Press Releases

Beyer Statement On The So-Called “Federal Employee Rights Act”

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Washington, February 5, 2016 | Thomas Scanlon (202 225 4376) | comments
Yesterday the Chairman of the House Budget Committee introduced the “Federal Employee Rights Act,” which, contrary to its title, would prohibit federal agencies from deducting voluntary union dues from their employees’ paychecks. Representative Don Beyer expressed vehement opposition to the bill, which he characterized as an unfair assault on federal employee labor unions.
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Yesterday the Chairman of the House Budget Committee introduced the “Federal Employee Rights Act,” which, contrary to its title, would prohibit federal agencies from deducting voluntary union dues from their employees’ paychecks. Representative Don Beyer expressed vehement opposition to the bill, which he characterized as an unfair assault on federal employee labor unions.

“Federal employees are not required to join unions and their membership dues are completely voluntary. Such deductions are allowed purely for the convenience of the federal workforce,” said Rep. Don Beyer. “This bill is another attack on civil servants who protect and serve our country every day, and a continuation of efforts to undermine the rights of workers for political gain. Federal employee unions are powerful tools to advocate for, protect, and represent federal workers.  In an age ripe with furloughs, pay freezes, shutdown scares, and sequester cuts, we should not weaken the collective bargaining rights of the workers that keep our country running.”

The proposed legislation would prevent federal employees from exercising their voluntary collective bargaining right and prohibit a wide range of common sense activities, including representation in personnel actions, pay advocacy, and issues related to policy and benefits. Federal employee unions exist at no cost to the taxpayer and provide crucial representation in order for workers to feel safe from retaliation when they report waste, fraud, and abuse.

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