NFFE Provides Testimony in Support of the Next Generation of Federal Employees Act
December 1, 2021
Today, the U.S. House of Representatives Subcommittee on Government Operations held a hearing on “The Future of Federal Work” and discussed new legislation entitled the “Building the Next Generation of Federal Employees Act,” also known as “NextGenFeds.” The National Federation of Federal Employees (NFFE) provided written testimony from National President Randy Erwin in support of the bill, which will revamp internships and fellowships within federal agencies to help build a modernized civil service.
The NextGenFeds Act will facilitate the process of filling open positions as career employees retire. “The federal workforce must be proactive in planning for the next generation of civilian employees and adjust to our country’s dynamic populace,” said President Erwin in his testimony. “It is necessary that the federal government take strategic action in its recruitment and hiring programs so that the civil service can continue to support our nation every day and carry out it’s critical missions.”
If passed, the bill will also require interns to be paid a fair wage. President Erwin testified that, “NFFE endorses the move to provide for a living wage to interns and fellows. Given the amount of debt incurred by students to pay for their educations, and given the increasing cost of living, a living wage is critical to ensure that federal internships and fellows programs are a financially accessible choice for all graduates, not just for students who can afford a non-paying internship. Further, the NextGenFeds Act will permit graduates of the Jobs Corps program to be eligible for federal internships, helping young people from disadvantaged communities establish a stable career path in civil service.”
“I am excited to endorse the NextGenFeds Act for a number of reasons,” said President Erwin. “The legislation is a key item if we want the federal workforce to maintain it’s standard of excellence. It will open the door to every young person who seeks a career within the civil service, while promoting diversity and inclusion. The next generation is ready to help move America forward and this bill will provide OPM the tools to build a workforce equipped for the future.”