P  E  R  M  E  R  I  C  A  .  C O M


a great interview    (45 minutes)
on thursday may 23rd, terry gross interviewed Lizzo
to download/save the interview, click the three dots [ . . . ]
rename the file to " Lizzo Interview, FreshAir, May 23, 2019 "

Lizzo New CD Review
( 3 mb )

if nancy & the dems really want the tax papers ... they can follow his lead ... say the magic words ... " dear tricky leaps"

♦       May 24, 2019 .. 6th Cir.:  Rogers v. Webstaurant ..  Brittany Rogers filed suit against the Webstaurant Store for allegedly retaliating against her after she sought overtime pay. The district court dismissed her suit, and we affirm.    Brittany Rogers worked as a customer service representative for the Webstaurant Store. The main goal of customer service is to provide helpful and friendly service to customers. But Rogers’s manager, Tricia Wilkerson, believed that Rogers lacked a “can do attitude towards helping customers.”    Webstaurant decided it was best to cut ties with Rogers and let her go.    Rogers did not believe Webstaurant fired her for performance reasons. Instead, she believed that Webstaurant fired her because she complained about not getting overtime pay. So she filed suit under the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA).  ..  COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       May 24, 2019 .. 5th Cir.:  Inocencio v. Montalvo ..  Inocencio, a Hispanic man, was employed by the Houston Police Department (HPD) from 1982 until his retirement in 2014.    Inocencio was promoted to the rank of Sergeant in 1992. In 2004, Inocencio was promoted to Lieutenant and assigned to the Narcotics Division, where he remained for the duration of his career until he retired.    Inocencio alleges that the Narcotics Division had a long-standing policy of promoting into HIDTA positions only officers who had first worked in the street-level units within that division. Inocencio also maintains that he was highly qualified for the HIDTA positions, claiming that he led the “most productive” squad in General Narcotics and achieved high productivity by cultivating and managing about 60 confidential informants.  ..  COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       May 24, 2019 .. FLRA:  Defense v. ACEA ..  The Federal Labor Relations Authority’s (FLRA’s) Boston Regional Office issued an unfair-labor-practice (ULP) complaint alleging that the Respondent (the Agency) violated § 7116(a)(1), (5), and (6) of the Federal Service Labor-Management Relations Statute (the Statute).    The complaint alleged that the Agency committed ULPs when it refused to implement a successor collective-bargaining agreement with the Charging Party (the Union), despite a decision from the Federal Service Impasses Panel (the Panel) directing the Agency to adopt that agreement.    In the attached decision, an FLRA Administrative Law Judge (the Judge) recommended finding that the Agency committed the ULPs alleged in the complaint.      The main issue before us is whether the Judge’s recommended decision is contrary to law.  ..  FLRA DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       May 23, 2019 .. 4th Cir.:  Westmoreland v. TWC ..  After Time Warner Cable (“TWC”), fired Glenda Westmoreland, an African American woman, she filed this action, alleging that the company would not have done so but for illegal age discrimination.    Following a three-day trial, the jury found for Westmoreland, and the district court denied TWC’s motion for judgment as a matter of law.    TWC now brings this appeal, principally contending that Westmoreland failed to present sufficient evidence to justify the jury verdict.  ..  COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       May 23, 2019 .. 5th Cir.:  Herring v. AP&J ..  Charles Herring sued NewFirst National Bank (which he inaccurately calls NewFirst State Bank) and certain individuals for race discrimination under Title VII, 42 U.S.C. § 1981, and state-law theories.  ..  The district court converted the motion to dismiss to a motion for summary judgment and granted summary judgment.  ..  COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       May 22, 2019 .. 2d Cir.:  Massaro  v. Education ..  Ms. Massaro, a former public school teacher of the New York City Department of Education (“DOE”).    