WH presses on with Schedule F, feds push back
- By FederalSoup Staff
- Nov 30, 2020
The Trump administration’s efforts to reduce or even remove appeals rights for many feds continues, as does a massive effort by fed advocates to prevent further erosions of protections.
At November’s end—even as the General Services Administration has certified Sen. Joe Biden as president-elect, sure to succeed President Trump Jan. 20, 2021—the White House is pressing forward with its “Schedule F” plan to reclassify untold thousands of federal employees to “at will” status. The new status was created by executive order only, and its legality has been called into question by many legal experts.
The most public and dramatic demonstration of the Trump administration’s commitment to Schedule F? The Office of Management and Budget has listed almost all of its employees as being slated for the new classification—about 88 percent, according to a report in Real Clear Politics and echoed in another on GovExec.com.
Meanwhile, however, fed unions and their allies in Congress are pushing back with equal vigor. The National Treasury Employees Union has filed a lawsuit against the move, claiming it is illegal.
“NTEU filed a lawsuit against the order … because it would create a new category of federal employees who are not covered by the basic civil service protections they are entitled to under the law,” the union explained in a recent release.
The American Federation of Government Employees is also pressing hard against the new classification.
“AFGE is asking our members to urge their representatives and senators to cosponsor both bills and to help fight this attack on dedicated public servants,” the union communicated to members in a recent release.
Rep. Gerry Connolly (D-Va.) last month spearheaded an effort in the House with a bill that would roll back the executive order establishing Schedule F, and outlaw the use of federal money to implement it. More recently, Sen. Gary Peters (D-Mich.) has led a similar effort in the Senate.
“This recent executive order will not only strip protections away from hard-working, dedicated civil servants, but it also recklessly creates chaos and dysfunction during the ongoing pandemic and presidential transition,” Sen. Peters said.
Other major federal employee advocate organizations, such as the National Active and Retired Federal Employees Association, are urging Congress to stop Schedule F from being implemented.