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CELEBRATING TWO MASTER STORY SPINNERS AT TOP OF THEIR CRAFT
( florida panhandle, little dumpy lady, $600,000, a stranger, johnny cash )


Bailey White - Long Black Veil  (1 of 2)
( 3 mb )

Bailey White - Long Black Veil  (2 of 2)
( 3 mb )


Johnny Cash - Sunday Morning Coming Down
( 3 mb )



☀       April 25, 2018  ...  5th Cir.:  Robin Rivers  v. FedEx  ...   SHE ALLEGED RETALIATION AND RACE DISCRIMINATION AGAINST FEDEX.  ...   From November 2011 until November 2013, when she took leave, Prince- Rivers worked as a temporary driver for FedEx through Randstad. Prior to taking leave, she filed two separate Charges of Discrimination with the Texas Workforce Commission and Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (“EEOC”). First, on September 30, 2013, she alleged retaliation and race discrimination against FedEx. She explained that she was receiving more work and less pay than her Hispanic co-worker, and that, when she complained about it, her hours “were reduced significantly.” Then, on October 3, 2014, Prince-Rivers filed charges against both Randstad and FedEx, claiming both race and sex discrimination. She alleged that she was “paid . . . $12.63 per hour while [her] male, non-African American coworkers were paid $13 per hour and above.”   ...   COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)


☀       April 24, 2018  ...  FLRA:  Labor v. AFGE  ...   The grievant alleged that the Agency failed to pay him properly for certain duties. The Union filed a step-one grievance on his behalf, asserting that the Agency violated the equal-pay-for-equal-work provision of the parties’ collective-bargaining agreement, as well as equal-employment-opportunity (EEO) laws and regulations. The Agency denied the step-one grievance based, in part, on a determination that the grievant was challenging the classification of his permanent position at the General Schedule, Grade 13 (-) level.      In a subsequent, step-two grievance, the Union asserted that:  (1)  the Agency “fail‍[‍ed‍] to promote and properly pay and grade [‍the grievant‍] as a GS-14”;  (2)  “the work of . . . a [‍former‍] GS-14 ‍[‍ employee (the former employee)‍] was directly assigned to” the grievant after the former employee’s departure; and  (3)  “no . . . position description accurately captured the work . . . assigned to” the grievant.         After the Agency denied the step-two grievance, the parties went to arbitration.      Arbitrator Gloria Johnson found that a grievance was arbitrable because it sought a temporary promotion for an employee (the grievant), rather than the reclassification of the grievant’s position.      The main question before us is whether the grievance concerns a classification matter and is therefore precluded by § 7121(c)(5) of the Federal Service Labor-Management Relations Statute (the Statute).   ...   FLRA DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)


☀       April 23, 2018  ...  DcDc:  U.S. v. Williams  ...   On October 19, 2011, Officer Bryan Cutcliffe of the Florida State University Police Department pulled Williams over for speeding. When Officer Cutcliffe approached Williams’ vehicle, he detected “the odor of burnt marijuana.” He ordered Williams out of the car and searched him1 and his vehicle. The search revealed “small bits of cannabis,” a number of pre-paid gift cards, some receipts, and banking documentation.2 When Officer Cutcliffe questioned Williams about the pre-paid gift cards, Williams “appeared to get very nervous and he began to shake.” Rather than arrest Williams, however, Officer Cutcliffe confiscated the pre-paid gift cards and allowed Williams to leave the scene.     Two years later, on June 13, 2013, Deputy Michael Wheeler of the Claytaon County Sheriff’s Office stopped Williams for traveling seventy-six miles an hour in a zone with a speed limit of forty-five miles per hour. When Deputy Wheeler spoke with Williams at the window of his vehicle, Williams appeared “nervous and sweating.”     After removing Williams from the vehicle, the deputies handcuffed and searched him. The search revealed $3,500 in cash in his pocket.     The search of the vehicle uncovered a few thousand dollars in cash, a loaded handgun, more than twelve pre-paid debit cards, a laptop computer, two iPhones, and a Samsung phone. In the hearing, Deputy Wheeler testified that he could “smell marijuana coming from the vehicle” as he spoke with Williams.   ...   COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)


☀       April 20, 2018  ...  DcDc:  Sagar v. Steve Mnuchin  ...   Plaintiff Vidya Sagar was hired by the Internal Revenue Service (“IRS”) as an Information Technology Specialist at the GS-15 paygrade.     He was 62 years old at the time.     He was hired for a one-year probationary period and was terminated shortly before the year expired.     According to the notice of termination, the Department decided to fire Sagar based on his conduct and performance. Sagar, however, sees it differently and alleges that he was the victim of age discrimination.     Vidya Sagar brings this action against the Department to challenge his termination, asserting three claims under the Age Discrimination in Employment Act [...]. He contends, first, that he was terminated because of his age;     second, that the Department retaliated against him for engaging in ADEA protected activity;     and, third, that he was subjected to a hostile work environment because of his age.   ...   COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)


☀       April 18, 2018  ...  Fed. Cir.:  Wells v. MSPB  ...   A CAUTIONARY TALE ABOUT NOT MAKING MILITARY SERVICE DEPOSIT BEFORE RETIRING  ...   Wells served in the Navy from 1974 to 1979.     She subsequently worked for the General Services Administration between 1980 and 1984, and the Department of Health and Human Services from 1984 until her retirement from federal service in 2005.     OPM notified Wells that, because the Social Security Administration certified that she was eligible for Social Security benefits, “OPM was recomputing her civil service annuity to eliminate retirement credit for [her] post-1956 military service for which she had not made a pre-retirement deposit.”     The letter explained that the law “allows credit for military service performed after 1956 under both the Civil Service Retirement System and the Social Security system, if the employee pays a deposit for the service before his retirement,”     but that Wells failed to make the deposit “even though [she was] informed about the consequences.”   ...   COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)


☀       April 18, 2018  ...  FLRA:  Defense (DISA) v. AFGE  ...   THOSE UNION-LOVING FLRA REGIONAL DIRECTORS ARE SO DAMNED BIASED AGAINST MANAGEMENT.  ...   The Petitioner filed a petition seeking to consolidate Agency bargaining units represented by the Petitioner and its constituent locals.     In her attached decision and order, Federal Labor Relations Authority (FLRA) Regional Director Jessica Bartlett (RD) found that it was appropriate to consolidate eleven units into one larger unit, to be represented by the Petitioner.     The Agency and the American Federation of Government Employees, Local 2 (Local 2) filed, with the Authority, applications for review of the RD’s decision. On October 26, 2017, the Authority granted the applications but deferred action on the merits.     The main question before us is whether a clear and identifiable community of interest exists for the proposed consolidated unit.   ...   FLRA DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)


☀       April 17, 2018  ...  US Supreme Court:  Sessions v. Dimaya  ...   US SUPREME COURT TOSSES LAW USED TO DEPORT CONVICTED CRIMINALS.  ...   President Trump appointee, Neil Gorsuch, joined the usual liberal suspects (Kagan, Ginsburg, Breyer, Sotomayor) to form the majority.   ( Bloomberg ) -- The U.S. Supreme Court threw out a provision in federal immigration law that was used to deport foreigners convicted of serious crimes. The justices, voting 5-4 Tuesday on the core question, said the law's definition of "crime of violence" was so vague as to be unconstitutional.   ...   COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)


☀       April 17, 2018  ...  FLRA:  Justice v. AFGE  ...   On May 8, 2017, Arbitrator Vicki Peterson Cohen issued an award finding, as relevant here, that the Agency violated the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) and the parties’ collective-bargaining agreement by failing to pay certain employees (officers) for the time that they spent traveling during a one-hour period between their regular and overtime shifts. The Arbitrator directed the Agency to compensate the officers with overtime pay and to reimburse the officers’ mileage expenses (mileage‑reimbursement remedy). There are two main, substantive questions before us.     The first question is whether the mileage‑reimbursement remedy violates the doctrine of sovereign immunity.     The second question is whether the Arbitrator’s award of pay for travel time is contrary to the FLSA.   ...  FLRA DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)


