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Washington DC Employment Law Blog

News from Passman & Kaplan: P&K Founding Principal Joseph V. Kaplan Speaking at SFLERP Annual Symposium

News from Passman & Kaplan: Passman & Kaplan Founding Principal Joseph V. Kaplan will be presenting at the 46th Annual Symposium of the Society for Federal Labor & Employee Relations Professionals (SFLERP), to be held in Arlington, VA on April 11-12, 2019. Mr. Kaplan will be speaking on "Managing Employees with Mental and Psychiatric Disability."  For more information, check out the SFLERP website.

News from Passman & Kaplan: P&K Founding Principal Joseph V. Kaplan To Be Presenter at Annual FDR Training Conference in Philadelphia August 12-15, 2019

News from Passman & Kaplan: Passman & Kaplan Founding Principal Joseph V. Kaplan is once again pleased to be a presenter at this year's FDR Training Conference, to be held in Philadelphia on August 12-15, 2019. Mr. Kaplan will be co-presenting three programs, "EEOC Mock Hearing," "The Accommodations Managers Love to Hate: Leave, Telework, and Reassignment as Reasonable Accommodations," and "Addressing Mental Disabilities in the Workplace: How to Apply Both the Letter and the Spirit of the Law."   For more information, check out the FDR Training Conference webpage.

News from Passman & Kaplan: P&K Client and Attorney Interviewed

News from Passman & Kaplan: On April 1, 2019, Passman & Kaplan, P.C. Founding Principal Edward H. Passman and his client, Tricia Newbold, were both interviewed in the press.  Ms. Newbold was interviewed by NBC News. Mr. Passman was interviewed on National Public Radio (NPR), on NPR's All Things Considered program. Both interviews concerned Ms. Newbold's claims against the Executive Office of the President, Office of Administration, which were recently discussed in greater detail in this blog.

News from Congress: P&K Client Blows Whistle to Congress

News from Congress: Tricia Newbold, an employee at the Executive Office of the President, Office of Administration, recently testified before the House Committee on Oversight and Reform. As the Committee's chair, Rep. Elijah Cummings, stated in an April 1, 2019 letter to the White House, Ms. Newbold "has informed the Committee that during the Trump Administration, she and other career officials adjudicated denials of dozens of applications for security clearances that were later overturned. As a result, she warned that security clearance applications for White House officials 'were not always adjudicated in the best interest of national security.' She also reported to the Committee that she has been targeted for retaliation after declining to grant security clearances based on longstanding national security protocols. She stated: 'I'm terrified of going back. I know that this will not be perceived in favor of my intentions, which is to bring back the integrity of the office.'"

News from Passman & Kaplan: P&K Principal Moderates Panel With MSPB Staff

News from Passman & Kaplan: Passman & Kaplan Principal Andrew J. Perlmutter will be moderating a panel discussion with staff from the U.S. Merit Systems Protection Board on May 21, 2019. The discussion, "Latest Developments at the Merit Systems Protection Board CY 2018 Year in Review", is sponsored by the American Bar Association, Section on Administrative Law and Regulatory Practice, Government Personnel Committee. For additional details or to register, see the ABA's website.

What if my security clearance is altered or revoked?

Many federal jobs (civilian and military) require a specific level of security clearance. If your security clearance is revoked, or if the minimum clearance level changes, you stand to lose your current position and possibly your government career.

You do have remedies to appeal a change in security clearance status. You also have rights if you suspect your clearance was revoked or changed due to retaliation or discrimination. It is important to seek legal guidance immediately if your security clearance is in jeopardy.

Employers exaggerate the cost of disability accommodations

Employers often balk at the perceived cost or hassles of complying with the Americans With Disabilities Act. This is true even in the public sector, where government agencies sometimes refuse to make reasonable accommodations for federal employees.

An ongoing study by the Job Accommodation Network (JAN) finds that the cost of making the workplace accessible or job duties feasible is usually less than $500. In fact, the majority of the time the cost is zero. Yet many employers refuse to engage in a good faith effort, leading to needless friction or lawsuits for violating the ADA.

Developments at the MSPB: FY 2018 Annual Report

Developments at the MSPB: On February 28, 2019, the Merit Systems Protection Board (MSPB) issued its annual report for FY 2018. The report discussed the current status of the MSPB's overall case processing in FY 2018.

News from the Federal Circuit: Two Federal Circuit Decisions

News from the Federal Circuit: Although the Merit Systems Protection Board (MSPB) continues without quorum, its chief reviewing court, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit, has continued deciding federal sector adverse action cases. Recently, the Federal Circuit issued two new decisions of interest:

News from Passman & Kaplan: P&K Client Tricia Newbold in the News

News from Passman & Kaplan: The discrimination complaint of Tricia Newbold, an employee at the Executive Office of the President, Office of Administration, was recently featured in the press. Ms. Newbold has alleged that she suffered ongoing disability discrimination based on her dwarfism at the hands of her supervisor, among other claims. Ms. Newbold's supervisor allegedly discriminated against her by repeatedly impairing Ms. Newbold's office access and by allowing office equipment and files to be placed out of her reach on several separate occasions. For example, Ms. Newbold alleges that her supervisor moved work-related security files that Ms. Newbold needed to a high location and then told her, "You have people, have them get you the files you need; or you can ask me." Based on these allegations, Ms. Newbold has filed a discrimination complaint, which is currently pending at the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC). Ms. Newbold's story was first publicly reported in a January 24, 2019 by NBC News. Ms. Newbold is represented by Passman & Kaplan, P.C. Founding Principal Edward H. Passman.

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