30:0998(108)CA - Bureau of the Census and AFGE Local 2782 -- 1988 FLRAdec CA



[ v30 p998 ]
30:0998(108)CA
The decision of the Authority follows:


30 FLRA No. 108

BUREAU OF THE CENSUS

                   Respondent

      and

AMERICAN FEDERATION OF GOVERNMENT
EMPLOYEES, LOCAL 2782, AFL-CIO

                  Charging Party

Case No. 3-CA-70555

DECISION AND ORDER

I. Statement of the Case

This unfair labor practice case is before the Authority under section 2429.1(a) of the Authority's Rules and Regulations, based on a stipulation of facts by the parties, who have agreed that no material issue of fact exists.

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 failing and refusing to provide the Union, the exclusive representative of a unit of the Respondent's employees, with the names and home addresses of those employees. For the reasons stated below, we find that the Respondent committed the unfair labor practices as alleged.

II. Facts

The Union is the exclusive representative of a unit of the Respondent's employees. By memorandum dated March 31, 1987, the Union requested that the Respondent furnish it with names and home addresses of all unit employees. By memorandum dated April 8, 1987, the Respondent refused to furnish the Union with the information requested.

The parties stipulated that the names and home addresses of the employees are normally maintained by the Respondent in the regular course of business and do not [PAGE] constitute guidance, advice, counsel, or training for management officials or supervisors relating to collective bargaining.

III. Positions of the Parties

The General Counsel argues that the Authority's decision on remand in Farmers Home Administration Finance Office, St. Louis, Missouri, 23 FLRA 788 (1986) (Farmers Home), enforced in part and remanded sub nom. U.S. Department of Agriculture and Farmers Home Administration Finance Office, St. Louis, Missouri v. FLRA, No. 86-2579 (8th Cir. Jan. 15, 1988), is controlling in this case. The General Counsel contends that the Respondent's admitted failure to furnish the Union with the names and home addresses of the employees in the bargaining unit constituted a clear violation of section 7116(a)(1), (5) and (8) of the Statute.

The Respondent contends that the Authority erred in its decision on remand in Farmers Home in a number of respects. The Respondent argues that the decision is inconsistent with section 7114(b)(4) of the Statute and asserts that there is no showing in this case that the Union needed the information to communicate with the employees. The Respondent further argues that the Union had sufficient and effective alternative means of communication available for that purpose.

The Respondent also contends that the Authority's decision diminishes the status and value of collective bargaining because unions and agencies can negotiate the means for the unions to communicate with the employees they represent. The Respondent maintains that in this case the parties' collective bargaining agreement provided means for the Union to communicate with unit employees at work.

The Respondent further contends that the Authority's decision is inconsistent with the Privacy Act because it ignores the privacy interests of employees. The Respondent argues that for privacy reasons employees may have established mailing addresses which are different from their home addresses. The Respondent asserts that if the goal of the Union is to communicate with employees, there is no persuasive reason why the Union needed any addresses other than mailing addresses. The Respondent also asserts that the Privacy Act precludes the Respondent from furnishing employees' home addresses to the Union and makes the Respondent liable for such disclosure. [ v30 p2 ]

IV. Analysis and Conclusion

In the Authority's decision on remand in Farmers Home, the Authority concluded that the release of the names and home addresses of bargaining unit employees to their exclusive representatives is n