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Kelley Calls Initial Meeting with Pistole Useful, Positive Step for Employees, Agency

Monday, August 23 2010

Washington, D.C.—The head of the National Treasury Employees Union (NTEU) today characterized as a “very useful and positive step forward for both employees and the agency” her initial meeting last Friday with John Pistole, administrator of the Transportation Security Administration (TSA).

The NTEU leader was able to bring to the TSA administrator’s direct attention the results of an NTEU-initiated survey of TSA employees, conducted by a respected private polling organization, showing that fully 85 percent of them understand and believe that collective bargaining would help improve the effectiveness of their agency.

That figure was included in a document President Kelley presented to Pistole highlighting employee views on significant workplace issues.

“I appreciated the opportunity to meet with (the administrator) and to discuss issues important to TSA and to (Transportation Security Officers),” President Kelley wrote in a follow-up message to the agency’s chief of staff.

Pistole currently is assessing the question of the grant of collective bargaining rights for TSA employees; these rights have been denied since the agency’s inception in 2001, and NTEU has been leading the fight to see that TSA employees have such rights to allow them to address a number of workplace issues.

Along with the strong showing for collective bargaining, the NTEU survey showed significant numbers of employees identifying the current TSA pay system as a problem, as well as benefits and workplace safety issues; performance evaluations; and promotions.

NTEU, which is the nation’s largest independent union of federal employees, is conducting an aggressive, nationwide organizing campaign among TSA employees, and represents many thousands of them at airports across the country.

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