She alleged that school personnel violated the Age Discrimination in Employment Act (“ADEA”) by discriminating against her on the basis of her age and retaliating against her for bringing an earlier age‐discrimination lawsuit.  ..  COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       May 22, 2019 .. D.D.C..:  Varnado v. Save the Children ..  Save the Children hired Ms. Varnado, who is African American, to be an Associate Director of Financial and Sub-Award Management within USP Finance. During her first performance review, Ms. Varnado received positive feedback from her supervisor, Juliana Brannan.    The next month, a finance manager on Ms. Varnado’s team gave notice, and Save the Children tried to hire someone temporarily to cover that manager’s immediate responsibilities. When that proved difficult, Ms. Varnado offered to take on the role to learn more about it, and she moved to Lexington, Kentucky, to do so. Upon arrival, she received training from another finance manager about the role.    Even in Ms. Varnado’s telling, this arrangement was not a happy one. First, Ms. Varnado was late to a conference call about her finance manager responsibilities. Then, she had issues using a risk assessment tool. Ultimately Save the Children fired her.  ..  COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       May 21, 2019 .. DOJ OIG:    FCC CHIEF ENDORSES SPRINT, T-MOBILE MERGER : FCC Chairman Ajit Pai said in a press release. "The commitments made today by T-Mobile and Sprint would substantially advance each of these critical objectives."    To secure the deal, Sprint agreed to sell Boost Mobile. Sprint will retain Virgin Mobile and T-Mobile will retain Metro by T-Mobile. ... nbcnews.com

♦       May 21, 2019 .. WCA:  Hollis v. Snohomish ..  Deborah Hollis appeals the summary judgment dismissal of her claims against her former employer, the Snohomish County Medical Examiner's Office(SCMEO),for retaliation, disability discrimination, and failure to accommodate her disabilities.    Hollis suffers from diabetes. In December 2013, Hollis requested a workplace accommodation for her diabetes and met with Heather Ole, SCMEO's operations manager. Hollis asked Oie for new boots, a refrigerator to keep her lunch in, and the ability to take breaks as necessary.    The day after the meeting, Hollis purchased the boots on SCMEO's credit card and Dr. Thiersch purchased a personal refrigerator for Hollis's work space. Ole advised Hollis that she could take breaks to manage her condition at any time and asked Hollis to notify her if she had any trouble taking those breaks. After this initial meeting, Hollis never contacted Ole to inform her that there were any issues with the accommodations.    In August 2015, Hollis complained to Dr. Daniel Selove, the chief medical examiner hired in 2015, that she was not able to take her lunch breaks.  ..  COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       May 20, 2019 .. FLRA:  SSA v. IFPTE ..  On December 14, 2016, the grievant received a favorable settlement on an EEO complaint she filed against the Agency. Two days later, the Agency informed the grievant that it was investigating her for conduct that had occurred in May 2016.    In March, 2017, the grievant filed a formal complaint with the EEO (second complaint) against the Agency alleging retaliation for the grievant’s first EEO complaint.    Following the conclusion of the investigation, the Agency issued a written reprimand to the grievant in May 2017. In response, the Union filed a grievance on June 29, 2017 on her behalf, alleging that the Agency violated the parties’ agreement and did not have just cause to issue a written reprimand.    The parties were unable to resolve the grievance, and it proceeded to arbitration.  ..  FLRA DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       May 20, 2019 .. 9th Cir.:  Lambert v. Tesla ..  Plaintiff-Appellant DeWitt Lambert filed suit against Defendant-Appellee Tesla, Inc. (Tesla), alleging violations of 42 U.S.C. § 1981.    Tesla moved to compel arbitration, and the district court granted the motion.    Lambert appealed, arguing that § 1981 claims cannot be subjected to compulsory arbitration.  ..  COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       May 20, 2019 .. D.C. Cir.:  Haynes v. DC Water ..  