34:0595(101)AR - - Oklahoma City Air Logistics Center, Tinker AFB and AFGE Local 916 - - 1990 FLRAdec AR - - v34 p595



[ v34 p595 ]
34:0595(101)AR
The decision of the Authority follows:


34 FLRA No. 101

FEDERAL LABOR RELATIONS AUTHORITY

WASHINGTON, D.C.

OKLAHOMA CITY AIR LOGISTICS CENTER

TINKER AIR FORCE BASE

and

AMERICAN FEDERATION OF GOVERNMENT EMPLOYEES

AFL-CIO, LOCAL 916

0-AR-1692

DECISION

January 26, 1990

Before Chairman McKee and Members Talkin and Armendariz.

I. Statement of the Case

This matter is before the Authority on exceptions to the award of Arbitrator Hugh R. Catherwood filed by the American Federation of Government Employees, AFL-CIO, Local 916 (the Union) under section 7122(a) of the Federal Service Labor-Management Relations Statute (the Statute) and part 2425 of the Authority's Rules and Regulations. The Oklahoma City Air Logistics Center, Tinker Air Force Base (the Agency) did not file an opposition to the Union's exceptions.

An employee filed a grievance concerning his written reprimand for loafing while on duty. The Arbitrator denied the grievance. For the reasons discussed below, the Union's exceptions are denied.

II. Background and Arbitrator's Award

A group of visiting officers and a general supervisor observed an employee sitting at his work desk with his feet up and his eyes closed. Award at 1. The general supervisor consequently ordered the employee to report to his supervisor as absent without leave. Id. The Agency issued a written reprimand to the grievant. The employee filed a grievance claiming that he was resting to abate a back injury and was not asleep. Id. The grievance was submitted to arbitration.

The Arbitrator found that whether the grievant was actually asleep or merely resting his back was irrelevant because the grievant "was certainly not at work" at the time of the incident. Award at 3. The Arbitrator, therefore, denied the grievance. Id. The Arbitrator commented that because the grievant was aware that visitors were arriving, "[r]esting while at work and at least appearing to be asleep were, to put it mildly, highly tactless in those circumstances." Id. at 2. The Arbitrator also noted that the Agency had accommodated the grievant's medical condition by assigning him to light duties. Id. at 3.

III. Union's Exceptions

The Union asserts that the Arbitrator's award is "contrary to and not within the spirit, intent and general character of the law." Union's Exceptions at 1. The Union argues that "[t]here is no clear evidence that the Grievant was 'sleeping' on the job, but that only in the opinion of the supervisors that he 'appeared' to be asleep." Id. at 3. The Union also argues that the Arbitrator did not adequately consider the grievant's medical condition. Id. at 2, 4.

IV. Analysis and Conclusion

Under section 7122(a) of the Statute, an arbitrator's award will be found deficient: (1) because it is contrary to any law, rule, or regulation; or (2) on other grounds similar