27:0857(93)CA SEIU VS VA -- 1987 FLRAdec CA
[ v27 p857 ]
The decision of the Authority follows:
27 FLRA NO. 93
VETERANS ADMINISTRATION (WASHINGTON, D.C.) and VETERANS ADMINISTRATION MEDICAL CENTER (MANCHESTER, NEW HAMPSHIRE) Respondent and NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF GOVERNMENT EMPLOYEES, SEIU, AFL-CIO Charging Party Case No. 1-CA-70086 1-CA-70087 1-CA-70088
I. Statement of the Case
This consolidated proceeding is before the Authority under section 2429.1(a) of our Regulations based on the parties' stipulation of facts. 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 refusing to provide the Union with names and home addresses of bargaining unit employees. The General Counsel filed a brief. For the reasons below, we find that the Respondent has committed the unfair labor practices as alleged.
The Union represents approximately 500 employees in three units at the Respondent's Manchester, New Hampshire Medical Center. Local R1-17 represents nonprofessional employees, Local R1-235 represents General Schedule (GS) professional employees, and Local R1-142 represents Title 38 professional employees. By letter dated September 18, 1986, the union requested names and home addresses of employees in the GS professional unit. By letter dated September 25, 1986, the Respondent provided name, grade, title, salary and duty stations of all members of the local representing these employees but declined to supply home addresses. By letter dated November 12, 1986, the Union requested names and home addresses of all employees in all three of the units it represents. The Respondent denied the request on the grounds that home addresses could not be provided because of the Privacy Act and because the information was not subject to disclosure under the Freedom of Information Act. Since September 25, 1986 and November 12, 1986, the Respondent has refused and continues to refuse to provide to the Union the requested home addresses with the names of unit employees.
The parties have stipulated that the information sought by the Union is normally maintained by the Respondent in the regular course of business, is reasonably available and does not constitute guidance, advice, counsel or training for management officials or supervisors, relating to collective bargaining. The parties agree that the only issues are whether the information, home addresses of unit employees, was necessary for the Union's representational purposes, and whether disclosure was prohibited by law.
III. Positions of the Parties
The General Counsel argues that our decision on remand in Farmers Home Administration Finance Office, St. Louis, Missouri, 23 FLRA No. 101 (1986), petition for review filed sub nom. U.S. Department of Agriculture and the Farmers Home Administration Finance Office, St. Louis, Missouri v. FLRA, No. 86-2579 (8th Cir. Dec. 23, 1986) is controlling in this consolidated proceeding. The General Counsel contends that the Respondent's refusal to provide the home addresses of bargaining unit employees violates section 7114(b)(4) of the Statute and constitutes the unfair labor practices alleged in the complaint.
The Respondent did not file a brief.
IV. Analysis and Conclusions
In our decision on remand on remand in Farmers Home, we held that the release of names and home addresses of bargaining unit employees to exclusive representatives is not prohibited by law, is necessary for unions to fulfill their duties under the Statute, and meets all of the other requirements of section 7114(b)(4). Our decision in Farmers Home analyzed the two exceptions to the Privacy Act's bar to disclosure of personal information pertinent to the release of employees' names and home addresses: exception (b)(2) concerning the Freedom of Information Act, and exception (b)(3) relating to "routine use" of information. We found that both exceptions to the Privacy Act's bar applied so as to authorize release of the information under the Privacy Act.
We also found in Farmers Home that the release of the information is generally required without regard to whether alternative means of communication are available. Further, from the parties' stipulation, it is evident that the other requirements of section 7114(b)(4)(A), (B) and (C) have been met. Consistent with our decision in Farmers Home, we therefore find that the Respondent was required to furnish the Union with the home addresses of the employees in the bargaining units. Its refusal to do so violated section 7116(a)(1), (5) and (8) of the Statute.
Pursuant to section 2423.29 of the Authority's Rules and Regulations and section 7118 of the Federal Service Labor - Management Relations Statute, the Veterans Administration (Washington, D.C.) and the Veterans Administration Medical Center (Manchester, New Hampshire), shall:
1. Cease and desist from:
(a) Refusing to furnish, upon request of the National Association of Government Employees, SEIU, AFL - CIO, the exclusive representative of units of its employees, the names and home addresses of all bargaining unit employees it represents located at its Manchester, New Hampshire VA Medical Center.
(b) In any like or related manner, interfering with, restraining, or coercing its employees in the exercise of rights assured them by the Statute.
2. Take the following affirmative action in order to effectuate the purposes and policies of the Statute:
(a) Upon request by the National Association of Government Employees, SEIU, AFL - CIO, the exclusive representative of units of its employees, furnish it with the names and home addresses of all bargaining unit employees it represents located at its Manchester, New Hampshire VA Medical Center.
(b) Post at all its facilities at the VA Medical Center, Manchester, New Hampshire, where bargaining unit employees represented by the National Association of Government Employees, SEIU, AFL - CIO are located, 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 the Director of the VA Medical Center, Manchester, New Hampshire, 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 section 2423.30 of the Authority's Rules and Regulations, notify the Regional Director, Region I, Federal Labor Relations Authority, in writing, within 30 days from the date of this Order, as to what steps have been taken to comply with this order.
Issued, Washington, D.C., June 26, 1987.
Jerry L. Calhoun, Chairman
Henry B. Frazier III, Member