February 09, 2003
Diane S. Witiak
(202) 639-6419

Professionals At D.C. Medical Center Pick AFGE

(Washington, D.C.)—“President Bush has declared war against reliable, experienced and patriotic federal employees—slashing pay, stripping away civil service protections, and announcing plans to privatize nearly one million federal jobs,” stated Bobby L. Harnage, Sr., National President of the American Federation of Government Employees (AFGE). “It’s no wonder these employees are turning to AFGE for effective union representation.”

Harnage’s statement was prompted by the recent AFGE election win of a unit of professional employees at the Veterans Affairs Medical Center in the District of Columbia. Some 350 employees, including physicians, will be included in the new bargaining unit that will become part of AFGE Local 2798 which currently represents non-professional employees at the Medical Center. The final vote tally was: 100 AFGE; 41 no union.

Local 2798 President Cleo Pennington, Executive Vice President Dwight Lamar, Secretary-Treasurer Richard Settle and Valerie Reilly, National Representative for AFGE’s Council of VA Locals, were key plays in the election win.

The American Federation of Government Employees, AFL-CIO, represents some 600,000 government employees in the United States and overseas. Nationwide, AFGE represents some 145,000 employees working for the Department of Veterans Affairs. For more information about AFGE, log onto

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