MEA Files Urgent Grievance On Behalf of Employees Impacted by City’s Unlawful “Unpaid Furlough” Orders
On Friday, some employees in the Library, Parks and Recreation, Transportation and Storm Water and other City Departments were instructed to not show up for work on Monday. These employees were also told that, beginning Monday, they would not remain in a paid status unless they used their own annual leave. This amounts to an unpaid furlough or temporary layoff, and MEA believes that the City has no right to unilaterally take this action against any employee who is willing and able to work.
MEA is asserting that this sudden, unilateral “unpaid furlough” by the City violates MEA’s contract, the City Charter, Civil Service Rules and State law related to collective bargaining for public employees. Accordingly, MEA filed a grievance (attached) with the City on Saturday, and we have had numerous conversations with various City officials about this violation. We expect to receive a formal response from the City on Monday indicating how they intend to proceed.
In the meantime, employees who received this directive to not show up for work and not be paid should still obey that direction while this grievance is pending. Our hope and expectation is that it will be resolved in our favor and resolved quickly. The first remedy we are asking for with this grievance is that any employee who was forced to used their annual leave shall be made whole for the loss of any pay or annual leave as a result of this unlawful directive. IF MEA prevails on this grievance, that will happen.
MEA will continue to vigorously protect your rights during this crisis and keep you posted on these developments in the coming days. Until then, please don’t hesitate to call your MEA representative. Stay strong and stay safe.
Grievance re Unilateral Furloughs.REV2