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

[ v57 p577 ]

57 FLRA No. 106

SOCIAL SECURITY ADMINISTRATION
BALTIMORE, MARYLAND
(Respondent/Agency)

and

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

WA-CA-01-0167

_____

DECISION AND ORDER

October 25, 2001

_____

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

I.     Statement of the Case

      On July 5, 2001, the Respondent and the Charging Party entered into a settlement stipulation ("the Stipulation"). On July 16, 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. [ v57 p578 ] 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 (SSA), Baltimore, Maryland shall:

      1.     Cease and desist from:

           (a)     Failing and refusing to respond to a request submitted by an agent of the exclusive representative of its employees, American Federation of Government Employees (AFGE), AFL-CIO, Council 220, which reply is necessary pursuant to § 7114(b)(4) of the Statute.

           (b)     Failing and refusing to furnish an agent ofthe exclusive representative of its employees, AFGE, AFL-CIO, Council 220, information which is necessary to assist bargaining unit employees in a grievance matter, Arbitration Case No. BW 2000-R-0068, which was scheduled for arbitration on March 14 and 15, 2001.

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

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

(a)     Provide the following information no later than thirty (30) days from the date of issuance of this Order: [n2] 
(i)     Memoranda issued by SSA Central Office personnel to SSA Regional Office staff that reference or describe protocol, policy, or procedures to follow with respect to the excused absence of Field Office and Teleservice Center employees on December 23, 1999;
(ii)     Memoranda issued by personnel in any of SSA's 10 Regional Offices to managers or team leaders in SSA Field Offices, Program Service Centers, Teleservice Centers, and Regional Office units in that same region that reference or describe protocol, policy, or procedures to follow with respect to the excused absence of Field Office and Teleservice Center employees on December 23, 1999; and
(iii)     Memoranda issued by any SSA Field Office, Program Service Center, Teleservice Center, and/or Regional Office management staff member to that facility's bargaining unit staff that reference or describe protocol, policy, or procedures to follow with respect to excused absences on December 23, 1999.

           (b) 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 Acting Commissioner 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.

           (c) 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 p579 ]


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 fail and refuse to reply to requests for information from the American Federation of Government Employees, AFL-CIO, Council 220, the exclusive representative of our employees, which reply is necessary for a full and proper discussion, understanding and negotiation of subjects within the scope of collective bargaining.

WE WILL NOT fail and refuse to furnish the American Federation of Government Employees, AFL-CIO, Council 220, the information requested on October 20, 2000, in connection with Arbitration Case No. BW 2000-R-0068.

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

WE WILL, upon request, furnish the American Federation of Government Employees, AFL-CIO, Council 220, information which is necessary for full and proper discussion, understanding, and negotiation of subjects within the scope of collective bargaining.

WE WILL furnish the American Federation of Government Employees, AFL-CIO, Council 220, the information requested on October 20, 2000, in connection with Arbitration Case No. BW 2000-R-0068 no later than thirty (30) days from the date of issuance of the Authority's Order approving the formal settlement in this matter.

      ________________________
(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, whose address is: Tech World Plaza, 800 K Street, NW., Suite 910-N, Washington, D.C. 20001, and whose telephone number is: (202) 482-6700.