OPM’s intention is to undermine union security
The FLRA has always held that union membership in the federal sector is for a one year period. Since the statute governing federal sector labor relations was passed in 1979, employees have had the opportunity to join the union at any time they wish and stop their membership every year during a period of time agreed upon by the union and the agency where the employee works.
OPM is now seeking to interfere with these negotiated agreements between the union and the employing agency by citing to a recent Supreme Court case [ Janus v. AFSCME Council 31, 138 S. Ct. 2448 (2018)] and claiming that this case (which had nothing to do with federal employees) should override the negotiated agreements between the union and the employing agency.
OPM’s intention is to undermine union security by claiming that the Janus case should mean that employees may leave the union at any time after an initial one year period. This claim is contrary to the law—the FLRA specifically rejected this interpretation of the law in a case decision in 1981. Clearly, this move by OPM to change 40 years of precedent is an attack against unions and has political motivations that are designed to eliminate unions in the federal government at a time when the work of many agencies are under unprecedented attack.
Your action on this important issue can help save the security of our union. Join me in submitting a comment today!
J. David Cox Sr.