Larry Haynes had worked at the D.C. Water and Sewer Authority (“D.C. Water”) for nearly thirty years when his position was eliminated as part of a reorganization. D.C. Water offered Haynes a new position, but he was unable to obtain the license that position required and lost his job.    Haynes alleges that he was treated differently than other employees affected by the reorganization due to his race, age, and learning disability, and that D.C. Water refused to accommodate his disability when it set deadlines for him to obtain the new license. He brings claims under various federal and D.C. civil rights statutes.  ..  COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       May 17, 2019 .. 11th Cir.:  Stanley v. Broward ..  Plaintiff-Appellant Jeffrey Stanley has alleged that the Defendant-Appellee Broward County Sheriff’s Office refused to rehire him due to his political activities in violation of the First Amendment.  ..  COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       May 17, 2019 .. 4th Cir.:  Dortch v. Cellco ..  Frieda Dortch contends that the district court erred in rejecting her hostile work environment claim by concluding that the alleged harassment was not severe or pervasive and in finding that Verizon was not on notice of the harassment.    To establish a hostile work environment claim, “a plaintiff must show that the offending conduct (1) was unwelcome, (2) was because of her [race or] sex, (3) was sufficiently severe or pervasive to alter the conditions of her employment and create an abusive working environment, and (4) was imputable to her employer.”    Harassment is considered sufficiently severe or pervasive so as to alter the terms or conditions of the employment if a workplace is “permeated with discriminatory intimidation, ridicule, and insult.”    The standard for proving an abusive work environment is intended to be a high one because it is designed to “filter out complaints attacking the ordinary tribulations of the workplace.”    Thus, the plaintiff must show not only that she subjectively believed her workplace environment was hostile, but also that a reasonable person could perceive it to be objectively hostile.  ..  COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       May 16, 2019 .. DOJ OIG:  Investigative Summary : Misconduct by an FBI Attorney for Shoplifting at Quantico Marine Base ... Justice.gov   (.pdf)

♦       May 16, 2019 .. FLRA:  Army v. AFGE ..  The Union president (the grievant) requested sixty-four hours of official time. On the request form, the grievant listed Section A.4, and generally referenced Subsections (a), (b), (c), (e), and (f) as the reasons for the official time, but did not specify how much time he needed for each activity.    While reviewing the request, the grievant’s supervisor orally asked the grievant for additional information about the activities that the grievant would perform so that the supervisor could determine whether the amount of time requested was reasonable.    When the grievant refused to provide any additional information, the Agency denied the request on the basis that the grievant requested an “excessive amount of time” without providing enough detail for management to determine how he would use the time.    The Union filed a grievance over the denial.  ..  FLRA DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       May 16, 2019 .. 7th Cir.:  U.S. v. Sanchez ..  Sanchez, a daily cocaine user, says that on the day of his arrest he had decided to take his own life. He took a gun from his closet and ingested multiple controlled substances.    Galesburg, Illinois police officers responded to a call about an intoxicated person on the street and encountered Sanchez, attempting (and failing) to stay upright, with the handle of the gun protruding from his pocket.    The officers handcuffed Sanchez and discovered that the gun was loaded and that its serial number had been removed.    In the same pocket, they also found a plastic bag containing three baggies of cocaine weighing 4.8 grams total.  ..  COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       May 15, 2019 .. 4th Cir.:  Chin-Young  v. U.S. ..  Chin-Young appeals the district court’s dismissal of his tort, discrimination, and various statutory claims on grounds of res judicata.    