Union urges protections for feds
- By FederalSoup Staff
- Nov 21, 2017
The National Treasury Employees Union has filed a “friend-of-the-court brief” on behalf of three federal employees asking the Supreme Court to review their appeals of Merit Systems Protection Board cases.
Although the NTEU does not represent the three federal employees in question, the union is asking the Supreme Court to review and to reverse a lower court decisions that denies the employees the opportunity to have a federal court review the adverse employment actions against them.
The employees appeals were filed late through no fault of their own, according to NTEU, and they should be allowed to challenge their dismissals or demotions in federal court.
“These cases are about protecting all federal employees – including whistleblowers – from retaliation or otherwise illegal personnel actions,” NTEU National President Tony Reardon, said. “The law says they have the right to federal court review of these actions. When their paperwork is late because of someone else’s mistakes, the court can and should excuse the tardiness,” he added.
According to NTEU, in all three cases, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit denied the employees their day in court because of inadvertently missed deadlines; two were late because the court posted incorrect information about the deadlines on its own website, and in the third case, the employee sent his petition by priority mail 13 days before the deadline, but it took 16 days to arrive.
“These lower court rulings were incorrect, harsh, and contrary to Congress’ intent to give federal employees an impartial review of adverse actions taken against them,” Reardon said.
AFGE also filed a brief on behalf of the employees.