☀       April 17, 2018  ...  Fed. Cl.:  Lucas v. United States  ...   ME TOO ... I WAS SEXUALLY ASSAULTED AT WORK OVER 30 YEARS AGO !.  ...   In the mid-1980s, plaintiff worked as a clerk-typist for the Department of Justice.     In her complaint, she alleges that she was sexually assaulted in the workplace in February 1985. See id. Following the incident, she attempted to file a complaint with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC), but believes the complaint was never submitted to the agency.     Thereafter, plaintiff alleges that she was reassigned to a different position, but given no official duties, in retaliation for complaining.     The alleged assault and subsequent retaliation for her decision to file an EEOC complaint occurred in 1985. The statute of limitations, therefore, ran six years later, in 1991.     In her reply, plaintiff indicates that she filed the instant complaint more than thirty years after the alleged offenses "due to the nature of the situation and the acknowledgement of this behavior now being addressed in society.     In its motion to dismiss, defendant argues that the court lacks jurisdiction to consider plaintiffs complaint for two reasons: (I) the allegations sound in tort, and (2) the claim accrued more than six years before the complaint was filed.   ...   COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)


☀       April 16, 2018  ...  FLRA:  VA (Kansas City ) v. AFGE  ...   WAS THE FLRA REGIONAL DIRECTOR INCOMPETENT? CORRUPT? A UNION TOOL?, ...  ...   On July 20, 2016, the Union petitioned Federal Labor Relations Authority (FLRA) Regional Director Sandra J. LeBold (RD) to clarify an existing bargaining unit at the Agency, and include seven Human Resources staffing assistants (staffing assistants). In the attached decision, the RD found that these employees are not excluded from the unit under § 7112(b)(3) of the Federal Service Labor-Management Relations Statute (Statute)[1] because they do not perform personnel work in other than a purely clerical capacity. The RD clarified the unit to include the staffing assistants on July 14, 2017.         On August 23, 2017, the Agency filed an application for review, and the Union filed an opposition on September 7, 2017. In an order dated October 23, 2017, the Authority granted review and deferred action on the merits.         The main question before us is whether the staffing assistants at issue are engaged in personnel work in other than a purely clerical capacity within the meaning of § 7112(b)(3).   ...   FLRA DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)


☀       April 13, 2018  ...  FLRA:  Labor v. AFGE  ...   As relevant here, the Union petitioned Federal Labor Relations Authority (FLRA) Regional Director Jessica Bartlett (the RD) to clarify the bargaining‑unit status of two employees. Before the RD, the Agency claimed, as relevant here, that the support specialist and the program analyst should be excluded from the bargaining unit because they are confidential employees under § 7103(a)(13) of the Statute. The RD concluded that the employees are not confidential.     The RD found that the employees are not confidential employees under § 7103(a)(13) of the Federal Service Labor‑Management Relations Statute (the Statute).[1]     Accordingly, she concluded that the employees should be included in the bargaining unit that the Union represents. In a December 15, 2017 order, the Authority granted review and deferred action on the merits.     The main question before us is whether the RD failed to apply established law by finding that the employees are not confidential employees.  ...   FLRA DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)


☀       April 12, 2018  ...  FLRA:  Justice (Prisons) v. AFGE  ...   In an award dated July 7, 2017, Arbitrator Robert Costello found that the Agency violated the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA)[1] and the parties’ collective-bargaining agreement by failing to pay certain employees (grievants) for the time that they spent traveling between their regular and overtime shifts.     The Arbitrator directed the Agency to compensate the grievants with overtime pay and to reimburse their mileage expenses. We consider one of the Agency’s exceptions.     The Agency argues that the award is contrary to a government-wide regulation.     Because the award conflicts with 5 C.F.R. § 551.422, an Office of Personnel Management (OPM) regulation implementing the FLSA, we set aside the award.  ...   FLRA DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)


☀       OPM:  ISSUANCE OF WEATHER AND SAFETY LEAVE REGULATIONS.

☀       April 11, 2018  ...  Fed. Cir.:  Kaplan v. U.S. (Air Force)  ...   THEY FEMALE-PAY-DISCRIMINATED AGAINST ME TOO!   ...   Dr. Kathleen Kaplan held several positions at the Air Force Office of Scientific Research. Dr. Kaplan was in the Demo [Pay] System science and engineering (DR) career path. Under the Lab Demo system, employees were evaluated and scored each year based on four factors: problem solving, communication, technology management, and teamwork and leadership.     Dr. Kaplan brought this action [...] alleging that her pay violated the statutory bar on sex discrimination stated in the Equal Pay Act [...].    (.pdf)   (.html)


☀       April 11, 2018  ...  DcDc:  Hudson  v. AFGE  ...   AFGE FIRED THIER BLACK MALE EMPLOYEE, TOO!  ...   In 2012, Plaintiff Eugene Hudson became the first black person elected to serve as     National Secretary-Treasurer for Defendant American Federation of Government Employees.     Despite being re-elected in 2015, he claims that the Union mistreated him, and ultimately fired him, because of his race in violation of Title VII and 42 U.S.C. [...].     AFGE now moves to dismiss, arguing that Plaintiff has failed to state a claim upon which relief may be granted.   ...   COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)


☀       April 11, 2018  ...  DcDc:  Rogers v. Smithsonian  ...   HE IS AN AFRICAN-AMERICAN MALE.   HIS SUPERVISORS ARE BOTH HISPANIC.  ...   Matthew Rogers is an African-American male who works as a Security Officer at the Smithsonian’s warehouse in Maryland. He has a certified disability for which he is entitled reasonable accommodation. His supervisor and assistant supervisor are both Hispanic.     Mr. Rogers has sued his employer for alleged discriminatory and retaliatory conduct due to race, disability, use of leave under the FMLA, and filing of EEO complaints.     The Complaint lists eight counts of action—Violation Civil Rights, Hostile Work Environment based on Race, Violation of ADA, Violation of the Rehabilitation Act, Violation of the FMLA, and Retaliation.   ...   COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)


☀       April 11, 2018  ...  DcDc:  Thomas v. WMATA  ...   HE HAS A HISTORY OF FILING EEOC DISCRIMINATION COMPLAINTS FOR RACE, AGE AND NATIONAL ORIGIN.  ...   Mr. Thomas is a 62-year-old U.S. citizen of Liberian (Africa) national origin. He currently works for Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority (WMATA). He has a history of filing EEOC complaints against his employer [...]     This case arises from WMATA’s decision not to promote Thomas. In February 2017, Thomas applied for a promotion to the open position of Deputy Chief Vehicle Engineer. The next month, WMATA rejected Thomas’s application, purportedly because he lacked the requisite ten years of management experience in transit engineering, which was part of the job description.     In this action, pro se plaintiff Ernest A. Thomas asserts age and national origin-based employment discrimination claims against his employer, WMATA.   ...   COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)


☀       April 10, 2018  ...  Fed. Cir.:  Mitrano v. Air Force  ...   FORM SF-86: THE MOST CRINGE-WORTHY FORM IN THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT  ...   The Air Force appointed Mr. Mitrano to a position as a Civil Engineer on January 11, 2016. In order to perform the duties associated with this position, Mr. Mitrano needed to obtain a secret security clearance [...].     On January 15, 2016, as part of the process for obtaining the necessary security clearance, the Air Force sent an email to Mr. Mitran0 instructing him to submit the required Standard Form 86 (Questionnaire For National Security PositionS).     As instructed, Mr. Mitrano submitted an SF-86 (Questionnaire For National Security Positions) form. The form indicated that he had been imprisoned for over twelve months.     On that basis, Mr. Mitrano was given a memorandum placing him on administrative leave indefinitely [...]. The Department of the Air Force removed Peter Mitrano from his position [...]. HERE, he appeals his Removal.  ...   COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)


☀       April 9, 2018  ...  FLRA:  JUSTICE (Prisons) v. AFGE  ...   ARBITRATOR'S AWARD EXCESSIVELY INTERFERES WITH MANAGEMENT’S RIGHTS TO ASSIGN WORK.  ...   Statement of the Case:     On July 6, 2017, Arbitrator Ed W. Bankston found that the Agency violated the parties’ agreement when it failed to staff the third floors of two housing units and, instead, assigned the duties affiliated with those floors to second-floor officers. He directed the Agency to staff the third floors of the housing units during the daytime. The Agency filed exceptions to his award on August 7, 2017.    The main question before us concerns whether the Agency has the right to determine when and where employees will work and how to best secure and safeguard the prison.    Specifically, we must determine whether the Arbitrator’s award is contrary to law, particularly management’s rights to assign work and to determine internal security practices under § 7106(a) of the Federal Service Labor-Management Relations Statute (Statute).       [...] we find that the award excessively interferes with those rights, and we vacate the award.  ...   FLRA DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)


