Bargain Together or Beg Alone
"STRENGTH IN UNITY"
Welcome to the AFGE Local 1637 website. Local 1637 represents the bargaining unit employees at the Federal Correctional Institution in Seagoville Texas and the South Central Regional Office in Grand Prairie Texas. This site is dedicated to the union members who put their lives on the line each day across the nation.
ARTICLE 1 - RECOGNITION
Section a. The Union is recognized as the sole and exclusive representative for all bargaining unit employees as defined in 5 United States Code (USC), Chapter 71.
We encourage all bargaining unit staff to become union members. Remember, strength is in numbers. As a member of Local 1637 you WILL be heard. Click here to download the form to join the AFGE Local 1637 Union. Contact a steward or E-Board member for more information about becoming a member.
Need a Union Rep?
Did you know anytime you are faced with disciplinary actions you may (and it is highly recommended) request a union representative? Just tell your supervisor you want a union representative before they begin to question you.
All Bargaining Unit Employees of the Bureau of Prisons have the right to be accompanied by a Union Representative to all interviews with management officials, in which the employee reasonably believes the interview might result in disciplinary action (e.g. Investigative, Safety, Accident, Mystery Shopper) to include "NOT THE SUBJECT OF THE INVESTIGATION".
The above right is guaranteed in the 1975 U.S. Supreme Court decision, NLRB v. J. Weingarten, and violation of that right has been found to be an Unfair Labor Practice. Simply stated, your Weingarten Rights provide that you may request, and management must provide, a Union Representative to accompany you to all interviews that you believe might result in disciplinary action.
Your Rights During an OIG Investigation: Garrity and Kalkines
While Weingarten and Miranda Rights will still be afforded, Special Agents use Kalkine or Garrity warnings in interrogations that everyone should become familiar with.
Garrity Rights: This is a voluntary interview. Always request a Union Representative and do not answer any questions. You can leave the interview if they inform you that this is a voluntary statement. Do not go forward until that has been explained and you have signed the waiver and assurance form from OIG. Protects the employee from having to choose between self incrimination and job forfeiture for failing to cooperate. The individual has the right to not be threatened with discharge in order for the OIG to secure incriminating evidence that would be used against them for arrest and prosecution. Miranda Rights would be applicable here.
Kalkines Rights: If the individual is given immunity from criminal prosecution, the employee is required to cooperate in the investigation even if the information solicited could be used for discharging the employee. Special Agents do not have the authority to grant immunity from criminal prosecution. However, if Special Agents provide the form "Administrative Warning: Duty to Cooperate" that means that the OIG has obtained such a waiver of prosecution.
As a reminder the AFGE Local 1637 union wants to remind all bargaining staff of their right to a union representative during any examination that could lead to disciplinary action. This includes Office of Inspector General (OIG), Office of Internal Affairs (OIA) and Special Investigative Services (SIS). The agency does not pick the representative, the union does. The agency also has an obligation to inform you of your right to union representation prior to any examination that they know could lead to disciplinary action, that's even if you don't ask for it, they still must tell you of your right.
In accordance with the Master Agreement, Article 6, section g, and 5 USC, Section 7114, employees are to be informed of the following rights:
Unit employees, including probationary employees, have the right to a Union representative during any examination by, or prior to submission of any written report to, a representative of the Employer in connection with an investigation if:
1. The employee reasonably believes that the examination may result in disciplinary action the employee; and
2. The employee request representation.
Do not fall for the old line "Well, you're not the subject of the investigation" and ask them to call the union president. The union is the one who assigns representation. Contact Javara Bienemy or any other union representative if you have any questions.
Benefits For AFGE Members
All union members have access to AFGE benefits. These benefits are backed by the collective strengths of over 10-million members of AFL-CIO unions. Many members who have taken advantage of these programs have saved as much or more of their annual union dues.
You can receive discounts from AT&T Wireless, Theme Parks, Car Rentals, Goodyear Tires and Services and much more.
Remember, these money-saving benefits are only available to AFGE members.
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