DHS Alters HR System at Employees' Expense

Wednesday, March 10, 2004

Washington, DC – Yesterday, the Office of Personnel Management (OPM) and the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) briefed employee representatives on a new human resources management system that, when enacted, will have a severe negative effect on the employees within DHS.

Their plan, first released in the Federal Register on February 20th and now in a 30-day public comment period, marks the first time the general public has seen a 'new breed' personnel systems in full (new systems are simultaneously being designed at DHS and the Department of Defense that are radically different from those currently in place throughout the federal government). 

"The system at DHS is not theoretical anymore, it is spelled out in full," said National Federation of Federal Employees (NFFE-IAM) President Richard N. Brown.  "This completely confirms our inclination that this administration is ignoring the views of federal employees and their representatives."

After spending several months conferring with employee representatives OPM and DHS heads selected a system that has a number of provisions undesirable to DHS employees.

"It is unconscionable that our government would task federal employees with ensuring national security, and then force them to endure this treatment," said Brown.  "This proposal will allow subjectivity into the pay system, eliminate due process, and abolish the rights of thousands working in the department."

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