☀       April 6, 2018  ...  11th Cir.:  Caporicci v. Chipotle  ... Lisa Caporicci was diagnosed with bipolar disorder when she was eighteen years old. She worked at chipotle mexican grill (Chipotle). Jared Miesel was the general manager of that location. On her last day at Chipotle, she started to feel “dizzy and disoriented.” She began “having issues serving customers.”    Miesel noticed Caporicci’s condition, took her off the line and sent her home. Caporicci testified that she “tried to explain to [Miesel] that her new medication was “messing with [her] and he told her that she should “go home and get some rest.”    After Caporicci was home, she had two phone conversations with Miesel. In the first call, Miesel “seem[ed] more empathetic.”    In the second call, Miesel told her, “I’m really sorry, but you just looked like you were on some shit, so you’re fired and you are not rehirable at Chipotle.”    Lisa Caporicci sued Chipotle, making claims that it discriminated against her based on her disability.    HERE, Lisa Caporicci appeals the district court’s grant of summary judgment in favor of her former employer, Chipotle Mexican Grill, Inc.   ...   COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)


☀       REALITY:  THE NOTE SALLY FOUND ON HER DESK: " Yo Look ... We all know that you've "Boinked" the majority of the men in the office.  First Gil... then Todd... now Rob.  How 'bout you get a grip ?!  Hope this book helps.  You need it. -- Your coworkers. "


☀       April 5, 2018  ...  5th Cir.:  Herster v. LSU (BOS)  ...   THE EMPLOYEE COMPLAINED, COMPLAINED, COMPLAINED UNTIL THE COURT SAID "ENOUGH" !!!  ...   During the interview process for his Professor of Law position at the Law Center, Sullivan (“Sullivan”) inquired about the possibility of his wife, Herster (“Herster”), also obtaining a faculty position at LSU. After receiving Herster’s credentials and qualifications, the School of Art agreed to employ Herster. The Law Center initially provided some of the funding for Herster’s position.     Once Herster began her employment at the School of Art, she immediately began to believe that she was being asked to do substantially more work than what her part-time Instructor position should entail. (So she began to complain, complain, complain, complain, ...)     Herster and her husband Sullivan appeal the dismissal of their claims against the Board of Supervisors of Louisiana State University (“LSU”) related to alleged gender discrimination.   ...   COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)


☀       OPM:  KEEPING APPLICANTS INFORMED THROUGHOUT THE FEDERAL HIRING PROCESS.

☀       OPM:  GUIDANCE FOR IDENTIFYING, ADDRESSING AND REPORTING CYBERSECURITY WORK ROLES OF CRITICAL NEED.

☀       April 2, 2018  ...  VAOIG:  ADMINISTRATIVE INVESTIGATION OF CONFLICT OF INTEREST, NEPOTISM, AND FALSE STATEMENTS WITHIN THE VA OFFICE OF GENERAL COUNSEL, WASHINGTON, DC.       The VA Office of Inspector General (OIG) Administrative Investigations Division received an allegation that Mr. Robert Fleck (SES), Chief Counsel of the Procurement Law Group (PLG) within the Office of General Counsel (OGC), actively and openly solicited, during a conference call with other Senior Executive Service (SES) employees, that the OGC hire his wife, Ms. KW (GS-14).1 One of the SES employees who participated in the conference call hired Ms. KW. The OIG found that Mr. Fleck had a conflict of interest and engaged in nepotism when he used his position as an SES manager in OGC’s Contract Operations to advocate for the employment of his wife and help establish for her a GS-14 e-Discovery attorney position on OGC’s Contract Litigation Team, a team that he managed.    The OIG determined Mr. Fleck shared VA sensitive information with his wife while she was being vetted for the VA position, and he and Ms. KW made false statements when questioned about it during their respective interviews.      Summary   Report


☀       April 2, 2018  ...  Fed. Cir.:  Bal v. Navy  ...   BAL: "THEY FIRED ME 4 MY DISABILITY" : NAVY: "WE FIRED HIM 4 TIMECARD FALSIFICATION." : FED CIR: "WE'RE REMANDING "BECAUSE YOUR DECISION DIDN'T ADDRESS DOUGLAS FACTORS."  ...   David Bal was employed by the Navy as a Materials Engineer at the Naval Air Weapons Center, Surface and Strike Warfare Analysis Branch, in China Lake, California for over thirteen years.     Mr. Bal appeals the final decision of the Merit Systems Protection Board sustaining his removal from the Navy. Mr. Bal argues that the Board improperly discounted his medical evidence of depression in assessing the reasonableness of his removal and failed to consider other relevant mitigating factors under Douglas v. Veterans Administration, [...].     We agree. For the reasons stated below, we vacate and remand the Board’s final decision for further proceedings consistent with this opinion.    COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)


☀       April 2, 2018  ...  Fed. Cir.:  Trinkl v. MSPB  ...   FED CIR :  " THE BOARD ERRED IN CONSIDERING AND DISMISSING TRINKL’S ALLEGATIONS INDIVIDUALLY, RATHER THAN VIEWING HIS CLAIMS COLLECTIVELY AS A SERIES OF ESCALATING INCIDENTS CULMINATING IN HIS RETIREMENT. "  ...   Trinkl was an economist with the Department of Commerce in the Bureau of Economic Analysis (“BEA”) from 1998 to his retirement in 2015. During his service to the agency, Trinkl received numerous “high quality” ratings related to his job performance.     In 2007, Howard Krakower was appointed as Trinkl’s first line supervisor. In 2013, Trinkl submitted a complaint to the BEA’s Human Resources Division, alleging that he had overheard Kurt Kunze, Trinkl’s second line supervisor, refer to older employees as the “peanut gallery.”     Trinkl and a fellow BEA employee also observed Kunze push another agency employee into a wall.     Subsequently, Trinkl alleges that he endured a “near-physical” attack from his supervisors Krakower and Trinkl’s amended petition before the Board alleges that this event took place in October of 2013.     On October 31, 2014, Trinkl submitted an Application for Immediate Retirement, and indicated that he wished to retire because he no longer felt safe working at the agency “due to reported supervisory threats and violence.”    COURT DECISION:  (.pdf)   (.html)


☀       March 30, 2018  ...  PaSc:  Com v. Turner  ...   YOU MAKE THE CALL: AN ATTEMPTED RAPE / ATTEMPTED SEXUAL ASSAULT CASE.  ...  HER ACCOUNT OF THE INCIDENT:  Shortly after midnight on March 6, 2012, the victim, Y.W., exited a store along with Shaneika Stephenson. Appellant, who was a casual acquaintance of Y.W., was outside the store and blocked her progress. Appellant grabbed the victim’s jacket and told her, “Bitch, you gonna suck my d--- and we gonna f---” while reaching toward his zipper. Appellant started to kiss the victim and tried to feel her breasts, but she was able to move his hand. Appellant, still holding on to the victim’s jacket, began choking her. He pushed her against the wall and she resisted, causing the two to fall to the ground.     Meanwhile, Ms. Stephenson ran into the street for help. A car stopped and the driver, a large male, hurried over to assist. The unidentified driver yelled at Appellant and demanded that he stop. Appellant put his hands in the air, and the victim was able to escape and call 911.     THIS APPEAL:  Curtis Turner appeals from the judgment of sentence of four to eight years imprisonment followed by five years probation imposed following his non-jury convictions for attempted rape, attempted sexual assault, unlawful restraint, indecent assault, terroristic threats, and simple assault..  ...   COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)