Chin-Young was terminated from his position as a civilian Supervisory Program Analyst in the Army Contracting Command (the “ACC”) in Fort Belvoir, Virginia in January 2011. He challenged his termination before the Merit Systems Protection Board (the “MSPB”) and he settled his initial challenge in May 2011.    He has subsequently brought three petitions to enforce the settlement agreement, resulting in two decisions by the MSPB, both of which he has appealed to federal district court. His second appeal is before us now.    For the reasons that follow, we affirm in part, reverse in part, and remand for further proceedings.  ..  COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       May 13, 2019 .. SUPREME COURT:  Apple. v. Pepper ..  SUPREME COURT RULES AGAINST APPLE IN APP STORE PRICE FIXING CASE ..  The proposed class action lawsuit by consumers accuses Apple Inc of monopolizing the market for iPhone software applications and forcing them to overpay.    Conservative Justice Brett Kavanaugh, an appointee of President Donald Trump, joined the court’s four liberal justices to rule against Apple in a 5-4 ruling.   (reuters)    (wiki)

♦       May 13, 2019 .. D.C. Cir.:  Figueroa v. Michael Pompeo ..  Figueroa is a Hispanic male born in Puerto Rico.    Relevant here, federal employees may invoke two theories to prove Title VII liability. First, under the disparate impact theory, employees may challenge the government’s use of a “particular employment practice that causes a disparate impact on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, or national origin.”    Second, under the disparate treatment theory, they may challenge any “personnel actions affecting employees” and involving “any discrimination based on race, color, religion, sex, or national origin.” Such actions include hiring, firing, and the provision of “compensation, terms, conditions, or privileges of employment.”  ..  DECISION:  (pdf)   (html)

♦       May 13, 2019 .. 11th Cir.:  Carpenter v. Alabama ..  Dr. John Carpenter, Jr., a physician who previously held a staff position with the University of Alabama Health Services Foundation (“UAHSF”) and a tenured faculty position at University of Alabama at Birmingham’s (“UAB”) School of Medicine, brought a § 1983 claim against UAHSF, alleging a violation of his property interest in continued employment in both positions when he was wrongfully discharged without a pre-termination hearing.  ..  COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       May 13, 2019 .. 7th Cir.:  Tomas v. Illinois ..  Susan Tomas, who is white and Polish, sued the Illinois Department of Employment Security and its employees under Title VII and the Fourteenth Amendment after she was passed over for a promotion. She also asserted that the defendants retaliated against her for filing a discrimination charge with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission.    Lastly, she brought discrimination and retaliation claims against both her union—the American Federation of State, County, and Municipal Employees, Local 1006—and union officials for inadequately investigating her allegations and declining to file grievances on her behalf.  ..  COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       May 10, 2019 .. 3rd Cir.:  Smith v. Scranton ..  SHE IS NOT A POOR PERFORMER,  SHE IS A "VICTIM" ??? ..  University of Scranton hired Smith to work as a receptionist in its Residential Life Office.    Smith had a rough tenure: she received several poor performance reviews and two warnings about the quality of her work.    A few weeks after the second warning, Smith told her supervisor that she was having “trouble with [her] memory” and suffering from “daily headaches.”    So in 2012, Smith asked for two accommodations under the Americans with Disabilities Act.    Soon after, Smith accepted a secretary position in the University’s Department of Theology and Religious Studies.    But Smith's performance remained spotty: She had trouble printing, scanning, and copying documents. She made mistakes filling out expense reports and reimbursements.  ..  COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       May 10, 2019 .. A.F.C.C.A.:  U.S. v. Bello ..  On 4 June 2017, Appellant was at a bar near Malmstrom Air Force Base (AFB), Montana.    