Looks like the Federal Railroad Safety Act  is just the beginning of a new wave of whistleblower protection statutes. The combination of a whistleblower friendly Obama Administration and the worst breakdown of financial regulation in decades is sure to result in a major expansion of whistleblower protection laws, and the legal press is taking notice.

In this session Congress is considering additional protections for federal employees , and another bill (the Private Sector Whistleblower Protection Streamlining Act) would establish a coherent system for protecting private-sector employees from retaliation when they report violations of law or threats to health and safety. A common element in these new whistleblower laws is that they give employees the right to go into federal district court to litigate their retaliation claims before a jury.

Sound familiar? So it does indeed look like the Federal Railroad Safety Act is forcing the railroad industry to blaze the trail that other private industries soon will be following.