The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs says it has been forced to rehire the longtime head of the Washington D.C. VA Medical Center, just one week after letting him go.
Brian Hawkins was fired last week after a series of reports from internal investigators revealed safety concerns, unsanitary conditions and a cockroach infestation inside the facility.
But Hawkins appealed his firing, and for that reason, the VA says it must rehire him back until a final ruling is made.
That ruling could come by October, the News4 I-Team has learned.
The agency had reassigned Hawkins in April, hours after an internal inspection revealed large scale supply shortages and unsanitary conditions in the medical center's supply areas.
A News4 I-Team investigation revealed Hawkins reassignment was to a new position at agency headquarters on Vermont Avenue. His move to a significant position triggered criticism from congressional leaders and military veterans.
Hawkins did not immediately respond to the I-Team’s request for comment.
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The DC VA Medical Center serves approximately 98,000 patients a year. It employs almost 2,000 people.