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December 10, 2019

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Paid Parental Leave Provision: Latest NTEU Actions

Federal employees would have up to 12 weeks of paid parental leave under legislation made public late last night. This is welcome news for the federal workforce and for NTEU, which has strongly advocated for the program for years. Now NTEU is working to get it to final passage.

Earlier today, National President Tony Reardon sent a letter to all members of the House of Representatives asking for their support for the provision, part of a larger defense authorization bill. “Few federal employees can afford to take weeks of unpaid leave. The FMLA has been a terrific first step, but we believe that no federal employee should be forced to choose between a paycheck and caring for the newest member of the family,” the letter states.

This afternoon, President Reardon was on Capitol Hill at a press conference celebrating inclusion of the paid parental leave program in the bill.  He explained how this will be a life-changing program for federal employees and called on Congress to swiftly approve the measure.

Finally, in testimony submitted today to a key House committee, Reardon urged Congress to take the next step and consider expanding the program for employees with critically ill family members. He reiterated NTEU’s support for the Federal Employee Paid Leave Act that would allow employees time to take care of themselves or a family member with a serious health condition.


On Capitol Hill: above Chairwoman Carolyn Maloney and President Reardon at a Capitol Hill press conference on the paid parental leave provision in the defense bill. During his remarks Reardon thanked Chairman Adam Smith, Chairwoman Maloney and Rep. Chrissy Houlahan for their leadership. Pictured above right: Rep. Houlahan, Lee Saunders, AFSCME President and President Reardon.

NTEU Returned to Court in Shutdown Suit

Last week, NTEU was back in federal court arguing a case aiming to end government shutdowns.

The union’s lawsuit alleges that forcing federal employees to work without pay violates the Constitution by obligating funds that have not yet been appropriated by Congress. U.S. District Judge Richard J. Leon heard arguments on the government’s motion to dismiss the NTEU case.

National President Tony Reardon attended the hearing and spoke with media covering the arguments. Read more in: The Washington PostFederal News Network; Government Executive; and Federal Times.


Sen. Chris Van Hollen, National President Reardon Join Holiday Festivities

More than 300 NTEU members gathered for Chapter 282’s (FDA Headquarters) annual holiday lunch. This year, National President Tony Reardon was joined by Sen. Chris Van Hollen (D-MD) who provided a legislative update and answered questions from several members. Thank you to Chapter President Marsha Hayden, Chapter Vice President Mike Theodorakis and Chapter 282 for creating a great opportunity for their members.

 

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December 3, 2019

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Reardon Testifies on CBP Staffing Shortages

While CBP has made progress in filling Officer vacancies, National President Tony Reardon continues to fight for additional CBP personnel.

In a statement submitted yesterday at a House Homeland Security subcommittee field hearing in Santa Teresa, New Mexico, Reardon calls for the funding for additional CBP Officers, Agriculture Specialists and other personnel at ports of entry in Santa Teresa and nationwide.

Reardon cited studies showing that slowdowns at the U.S.-Mexico border cost the U.S. economy billions in output and hundreds of thousands of jobs. CBP Officers, Agriculture Specialists and Trade Enforcement Specialists are responsible for facilitating legitimate trade and travel through the ports, as well as interdicting illegal drugs, criminals, counterfeit goods, and dangerous food or plant products. For example, of all of the opioids seized by CBP, 88 percent were seized at the ports of entry.

According to CBP's own onboard staffing data and working staffing models, there is still a shortage of 2,700 CBP Officers and 721 Agriculture Specialists across ports of entry.

“NTEU is not alone in seeking increased funding to hire new CBP Officers and Agriculture Specialist at the ports,” wrote Reardon. “A diverse group of business, industry and union leaders have joined forces in support of legislation and funding to hire more Customs and Border Protection personnel and alleviate staffing shortages at the nation’s ports of entry.”

#GivingTuesday: Consider a FEEA Donation


Today is Giving Tuesday and if you are able, NTEU hopes you consider supporting the Federal Employee Education and Assistance Fund (FEEA). Donations help FEEA help provide emergency assistance and scholarships to federal employees and their families. NTEU is proud to serve on FEEA’s board. Learn more about the great work they do. 

 

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