☀       March 29, 2018  ...  VAOIG:  THIS IS REALLY BAD: REVIEW OF ALLEGED UNSECURED PATIENT DATABASE AT THE VA LONG BEACH HEALTHCARE SYSTEM.       The OIG substantiated the allegation that an unauthorized Microsoft Access database was created by LBHCS SCI employees to capture patient demographics and to provide a repository for all SCI Centers to track patient data. Consistent with the allegation, the OIG team found multiple instances of databases that hosted SPI in violation of VA policy. It also substantiated that veteran SPI was hosted on an external server at the University of Southern California without a formal Data Use Agreement authorizing the activity. In addition, the OIG team noted this server could be accessed from the internet using default logon credentials.      Summary   Report

☀       March 29, 2018  ...  DcDc:  Savage v. HHS  ...   Plaintiff Wanda Savage worked for the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. She claims that, during her tenure, the Department took a host of discriminatory and retaliatory actions against her based on her race, sex, and disability status; that it retaliated against her for filing a complaint with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission; and that it failed to reasonably accommodate her disability. The Department has moved for summary judgment.  ...  DECISION:  (.pdf)   (.html)

☀       March 29, 2018  ...  FLRA:  AFGE v. DFAS  ...   The Union challenges the Arbitrator’s procedural-arbitrability determination on essence grounds. Specifically, the Union asks the Authority to find that the Arbitrator erred in interpreting the collective‑bargaining agreement when the Arbitrator found that the Union untimely invoked arbitration.    (.pdf)   (.html)

☀       OPM:  Pay-Related Legislative Changes in the National Defense Authorization Act, FY 2018

☀       March 28, 2018  ...  FLRA:  AFGE v. HUD  ...   Statement of the Case:     AFGE filed a grievance alleging that the Agency failed to consult with the Union prior to its decision to relocate its office in Boise, Idaho. Arbitrator Eduardo Escamilla concluded that the grievance was not arbitrable because it was untimely, denied the grievance, and ordered the parties to split all arbitration fees and charges evenly.     The Union excepts to the award, raising four substantive questions.     The first question is whether the procedural-arbitrability determination is based on nonfacts, but for which the Arbitrator would have reached a different result.     The second question is whether the Arbitrator exceeded his authority by making a procedural-arbitrability determination.     The third question is whether the Arbitrator failed to conduct a fair hearing.     The fourth question is whether the Arbitrator’s ruling to split the arbitration fees and charges evenly between the parties fails to draw its essence from the parties’ collective-bargaining agreement.   ...   FLRA DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)


☀       March 27, 2018  ...  VAOIG:  VAOIG FINDS VA HOSPITAL PERSONNEL SECURITY INVESTIGATION PROGRAM IN COMPLETE DISARRAY.      The VA OIG evaluated controls over the adjudication of background investigations at VA medical facilities to determine whether adjudication actions were timely completed and reliably recorded. The OIG found VA did not effectively manage the personnel suitability program to ensure investigations were completed for facility staff and estimated that about 6,200 required investigations were not initiated.     Adjudicators had not been reviewing investigations in a timely manner and suitability staff were not maintaining the required official personnel records.     These irregularities occurred because the Office of Operations, Security, and Preparedness (OSP) did not monitor compliance with program requirements.     Furthermore, OSP and the Veterans Health Administration (VHA) did not effectively manage human capital or ensure that sufficient and appropriate staff were assigned suitability functions.    Summary ... Report


☀       March 27, 2018  ...  7th Cir.:  Martinez v. American Airlines  ...   AFTER AN ON JOB INJURY, AIRLINE CAN'T FIRE ME. EVEN IF I CAN'T WORK. NEVER!  ...   John Martinez, a former aircraft mechanic for American Airlines, suffered serious injuries in a work accident that left him hospitalized for weeks, bedridden for more than a year, and in need of more than a dozen surgeries.     After his accident, Martinez took a medical leave of absence.     American terminated Martinez’s employment after he had been on medical leave for five years. Martinez sued American for violations of the Americans with Disabilities Act based on discrimination, failure to accommodate, and retaliation.     The district court granted American’s motion for summary judgment.     On appeal, Martinez argues that the district court erred by granting summary judgment for American on his failure to accommodate claim and by rejecting his claim that American failed to engage in the interactive process.   ...   COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)


☀       March 26, 2018  ...  SC.NY:  Snickles v. New York  ...  ME TOO = WE WERE ALL VICTIMS OF SEX HARASSMENT AND DISCRIMINATION BY SAME BOSS, HONESTLY. ( WHERE IS OUR CHECKS ? )  ...   These consolidated appeals concern orders issued in six similar claims, in which each claimant sought to recover damages under several theories. All of the claims arise from allegations that former New York State Assemblyman Dennis Gabryszak, who employed all six claimants in various capacities, engaged in acts of sexual harassment and employment discrimination against claimants, spanning nearly a decade.  ...   COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)


☀       March 23, 2018  ...  DcDc:  Welch v. Powell  ...   SMITHSONIAN INSTITUTION DISCRIMINATION MADE ME PEE MYSELF  ...   Plaintiff, an employee of the Smithsonian Institution (“Smithsonian”), brings this action against Defendant David. J. Skorton, the Secretary of the Smithsonian. Mr. Welch alleges that the Smithsonian failed to accommodate his disability, intentionally discriminated against him on the basis of disability, retaliated against him after he filed Equal Employment Opportunity (“EEO”) complaints, and subjected him to a hostile work environment, all in violation of the Rehabilitation Act.   ...   COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)


☀       March 23, 2018  ...  2d Cir.:  Ayala v. Postal  ...   Plaintiff-appellant Miledys Ayala, pro se, appeals from a judgment in favor of the United States Postal Service (“USPS”) and the National Association of Letter Carriers, AFL-CIO (“NALC”) in her employment discrimination action. Ayala alleged national origin and age discrimination, as well as retaliation, in violation of Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 [...] and the Age Discrimination in Employment Act of 1967 (“ADEA”,[...]. She also asserted a claim against NALC for breach of its duty of fair representation (“DFR”).   ...   COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)


☀       March 22, 2018  ...  9th Cir.:  Pharrell Williams  v. Frankie Gaye  ...   MORE  “BLURRED LINES”   v.   “GOT TO GIVE IT UP”   ...   [Pharrell Williams, Clifford Harris, Robin Thicke, I Like’Em Thicke Music, etc]    v   [Frankie Gaye, Marvin Gaye III, Nona Gaye, Interscope Records; Universal Music, etc].  ...   COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)


☀       March 21, 2018  ...  FLRA:  NAVY v. IFPTE  ...   NAVY WAS A MERE FIFTY-TWO MINUTES LATE.  ...   In October 2016, the Union grieved the Agency’s alleged failure to comply with a Federal Service Impasses Panel (FSIP) order concerning the remodeling of one of its facilities. The Arbitrator sustained the grievance and ordered the Agency to comply with the FSIP order.         Statement of the Case:   The Agency filed exceptions to an award of Arbitrator Marilyn H. Zuckerman fifty-two minutes after midnight on the 31st day after service of the award.       The question before us is whether the Agency’s exceptions should be dismissed as untimely.   ...   FLRA DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)


☀       March 21, 2018  ...  DcDc:  Nytes v. Trustify  ...   The plaintiff, who “suffers from . . . Bipolar Disorder alleges that during his employment with Trustify, he “disclosed his disability to his managers at Trustify, and “on more than one occasion, requested reasonable accommodation for his disability, specifically requests for a particular “work schedule.         The plaintiff further alleges that in response to his requests, defendant “Trustify refused to engage in the required interactive process with [him] and refused [him] an accommodation for his disability.         Thereafter, the plaintiff “experienced a period of decompensation . . . because of his disability, ...”    COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)


☀       March 19, 2018  ...   SCREWED!!!   HE'S SO PROUD THAT THEY FIRED THE GUY 2 DAYS BEFORE HIS LONG ANNOUNCED RETIREMENT DATE.  ...   After reading numerous comments on social media this weekend, many Feds are learning what others have known for a long time; the general public is extremely resentful of Federal employee's pay, health insurance and retirement benefits.    Tread carefully.


