Social Security Administration, Baltimore, Maryland (Respondent/Agency) and American Federation of Government Employees, Council 220 (Charging Party/Union)

[ v57 p576 ]

57 FLRA No. 105

SOCIAL SECURITY ADMINISTRATION
BALTIMORE, MARYLAND
(Respondent/Agency)

and

AMERICAN FEDERATION OF GOVERNMENT
EMPLOYEES, COUNCIL 220
(Charging Party/Union)

WA-CA-00728
WA-CA-00729

_____

DECISION AND ORDER

October 24, 2001

_____

Before the Authority: Dale Cabaniss, Chairman, and
Carol Waller Pope and Tony Armendariz, Members

I.     Statement of the Case

      On July 11, 2001, the Respondent and the Charging Party entered into a settlement stipulation "(the Stipulation"). On July 12, 2001, the Stipulation was approved by the Washington Regional Director of the Authority, on behalf of the General Counsel. [n1] The Stipulation provides for entry of a consent order by the Authority and a consent judgment by any appropriate United States Court of Appeals. In addition, the parties have waived proceedings before the Authority to which they may be entitled under the Federal Service Labor-Management Relations Statute (the Statute) and the Regulations of the Authority, and the Respondent has consented to the entry of a decree by an appropriate Federal court enforcing the order of the Authority upon application by the Authority.

      The settlement stipulation in this case effectuates the Authority's policy of "foster[ing] amicable resolution of disputes by encouraging parties to reach agreement where possible." AFGE, Local 2145, 44 FLRA 1055, 1061 (1992). Moreover, there is no evidence in the record, or assertion by any party, that the agreement is inconsistent with any policy of the Authority. Accordingly, the Stipulation is hereby approved and made part of the record in this case.

      Based on the entire record in this case, including the Stipulation, the Authority finds that: (1) the Respondent is an agency, within the meaning of § 7103(a)(3) of the Statute; (2) the Charging Party is a labor organization, within the meaning of § 7103(a)(4) of the Statute; and (3) the Charging Party is the exclusive representative of a unit of employees appropriate for bargaining under the Statute. Also based on the record, the Authority issues the following Order:

II.     Order

      Based on the above findings, the Stipulation, and the entire record in the proceedings, and pursuant to § 7105(a)(2)(G) of the Statute, the Authority hereby orders that the Social Security Administration, Baltimore, Maryland shall:

      1.     Cease and desist from:

           (a)      Conducting formal discussions with bargaining unit employees without affording the American Federation of Government Employees (AFGE), Council 220, the exclusive representative of the employees, prior notice and an opportunity to be represented at the formal discussion, including formal discussions held by interactive video teleconference (IVT).

           (b)     In any like or related manner, interfering with, restraining, or coercing employees in the exercise of rights assured to them by the Statute.

      2.     Take the following affirmative actions in order to effectuate the policies of the Statute:

           (a)     Post at all facilities where bargaining unit employees are located copies of the attached Notice to All Employees on forms to be furnished by the Washington Regional Director for the Federal Labor Relations Authority. On receipt of such forms, they shall be signed by the Commissioner of the Social Security Administration and shall be posted and maintained for 60 consecutive days thereafter in conspicuous places, including all bulletin boards and other places where notices to employees are customarily posted. Reasonable steps shall be taken to ensure that such Notices are not altered, defaced, or covered by any other material.

           (b)     Pursuant to § 2423.41(e) of the Authority's Regulations, notify the Washington Regional Director, in writing, after 5 days and again after 60 days from the date of this Order, as to what steps have been taken to comply. [ v57 p577 ]


NOTICE TO ALL EMPLOYEES
POSTED BY ORDER OF THE
FEDERAL LABOR RELATIONS AUTHORITY

The Federal Labor Relations Authority has found that the Social Security Administration, Baltimore, Maryland violated the Federal Service Labor-Management Relations Statute and has ordered us to post and abide by this notice.

We hereby notify bargaining unit employees that:

WE WILL NOT conduct formal discussions with bargaining unit employees without affording the American Federation of Government Employees, Council 220 (Union), the exclusive representative of the employees, prior notice and an opportunity to be represented at the formal discussions, including meetings held by interactive video teleconference (IVT).

WE WILL NOT in any like or related manner interfere with, restrain, or coerce bargaining unit employees in the exercise of rights assured to them by the Federal Service Labor-Management Relations Statute.

      ________________________
(Activity)

Date: _________ By:___________________________

      (Signature) (Title)

This Notice must remain posted for 60 consecutive days from the date of posting, and must not be altered, defaced or covered by any other material.

If employees have any questions concerning this Notice or compliance with its provisions, they may communicate directly with the Regional Director for the Federal Labor Relations Authority,