28:0763(98)CA - Air Force, 832d Combat Support Group, Luke AFB, AZ and AFGE Local 1547 -- 1987 FLRAdec CA
[ v28 p763 ]
The decision of the Authority follows:
28 FLRA No. 98 DEPARTMENT OF THE AIR FORCE, 832D COMBAT SUPPORT GROUP, LUKE AIR FORCE BASE, ARIZONA Respondent and AMERICAN FEDERATION OF GOVERNMENT EMPLOYEES, LOCAL 1547, AFL-CIO Charging Party Case No. 8-CA-70135
I. Statement of the Case
This consolidated proceeding is before the Authority under section 2429.1(a) of our Regulations based on the parties' stipulation of facts. The complaint alleges that the Respondent violated section 7116(a)(1), (5), and (8) of the Federal Service Labor - Management Relations Statute (the Statute) by refusing to provide the Union with the names and home addresses of bargaining unit employees. The Respondent filed a brief. 1 For the reasons below, we find that the Respondent has committed the unfair labor practices as alleged.
The Union represents a unit of nonprofessional employees paid from appropriated funds and serviced by the Luke Air Force Base Central Civilian Personnel Office. There are approximately 1006 employees in the unit. By letters dated October 10 and 27, 1986, the Union requested the names and home addresses of all employees in the exclusive unit. The Respondent refused to provide the information to the Union by letters dated October 22 and 28, 1986. [PAGE]
The parties have stipulated that the information is maintained in the Respondent's appropriated fund payroll files and may be obtained from there. However, the payroll records do not identify employees by bargaining unit status. That information is contained in the Respondent's personnel records. Furthermore, there is no automated record at the Respondent's facility with the names, home addresses and unit status of appropriated fund civilian employees. The parties further stipulate that the information does not constitute guidance, counsel, advice, or training provided for management officials or supervisors relating to collective bargaining.
III. Positions of the Parties
The Respondent concedes that our decision on remand in Farmers Home Administration Finance Office, St. Louis, Missouri, 23 FLRA No. 101 (1986) (Farmers Home), petition for review filed sub nom. U.S. Department of Agriculture and the Farmers Home Administration Finance Office, St. Louis, Missouri v. FLRA, No. 86-2579 (8th Cir. Dec. 23, 1986), is dispositive of several issues, but urges us to reverse that decision. The Respondent argues that release of the names and home addresses of employees is contrary to the Privacy Act, and also that availability of alternate methods of communication with employees would in some situations be sufficient to preclude the requirement of release of home addresses.
In addition, the Respondent argues that certain requirements of section 7114(b)(4) of the Statute are not met here. Specifically, it argues that the records are not normally maintained in the regular course of business as required by section 7114(b)(4)(A) because (1) names and addresses are in payroll records which are not identified by bargaining unit status; and (2) there is no automated record at the Respondent's facility which contains the names, home addresses and bargaining unit status of appropriated fund civilian employees. The Respondent concedes that a list could be created manually by going through the records of the employees. Because such a list would have to be created, the Respondent also argues that the data is not "reasonably available" as required by section 7114(b)(4)(B).
IV. Analysis and Conclusions
in our decision on remand in Farmers Home, we held that the release of the names and home addresses of bargaining unit employees to exclusive representatives is not prohibited by law, is necessary for unions to fulfill their duties under the Statute, and meets all of the other [ v28 p2 ] requirements of section 7114(b)(4). Our decision in Farmers Home analyzed the two exceptions to the Privacy Act's bar disclosure of personal information pertinent to the release of employees' names and home addresses: exception (b)(2), concerning the Freedom of Information Act, and exception (b)(3), relating to "routine use" of information. We found that both exceptions to the Privacy Act's bar applied so as to authorize release of the information under the Privacy Act, and the Respondent has conceded that under Farmers Home, the requirements of the Privacy Act have been met. We also found in Farmers Home that the release of the information is generally required without regard to whether alternative means of communication are available.
Although the Respondent argues that the information sought by the Union is not normally maintained or reasonably available, the stipulation clearly shows that the names and home addresses of employees are maintained and that identification of employees as to unit status also is maintained. Consequently, we find that the requirement of section 7114(b)(4)(A) has been met and that the information is reasonably available within the meaning of section 7114(b)(4)(B). See, for example, Department of the Navy, Naval Submarine Base, New London (New London, Connecticut), 27 FLRA No. 85 (1987). Consistent with our decision in Farmers Home, we therefore find that the Respondent was required to furnish the Union with the names and home addresses of the employees in the bargaining unit. Its refusal to do so violated section 7116(a)(1), (5), and (8) of the Statute.
Pursuant to section 2423.29 of the Authority's Rules and Regulations and section 7118 of the Federal Service Labor - Management Relations Statute, the Department of the Air Force, 832d Combat Support Group, Luke Air Force Base, Arizona, shall:
1. Cease and desist from:
(a) Refusing to furnish, upon request of the American Federation of Government Employees, Local 1547, AFL - CIO, the exclusive representative of a unit of its employees, the names and home addresses of all bargaining unit employees it represents located at Luke Air Force Base, Arizona. [ v28 p3 ]
(b) In any like or related manner, interfering with, restraining, or coercing its employees in the exercise of rights assured them by the Statute.
2. Take the following affirmative action in order to effectuate the purposes and policies of the Statute:
(a) Furnish the American Federation of Government Employees, Local 1547, AFL - CIO, the exclusive representative of a unit of its employees,