Today, President Trump implemented a federal hiring freeze. According to the presidential memorandum, the hiring freeze applies to all executive branch agencies and is effective as of noon January 22, meaning that no new federal civilian positions can be created or filled after this time, unless they meet an exception. The freeze exempts military personnel and provides agencies with the ability to continue to fill vacant civilian positions that have “national security or public safety responsibilities.”
The memorandum also prohibits contracting out as a way to fulfill agency missions as a result of the hiring freeze, and states that it does not impact any current collective bargaining agreements. Of note, the Director of the Office of Management and Budget (OMB), in consultation with the Director of the Office of Personnel Management (OPM), are directed to craft a longer-term federal workforce reduction plan—via attrition—in ninety days.
NTEU strongly opposes this hiring freeze that will increase workloads on already overburdened federal employees. As the GAO has pointed out, previous hiring freezes were inefficient and did not actually save money. This fact was pointed out to President-elect Trump in a letter signed by over 100 Members of Congress urging him not to take this action.
NTEU will continue to work with these supporters and others to minimize the impact of this short sighted action.