Fedsmill respect for employee rights, ideas, insights, participation and unions generates the power to improve government extra strength gas x while pregnant

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While the world of music is blessed with the genius of Yo Yo Ma, the Federal LMR community is stuck with the screeching of Yo-Yo KA. Kiko and Abbott (aka The KA), our two little TRUMP-ettes, have decided once again to yank us LMR practitioners like a yo-yo from the stability and comfort of long-time legal precedent. They just announced that the bargaining obligation only covers changes in “conditions of employment,” not changes in “working conditions.” As they see it, one of the canons of statutory construction, which they never specifically cite, requires that the two terms must mean something different since they are not identical. That is the equivalent of denying the existence of synonyms in the English language, such as a donkey and an ass. Apparently, The KA believes management is suffering such a huge injustice now that an entirely new exception to the bargaining obligation is needed. It matters little to them that this will lead to years of litigation, during which management reliance on the rule could cost the government millions in back pay and attorney fee damages. The current publicly known cost to an agency of a single blunder is $900 million, but nothing says it can’t go higher. Continue reading

Way back in 1986 NFFE demanded an agency give it data on employees so that it could pursue civil rights claims on their behalf, and FLRA upheld the union’s ground breaking logic then as well as two years later. See NFFE Local 29, 22 FLRA 667 (1986) and NFFE Local 589, 32 FLRA 133 (1988). Not long after those precedent-setting cases, AFGE joined the struggle in 32 FLRA 133, 44 FLRA 1405, firmly establishing that unions are entitled to information about how various personnel actions such as awards, promotions, training, etc. are doled out among the various civil rights protected groups. Then, a week ago the NLRB issued a decision adding its weight to FLRA precedent on this issue. That decision will likely play a role shortly in the federal sector because FLRA precedents cited above all pre-dated the imposition of the particularized need (PN) standard. The PN standard now requires that any union requesting that kind of data needs to make a more sophisticated argument, especially to President Trump’s appointees. So, we thought we would walk through what that would look like so that advocates on both sides of the table argue and/or administer this thoroughly. Continue reading

Now that FSIP has announced that it is going to reduce unions’ official time allotment if the unions do not increase their activity on behalf of employees, unions need to step up their representational activities. The best way to do that is to make sure all the unit employees not only know their rights, but also know that the union can help them enforce those rights. (As we have said before, sadly the American education system spends more time on the War of the Roses than the employment rights that will shape the next 50 years of a person’s life. That is a gap that unions have to fill.) We suggest that unions send all unit employees, not just members, an e-mail each week that contains a short story about a different right they have. It is OK to post the story on your web site, but that is not as good as pushing the story into their e-mail box.) Below you will find over 50 stories we have chosen from the nearly 900 FEDSMILL postings that were written for the typical employee. Pick one a week and push the information out to everyone in the unit along with perhaps a short message that your union is ready to help employees who might be experiencing a similar problem. Unions need to advertise just as much as any other business, and if they do so they should see a jump in membership as well. (Union leaders have our permission to copy these and any other story.) Continue reading