December 11, 2015
By John Quinn, LaborPress USA
While the contract between the Transportation Security Administration and American Federation of Government Employees had expired December 9th, little negotiations had been taking place for months.
TSA employees are now without a contract for the first time since the signing of their first labor agreement in 2012. While Federal employees are entitled to protections under Title 5 of the U.S. code, TSA workers are not covered under this provision and depend on a contract for benefits and rights. Issues remaining in negotiations besides salary include the workers performance evaluation, dispute and grievance procedures, uniform allowance and transfer procedures. The union is also concerned with the increase of part-time workers being hired rather than full-time. The pay scale for all federal workers including TSA employees, is established by Congress.
The union represents over 45,000 transportation security officers. “Morale is at an all-time low,” said Hydrick Thomas, president of AFGE’s TSA council. Transportation security officers “are tired of low pay, horrible working conditions and being treated like second-class employees. Even though the workforce is extremely dedicated to the TSA mission, it should be obvious to agency management that rock-bottom morale can only have a negative impact on our ability to perform our jobs.