July 14, 2010
Tests Results Can Now Be Grieved: After repeatedly expressing dissatisfaction with TSA's performance evaluation system, AFGE praised the agency for revising its grievance procedures to specifically allow TSOs to grieve their test scores. In a directive issued July 8, Assistant Administrator for Human Capital Richard Whitford wrote that "if the affected employee demonstrates that the assessment is flawed, (e.g. an equipment malfunction or the content material is not aligned with the applicable security screening standard operating procedures), the matter may be grieved." The new directive clarifies and clears up confusion over whether the test results can be grieved. AFGE always believed TSOs had this right based on the previous directive. Now this has been official recognized by TSA.
AFGE Action Leads to Repeal of AWOL in Memphis: TSA at Memphis International Airport has repealed an absence without leave (AWOL) issued to a TSO after AFGE sent a letter to management protesting the unjustified AWOL. In a strongly worded letter to local management, AFGE Local 555 charged that management violated TSA policy when it rejected the TSO's medical documentation issued by an emergency care facility simply because the documentation was not on the TSO's doctor's letter head. The union argued that the emergency room discharge paper already displays the name of the facility, address, phone and fax numbers, the patient's diagnosis, after care instructions and treating physician's signature. Most ER doctors don't carry around their own personal stationary, and the chances are pretty slim that the treating physician at any ER facility is also the patient's primary care physician.
"I was very happy to see the AWOLs overturned," said TSO David Sills, who was facing a disciplinary action from letter of reprimand up to termination prior to AFGE involvement.
AFGE LOCAL 555 Executive Vice President Valyria Lewis said, "AFGE activists in Memphis vow to continue to challenge TSA Memphis management's misinterpretation of policies and directives, abuse of authority and retaliation until our message is heard loud and clear: The bullying stops now!"
AFGE Sponsors Softball Team in Miami: TSOs in Miami have a yearly softball league for everyone to participate and enjoy their time off together. The softball league promotes friendship and community even though all the teams are competitive and want to win the championship. This year AFGE sponsored a team to emphasize the importance of fun and unity. The AFGE Team made it to the playoffs and will play on Saturday July 17. The team began to practice in January with the official season starting in April. Gabriel Padilla is the coach and Erick Nackreiner is the assistant coach. In Miami, TSOs understand what it means to be part of the AFGE family. Good luck to all the teams and have fun!
For more information about AFGE representation, go to www.tsaunion.net or call AFGE TSA Hotline at (866) 392-6832. American Federation of Government Employees, AFL-CIO 80 F Street, N.W., Washington, D.C. 20001 * Tel. (202) 737-8700 * Fax (202) 639-6492 * www.afge.org