > Committee and each of the RPCVs' Senators and Congressmen, then the
              > letter would be in the hands of a sizeable number of our elected
              > representatives. Whether or not that would reach the critical mass
              > needed for action remains to be seen. I'd be willing to take a stab
              > at a draft letter if people think it's a good idea.
              >
              > Personally I have no major problem with the OIG's investigation as
              > long as it doesn't become unduly burdensome for RPCVs. If, in fact,
              > there are people who are abusing the system, then they should be
              > stopped. However, I do have some concerns as well: I don't like
              > people feeling intimidated by the OIG. I don't want the
              > investigation to result in our having to provide additional and/or
              > repetitive medical documentation. (I feel that my OWCP file
              > contains current and adequate documentation to support my claim.) I
              > hope the OIG did a cost benefit analysis beforehand to demonstrate
              > that the investigation is likely to be cost effective (i.e., the
              > amounts recovered will exceed the cost of the investigation). It is
              > too bad that the OIG feels that it has to conduct the
              > investigation. If OWCP were doing its job, it would be able to stop
              > the scofflaws without Peace Corps intervention.
              >
              > Kevin
              >
              >
              > --- In owcp@yahoogroups.com, Heidi Fassnacht <riverock5@y...> wrote:
              >> Kevin,
              >>
              >> I got the exact same letter. Personally, I found the
              >> letter somewhat intimidating. It is bad enough to get
              >> the letters from DOL that feel threatening, but to get
              >> one like this from Peace Corps made me mad. Isn't
              >> anyone looking out for *our* interests? I think what
              >> the OIG is looking to do is reasonable, but given how
              >> one sided this whole struggle seems, I feel very
              >> frustrated that this 'investigation' seems to be
              >> equally one sided. I find it insulting given how many
              >> of us have had to deal with all of DOL's nonsense that
              >> they didn't say they were looking into if the system
              >> were working well for us, like you mentioned.
              >>
              >> Heidi
              >
              >
              >
              >
              >
              >
              > Yahoo! Groups Links
              >
              >
              >
              >
              >
              >
              Dear Janice,



              I am writing because we need your support.



              Peace Corps service profoundly affects people's lives, especially the lives
              of those of us who have had the privilege to do it.



              The National Peace Corps Association (NPCA) was set up to promote Peace
              Corps service and the values of fostering peace and service that it
              embodies.



              Although we have a long way to go to fully realize the potential inherent in
              our remarkable community, with your help we have made some real progress:



              * Advocacy. We have significantly expanded our ability to advocate on
              behalf of Peace Corps values and to keep our members abreast of issues,
              including the army's recruiting plans involving an option of Peace Corps
              service.



              * Global Education. Through a growing network, we keep young Americans
              informed about the dynamic and complex world we live in by enabling
              educators to bring accurate and meaningful resources to the classroom.



              * Publications. To provide you more timely information, we shifted to a
              monthly electronic newsletter. WorldView magazine has begun special issues
              on key human development issues, such as AIDS.



              * Recognition. We are working to enhance the profile of our Sargent Shriver
              and Loret Miller Ruppe awards to better recognize exemplars of members who
              embody the values of fostering peace and promoting service.



              To do this and the many more things we aspire to do leading up to the
              upcoming 50th anniversary of Peace Corps requires resources. Our membership
              dues only provide 16 percent of our needs. Please give what you can. You
              can contribute at https://www.npcaonline.org/npcassa/ssaauthmain.login_page.
              Log in using your personal login provided below and click on "contribute".
              We will put your donation to good use.



              Gratefully,







              Kevin F. F. Quigley

              President
            • Kevin
              Jan, Thanks for speaking up. I don t think there is one right way to approach the problem. Going public, which you and Nancy seem to favor, is one way.
              Message 6 of 6 , Jun 15, 2005
              • 0 Attachment
                Jan,

                Thanks for speaking up. I don't think there is one right way to
                approach the problem. Going public, which you and Nancy seem to
                favor, is one way. Working through the channels, as you put it, is
                another. It should be noted, however, that I'm looking at channels
                outside the executive branch, which is why I haven't contacted the PC
                Director or the President. Maybe I'm wrong, but I think if we can
                get our legislators, and particularly their auditing arm (i.e., the
                GAO), to put some pressure on the Department of Labor and Peace
                Corps, I believe we can get some action. Nothing I've said should
                discourage anyone from contacting Oprah, 60 minutes, or NBC news.
                Action on multiple fronts can be very effective.

                Kevin

                P.S. If someone wants to take the lead in inviting members of the
                media to visit this forum, I'm all for it. There are stories here,
                but whether they're newsworthy or would have broad public appeal is
                for the media to decide.

                --- In owcp@yahoogroups.com, Janice Williams <therifi@m...> wrote:
                > Kevin
                > Why don't youi send the president copies of your e-mail? Seems he
                needs a
                > good dose of reality. Why doesn't Peace Corps support us? I'm
                still unable
                > to be ccepted by PC as blind in my left eye due to Peace Corps
                service.
                > Personally I would prefer to see you contact Oprah or 60
                Minutes. I
                > don't think working through channels will be effective in the end.
                There is
                > always more red tape.
                >
                > Jan Williams
                t
              Your message has been successfully submitted and would be delivered to recipients shortly.