President Trump on Friday signed a series of executive orders making it easier to fire federal government workers and to curb the workplace role of unions that represent them.
Andrew Bremberg, the head of the White House Domestic Policy Council, said the president was “fulfilling his promise to promote more efficient government by reforming our Civil Service rules.”
Unions representing government workers were quick to denounce the actions, calling them an “assault on democracy,” in the words of the American Federation of Government Employees, the largest federal employee union, which represents 700,000 workers.
- The first executive order makes it easier to fire and discipline federal employees. The administration said it could take six months to a year to dismiss an employee for poor performance, followed by an average of eight months to work through appeals. To streamline the process, the official said, the executive order will reduce the period in which poor performers must demonstrate improvement to 30 days, from as many as 120 days.
- The second executive order directs federal agencies to renegotiate contracts with unions representing government employees to reduce waste. The administration official expressed hope that, for example, agencies could stop having to pay expenses of both sides when unions undertake appeals on behalf of fired workers.
- The third order aims to cut down on what is known as “official time,” in which government workers who have roles in the union, like helping colleagues file grievances, are allowed to perform those roles during normal working hours for which they draw their usual salary. The order limits official time to 25 percent of their hours during the year. Administration officials said a subset of federal employees had been able to spend as much as 100 percent of their duty hours on union business.
In regards to point number three, it would seem like 10% is more than generous. Strike that. There should not be public unions in the first place.
The unions of course responded with their usual charges.
“This is more than union busting — it’s democracy busting,” J. David Cox Sr., national president of the American Federation of Government Employees.
Please be serious.
The body of the New York Times article changed as I was cutting snips. Some portions of the above text may not appear in the refreshed article.
Court Ruling Coming Up
The US Supreme Court has agreed to hear the case of Janus vs AFSCME.
At issue are the constitutionality of laws in 22 states that force public employees who do not want to belong to unions to pay unions “agency fees” for bargaining collectively on their behalf. The plaintiff — Illinois state worker Mark Janus — argues that agency fees violate his First Amendment rights of freedom of speech and association by compelling him to underwrite union political activity with which he disagrees.
The expected outcome will reduce public unions by as much a 726,000.
That's a start. but 726,000 is only 10%. The goal should be 100%.
Roosevelt on Public Unions
All Government employees should realize that the process of collective bargaining, as usually understood, cannot be transplanted into the public service. It has its distinct and insurmountable limitations when applied to public personnel management. The very nature and purposes of Government make it impossible for administrative officials to represent fully or to bind the employer in mutual discussions with Government employee organizations.
Particularly, I want to emphasize my conviction that militant tactics have no place in the functions of any organization of Government employees. Upon employees in the Federal service rests the obligation to serve the whole people, whose interests and welfare require orderliness and continuity in the conduct of Government activities. This obligation is paramount. Since their own services have to do with the functioning of the Government, a strike of public employees manifests nothing less than an intent on their part to prevent or obstruct the operations of Government until their demands are satisfied. Such action, looking toward the paralysis of Government by those who have sworn to support it, is unthinkable and intolerable. It is, therefore, with a feeling of gratification that I have noted in the constitution of the National Federation of Federal Employees the provision that "under no circumstances shall this Federation engage in or support strikes against the United States Government."
End Collective Bargaining
There should be no collective bargaining by public unions because there should be no public unions. The goal should be to get rid of them all.
Mike "Mish" Shedlock