WASHINGTON, DC – In response to the issuance of the Executive Order on Labor-Management Forums issued today by the White House, AFGE National President John Gage said, “The Executive Order clearly demonstrates to the political and career managers in each agency that the President wants a real change away from the confrontational, anti-union labor relations approach that has been practiced by the managers and labor relations officials over the last nine years. It will be up to the White House to hold agencies accountable for making the 180 degree turn quickly. We will be holding the Obama Administration to their promise to work with us to get America’s work done.
“The success of any government reform effort depends on pressure not only from the top officials pushing their ideas down but from the frontline workers, through their elected representatives, having meaningful input into how the people’s work can best be done. The Executive Order on pre-decisional involvement is not an end, but a means to an end—the goal is the transformation of how government services can be more effectively delivered in an energized work environment where people feel they are making a difference.
“The administration’s decision not to make b(1) bargaining mandatory, is, of course, a disappointment. But our locals are ready to develop good relationships with their management counterparts. AFGE’s focus will be in working through issues so that the agencies will be better able to advance their missions. As the Executive Order illustrates, significant improvements in the agencies’ performance will be directly related to how well the managers engage with the unions which represent approximately eighty percent of the non-managerial eligible government workforce.”