At some point during the evening, Appellant left the bar and was standing outside with his friends as Senior Airman (SrA) WG was entering the bar.    Appellant said something to a person who was with SrA WG, and Appellant and SrA WG exchanged words.    As the verbal confrontation escalated, Appellant and SrA WG moved very close to each other, and Appellant ultimately punched SrA WG twice in the face.    SrA WG fell to the ground, striking his head on the pavement and sustaining a skull fracture and subdural hemorrhage.    Security camera footage showed that, prior to the fight, Appellant reached into his pants pocket, retrieved a cell phone, and handed it to a female who was watching the events unfold.    She appeared to record or photograph the fight with the phone.  ..  COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       May 10, 2019 .. Fed Cir.:  Broughton v. U.S. ..  Ms. Broughton was honorably discharged from the United States Navy and the Naval Reserve in 1997.    From 2005 through 2009, she worked for the Department of Veterans Affairs at medical centers in Denver, Colorado, and Seattle, Washington.    She alleges that exposure to hazardous waste odors during her employment caused her to suffer from hypoxia.    She ultimately resigned in May 2009 after the VA denied her requests for accommodation.    Since her resignation, Ms. Broughton has started several legal proceedings related to her work environment, including before the Office of Workers’ Compensation Programs, the Merit Systems Protection Board, and the [court].   COURT DECISION:  (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       May 9, 2019 .. 6th Cir.:  Fowler v. Benson ..  SHAME ON YOU SIXTH CIRCUIT, SHAME ON YOU ..  This is a case about the constitutionality of Michigan’s driver’s-license suspension scheme, as applied to indigent drivers. Plaintiffs claim that the Michigan Secretary of State’s suspension of an indigent person’s driver’s license, on the basis of unpaid court debt, violates the Fourteenth Amendment.    Plaintiffs contend that suspending the driver’s licenses of the poor is irrational because license suspension makes their commuting to and from work, for instance, much harder, and therefore reduces the chances that they will pay the debt.    Because Plaintiffs have not shown that Michigan’s legal scheme is devoid of a rational basis, we decline Plaintiffs’ invitation to etch their preferred driver’s-license policy into constitutional bedrock.    The district court granted Plaintiffs’ motion to enjoin Michigan’s Secretary of State from enforcing Michigan’s driver’s-license suspension law.    Because we find that the Secretary’s enforcement of Michigan law does not run afoul of the Fourteenth Amendment, we REVERSE.  ..  COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       May 9, 2019 .. 7th Cir.:  Levitin v. Northwest ..  Dr. Yelena Levitin is a female, Jewish surgeon of Russian descent. She owns and operates Chicago Surgical Clinic, Ltd., a private medical practice. From 2000 through early 2013, most of her revenue came from the work she performed at Northwest Community Hospital in Arlington Heights, Illinois., where she maintained practice privileges.    In December 2008 Levitin complained to Northwest that Dr. Daniel Conway, another surgeon, was harassing her. She alleges that Conway repeatedly criticized her medical decisions, undermined her in front of her patients, and interrupted one of her surgeries. Northwest reprimanded Conway, and any direct harassment stopped in January 2009.    For nearly thirteen years, Dr. Yelena Levitin performed surgeries at Northwest. In January 2013 the hospital terminated her practice privileges.    She brought this Title VII suit claiming that Northwest discriminated against her based on her sex, religion (Jewish), and ethnicity (Russian).  ..  COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       May 9, 2019 ..  ARMY CHANGES PROMOTION RULES TO FACILITATE A FLOOD OF PROMOTIONS OF UN-QUALIFIED SOLDIERS OVER FULLY-QUALIFIED SOLDIERS.  ..  The new system, which will be implemented over the next couple years, will push top performers in their ranks ahead of those who have served longer in the same position for sergeant first class and above. ..  Read More     First They Lowered The Physical Requirements For Women; Now The Promotion Requirements.

