Normal Topic DOE Polygraph Consent Form (Read 3838 times)
Paste Member Name in Quick Reply Box George Maschke (Guest)

DOE Polygraph Consent Form
Feb 14th, 2001 at 5:27pm
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The U.S. Department of Energy polygraph examination consent form ( requires those who sign to positively affirm some troubling things. For example, those who sign this form affirm in para. 1.b that they they understand, that:

Adverse action will not be taken against me based solely on a refusal to undergo this examination, and any refusal will not be recorded in my personnel file.

but in the next paragraph (1.c.) they must acknowledge their understanding that:

Refusal to undergo the polygraph examination will preclude the granting of or continuing access to the designated program, specific position or body of information.

For one to affirm both of these things requires one to adopt an unusual meaning for the term "adverse action." Preclusion from access to information for those who refuse to undergo a polygraph examination has serious, negative employment consequences, and this preclusion amounts to an "adverse action" within the usual meaning of the words.

In para. 1.d., the examinee must certify that he/she understands that

The polygraph procedures will be explained and a review of all test questions will be made prior to the examination.

However, the explanation of the polygraph procedure that the polygraph examiner (following federal doctrine for the administration of polygraph examinations) provides to the examinee is false and misleading. (See Chapter 3 of The Lie Behind the Lie Detector and the Test for Espionage and Sabotage Administration Guidelines for details.)

In para. 1.f, the examinee certifies that he/she understands that

Because I am not suspected of having committed any criminal offense, a specific warning regarding self-incrimination will not be provided. However, the exclusion of this warning does not preclude me from consulting with an attorney at my expense prior to the polygraph examination.

For DOE employees and contractors to certify that they understand that they are "not suspected of having committed any criminal offense" requires an exercise doublethink. If these persons are truly "not suspected of having committed any criminal offense,"  then why are they being interrogated precisely about having committed criminal offenses, including, at that, espionage (a potential capital offense)?

Lastly, in para. 2, the examinee certifies that

I understand the above conditions associated with a polygraph examination, including the applicability of the Privacy Act of 1974

But the form itself does not explain the applicability of the Privacy Act. It would be approprate for that information to be inlcluded in the form.

Last modification: George Maschke - 02/14/01 at 09:27:58
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DOE Polygraph Consent Form

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