We're sure you've heard by now that President Trump is proposing massive layoffs to the federal government. But how can he do this, and what rules does he need to follow? Tune in for our three-part series on RIFs. Today we will discuss what a RIF is. On Wednesday, we will focus on appeals and grievances of RIF decisions. And finally, on Friday, we will discuss reemployment rights after a RIF.
"Federal employees support our troops stateside and abroad, fight crime and terrorism and protect our borders. They combat forest fires, inspect our roads and bridges and ensure our aviation system is the safest in the world. They guard and enhance our national parks and lands, guarantee seniors receive their Social Security benefits and process and deliver mail to every address in every type of weather."
Federal employees who are facing disciplinary actions play by a different set of rules than non-federal employees. Disciplinary actions are typically proposed in the form of suspension or removal based on misconduct or unachieved performance goals (failure to comply with a Performance Improvement Plan [PIP]). If you've been proposed with a disciplinary action, it's likely you have questions about what steps to take next. Some of those might include:
Federal law provides important protections for employees. Basic rights - such as fair pay, a safe workplace and freedom from discrimination - form the backbone of a better work environment.
Nepotism is common in the private sector - especially among small, family-run businesses. But in government jobs, it's a conflict of interest that could derail your career.
"[S]ocial media is a tool as important to security clearances as interviews with friends and family..."
After a four day trial, federal jury awarded our client, Jennifer B. Campbell, $555,000 in back pay and other damages. Our team proved to the jury that Ms. Campbell's former employer, the D.C. Department of Health Care Finance (DHCF), violated her due process rights by reporting negative allegations in the press without informing her.
It is likely that at some point in your federal government career you may be called upon to provide testimony in the course of an investigation. The subject may involve you or someone else. The investigator may be an agency employee or from the office of inspector general. Most investigations are of an administrative nature: that means that the worst that can happen is someone can lose their job. However, a recent case reminds us that criminal penalties can arise if you are not truthful.
The EEOC's recent ruling in Baldwin v. Dep't of Transportation, EEOC Appeal No. 0120133080, 2015 WL 4397641 (July 16, 2015) represents another significant victory in the hard-fought battle for the rights of the LGBT community. This groundbreaking decision is the first of its kind to find that claims of discrimination based on "sexual orientation" may be brought under Title VII of the Civil Right Act of 1964.
Sharon Walker, Martha Larry, Merriom Hashim, Antoinette Clark, Sherry Mosley v. John M. McHugh, Secretary, Department of the Army