♦       May 8, 2019 .. 6th Cir.:  Barrow  v. Cleveland ..  Jerome Barrow, an African-American male, began his long career with the [Cleveland Police] in 1979. Barrow was a good officer; he received high marks and rose through the ranks.    In 1993, he was promoted to sergeant.    Barrow achieved the rank of lieutenant in 2005, and later joined the vice unit, where he spent most of the rest of his career.    Barrow took the test to become a captain in 2011, but failed to achieve a passing score. Of the officers who took the exam, eight passed and two (including Barrow) failed. Only one of the officers who passed was African-American.    After learning of the test results, Barrow filed a charge with the EEOC alleging that the test was racially discriminatory.    Following his EEOC charge, Barrow experienced several employment actions that he claims were in retaliation for his EEOC complaint.  ..  COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       May 7, 2019 .. 6th Cir.:  Romano v. Hudson ..  The Hudson City School District (“Hudson”) in Ohio is one of the highest-achieving school districts in the country.    Trisha Romano applied to work there as a teacher every year from 2012 through 2016.    She was never hired and, eventually, stopped being interviewed.    In 2017, Romano filed a complaint alleging, among other things, age discrimination in violation of the Age Discrimination in Employment Act (the “ADEA”) and retaliation in violation of the ADEA.  ..  COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       May 7, 2019 .. Fed. Cir.:  Robinson v. DVA ..  Petitioner Robinson appeals the Merit Systems Protection Board’s decision to uphold the Department of Veterans Affairs’ removal of Mr. Robinson as Associate Director of the Phoenix Veterans Administration Health Care System.    BACKGROUND    Mr. Robinson became the Associate Director of the Phoenix Veterans Administration Health Care System (“Phoenix VA”) in May 2012.    During his tenure as Associate Director, Mr. Robinson was aware that scheduling issues were a problem, including the fact that it often took more than thirty days for patients to receive new-patient appointments.  ..  COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       May 7, 2019 .. WCA:  Engstrom-Stockwell v. Microsoft ..  George Engstrom and John Stockwell appeal the trial court's summary judgment dismissal of their claim for wrongful discharge in violation of public policy against Microsoft Corporation. They believe that they were terminated from Microsoft as retaliation for initiating an investigation into another Microsoft employee.  ..  COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       May 6, 2019 .. PCC:  Ream v. PA DPW ..  On appeal, we consider whether the trial court erred in [denying] Jennifer Ream's (Ream) claim for constructive discharge due to retaliation for protected activity.    The incident that precipitated Ream’s decision to quit her job occurred in June 2014 when a resident wandered away while Ream was assisting four other residents with dining. Ream believed that another RSA was monitoring the resident in the restroom.    On July 10, 2014, Ream quit her job out of fear of possible termination.    She voluntarily terminated her position notwithstanding a “satisfactory” final work evaluation and special commendations from her work supervisor. In August 2014, the Department issued a notice of no-discipline to Ream regarding the June 2014 incident.    In October 2015, Ream filed the instant complaint.  ..  COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       May 3, 2019 .. VA OIG:  This audit substantiated that the psychologist improperly coded mental health services for about 66 percent of patient encounters for a 20-week period. The psychologist double-coded services, used codes not supported by the medical documentation, and entered codes not permitted for psychologists’ use. Also, the psychologist received about $7,700 in salary for clinic time not spent providing direct patient care and more than 243 hours in unnecessary overtime pay.  vaoig   (.pdf)

♦       May 3, 2019 .. DOJ OIG:  Investigative Summary: Findings of Misconduct by an FBI Special Agent in Charge and Assistant Special Agent in Charge for Failing to Ensure Contact with a Known Drug Trafficker was Handled According to FBI Policy ...     Justice.gov   (.pdf)

