Please note that, after an employee seeks Union representation, it is an Unfair Labor Practice (ULP) for management to bypass the union representative to discuss the matter in question directly with the employee [5 U.S.C. §7116(a)(1)].
Here’s a case for example:
When an employee came to the chapter president seeking assistance in dealing with a leave issue, the chapter president went to the manager herself and discussed it with her. Rather than respond to the president, the manager bypassed the chapter president and went straight to the employee. The Territory Manager told the chapter president that since no grievance had been filed, there was no obligation to involve the union. NTEU filed a charge alleging a bypass and the Federal Labor Relations Authority (FLRA) agreed. Management agreed to settle with a posting wherein the IRS agreed not to bypass the union when dealing with an employee issue raised by the union.
Union representatives receive extensive training in the Collective Bargaining Agreement (CBA) and related laws and regulations to best serve employee interests and those of the entire bargaining unit. We can anticipate outcomes based on previous cases and best represent your interests. Also remember that NTEU is the exclusive representative of FDA employees physically stationed in Arkansas, Colorado, Iowa, Kansas, Missouri, Nebraska, New Mexico, Oklahoma, Texas, and Utah.
Please let me or another Union representative know if you have any questions or concerns.