UNION STAFF ARE PROTECTED FROM AGENCY CHANGES TOO
FLRA popped out an interesting case just before time ran out in 2016 that addressed an agency’s ability to change how it deals with union staff who are not now (and maybe never were) federal employees. Does the agency have to serve notice on the union and complete bargaining before it can change, for example, the security procedures the non-fed union staffer must follow to enter the agency’s building? After all, non-fed union staffers aren’t any different than any vendor or repair technician seeking to enter the building. Right?
No, Wrong! The Authority held yet again that it changes the conditions of employment for unit employment when the agency changes the procedures or rights of the union staff those employees rely upon. See VA, Richmond, VA and AFGE, Local 2145, 70 FLRA 119 (2016). See also Philadelphia Naval Shipyard and MTC, 4 FLRA 255 (1980), and Bureau of Indian Affairs, Isleta Elementary School, Pueblo of Isleta, NM and AFT, Indian Educators Federation, 54 FLRA 1428 (1998).