☀       March 19, 2018  ...  11th Cir.:  EEOC v. Exel  ...   A jury awarded the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (the “EEOC”) and Contrice Travis back pay, compensatory damages, and punitive damages after finding that Travis’s employer, Exel, Inc., discriminated against her because of her sex.         The discrimination occurred when Dave Harris, Travis’s supervisor, denied her a promotion in favor of Michael Pooler, a male employee. After the verdict, Exel filed a renewed motion for judgment as a matter of law.         The district court denied Exel’s motion as to liability, but granted it as to the jury’s punitive damages award.         Travis and the EEOC now appeal the vacatur of the jury’s punitive damages award, and Exel cross-appeals the denial of its motion as to liability.   ...   COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)


☀       March 16, 2018  ...  DcDc:  Lopez v. CIA  ...   DON'T FUNK WITH THE CIA !  ...   Rodlqwlii ilohg klv ruljlqdo frpsodlqw rq -dqxdu\ &rpso >'nw 'hihqgdqwv ilohg dq dqvzhu rq 0dufk iroorzhg e\ d prwlrq iru mxgjphqw rq wkh sohdglqjv 'hiv $qvzhu >'nw 'hiv 0rw. Iru - rq wkh 3ohdglqjv >'nw 3odlqwlii uhvsrqghg wr ghihqgdqwv prwlrq e\ furvv prylqj iru vxppdu\ mxgjphqw exw kh dovr ilohg d prwlrq iru. Ohdyh wr dphqg klv frpsodlqw 3o v 5hvs wr 'hiv 0rw iru - rq wkh 3ohdglqjv lq 6xss ri 3o v &urvv0rw iru 6xpp >'nw 3o v 0rw iru. Hdyh wr )loh dq $p &rpso iru ,qmxqfwlyh 5holhi >'nw 7kh &rxuw judqwhg sodlqwlii v prwlrq.   ...   COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)


☀       March 15, 2018  ...  ScSc:  IN THE MATTER OF JOHN SWAN  ...   FOOLISH, DO-GOODER ATTORNEY GETS HIS PUNISHMENT. ... MAKES HIS DO-BAD PROFESSION LOOK BAD.  ...   MATTER A:    Respondent represented Client in a criminal matter. Concerned that Client was suffering from a medical emergency and that the medical treatment Client was receiving in jail was inadequate, respondent paid Client's bond. When Client ran out of money to pay for the motel room where she was living, and was at risk of having to live on the street, respondent, with his wife's permission, allowed Client to stay at respondent's house with respondent and his wife for two to three nights         MATTER B:    On several occasions, respondent made sexually inappropriate comments to Client on the telephone while she was in jail, and on one occasion did the same with another client who was in jail. There is no evidence, nor have the clients claimed, respondent had sexual relations or engaged in any other inappropriate or unwarranted touching with either client, including with Client while she was staying in his home. There is also no evidence respondent requested sexual services in exchange for anything.         MATTER C:    On one occasion, respondent delivered electronic cigarettes to two clients in jail.   ...   COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)


☀       March 12, 2018  ...  Fed Cir.:  Holton v. Navy  ...   Scott Holton was formerly employed by the Department of the Navy as a rigger supervisor at the Portsmouth Naval Shipyard (“PNS”). Mr. Holton had been employed at the shipyard since January 8, 2007.         On March 11, 2015, Mr. Holton’s crew was using a portal crane to move submarine covers from the upper staging area to the landing area of Dry Dock 2. During the movement around this curve on March 11, the crane boom struck Building 343, causing roughly $30,000 in damage.         Navy Shipyard Portsmouth [...] allows post-accident drug testing of employees, after an accident causing damage in excess of $10,000 [...]         The members of the crane team were notified that they would drug tested due to the severity of the accident.         Mr. Holton’s sample was tested twice and found positive for marijuana both times. Mr. Holton’s test result was 150 times greater than the allowable marijuana testing cutoff.         On May 15, 2015, the Navy proposed his removal [...] the Executive Director removed him, effective July 8, 2015.         Mr. Holton appealed his dismissal to the Board.         Here, Scott Holton petitions for review of the decision of the Merit Systems Protection Board (“Board”) affirming his removal.  ...   COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)


☀       March 9, 2018  ...  FLRA:  AFGE v. Army  ...   On October 7, 2016, the Agency notified the Union that it was implementing a two-year probationary period for certain employees pursuant to 10 U.S.C. § 1599e. The Union invoked bargaining but, after several attempts to schedule a time for impact and implementation bargaining, filed a ULP charge (first ULP charge) against the Agency. The Union withdrew the first ULP charge after the parties reached a settlement agreement. Under this agreement, the Agency agreed to bargain to the extent required by the Statute over the Union’s proposals.         After the parties entered into the settlement agreement, the Union resubmitted its proposals to the Agency. In response, the Agency informed the Union that the Agency was not required to negotiate over the Union’s proposals because they were either outside the scope of the proposed change or not related to conditions of employment.         In response, the Union filed another ULP charge (second ULP charge) on June 27, 2017, alleging that the Agency repudiated the settlement agreement pertaining to impact and implementation bargaining.   ...   FLRA DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)


☀       March 8, 2018  ...  VAOIG:  Critical Deficiencies at the Washington DC VAMC.       This report is meant to not only improve conditions at the DC VAMC, but also to serve as a roadmap for other VA medical facilities and to improve integrated reviews and oversight by Veterans Integrated Service Networks and VA central offices.         The OIG found that critical deficiencies at the DC VAMC were pervasive and persistent—often spanning many years—but were not successfully remediated by leaders at multiple levels within VA. These deficiencies impacted core medical center functions that healthcare providers need to effectively provide quality care. The report details the DC VAMC’s failures in ensuring supplies and equipment reached patient care areas when needed, processing and sterilizing instruments, managing and securing assets, maintaining cleanliness, providing timely prosthetic devices, properly reporting and analyzing patient safety events, and receiving the staffing and leadership needed for sustainable change. The OIG did not find evidence of adverse clinical outcomes, a condition that is largely attributable to front-line care providers who were committed to providing the best possible care by borrowing supplies, improvising, or personally ensuring patients received what they needed. The OIG made 40 recommendations and VA concurred with each one. VA also provided detailed action plans on how the recommendations are going to be implemented and identified the progress they have already made.      Summary   Report


☀       March 7, 2018  ...  FLRA:  Air Force v. AFGE  ...   Statement of the Case:     After the Agency filed exceptions to an arbitration award, the Authority’s Office of Case Intake and Publication (CIP) ordered the Agency to show cause, by a specific date, why the exceptions should not be dismissed as untimely (show-cause order). Although the Agency responded to the show-cause order, its response was untimely.         Accordingly, CIP dismissed the Agency’s exceptions (dismissal order).         Now, the Agency has filed a motion for reconsideration of the dismissal order. Because the Agency’s arguments are untimely, we do not consider them.   ...   FLRA DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)


☀       March 7, 2018  ...  6th Cir.:  Golden v. [Burger King’]  ...   AFRICAN-AMERICAN MALE; BURGER KING MANAGER; MEMPHIS.  ...   Golden began working for MIC in September 2010 as a fast-track manager, and, in December of that year, was transferred to Burger King’s Summer Avenue location in Memphis, Tennessee as the general manager. Golden’s direct supervisor was district manager Kellie Barksdale, and it is disputed how Barksdale treated Golden throughout his employment.         Golden, who is an African-American male, contends that he was denied raises, evaluations, promotions, and vacation days while his white and female counterparts received those benefits.1 Golden contends that Barksdale made discriminatory comments towards him and his staff. For example, Golden stated in an affidavit that Barksdale would refer to President Barack Obama as “your President,” and that because he was her first black male general manager, she referred to him as her “lab rat.”         He also averred that Barksdale said that black managers always failed “because of drugs, some kind of sexual harassment charge, or money missing, or messing with a minor.”   ...   COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)


