Va Hospital Master Agreement

AFGE filed with FSIP on June 3, arguing that the Department of Veterans Affairs had proposed significant changes to its collective agreement with the union and then refused to negotiate in good faith with AFGE representatives for counter-proposals substantially similar to those of the current agreement. The body removed several articles from the agreement and removed others, said Ibidun Roberts, who represents NVAC. AFGE and the Department of Veterans Affairs are parties to a collective agreement covering consolidated bargaining units at the national level. Section 20 of this collective agreement, entitled “Working Hours and Overtime,” contains a number of provisions relating to the allocation of working hours. The provisions in this area are as follows: collective bargaining between the Department of Veterans Affairs and the American Federation of Government Employees has been stalled for more than a year, and the COVID-19 pandemic, which closed parts of the country and increased workload and risk to health care professionals, only exacerbated differences of opinion between agency management and unions about the better administration of federal staff. There is ample evidence in the minutes that both parties acknowledged that the issue of reassigning personnel from two missions to other missions had been negotiated instead or in addition to the question of the end of the two missions. In their opening statements, the advisors focused, for both General Counsel and the respondent, on reassigning staff to another mission and not on the abolition of missions. Although evidence was provided of the sustainability of the two missions, whose personnel were reassigned, substantial evidence was also highlighted, which focused on the practices and measures related to the reassignment of workers on missions. In its terms of reference, according to the hearing, the respondent does not answer the question of whether the termination of mission constitutes a violation of the statute, except for the fact that the two missions continue.

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