"President Bush needs to wise up. It doesn't take a rocket scientist to figure out why the government is experiencing severe recruitment and retention problems. With both salaries and health insurance benefits substantially below those provided by large private sector firms and state and local governments, it's no wonder the government has failed to recruit top college graduates in the past several years.
"The answer won't be found in the current "band-aid" approach of creating special pay rates for select employees as favored by the Bush Administration. Only when the federal work force is fairly compensated, respected for their dedicated service and no longer faces the threat of contracting out to the lowest bidder, will the government once again be able to recruit the best and brightest.
"AFGE wholeheartedly thanks Reps. Steny Hoyer (D-Md.) and Tom Davis (R-Va.) for their continued efforts to compensate federal workers fairly."
"AFGE and its membership are also grateful to Rep. Nita M. Lowey (D-N.Y.) for her efforts to retain the existing contraceptive coverage mandate in the federal government's health care program. AFGE believes that contraceptive coverage is a basic preventative health service that should be available to the federal government's female employees and their dependents through their FEHBP plans."
The American Federation of Government Employees, AFL-CIO, is the largest union for government employees, representing 600,000 federal workers in the United States and overseas. Go to www.afge.org for more information about AFGE.