FT. BELVOIR, VA – Officials from the American Federation of Government Employees and the Defense Contract Audit Agency today signed the first-ever contract covering all bargaining unit employees at the agency.
About 3,200 employees across the agency’s five regions are covered by the new contract, compared to roughly 1,300 employees in two regions who had union representation prior to the formation of the national bargaining council, AFGE Council 162.
“This is truly a historic day for DCAA employees. For the first time in the 48 years that DCAA has been in existence, bargaining unit employees across the agency are protected by an agency-wide collective bargaining agreement,” AFGE National President J. David Cox Sr. said.
Most of the agency’s bargaining unit employees are accountants and auditors, followed by administrative support personnel, accounting clerks and accounting technicians.
In addition to expanding existing protections to employees across the agency, the new contract includes a new article pertaining to hours of work that will give employees more flexibility in scheduling start and stop times, AFGE Council 162 President Jim Galler said.
Council 162 also has agreed to establish a Labor Management Forum with DCAA management in accordance with President Obama’s Executive Order 13522. The first meeting was held Wednesday, the day before the national contract signing ceremony at DCAA headquarters.
“Like any contract negotiations, there was a lot of give and take throughout the bargaining process, but we are generally quite happy with the end result,” Galler said. “We certainly could not have finished our negotiations and gotten to this point without the assistance of National President Cox, AFGE Field Services and Education Department Deputy Director Peter Winch, and Labor Relations Specialist Cara James.”