Sequestration or Shutdown: A Lose-Lose for Federal Employees
With less than two weeks remaining before the Dec. 13 deadline, the Congressional Budget Conference faces mounting pressure to reach an agreement to keep the government funded beyond Jan. 15. If a grand bargain is not struck and Congress resorts to passing yet another Continuing Resolution, a second round of sequestration cuts will take effect. Without the budget flexibility federal agencies enjoyed in 2013, federal employees are exposed to greater furlough risks in 2014.
FWA Sends Letter to Budget Conference Urging Protection of Federal Workers
Federal employees have contributed more than $114 billion over the past three years toward deficit reduction. This staggering amount is the result of a three-year pay freeze, multiple furlough days due to sequestration, and an increase in pension contributions from new federal workers. As a result of the ongoing three-year federal pay freeze, a worker earning $40,000 annually, will lose $54,840.19 in cumulative income over the next 20 years . For many families, that loss of income is the difference between being able to make a mortgage payment or put food on the table. Federal employees have shouldered an excessive weight in budget cuts, and they have long proved their tenacity and dedication. Federal employees and their families have experienced enough turmoil.
NFFE/IAM Wins Landslide Election at Aberdeen Proving Ground
Employees of the Army Contracting Command (ACC) at Aberdeen Proving Ground in Gunpowder, MD have a rich history of NFFE/IAM representation. However, a recent agency realignment brought a new group of contractors to the base, forcing a combination between new and veteran Aberdeen ACC employees. With the two unions at odds regarding representation, the U.S. Army filed a petition with the Federal Labor Relations Authority (FLRA) requesting single-union representation for the newly-combined ACC employees. The FLRA upheld the petition which set the stage for a winner-take-all election to determine union representation.
National President Dougan: “This Era of Congress Manufacturing One Crisis After Another Must End.
With the government likely on the brink of ending its shutdown, William R. Dougan, National President of the National Federation of Federal Employees, a national union representing 110,000 federal workers throughout the U.S., issued the following statement: "Federal Employees are real people, with real families, real bills, and real worries. ...This era of Congress manufacturing one crisis after another must end.”
National President Dougan Calls on Congress for Emergency Funding as Federal Fire Suppression Budget Officially Runs Dry
The National Federation of Federal Employees, a national union representing 110,000 federal workers government-wide, including the majority of federal wildland firefighters, is calling on Congress to provide emergency funds to supplement the recently exhausted federal wildfire suppression budget and to restore arbitrary sequestration cuts to firefighting in next year’s budget. In a letter to leaders of both the House and Senate appropriations committees, NFFE National President William R. Dougan called for swift and decisive action. “With so much on the line, our elected leaders cannot in good conscience allow these reckless cuts to undermine the safety of our firefighters and communities,” said Dougan.
Dougan Pens Letter to Congress Urging Support for Cole-Kilmer Amendment to Exempt 180,000 Defense Employees from Furloughs
With furloughs underway for over 650,000 Department of Defense (DoD) workers, serious questions have been raised about the potential for yet another round of temporary forced layoffs in fiscal year 2014. A major point of contention has developed over DoD’s initial decision to furlough 180,000 Defense Working Capital Fund (DWCF) employees – workers paid through reimbursements for the goods and services they provide. These workers are essentially budget-neutral; no savings occur when furloughing them. Many argue that these workers’ budget-neutral status should exclude them from furloughs, yet DoD leadership has thus-far held firm in their decision to maintain furloughs for DWCF employees in FY13.