♦       May 3, 2019 .. 9th Cir.:  EEOC v. Jeanswear ..  1. The district court abused its discretion when it held that the subpoenaed information was not relevant to L.B.’s charge.    2. The district court also abused its discretion when it held that the subpoena was unduly burdensome.  ..  COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       May 2, 2019 .. Fed. Cir.:  Mogil v. DVA ..  Allyn Mogil served as an engineering technician at the VA Medical Center in Minneapolis, Minnesota from 2008 to 2017.    In this role, he was responsible for development, design, and implementation of VA engineering and maintenance projects, including new construction, renovation, and equipment replacement and service.    Around November 2016, he began sharing an office with Tony Horacek. Their office had three light fixtures controlled by two switches. They had an ongoing dispute over whether the lights should remain on or off in their office.    One day Mr. Mogil returned to the office and discovered that Mr. Horacek had turned the lights off.    Mr. Mogil “snapped,”    He retrieved a hammer from the facility’s electrical shop, and smashed the light switch with the hammer, which permanently disabled the lighting in his office [...] . ..  COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       May 2, 2019 .. FLRA:  AFGE v. Immigration ..  In this case, the Agency issued memoranda to employees to notify them of misconduct investigations, and to suspend certain workplace privileges during the course of those investigations.    Arbitrator John M. Donoghue found that issuing these memoranda prior to the completion of investigations by the Office of Security and Integrity (OSI) was not prohibited by the Agency’s regulations or the parties’ collective-bargaining agreement.    On March 27, 2018, the Union filed exceptions [appeals] to the award, and on April 27, 2018, the Agency filed an opposition to the Union’s exceptions.  ..  FLRA DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       May 2, 2019 .. Fed. Cl.:  Oliva v. U.S. (DVA) ..  In this breach of contract action, plaintiff, Steven J. Oliva, seeks to recover relocation incentive pay and lost salary from the government in connection with certain alleged breaches of the Settlement Agreement that he entered with the VA on or about January 30, 2015.    Plaintiff periodically worked for the VA from 2000 until his termination from the agency in 2016.    After spending 8 years employed in the private sector, plaintiff returned to the VA in 2012, as an Associate Director of Pharmacy Customer Care at the Health Resource Center located in Waco, TX.    Thereafter, plaintiff worked as an Associate Director of Contract Management for the VA’s Health Resource Center headquarters located in Topeka, KS and the Campus of the Central Texas Veterans Healthcare System located in Waco, TX.    In the amended complaint, plaintiff alleges that the VA breached the Settlement Agreement in March 2015 and February 2016, respectively, and that he did not receive certain job offers [...].  ..  COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       May 1, 2019 .. DOJ OIG:  Investigative Summary: Findings of Misconduct by a DEA Assistant Special Agent in Charge for Failure to Act in a Professional Manner, and by a DEA Special Agent in Charge for Favoritism and Providing False Statements to the OIG ...     Justice.gov   (.pdf)

♦       May 1, 2019 .. 10th Cir.:  Provencio v. Intel ..  INTEL INSIDE    INSIDE INTEL :   Jollene Provencio appeals from the district court’s grant of summary judgment in favor of Intel Corporation.    Provencio worked for Intel for nearly 20 years. In March 2015, she participated as a witness in an internal investigation of another employee’s age-discrimination complaint.    Although Provencio did not tell the investigator she had witnessed age discrimination, she did complain that some of her supervisors had created a hostile work environment.    She described a female supervisor, Janice Lee, as a bully who seemed to have issues with women, and she stated that a male supervisor, Randie Dorrance, would not write up any managers.    A few months later, Provencio’s direct supervisor, Keith Baumgardner, told her that three other managers—Lee, Dorrance (who was Baumgardner’s supervisor), and Jeff Kiehne—had complained that she was unapproachable and difficult to work with.    Baumgardner had not received complaints about Provencio’s job performance before she participated in the internal investigation.  ..  COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       May 1, 2019 .. TCA:  Jones v. Allman ..  The plaintiff, Leslie K. Jones, was hired by Tennessee State University (“TSU”) in 1999 as a campus security officer.    On March 1, 2012, TSU provided notice to Mr. Jones that his employment with TSU would be terminated as of March 15, 2012.    The record reflects that Mr. Jones’s termination followed an incident wherein he was reprimanded for issuing an emergency alert, allegedly without justification.    On May 25, 2012, TSU’s Director of Human Resources sent a letter to Mr. Jones, denying Mr. Jones’s request for a grievance hearing.    On December 18, 2012, Mr. Jones retained attorney Andy Allman to assist him with this matter.  ..  COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       Apr 30, 2019 .. FLRA:  Energy v. AFGE ..  The Union filed a grievance on behalf of a group of dispatchers who alleged that they were not receiving the prevailing rate of pay for work on holidays.    The Agency denied the grievance.    