Homeland Security Watch

News and analysis of critical issues in homeland security

September 26, 2006

DHS drops collective bargaining case

Filed under: Legal Issues,Organizational Issues — by Christian Beckner on September 26, 2006

DHS has decided not to appeal to the Supreme Court regarding its ongoing legal dispute with federal government unions over collective bargaining rights at DHS, according to FCW:

Larry Orluskie, a DHS spokesman, said the decision came from the Justice Department’s Office of the Solicitor General late Sept. 25. The decision allows the agency to move forward to “pursue labor relations flexibilities rather than spending additional time in litigation,” Orluskie said.

“If we go to the Supreme Court, we’d go on and on and on,” he said. “What we’re going to do is engage with our other partners, with the components, OPM, sit down with the unions and consider all available options.”

MaxHR had been tied down in courts because of problems with ensuring collective bargaining rights for employees. The original court decision, in August 2005, blocked labor-relations portions of MaxHR and was eventually reaffirmed by an appeals court in June.

Unions applauded the decision and agreed with DHS on the need to move past the court battles.

“DHS has made the right decision — for itself, for its employees and for our nation,” said Colleen Kelley, president of the National Treasury Employees Union. The union led the fight against MaxHR in court. “It is now time for DHS to put this adversarial proceeding behind it and to join with NTEU in focusing solely on the agency’s critical mission of protecting the American people.”

I’m glad that DHS is finally dropping this case. The negative mood that this created on human capital issues at DHS over the last three years vastly overwhelmed any performance-related benefits that this plan might have generated. There need to be strong incentives – both carrots and sticks – for high performance at DHS, but it’s been clear for the last two years that this plan was not the right way to pursue this objective.

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October 26, 2006 @ 6:00 am

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Comment by Eulalia Gustafson

August 6, 2010 @ 12:07 am

This post was very well written, and it also contains many useful facts. I enjoyed your distinguished way of writing the post. You have made it very easy for me to understand. You know it hurts them, because they’re advertising so hard to get you to opt in for their overdraft services.


September 3, 2010 @ 3:03 pm

The press can’t gather facts freely or report them frankly. Ignorance is a good excuse. You can complain and play old maid. The airline had a monopoly here, now the only monopoly is the labor. Half the place is empty and the other half on life support. It might be mercy to pull the plug. The foundations are funding razzle-dazzle marketing campaigns as a collective effort. Demand is down with security way up. The whole scene is like East Germany with failed bonds and the public flying cattle class. Some group conned some other group to subsidize flights to Paris at a loss. The result is a loss monopoly.

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