Policy Number: 2003-017-io
Policy Title: Whistle Blower Policy and Posting

Purpose: The University encourages the reporting of concerns related to animal welfare. This policy provides the mechanism to report concerns regarding animal welfare, and provides assurance that persons may express those concerns.

POLICY: Any individual who has concerns related to the use of animals in teaching, research, or outreach at the University of Wisconsin–Madison may express those concerns without fear of reprisal. To that end, UW–Madison will not tolerate any reprisal against an individual who has come forward with concerns or allegations of wrong-doing involving the care and use of animals. Any such reprisal is prohibited by state law and University policy, and perpetrators are subject to sanctions.

This policy provides three separate avenues for individuals to express concerns relating to the use of animals in teaching, research, or outreach.

  1. Any individual may report concerns anonymously to the tip line maintained by the Office of Research Policy in the Office of the Vice Chancellor for Research and Graduate Education (608.890.1273).
  2. Any individual may report concerns to persons with authority over UW–Madison’s animal care and use program, which includes the chair of the appropriate Animal Care and Use Committee, the Director or Assistant Director of RARC, the Chief Campus Veterinarian, and the University’s Institutional Official.
  3. UW–Madison employees may report concerns under the procedures of the Wisconsin Whistle Blower Law. In order to receive legal protection against reprisal by the Wisconsin Whistle Blower Law, employees should direct their concerns in writing to anyone in their supervisory chain of command for animal care and use purposes before disclosing the concerns to anyone other than their attorney, collective bargaining representative, or legislator. The supervisory chain of command for animal care and use purposes includes their immediate supervisor, their Dean’s or Director’s Office, or any of the persons with authority over the UW animal care and use program listed above. Alternately, employees may direct their concerns to the Equal Rights Division of the Wisconsin Department of Workforce Development (DWD). Employees who prefer to direct their concerns to DWD may do so by e-mail, telephone (608.266.6860), or TTY 608.264.8752).

    Employees who feel that a personnel action has been taken against them in reprisal for reporting a potential violation of animal care and use requirements should contact their supervisor, their Dean’s or Director’s Office, the chair of the appropriate Animal Care and Use Committee, the Director or Assistant Director of RARC, or the University’s Institutional Official. The contact should be made within sixty (60) days of the personnel action in order to receive protection under the Wisconsin Whistle Blower law.

Each College/School is responsible for posting this policy in sufficient numbers and locations to assure employees' awareness. Colleges or Schools wishing to modify the posting to include additional College/School contacts may do so as long as, at a minimum, the following are included (see example below):

  • Chair of the Animal Care and Use Committee with oversight responsibility for that facility
  • Director of RARC
  • Assistant Director of RARC
  • Chief Campus Veterinarian

Get a copy of the whistle blower poster.

Author: R. Lane
ePublication Date: 06/30/2003
History: amended 11/2010; 11/2014