AFGE National President Continues Tour on Border Protection Issues
Town Hall Meetings with Border Protection Officers
February 13 - 17, 2006
Monday, February 13, 2006 Lone Star Restaurant 4201 West Business Hwy 83 Harlingen, Texas
Tuesday, February 14 El Patio Restaurant 402 East Main Street Rio Grande, Texas
Wednesday, February 15 Coyote Coral & Cantina 4615 San Bernardo Street Laredo, Texas
Thursday, February 16 Sirloin Stockade 225 South Bibbs Street Eagle Pass, Texas
Friday, February 17 Sirloin Stockade 2015 Veterans Blvd. Del Rio, Texas
John Gage, AFGE National President Roy Flores, AFGE National Vice President, 10th District
(Harlingen, Texas)-AFGE National President John Gage will host the town hall meetings across southern Texas to hear Customs and Border Protection officers concerns about a lack of law enforcement status and border security. Also in attendance will be AFGE National Vice President, Roy Flores.
Border protection officers put themselves at physical risk to arrest and detain individuals that violate the law but do not have the benefits of law enforcement status. AFGE is leading the effort to get “6(c)” law enforcement benefits for border patrol officers, which would allow them to retire after 20 years of service at 50 years old, or at any time after serving for 25 years.
Gage explained at a recent town hall meeting in El Paso that the lack of benefits and pay for Customs and Border Protection officers has resulted in a ‘20 percent vacancy rate’ that weakens national security. This vacancy rate puts homeland security at risk by stretching an understaffed and underappreciated workforce with overly important responsibilities.
“Customs and Border Protection officers have got a gun, and a badge, but they don’t have the respect of their agency,” said Gage.
AFGE is the overwhelmingly dominant union representing employees within the Department of Homeland Security. AFGE represents workers of the Border Patrol, Citizenship and Immigration Services, Immigration and Customs Enforcement, Federal Protective Service, Federal Emergency Management Agency, the Coast Guard and the Transportation Security Administration. AFGE has been at the forefront of representing DHS workers and opposing extreme personnel proposals in the department since its creation in 2001.
The American Federation of Government Employees (AFGE) is the largest federal employee union, representing 700,000 workers in the federal government and the government of the District of Columbia.