☀       March 7, 2018  ...  4th Cir.:  Cooper v. Smithfield  ...  INFLICTION OF EMOTIONAL DISTRESS; DISPARATE TREATMENT; WRONGFUL TERMINATION; RETALIATION   ...   Plaintiff-Appellant Lisa Cooper is a former employee of Defendant-Appellee The Smithfield Packing Company (Smithfield). Between 1995 and 2011, Cooper was employed by Smithfield, save for a short period when she had been terminated and then reinstated for reasons unrelated to this case.         According to allegations in Cooper’s Fourth Amended Complaint, Lowery sexually harassed her on a regular basis between 2007 and 2011, repeatedly asking her to sleep with him, threatening her when she refused to sleep with him, physically brushing up against her, demeaning her relationship with her husband, and requiring her to work in close proximity with him for no apparent reason.         This pattern of abuse culminated in July 2011, when Cooper reported Lowery’s behavior to Smithfield’s human resources department (HR). After her initial verbal report, Cooper was asked by HR to provide a written statement, which she submitted the following day.         The next day, while Smithfield continued to investigate the claims, Cooper resigned.         Cooper timely filed a claim with the EEOC, alleging discrimination, harassment, and retaliation arising from Lowery’s alleged pattern of sexual abuse.  ...   COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)


☀       March 5, 2018  ...  DcDc:  Brookens v. Labor  ...   Brookens is a former DOL economist with degrees in law and economics.         DOL fired him in 2008.         He then filed grievances for arbitration, claiming, among other things, that his firing was both the result of unlawful age and race discrimination and in retaliation for his participation in protected union activity (such as a grievance he had filed in 1999).         In 2012, an arbitrator disagreed and rejected the claims. Brookens appealed the arbitrator’s decision to the MSPB, which referred the case to an administrative law judge (“ALJ”).   ...   COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)


☀       March 2, 2018  ...  5th Cir.:  Mengistu v. MVSU  ...   Tadesse Mengistu is an Ethiopian-born U.S. citizen and an associate professor in the Department of Business Administration at Mississippi Valley State University. In 2013, his department hired a candidate from South Korea with substantial private sector experience as an assistant professor. Mengistu later discovered that the newly hired assistant professor made more than he did and sued. He alleged that the university and department chair Jongchai Kim (who happens to be Korean) discriminated against Mengistu by paying the newly hired professor a higher salary despite his lower rank and lesser qualifications.   ...   DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)


☀       March 2, 2018  ...  FLRA:  Prisons v. AFGE  ...   On November 7, 2016, Arbitrator Vern E. Hauck issued an award finding, in relevant part, that the Agency violated the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA)[1] by failing to compensate two types of employees (officers) – relief officers and non-relief officers – for activities that they performed before and after their assigned shifts. As a remedy, the Arbitrator directed the Agency to compensate the officers with overtime pay.         There are two main questions before us.         The first question is whether the award is contrary to the FLSA and the Portal-to-Portal Act (the Act)[2] because it directs the Agency to compensate relief and non-relief officers, respectively, for the time that they spent traveling to and from their duty posts.         The second question is whether the awarded remedy is deficient.   ...   FLRA DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)


☀       March 1, 2018  ...  10th Cir.:  Winston v. Ross  ...   THE VICTIM AND THE COURT.  ...   THE VICTIM :   Deborah L. Winston sued her former employer, the National Weather Service (NWS), an agency of the United States Department of Commerce, under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and the Rehabilitation Act for discrimination on the basis of disability and for unlawful retaliation.         Ms. Winston’s lawsuit asserted that (1) NWS discriminated against her by failing to provide reasonable accommodations for her disability, and (2) it retaliated against her on several occasions for requesting reasonable accommodations.         She appeals the district court’s grant of summary judgment in favor of the National Weather Service.    THE COURT :   The record shows that Ms. Winston’s performance evaluation was generally positive, she ultimately received time off to vote, and the letter of caution was premised on mistakes she admitted to having made.         Ms. Winston has not shown that NWS’s requiring a doctor’s note for sick leave or that exercising additional scrutiny of her performance amounted to materially adverse action.   ...   COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)


☀       March 1, 2018  ...  DcDc:  Pars v. CIA  ...   DON'T FUNK WITH THE CIA!.  ...   Mr. Pars is a veteran employee of the ClA.         In December 2014, he began an one-year assignment as the Deputy Chief of Base, a management position, at a base located in a conflict Zone.         In this position, he allegedly observed certain “unusual and inappropriate” behaviors of the Chief of Base (“COB”) which he feared “negatively impacted the Base’s ability to meet its mission of assisting Intelligence Community (lC) and US military partners, and endangered the lives of personnel.”         For example, the COB allegedly often spent time cooking, baking, socializing, entertaining, exercising, and shopping, and insisted on traveling in areas of indirect fire attack to perform certain of these activities, putting herself and other military personnel in danger.         In one instance, the COB and her personnel allegedly traveled through an area that was hit by a rocket ten minutes later. In another instance, the COB allegedly missed a meeting With a senior U.S. military official in order to cook.         The COB also allegedly told Mr. Pars that she was “horribly depressed” ` and missed her family. According to Mr. Pars, she selected certain individuals to become her “adopted sons,” and gave preferential treatment to those individuals, entertaining them and permitting them to shirk their work responsibilities.         In or around January 2015, upon advice from the base’s Psychological Officer, Mr. Pars disclosed his concerns to the “Chief,” the next person in the chain of command. [After] the Chief allegedly relayed Mr. Pars’ disclosure to the COB, they allegedly retaliated against Mr. Pars by excluding him from key 'meetings, micromanaging his work, and exhibiting “belligerent and threatening behavior” towards him.   ...   COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)


☀       February 28, 2018  ...  9th Cir.:  Duggan v. Defense  ...   Petitioner George Duggan brought this action under the Whistleblower Protection Act against the Department of Defense, alleging that the Department took several adverse personnel actions against him in retaliation for his protected disclosures about misconduct at the Defense Contract Audit Agency (“DCAA”). Following an unsuccessful appeal to the Merit Systems Protection Board (“Board”), Petitioner timely seeks review.   ...   COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

☀       February 28, 2018  ...  9th Cir.:  Johnen v. MSPB  ...   Petitioner Michael Johnen alleges that the United States Department of the Army terminated him and excluded him from his work site because he had made complaints that are protected under the Whistleblower Protection Act.   ...   COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)


☀       February 27, 2018  ...  2d Cir.:  Zarda v. Altitude  ...   SECOND CIRCUIT PANEL SAYS GAYS ARE "ME TOO" FOR SEXUAL DISCRIMINATION COMPLAINTS.  ...   Donald Zarda brought this suit against his former employer alleging, inter alia, sex discrimination in violation of Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 (“Title VII”)[...]. In particular, Zarda claimed that he was fired after revealing his sexual orientation to a client.         The United States District Court for the Eastern District of New York (Bianco, J.) granted summary judgment to the defendants on the ground that Zarda had failed to show that he had been discriminated against on the basis of his sex.         We convened this rehearing en banc to consider whether Title VII prohibits discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation such that our precedents to the contrary should be overruled.         We now hold that sexual orientation discrimination constitutes a form of discrimination “because of . . . sex,” in violation of Title VII, and overturn Simonton and Dawson v. Bumble & Bumble,   ...   (.pdf)   (.html)


☀       February 26, 2018  ...  FLRA:  Prisons v. AFGE  ...   On October 3, 2016, Arbitrator Kathleen Miller issued an award finding that the Agency violated the parties’ agreement and the Federal Service Labor-Management Relations Statute (Statute)[1] when it reserved certain assignments, days off, and shifts for non-bargaining-unit employees before giving bargaining-unit employees the opportunity to bid on assignments, days off, and shifts as well as when it allowed non-bargaining-unit employees to participate in the bidding process under the parties’ agreement.         On November 2, 2016, the Agency filed five substantive exceptions.         This case primarily turns on one question—whether, as the Agency argues, the award is contrary to law because it is contrary to its management rights under § 7106 of the Statute. In order to answer this question, we take this opportunity to reevaluate how we analyze exceptions alleging that an award is contrary to a management right under § 7106 of the Statute.         Under our new standard, we find that the award excessively interferes with the Agency’s management rights to assign employees and to assign work. [...]   ...   FLRA DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)


