GET NFFE E-NEWS
   

ACTION ALERT: Tell Congress to Protect Due Process Rights for VA Employees

Tuesday, July 28, 2015

(National Federation of Federal Employees)

Congress is on the verge of stripping due process rights from every non-management Veterans Affairs (VA) employee – including whistleblowers and the over 100,000 veterans employed by the VA.

Supporters of the dubiously-named “VA Accountability Act” (H.R. 1994) claim that the VA is unable to eliminate poor performers. In fact, the VA fired 2,247 employees for disciplinary or performance reasons in FY 2013 alone, more than any other cabinet-level agency, according to the Office of Personnel Management.

The House will hold a floor vote on the VA at-will employment bill on Wednesday, July 29.

Ultimately, H.R. 1994 would have a crippling effect on employee morale – resulting in higher turnover of employees and worsening the standards of care for the brave men and women who served our country, and all at a far greater cost to the American taxpayer.

Tell your Representative to vote NO on H.R. 1994.

Or, The Capitol Switchboard number is (202) 224-3121. They will direct you to the correct office from there.

* When contacting your Congressional Representative, be sure to do so off duty time, on your own computer, and as a constituent

###

Dear Rep.

I am writing to strongly urge you to oppose the so-called "VA Accountability Act," (H.R. 1994), when it comes to the House floor for a vote this week. H.R. 1994 will reduce accountability among the Veterans Affairs workforce by stripping due process rights from every non-management VA employee - including whistleblowers and the over 100,000 veterans employed by the VA.

One of the most significant misconceptions supporters of H.R. 1994 claim is that the VA is unable to eliminate poor-performers. In fact, the VA fired 2,247 employees for disciplinary or performance reasons in FY 2013 alone, more than any other Cabinet-level agency, according to data from the Office of Personnel Management. In FY 2014, the VA fired nearly 2,600 employees for cause. The assertion that the VA is incapable of operating within the current structure to handle, discipline and terminate poor-performers is simply a poorly-disguised attack on a workforce made up of over 100,000 American veterans.

A key provision of H.R. 1994 is extending probationary periods for Hybrid Title 38 employees to 18 months, while providing the Secretary unilateral discretion to extend the probationary period - resulting in severely limited appeal rights. The extension of probationary periods is an indefensible proposal, and would serve no purpose other than to silence potential whistleblowers of any protections necessary to expose abuse early in their careers.

The legislation also works to erode long-standing employee due process rights by setting unrealistic Merit Systems Protection Board (MSPB) and appeals adjudication timelines. H.R. 1994 would provide VA leadership unfettered power, adopting a policy ripe for corruption.

H.R. 1994 would have a crippling effect on employee morale - resulting in higher turnover of employees and worsening the standards of care for the brave men and women that served our country, and all at a far greater cost to the American taxpayer. I urge you to vote "NO" on H.R. 1994.

Sincerely,

[Full Name]

Add Comment

Your Name:

Email: (optional)

Comment Title (optional):

Comment Text:

Type the letters and numbers you see in the image.
click here if you can't read the image.