AFGE REACHES NEW AGREEMENT FOR TSA EMPLOYEES
There has never been any doubt as to how much AFGE wanted to represent TSA employees once the agency was created in the aftermath of the 9/11 disaster. When Congress and a union-busting White House refused to let TSA employees organize into a union, AFGE creatively recognized their right to join as members of an association. When management decisions drove attrition rates through the roof making it almost impossible to establish a core of long-term, local TSA “association” leaders, AFGE offered to represent anyone who signed a dues withholding form whether there was an established local at his/her airport or not. It threw tradition and national control out the window in favor of doing whatever was necessary to clear whatever hurdles the agency placed in employee rights. Employee needs, not those of the union’s political hierarchy, took precedence. Nearly a decade later, AFGE’s time-tested understanding of what it takes to organize employees in the face of anti-union management opposition is paying off for both employees and AFGE. The TSA Council has over 15,000 AFGE dues paying members and TSA employee rights continue to grow. Here is a list of the latest addition of their rights as posted in an AFGE press release.
- Guaranteed free parking for the term of the contract
- Ability of up to 5 percent of an airport’s workforce to bid on a new certification (i.e. passenger or baggage) during shift bid
- An increase in the uniform allowance
- Cargo pants may be worn at the checkpoint
- Tattoos do not have to be covered unless they are obscene, racially/ethnically derogatory, and/or criminal gang tattoos
- Improvements to help union stewards with employee representation
- Some employees will now be able to bid up to four weeks of annual leave
- More jackets may be worn at the checkpoint (i.e. Ike jacket, 3-in-1 jacket, and team jacket)
- Additional items are available for purchase on VF Solutions (e.g. black T-shirts, summer socks, and sports bras)
- Management cannot mandate that employees clock-in or clock-out for lunch breaks
- Management is required to select a limited number of special assignments by seniority order
- Shorts may be worn from Memorial Day to Labor Day
- Establishment of a new veterans committee.