Attempt to Ban Official Time for Protecting Employees Falters After Pressure From Workers


A recent amendment targeting official time, an essential component of effective labor-management relations in the federal sector, was defeated in the House of Representatives this week after an intense call-in and lobbying campaign from federal employees.

Amendment 38 to the National Defense Authorization Act (H.R. 4310), filed by Rep. Phil Gingrey (R-GA), was defeated when the House Rules Committee determined the amendment was not in order.

The proposed amendment would have severely limited the official time union representatives use to represent employees in grievances, unfair labor practices, and discrimination cases.

The anti-union measure was almost attached to the Defense bill on just two days’ notice. NFFE-IAM members in Washington for the IAM Legislative Conference mobilized against this harmful provision on Capitol Hill, calling on House members to shoot down this anti-worker attack. Their message in the halls of Congress was echoed by thousands more throughout the country who called on Congress to defeat this amendment, which is nothing more than a thinly-veiled attempt to strip federal workers of a voice in their workplace.

“I’m proud of all the work our folks did this week to protect federal workers by making sure this amendment never saw the light of day,” said NFFE Legislative Director Randy Erwin. “Federal employees have been stepped on enough. We simply will not stand for attacks like these in Congress.”