Hazardous Duty Pay: We have been actively working in Congress to include hazard pay for some positions included in the various coronavirus relief bills that Congress has been considering. In addition, a class action lawsuit, Braswell v. U.S., has been filed in the U.S. Court of Federal Claims seeking hazard pay for a proposed class of federal employees exposed due to the ongoing work performed within close proximity to infected persons or climates. We will keep you informed of the progress of this suit, including if employees need to opt in. When the court eventually certifies a class, any NTEU employees who fit within the court’s final class definition should have a chance to become part of the suit.
Families First Coronavirus Response Act: When the FFCRA took effect April 1st Chapter 105 asked the agency what was required of the employees to apply and how soon they could take advantage of this new entitlement. The agency said it was looking for guidance from headquarters. After asking multiple times what the ETA on FFCRA was we decided the agency was sitting on their hands and it was time for ACTION. As everyone saw in the email sent by the chapter, we listed how to qualify for FFCRA and we created our own process. The chapter then started asking employees who qualify to submit memos requesting the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (H.R. 6201, Public Law 116-127, March 18, 2020). NTEU WAS DONE WAITING. Our actions with your help forced the agency to implement this new entitlement to care for our families. If you need help applying for FFCRA please contact your local stewards
COVID-19 testing for employees: We are fighting for this at the HQ level. Our employees are in close contact with thousands of travelers a day raising the possibility of exposure. It is extremely important for our officers to have access to testing to protect ourselves and the community from further spread. In continuing this fight we have reached out to multiple private hospitals to possible partner with NTEU to provide testing or medical advice
Costco: NTEU was able to reach out to Costco’s Corporate Office to provide preferential treatment to first responders. Our employees absolutely need to stay focused and should not have to worry about their families having food or essentials at home. On April 8th Costco announced that they would be giving preferential treatment to first responders and healthcare workers. This is a huge win in our efforts to protect the men and women that are putting their lives on the line and potentially exposing themselves to covid-19 simply by reporting to work.
Media: When the level of the fight changes so does the game plan. All the issues we have been dealing with have been coming from headquarters. Because these shortsighted decisions have been coming from such a high an level, we needed to make sure our employees are heard. Nationwide NTEU chapters have done 22 News interviews. Of these interviews Chapter 105 did 17. We were interviewed by such media outlets as CNN, NBC, Channel 10 News, Breitbart, law enforcement today, Telmundo, Univision, The Union Tribune, Congressional Times, KOGO 760 and many more. Just recently our success was realized when the Commissioner dropped a letter on CBP.gov addressing our Chapter directly. Days later Headquarters agreed to meet with NTEU in order to discuss our demands.