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Federal Employees News Digest : Sep 23, 2013
September 23, 2013 Vol. 63, No. 10 3 Visit us on the Internet at www.FederalDaily.com "As a union who represents work- ers at public shipyards throughout the nation, as well as other [Naval Sea Systems] locations, we are all deeply saddened by the loss of life, and for those who have been wounded today at the hands of this senseless act of terror," Gregory Junemann, president of the International Federation of Professional & Technical Engineers, said. "The entire IFPTE family sends our condolences to the families of those who have lost their lives." "Many members of IFPTE regularly participate in meetings and other busi- ness at the Washington Navy Yard and are not only colleagues with many who work there, but are also friends," Junemann added. "As the first responders continue to do their jobs in assisting the wounded and protecting the public, the thoughts and prayers of IFPTE are with them. Our union stands ready to assist them and the entire Washington Navy Yard com- munity in any way possible." Navy offers support "I'm deeply shocked and saddened by the shooting this morning at the Navy Yard," Secretary of the Navy Ray Mabus said. "Our thoughts and prayers are with the victims and their families. I have com- plete confidence in our first responders, and I continue to be completely focused on this very difficult situation." "[Our] deepest condolences to the families of the victims of today's events at the Navy Yard," Chief of Naval Operations Adm. Jonathan Greenert, said. "Our team of Sailors and Navy Civilians at the Navy Yard deserve our care and concern at this time. I applaud the efforts of all who immediately responded to this course of events in order to care for the injured victims and ensure the safety of our personnel." The Navy Warfighter and Family Support Center at Joint Base Anacostia- Bolling opened a hotline on 1-855- 677-1755 "to help those affected by the tragedy at the Washington Navy Yard," Naval base authorities said in a release. See the White House state- ment at: http://www.whitehouse.gov/ blog/2013/09/16/president-obama- speaks-washington-navy-yard-shooting; the NTEU statement at www.nteu.org; and the IFPTE statement at http:// www.ifpte.org/news/details/IFPTE- statement-on-the-Washington-Navy- Yard-shootings. Unions continue protest of plan to withdraw postal workers from FEHB Congress is considering various ver- sions of postal reform legislation that contain provisions that would permit the U.S. Postal Service to remove its employees from participation in the Federal Employees Health Benefits Program. The plans---in the Postal Reform Act of 2013 (S. 1486)---would slash the participant pool of the massive federal insurance program by more than one- quarter, and also---critics say---badly weaken the program and health care coverage for both postal and federal agency employees. In the face of the threat, federal employee unions and other organiza- tions are continuing to unite in rejecting the legislation---focusing on stopping provisions they say would do greatest harm to federal employee health care and workers' compensation programs. A section of the bill would amend the Federal Employees' Compensation Act to reduce disabled beneficiaries' benefits from current levels when they reach Social Security retirement age. "On FECA, the provisions would leave totally disabled FECA beneficia- ries with the worst long-term injuries vulnerable to impoverishment when they reach their full Social Security retirement age," Beth Moten, American Federation of Government Employee's legislative and political director told FEND. "They would also be extremely detrimental to totally disabled federal employees with dependents." Moten noted that her observations on how the proposed cost-cutting mea- sures would cause harm come direct- ly from a September 2012 General Accountability Office report, entitled "Federal Employees' Compensation Act: Analysis of Proposed Program Changes," and other GAO reports. Opponents of the legislation also point out that any Postal Service or govern- ment savings would be exceeded by costs that would be shifted onto employees--- making the proposal, effectively, a net cut in employee compensation. "On the FEHBP portion [alone], OPM has estimated that these provisions will raise premiums for employees and retir- ees who remain in FEHBP by 2 percent to 35 percent," Moten told FEND. Broad push to stop bill The major federal employees orga- nizations told FEND they are going to push hard on all cylinders against the bill---and encouraged employees to get involved. "We will do what we always do on important legislative issues---emphasize to lawmakers the impact of such a change on their constituents, and point out the unfairness and lack of wisdom and foresight of the bill's provisions, impacting both health insurance pre- miums and the workers' compensation program," National Treasury Employees continued from page 1 Don’t miss our discussion of weekly news topics. Discuss these stories and more with your fellow federal workers at www.FederalSoup.com. continued on page 5
Sep 16, 2013
Sep 30, 2013