[ v15 p438 ]
The decision of the Authority follows:
15 FLRA No. 89 U.S. DEPARTMENT OF HOUSING AND URBAN DEVELOPMENT Respondent and AMERICAN FEDERATION OF GOVERNMENT EMPLOYEES Charging Party Case No. 3-CA-20788 DECISION AND ORDER This matter is before the Authority pursuant to the Regional Director's "Order Transferring Case to the Federal Labor Relations Authority" in accordance with section 2429.1(a) of the Authority's Rules and Regulations. Upon consideration of the entire record in this case, including the stipulation of facts and the parties' contentions, the Authority finds: The complaint alleges that the Respondent violated section 7116(a)(1), (5) and (8) of the Federal Service Labor-Management Relations Statute (the Statute) when its agents, Craig Nickerson and Michael Ehrman, conducted a meeting on June 22, 1982 at which they failed to afford the Union an opportunity to be present, thereby bypassing the Union and failing to comply with section 7114(a)(2)(A) of the Statute. /1/ The stipulated record reflects that on June 22, 1982, Nickerson and Ehrman, both Division Directors in the Office of Urban Rehabilitation, called a meeting at which all employees present in the Officer were required to attend. In addition to Nickerson and Ehrman, the meeting, which commenced 15 minutes after it was called, was attended by approximately 30 employees and at least two additional supervisors. It was held outside Nickerson's office in an open area and was conducted jointly by Nickerson and Ehrman. No Union representatives were present. The purpose of the meeting was to inform the employees of a pending reduction-in-force (RIF), and a memo regarding the RIF was handed out to all employees present. Questions asked at the meeting were responded to by Ehrman and Nickerson who either referred the employees present to the memo or told them the answer would be provided later. The meeting lasted approximately 20 minutes and no minutes were kept. Upon consideration of all the factors relevant to the circumstances of the instant case, the Authority concludes that the June 22, 1982 meeting was "formal" within the meaning of section 7114(a)(2)(A). /2/ Thus, the stipulated record establishes that the meeting was conducted by two second level supervisors of the bargaining unit employees in attendance; at least two other management representatives were present; prepared materials concerning the RIF were passed out at the meeting; and attendance was mandatory. Turning next to the question of whether the subject matter discussed at the meeting concerned "any grievance, or any personnel policy or practices or other general conditions of employment," the Authority notes that there is no dispute that the pending RIF falls within such subject matter. Accordingly, the Authority concludes that the meeting held on June 22, 1982 was a formal discussion within the meaning of section 7114(a)(2)(A). Thus, the Respondent's failure to provide the exclusive representative with an opportunity to be present at a meeting which constituted a formal discussion of matters within the meaning of section 7114(a)(2)(A) of the Statute was violative of section 7116(a)(1) and (8). However, the Authority finds that the Respondent did not bypass the Union at the meeting in violation of section 7116(a)(1) and (5) of the Statute. Thus, the purpose of the meeting was solely to transmit information to the employees. The stipulated record is devoid of any evidence that the Respondent attempted to deal directly with the employees with respect to their conditions of employment. /3/ Accordingly, this allegation of the complaint must be dismissed. ORDER Pursuant to section 2423.29 of the Authority's Rules and Regulations and section 7118 of the Statute, the Authority hereby orders that the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development shall: 1. Cease and desist from: (a) Failing to provide the exclusive representative, American Federation of Government Employees, with an opportunity to be present at formal discussions with bargaining unit employees at which personnel policies and practices or other conditions of employment are discussed. (b) In any like or related manner interfering with, restraining, or coercing its employees in the exercise of their rights assured by the Statute. 2. Take the following affirmative action in order to effectuate the purposes and policies of the Statute: (a) Post at its facilities, located at 4551 7th Street, S.W., Washington, D.C., copies of the attached Notice on forms to be furnished by the Federal Labor Relations Authority. Upon receipt of such forms, they shall be signed by an appropriate official 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 insure that such Notices are not altered, defaced, or covered by any other material. (b) Pursuant to section 2423.30 of the Authority's Rules and Regulations, notify the Regional Director, Region III, Federal Labor Relations Authority, in writing, within 30 days from the date of this Order, as to what steps have been taken to comply herewith. IT IS FURTHER ORDERED that the remaining allegation of the complaint in Case No. 3-CA-20788 be, and it hereby is, dismissed. Issued, Washington, D.C., August 8, 1984 Barbara J. Mahone, Chairman Ronald W. Haughton, Member Henry B. Frazier III, Member FEDERAL LABOR RELATIONS AUTHORITY NOTICE TO ALL EMPLOYEES PURSUANT TO A DECISION AND ORDER OF THE FEDERAL LABOR RELATIONS AUTHORITY AND IN ORDER TO EFFECTUATE THE POLICIES OF CHAPTER 71 OF TITLE 5 OF THE UNITED STATES CODE FEDERAL SERVICE LABOR-MANAGEMENT RELATIONS WE HEREBY NOTIFY OUR EMPLOYEES THAT: WE WILL NOT fail to provide the exclusive representative, American Federation of Government Employees, with an opportunity to be present at formal discussions with bargaining unit employees at which personnel policies and practices or other conditions of employment are discussed. WE WILL NOT in any like or related manner interfere with, restrain, or coerce our employees in the exercise of their rights assured by the Statute. (Activity) By: (Signature) (Title) Dated: . . . 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, Region III, Federal Labor Relations Authority whose address is: P.O. Box 33758, Washington, D.C. 20033-0758 and whose telephone number is: (202) 653-8452. --------------- FOOTNOTES$ --------------- /1/ Section 7114(a)(2)(A) reads as follows: (a)(2) An exclusive representative of an appropriate unit in an agency shall be given the opportunity to be represented at-- (A) any formal discussion between one or more representatives of the agency and one or more employees in the unit or their representatives concerning any grievance or any personnel policy or practices or other general condition of employment(.) /2/ See Department of Health and Human Services, Social Security Administration, Bureau of Field Operations, San Francisco, California, 10 FLRA 115 (1982); Defense Logistics Agency, Defense Depot Tracy, Tracy, California, 14 FLRA No. 78 (1984). /3/ See Internal Revenue Service (District, Region, National Office, Unit), 11 FLRA No. 23 (1982) affirmed sub nom. National Treasury Employees Union v. FLRA, 725 F.2d 126 (D.C. Cir. 1984).