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Federal Employment and Labor Law Blog

Are you being investigated at work?


If you have learned that you are the target of an investigation in the federal workplace, you are probably worried about what might happen.

Unfortunately, the possible outcomes are grim: You may be facing disciplinary action. You may be placed on a performance plan. Or you may even lose your job.

Federal employees and the Hatch Act: What you need to know.

Reporters throughout the country recently spotlighted the Hatch Act. The law drew the media’s attention when the Office of Special Counsel accused Kellyanne Conway of a violation. The media’s attention to the matter was well deserved. In certain situations, federal employers can fire those who violate this law.

The story led to many questions. This piece will provide some basic information.

Federal employee fights back after fired for Facebook comment

A local government agency recently fired a 911 dispatcher for comments she made on social media. The federal employee made a comment on Facebook in response to the election of President Donald Trump in 2016. She states that due to this comment, her employer terminated her position as a dispatcher.

The dispatcher also states the employer has censored her political speech in the past, making her remove a Trump 2016 sweatshirt or else face repercussions for insubordination.

GAO calls out OPM for poor retirement application management

The Office of Personnel Management (OPM) is responsible for managing the retirement applications for federal employees. The agency receives an average of 100,000 applications annually. Although managing these requests is a major undertaking, the agency has failed to meet even its own goals.

Federal employees: Tips to prep for your annual review

Annual reviews are commonplace in any job, but those who work in the federal sector should note that even if the review does not directly impact their pay it will have an impact on their position. A recent piece in the Federal Times notes the review could still effect consideration for promotions or other positions outside your current agency.

OPM merger may lead to more questions than answers

Government officials recently proposed merging the Office of Personnel Management (OPM) with the General Services Administration (GSA). Since the proposal, lawmakers have been on leave for the Memorial Day Break. The Congressional calendar slates lawmakers to return to work today. It is likely the lawmakers will renew discussions of the OPM/GSA proposal's fate.

Is this the end of the Office of Personnel Management?

The Office of Personnel Management (OPM) has a good reputation for managing retirement programs and insurance for federal employees. However, it is not known for its efficiency.

Departments have attempted to start their own personnel units to move away from the OPM. This was the first sign of struggle for the OPM, highlighted when both the Department of Homeland Security and the Department of Defense received approval to begin their own systems, in 2002 and 2004 respectively.

Will lawmakers’ move to protect federal whistleblowers backfire?

Whistleblowers play an important role in the federal government. The tips given by these workers help hold those in power accountable. These workers can catch an abuse of the system, ideally while there is still time to rectify the problem. In exchange, the government and legal system is supposed to protect the worker from retaliation.

VA called to "do better" when it comes to sexual harassment

The House Committee on Veterans’ Affairs recently called out the Veterans Affairs (VA) office for its failure to properly address sexual harassment within the agency. The public scolding was part of a letter published online on The House Committee on Veterans’ Affairs Chairman’s website.  

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