☀       February 23, 2018  ...  DcDc:  Banks v. Conner  ...   AGRICULTURE DISPUTES DECISION THAT HER REMOVAL FROM SES WAS SEX BASED.  ...   Plaintiff Denise Banks brought this action under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 against Defendant Secretary of the U.S. Department of Agriculture (“USDA” or “Defendant”), alleging, among other things, that she was discriminatorily removed from her Senior Executive Service position while employed at USDA based on her sex and race.         Plaintiff’s discrimination claims survived summary judgment and proceeded to trial.         At trial, the jury agreed that Plaintiff’s sex was a motivating factor in her demotion and returned a damages award of $100,000. The jury, however, found in favor of USDA on Plaintiff’s race discrimination claim.         The jury’s verdict lies at the heart of the parties’ motions that are now before the court. In a motion filed under Rule 50 of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure, USDA argues that the verdict cannot be sustained and asks the court to enter judgment as a matter of law in its favor on Plaintiff’s sex discrimination claim.         [...] Plaintiff, on the other hand, maintains that the verdict should be upheld and, by her own motion, seeks an equitable award consisting of reinstatement to the Senior Executive Service, back pay, and a clean employment record.  ...   COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)


☀       February 22, 2018  ...  DcDc:  Robinson-Douglas v. Coastal  ...   WHEN WOMEN ARE DISCIPLINED FOR CLEAR ACTS OF MISCONDUCT, SOME FALSELY CLAIM SEX DISCRIMINATION AND SEXUAL HARASSMENT AS REAL REASON.  ...   Plaintiff Content Robinson-Douglas v(“plaintiff’) brings this action against her former employer, defendant Coastal International Security, Inc. (“defendant” or “Coastal”) to challenge her allegedly unlawful termination. In her amended complaint, plaintiff contends that Coastal violated Title VII of the Civil Rights Act [...] by discriminating against her on the basis of sex and retaliating against her for engaging in statutorily protected activities.         Coastal counters that plaintiff Was terminated not on the basis of sex or as an act of retaliation, but because plaintiff failed a security test and committed various infractions of company policy While stationed as a security guard at the Department of Commerce (“DOC”).         Coastal has thus moved for summary judgment on all claims. Upon consideration of the parties’ submissions andthe entire record, defendant’s motion for summary judgment is GRANTED.   ...   COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)


☀       February 22, 2018  ...  Fed. Cir.:  Lockwood v. DVA  ... Petitioner petitions for review of an arbitration decision sustaining his indefinite suspension from employment with the Department of Veterans Affairs (“VA”).         Petitioner is employed as a firefighter at the VA Medical Center near Alexandria, Louisiana. In July 2014, the VA police began an investigation into allegations that the petitioner was stalking female employees at the hospital facility.         As part of the investigation, a VA police officer filed a series of police investigative reports in October 2014. In the initial report, dated October 2, 2014, the officer recounted statements made by five individuals who reported that the petitioner had followed female employees around the medical campus; had entered an employee’s vehicle uninvited; had engaged in unwanted physical contact with one employee; and had “followed other employees off campus to their residences” and “followed other female employees around town.” Some of the women stated that the petitioner had made them feel uneasy and unsafe.         A follow-up report dated October 7, 2014, described additional allegations of stalking, including a statement from one employee that the petitioner’s constant presence had caused her anxiety and fear. She added that she could not work late when needed “due to the fact that he is constantly around and watching her.” In another report, the officer described an incident that he personally observed in which the petitioner sprinted toward an employee and then followed a few paces behind her before abruptly leaving the area when he noticed the police officer’s presence.         On October 15, 2014, two officers from the VA police department notified the petitioner that there was a warrant for his arrest and transported him to the local sheriff’s office where he was booked on three counts of stalking.  ...   COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)


☀       February 21, 2018       NO NEW DECISIONS, INFO. SORRY.


☀        AFTER A 32 YEAR STERLING CAREER, BLACK WOMAN TAKES THE FALL FOR VA SECRETARY'S WHITE WIFE'S AND WHITE BUDDIES' MISCONDUCT
thanks 4 your service.

☀       February 16, 2018  ...  DcDc:  Parks v. Giant Food   ...   THREATENED,TRANSFERRED, WRITTEN UP, TERMINATED.      Tony D. Parks was formerly employed at various Giant Food grocery stores. On April 3, 2017, he brought a law suit against Giant in D.C_ Superior Court, alleging that after being promoted he “was not given the proper raise and after he filed a “retaliation suit” he was “threatened by a manager,transferred, written up then terminated.”   ...   COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)


☀       February 15, 2018  ...  VAOIG:  ADMINISTRATIVE INVESTIGATION – VA SECRETARY AND DELEGATION TRAVEL TO EUROPE.       The 11-day trip included two extensive travel days and three-and-a-half days of official events—with a cost to VA of at least $122,334.      The group’s schedule, however, included significant time for preplanned tourist activities by Secretary Shulkin, his wife, and others on the delegation.         After a thorough investigation, OIG’s findings included (1) the Chief of Staff’s alteration of a document and misrepresentations to ethics officials caused Secretary Shulkin’s wife to be approved as an “invitational traveler,” which authorized VA to pay her travel costs (although only airfare was claimed); (2) Secretary Shulkin improperly accepted a gift of Wimbledon tickets and related hospitality; (3) a VA employee’s time was misused as a personal travel concierge to plan tourist activities exceeding that necessary for security arrangements; and (4) travelers’ documentation was inadequate to determine the trip’s full costs to VA. The OIG did not assess the value of the trip to VA or determine whether the Europe travel, as conducted, was “essential,” per VA policy.      Summary   Report


☀       February 14, 2018  ...  DcDc:  Caires v. FDIC  ...   WHEN THE "FLIP-THIS-HOUSE" FUN FADES ... OVER 5 MILLION IN DEBT.  ...   For Plaintiff Richard Caires, it might feel like Groundhog Day. Caires, who has been trying to avoid repayment of a $5.5 million loan he obtained from Washington Mutual Bank in 2005, has filed, reworked, and re-filed several markedly similar lawsuits in four different courts over the past ten years. Each time he loses – whether on the merits or because of a jurisdictional bar – he tries again. This time around, Plaintiff has filed suit against the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation seeking a declaratory judgment on the current ownership of the loan and damages for a bevy of alleged injuries.  ...   COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)


☀       February 14, 2018  ...  DcDc:  Braun v. Interior  ...   Plaintiff Jason Brian Braun is a former employee of the Department of the Interior (“DOI”). After his employment ended in 2010, Braun brought administrative claims that he had been subject to disability discrimination during his employment.  ...   COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)


☀       February 13, 2018  ...  Fed. Cir.:  Hirschfield v. OPM  ...   WHAT A WASTE OF COURT TIME: $240 ... WANTED TO SEE HER SAME-SEX MARRIAGE UP IN LIGHTS ?   ...   S.G. Hirschfield was unmarried at the time of her retirement from federal service in January 2012. On May 5, 2015, she married Jean Roberta Rizzo. On February 17, 2016, she elected a partial survivor annuity payable to Rizzo in the event of Hirschfield’s death.         In April 2016, OPM informed Hirschfield that she had received an overpayment of $240.00. Here, Hirschfield appeals the final decision of MSPB which affirmed a $240 annuity overpayment calculation by OPM.   ...   COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)


☀       February 12, 2018  ...  Fed. Cir.:  O'Farrell v. Defense  ...   REVERSED ... DAMIT ... REVERSED !!!  ...   Petitioner Michael J. O’Farrell, Jr. appealed to the Merit Systems Protection Board (“MSPB”), alleging, inter alia, that his employing agency, the U.S. Department of Defense (“DOD” or “Government”) failed to grant him military leave for active military service in violation of the Uniformed Services Employment and Reemployment Rights Act of 1994 (“USERRA”) [...] . An administrative judge (“AJ”) issued an initial decision denying Mr. O’Farrell’s claim and dismissing his appeal.         DECISION:  We have considered the Government’s remaining arguments and find them unpersuasive. Accordingly, the Final Decision of the Merit Systems Protection Board is REVERSED.   ...   COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)


