NFFE Delegates Gather for Convention, Elect New Leadership and Chart Path Forward


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Last week, delegates elected from NFFE Locals around the country descended on Lake Buena Vista Palace outside of sunny Orlando, Fla. for NFFE’s 50th National Convention. Delegates gathered to hear from a variety of government and labor leaders, elect new national leadership and chart the path the Union will take over the next four years in the form of bylaws amendments and convention resolutions. And after five days of rigorous work, NFFE-IAM members have emerged stronger, unified and a more transparent Union for the years to come.

While there were many unique storylines heading into National Convention, perhaps none are more compelling than the first private-sector Local attending and participating in the Union’s 50th National Convention. Following a change to the Union’s bylaws in 2012 allowing for private sector organizing, there has been a concentrated effort to diversify the Union’s membership. Delegates representing Correctional Employees Local 3 (CE-3), with the assistance of their National Business Representative Roosevelt Littlejohn Jr., arrived and registered at convention promptly (the first delegates to check in). Hector Garcia, Juan Castillo, Sally Gutierrez and Crystal Cruz traveled from Texas (where they are employed at detention facilities) to immerse themselves in the often tedious bylaw revision process and fully engage with the week’s variety of speakers and panels.

During the week, delegates heard from a variety of highly-regarded labor leaders, including: IAM International President Robert Martinez, Jr., National Association of Government Employees President David Holway and the United Defense Workers Coalition Chairman, Byron Charlton. Delegates also welcomed to the podium federal agency leaders, such as Susan Grundmann, Chair of the Merit Services Protection Board (MSPB) and former NFFE General Counsel to speak about the assault on due process protections in the federal sector.

Complementing the variety of dynamic speakers were numerous videos submitted by political leaders in Washington, DC, including: Sen. Kristin Gillibrand (NY), Sen. Jon Tester (MT), Rep. Frank LoBiondo (NJ), Sen. Heidi Heitkamp (ND), Sen. Tim Kaine (VA), Rep. Gerry Connolly (VA), Rep. Donna Edwards (MD), Rep. Derek Kilmer (WA) and Rep. Paul Tonko (NY). These leaders are some of the most distinct federal employee allies on Capitol Hill and outlined the numerous battles being waged in Washington over the pay, pensions and due process protections of federal employees. The videos were met with raucous applause from convention delegates as members of Congress urged delegates to get engaged in political battles to advance the interests of federal employees.

Before the week was out, delegates elected a new slate of National Officers (which can be found here) and approved numerous bylaws revisions and convention resolutions (which will be outlined in detail at a later date). Be sure to check back on the website for continued updates and reflections from NFFE’s 50th National Convention.

The elected delegates to NFFE’s 50th National Convention

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