Snider & Associates, LLC and AFGE Local 32 are pleased to announce the successful outcome of a grievance filed as a result of a wrongful termination.
In 2008, OPM removed the Grievant, a GS-13 Accountant and former Union President, for failing to submit to an allegedly required background check. For more than four years the Grievant had been contesting his designation in a public trust position which triggered the requirement for the background check.
In 2007, Arbitrator Joseph Sharnoff issued a decision that permitted the Agency to require employees with public trust designations to undergo background checks. However, he also found that the Agency had an obligation to discuss the designation with any employee that contested his or her public trust position status.
The grievance was filed, in part, as a result of the Agency failing to discuss the grievant’s public trust designation before requiring that he submit to a background check – a violation of Arbitrator Sharnoff’s decision.
In July 2012, Arbitrator Andrew Strongin ruled in the Union’s favor and overturned the removal. In doing so he awarded the Grievant make whole relief including: reinstatement, back pay with all emoluments, and attorney fees; a sum that will likely exceed hundreds of thousands of dollars. He also required to Agency to engage in an interactive discussion with the Grievant before requiring him to undergo any background check.
During the grievance process and at the arbitration hearing, AFGE Local 32 and the Grievant were represented by Jacob Y. Statman, Esq., a senior attorney at Snider & Associates, LLC. Upon reading the decision, Mr. Statman stated that he was “pleased that the Arbitrator saw through the Agency’s attempt to strong-arm the Grievant into submitting to a background check that could not yet have been required.”
Snider & Associates, LLC is a boutique labor and employment law firm representing federal employees across the country. In addition to federal sector grievances the firm handles EEO and MSPB cases for unions and their bargaining unit members. The firm offers free consultations for its federal union clients. For additional information about this case or for information about how the firm can assist your union or bargaining unit employees in other matters please contact Jacob Y. Statman, Esq. at firstname.lastname@example.org or (410) 653-9060.