☀       February 12, 2018  ...  FLRA:  ILUNA v. National Guard  ...   Statement of the Case   This matter is before the Authority on a negotiability appeal filed under § 7105(a)(2)(E) of the Federal Service Labor-Management Relations Statute (Statute). It concerns the negotiability of one multi-part proposal that would require the Agency to provide certain dual-status technicians (technicians) with military uniforms or, in the alternative, an $800 annual allowance for such uniforms.         The parties dispute what portions of the proposal are before the Authority—namely, whether or not the portions that apply to enlisted technicians are at issue.         The Union argues that the portions of the proposal at issue concern whether the Agency could provide: (1) officer or warrant officer technicians (collectively, officer technicians) with uniforms; and (2) an $800 annual allowance to officer technicians or enlisted technicians if they do not receive a uniform.         The Agency included with its statement of position (statement) a copy of a Federal Service Impasses Panel (Panel) settlement, and argues that the Panel settlement resolved the issue of enlisted technician uniforms and allowances, and that the only remaining portion of the proposal involves whether or not the Agency can provide officer technicians with uniforms or, alternatively, allowances.         Turning to the negotiability of the proposal, [...]   ...   FLRA DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)


☀       February 9, 2018  ...  4th Cir.:  Fleming v. Richard v. Spencer  ...   Bruce Fleming, an English Professor at the United States Naval Academy, challenges three employment actions — a letter of reprimand, the denial of a merit pay increase, and the denial of a request for funding — as a violation of his First Amendment right to academic freedom.         This case involves the “comprehensive” and “integrated scheme of administrative and judicial review” established by Congress in the Civil Service Reform Act (“CSRA”), for claims arising out of federal employment.   ...   COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)


☀       February 8, 2018  ...  11th Cir.:  Patsalides v. Fort Pierce  ...   SHE GOT HER MALE CO-WORKER FIRED QUICKLY DESPITE QUESTIONABLE ALLEGATIONS, NOW SHE WANTS TO GET PAID,TOO.  ...   Nicole Patsalides appeals the district court’s grant of summary judgment to the City of Fort Pierce on her claims of employment discrimination on the basis of sexual harassment and retaliation [...].         Patsalides’s claims arise from a series of incidents between herself and a male co-worker that occurred after her three months of police training on the job and in her first two weeks as a patrol officer for the police department of the City of Fort Pierce. During that time, by her account, a male patrol officer with whom she worked touched her repeatedly in ways that she considered to be inappropriate, and in general showed an undue interest in her. Over the relevant two-week period, the male officer touched her arm, shoulder, or hands on approximately ten different occasions, and on one occasion rubbed his hand on her thigh from up by her service belt all the way down to her knee. The male officer would also arrive as backup on police calls to which Patsalides was dispatched without being called for, and tried to maximize the amount of time that he spent with her.         Notably, however, Patsalides does not claim that the male officer ever made any remarks of a sexual or flirtatious nature to her.         After two weeks of this sort of behavior, Patsalides reported the male officer to a superior in the police department.         Within a day the department launched an investigation. Within three days the male officer was placed on paid administrative leave.         Thereafter, his employment with the City was terminated.   ...   COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)


☀       February 8, 2018  ...  FLRA:  Justice (Prisons) v. AFGE  ...   MOST UNION REPS --- SPEND MOST OF THEIR TIME --- OBSTRUCTING GOOD MANAGEMENT.  ...   The prison guard admitted that he had used marijuana when he tested positive during a routine test. His supervisor and Union representative encouraged him to submit to a retest. He agreed and again tested positive.         Then, following established procedures, the supervisor scheduled an interview with the guard and his Union representative. At the interview, however, the Union representative repeatedly interfered with the supervisor’s investigation by “suggest[ing]” and “feeding answers” to the guard as to how he should respond to the supervisor’s questions.         Consequently, the supervisor asked the Union representative several times to stop “interfer[ing]” with his investigation and to stop “asking questions . . . that did not pertain to the investigation.”         As the Judge noted, the Agency has a “legitimate interest . . . [in] preserving the integrity of the investigation”[8] and that an agency may “place reasonable limitations on the . . . representative’s participation . . . in order . . . to achieve the objective of the examination.” ... Read On ... Read On.  ...   FLRA DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)


☀       February 7, 2018  ...  Fed Cir.:  Soliman v. U.S. (State)  ...   Soliman is a former State Department employee who served as a legal advisor in the State Department’s Iraqi Transition Assistance Office (“ITAO”). Executive Order 13,431 established ITAO as a temporary office to support the United States in “concluding remaining large infrastructure projects expeditiously in Iraq, in facilitating Iraq’s transition to self-sufficiency, and in maintaining an effective diplomatic presence in Iraq.” [...]. ITAO personnel were hired pursuant to 5 U.S.C. § 3161, id., which authorizes appointment of personnel to a temporary organization within the government.         On April 30, 2009, the State Department confirmed Soliman’s “temporary excepted appointment” as a “PRT Rule of Law Senior Advisor” in the ITAO for a term effective May 14, 2009 and not to exceed June 13, 2010. [...] The State Department terminated Soliman’s “temporary appointment” with the ITAO effective December 2, 2009.         In 2010, Soliman initiated unsuccessful Equal Employment Opportunity Commission proceedings against the State Department alleging discrimination in connection with his termination. In 2013, Soliman filed suit against the government in the United States District Court for the District of Columbia (“D.C. District Court”) challenging the termination of his employment on multiple grounds, including breach of contract.   ...   COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)


☀       February 6, 2018  ...  USCFC:  Wade v. (Army)  ...   Plaintiff Tanya V. Wade's most recent duty location, prior to her retirement after thirty-six years of government service, was at the Weapons and Materials Research Directorate (WMRD), a Directorate within the ARL, where she was an "Administrative Officer [GS-13 equivalent] for Dr. Patrick J. Baker, Director of Weapons and Materials Research .... "         In the spring of 2015, Ms. Wade states that she informed her immediate supervisor, the then-Director of WMRD, Dr. Baker, of her intent to retire. During this discussion, Ms. Wade alleges that Dr. Baker asked plaintiff if she was interested in returning to the ARL after she retired to work part-time as a reemployed annuitant for two years.         Ms. Wade claims that she informed Dr. Baker that she was interested in working part-time as a reemployed annuitant, and that Dr. Baker "instructed me to prepare the required documentation. Ms. Wade, however, was not rehired as a reemployed annuitant.         Plaintiff Tanya V. Wade filed a complaint in this court alleging that the defendant, United States Army Research Laboratory (ARL), breached an express or implied-in-fact contract with the plaintiff. Ms. Wade alleges that her agreement with the ARL "stipulated" that, following her retirement from the ARL, she would return to the ARL to work as a re-employed annuitant for two years on a part-time basis.   ...   COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)


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☀       February 2, 2018  ...  ScDc:  Steiner v. Chaabad  ...  BET YOU CANNOT READ THIS DECISION WITHOUT GETTING LOST.  ...   Appellant Rabbi Yehuda Steiner was hired by American Friends of Lubavitch (AFL), a nonprofit affiliated with ―the Chabad-Lubavitch movement,‖ to run AFL‘s campus outreach at George Washington University (GW). The noncompete and noninterference clauses at issue in this case appear in an employment contract Rabbi Steiner signed—on behalf of himself and his wife, Rivky Steiner—with one of the organization‘s representatives, appellee Rabbi Levi Shemtov. When the Steiners‘ employment ended under contested circumstances, Rabbi Shemtov and appellee AFL filed a complaint alleging a breach of contract and successfully sought a preliminary injunction that required the Steiners to refrain from competing or interfering with AFL‘s involvement at George Washington University.   ...   COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)


☀       February 1, 2018  ...  6th Cir.:  Wilson v. Brennan  ...   Frank Wilson sued his former employer, the United States Postal Service, bringing 20 separate “claims” under the United States Constitution, Title VII of the Civil Rights Act [...]and tort law (including negligence, conspiracy, and infliction of emotional distress). Nearly all arose from three instances of alleged wrongdoing in 2014, which Wilson largely attributes to racial discrimination.         Wilson primarily alleges that he was subjected to racial discrimination, retaliation for filing charges with the EEOC, and other unlawful conduct three times in 2014. First, a supervisor told him to come into work on a day he had been scheduled to have off. Second, “the proper procedure was not followed” when he was “issued discipline” for (admittedly) failing to wear his seatbelt while operating a mail truck. And third, after he retired, he received a letter warning him that he was in jeopardy of being considered absent without leave because of his recent pattern of absenteeism.         Wilson also complained about five more situations, mostly disciplinary actions, that occurred in 2012. All of these incidents, Wilson asserted, provided a basis for his employment-discrimination, retaliation, and related claims.   ...   COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)




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