Developments at the EEOC: On October 15, 2018, Chief Administrative Judge Patrick Kokenge of the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission's Miami District Office issued a Consent Order awarding the Complainant remedies in EEOC No. 570-2014-001194X.
News from the Courts: On July 10, 2017, the District of Columbia Office of Human Rights (OHR) issued its Final Order in Massengale v. D.C. Fire and Emergency Medical Services, OHR Docket No: 14-360-DC(CN). OHR reversed Ms. Massengale's 2014 termination and ordered her reinstated with back pay.
News from Congress: On June 23, 2017, the President signed into law Pub.L. 115-41. The new statute reduces civil service protections for employees of the Department of Veterans Affairs (DVA).
News from the Supreme Court: On June 23, 2017, the Supreme Court issued its decision in Perry v. Merit Systems Protection Board, 582 U.S. ____. The Court clarified the appeals process for "mixed case" appeals before the Merit Systems Protection Board (MSPB) that involve claims of discrimination.
News from the Courts: On June 16, 2017, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit issued a precedential decision in Lee v. U.S. Agency for International Development et al., No. 16-5276. The D.C. Circuit addressed the issue of whether a federal employee has a civil remedy for alleged false statements by managers under 18 U.S.C. § 1001.
News from the Federal Circuit: On May 9, 2017, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit issued its decision in Helman v. Dept. of Veterans Affairs, No. 2015-3086. The Court struck down part of the statute for expedited removals of Department of Veterans Affairs (DVA) Senior Executive Service (SES) employees as unconstitutional, but left much of the statute in place.
Developments at the MSPB: On September 27, 2016, the Merit Systems Protection Board (Board) issued a precedential decision in Thomas v. Dept. of the Navy, 2016 MSPB 34. The Board reinstated Appellant Stephanie Thomas' dismissed constructive suspension appeal. Ms. Thomas claimed that the Agency compelled her to take 3 days/week of leave without pay (LWOP) because it had denied her reasonable accommodation request for telework, and reporting to her workplace would violate her doctor's orders. The Board found that Ms. Thomas had made a nonfrivolous allegation of constructive suspension. This decision expands the circumstances recognized in Board precedent for constructive suspension claims.
As a federal employee, you are in a unique position. On one hand you represent the government and its interests. On the other, you are a private citizen with constitutional rights, such as freedom of speech. Unfortunately, this duality can make it complicated when your personal views conflict with the government's and you make others aware of it.
Developments at the MSPB: On February 29, 2016, the Merit Systems Protection Board (MSPB) issued its Annual Report for FY 2015. This Annual Report, issued a mere 20 days after the MSPB's Annual Performance Report (analyzed in this blog), provided more detailed statistics concerning its caseload in FY 2015.
If you are a federal employee facing allegations of poor work performance or wrongdoing, you may face severe disciplinary action called an "adverse action." Adverse actions may include a suspension (over 14 days), furlough (over 30 days) demotion or reduction in pay, or removal from your position, all of which can severely hurt your career opportunities.