Congress Seeks Documents on Trump Administration’s Change to Longstanding Rules Protecting Federal Employees
Washington, D.C. (Jan. 23, 2020)—Today, Rep. Carolyn B. Maloney, the Chairwoman of the Committee on Oversight and Reform, and Rep. Bobby Scott, the Chairman of the Committee on Education and Labor, sent a letter to the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) seeking documents and information about the change proposed to longstanding federal rules ensuring that federal employees who bring complaints for illegal employment discrimination may be accompanied by the representatives of their choice.
“As the Chairwoman of the Committee on Oversight and Reform, which has jurisdiction over Title 5 of the U.S. Code, the Federal Service Labor Management Relations Statute (FSLMRS), and the Civil Service Reform Act, and the Chairman of the Committee on Education and Labor, which has jurisdiction over EEOC, we are extremely concerned about the potential effects of this proposed rule on the enforcement of employment anti-discrimination laws and policies affecting federal employees and the fairness of the federal workplace,” the Chairs wrote.
For 40 years, EEOC has required that federal agencies allow employees to use work hours to bring formal complaints of employment discrimination against their agencies. The existing rule also ensures that representatives chosen by complainants, if they are employees of the agency, “shall be on official time” when they advise, accompany, and represent complainants.
On December 11, 2019, EEOC published a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking that would amend that agency requirement and allow agencies to deny the use of official time by any representative who is “an officer, steward or otherwise in an official capacity” of a union. The proposed rule would exclude only union representatives from the government-wide Equal Employment Opportunity (EEO) official time requirement.
Click here to read today’s letter.