(WASHINGTON) —The American Federation of Government Employees—the union for Transportation Security Administration workers nationwide—today expressed outrage at House members who voted to strip from TSA workers the right to collectively bargain by passing an amendment by Rep. Todd Rokita (R-Ind.) to the House DHS Appropriations Bill. AFGE said it would continue to fight any similar amendment in the Senate.
The Rokita amendment (to the House DHS Appropriations Bill) prohibits the TSA workforce from coverage under any collective bargaining procedures, and specifically the collective bargaining determination issued by TSA Administrator John Pistole this past February.
AFGE mobilized its supporters to urge their congressmen to vote against the amendment and is poised to fight any anti-worker legislation tooth and nail.
“Despite what Mr. Rokita claimed when he introduced his amendment, there is no evidence that collective bargaining rights have any negative impact on national security, nor that these rights undermine the ability of TSA or any other DHS employee to perform their duties,” AFGE National President John Gage said. “Let us not forget that the 9/11 police and firefighter first responders all were union members with a collective bargaining contract, and it was AFGE police at Ft. Hood who didn’t stop to check their collective bargaining contracts before taking down a killer.
“AFGE will not allow these corporate, right wing politicians to make being in a union un-American,” Gage said. “This amendment is nothing but a repeat of Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker’s unfounded attack on the right of all Americans to have a voice at work and the right to bargain collectively.”
AFGE is the only union to represent TSOs since the agency’s inception, and currently has dues-paying members in 40 AFGE TSA Locals across the country. With more than 265,000 dues-paying members in more than 75 federal and D.C. government agencies, AFGE is the single largest federal employee union in the country.
For more information on AFGE at TSA, please visit www.TSAUnion.com.