The Climate Science Legal Defense Fund (CSLDF) has filed a letter in support of the August 2019 whistleblower complaint filed by Dr. George Luber against the Centers for Disease Control (CDC).
Luber was a long-time and well-respected epidemiologist at the CDC, where he helped establish the Climate and Health Program, which he led for nearly a decade.
According to allegations set out in Luber’s whistleblower complaint, the Trump Administration repeatedly censored him by curtailing his ability to communicate with both the public and his colleagues about critical research on the health impacts of climate change.
Luber alleges that CDC officials prohibited him from communicating with the press about his work, and prohibited him from participating in at least one professional conference on climate change and health. Luber says the CDC retaliated against him and eventually suspended him for speaking up about these events; the CDC also dismantled the entire Climate and Health Program.
Luber and his colleagues are not alone. The Silencing Science Tracker we at CSLDF created with the Sabin Center at Columbia Law School documents dozens of instances of the federal government censoring scientists since the 2016 presidential election. During this time, CSLDF has also assisted an increasing number of federal scientists facing censorship over their climate research.
We are deeply troubled by the circumstances at the now-defunct CDC Climate and Health Program, which is why we filed this letter in support of Luber’s whistleblower complaint to the Office of Special Counsel. We hope that the Office of Special Counsel will treat this complaint with the seriousness it deserves.