At arbitration, as relevant here, the Arbitrator addressed whether the grievance was arbitrable and whether the Agency should have paid the dispatchers a higher rate of holiday premium pay. ..  FLRA DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       Apr 30, 2019 .. 11th Cir.:  Hudson v. Tyson ..  Hudson began working for Tyson as a tray packer in August 2015.    Hudson’s post-job offer health assessment showed that Hudson identified asthma and back problems on her health assessment, but checked the box “No” when asked “Do you have any work restrictions?”    Within her first week on the job, however, she complained of back pain to her line leader. A day or two later, she was sent to the nurse’s station to discuss her back complaints.    On September 6, 2016, Hudson filed the present suit against Tyson, alleging that Tyson violated her rights under the ADA by failing to accommodate her disabilities.    Specifically, in her pro se complaint, she alleged that she was forced to resign in September 2015 after Tyson was unable to accommodate her back injury and asthma.  ..  COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       Apr 30, 2019 .. 9th Cir.:  Weil v. Citizens Telecom ..  On April 1, 2013, David Weil was notified he had not been selected for the promotion.   Also in April, Potts prepared a Development Action Plan (DAP) for David Weil, which identified areas for improvement, and Weil agreed to follow through on several “action items.”   Later that month, David Weil spoke with L.H., who was then working for Frontier in her new capacity.     In his deposition, Weil described what L.H. told him as follows:     She had made it a – that the statement saying that she felt I was qualified for the job. She tried to get me into the director role; I had three things that were against me, and her exact verbiage – I remember this clearly – is ‘You have three things going against you. (1) You’re a former Verizon employee, okay. (2) You’re not white. And (3) you’re not female.’   L.H. was later terminated in June 2013.   David Weil failed to meet the DAP deadlines and complete action items. In June 2013, he was put on a Performance Improvement Plan (PIP) for a 60-day period to end on August     Frontier terminated Weil on August 15, 2013, prior to the end of his PIP.   Weil brought suit against Frontier.  ..  COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       Apr 29, 2019 .. DOD OIG:  Report of Investigation: Patrick M. Shanahan Acting Secretary of Defense:    On March 15, 2019, we initiated an investigation into allegations that Acting Secretary of Defense Patrick M. Shanahan, took actions to promote his former employer, Boeing, and disparage its competitors, allegedly in violation of his ethical obligations. We received similar allegations from various referrals.  dod ig

♦       Apr 29, 2019 .. 1st Cir.:  Pena v. Honeywell ..  Plaintiff Mayra F. Pena worked as a machine operator and associate assembler for defendant Honeywell International, Inc. (Honeywell), until Honeywell terminated her employment on June 17, 2013, on the basis of job abandonment.    Pena had not come to work since March 8, 2013. On September 20, 2013, Pena applied for Social Security Disability Income (SSDI) benefits, asserting that she was totally disabled and had been since March 8, 2013.    On April 16, 2015, Pena filed this suit [...] claiming that Honeywell terminated her employment on the basis of her disabilities, failed to provide her with reasonable accommodations, and retaliated against her.  ..  COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       Apr 29, 2019 .. Fed. Cir.:  Coppola v. DVA ..  Dr. Coppola was employed as a part-time physician for the Department of Veterans Affairs.    On February 8, 2011, Dr. Coppola filed an EEO complaint alleging wage violations due to age discrimination within the VA.    In particular, Dr. Coppola alleged that he was denied certain pay increases between 2005 and 2010 on the basis of age.    While his EEO complaint was pending, Dr. Coppola participated in an investigation by the Office of the Medical Inspector into complaints concerning patient care and safety at his workplace.    On September 10, 2012, Dr. Cop- pola appeared on a local news station to discuss the results of the investigation and his own observations and concerns. On September 13, 2012, Dr. Coppola received notice from the VA that he would be terminated from his position in approximately two weeks.  ..  COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       Apr 26, 2019 .. D.D.C.:  Francis v. Perez (Labor) ..  Dr. Francis, Ph.D, sues R. Alexander Acosta in his official capacity as Secretary of the Department of Labor for alleged discrimination and retaliation in violation of Title VII of the Civil Rights Act and the Age Discrimination in Employment Act.    BACKGROUND:    Dr. Francis is an African-American female of West Indian descent who was over the age of 40 at all times relevant to this case and who engaged in protected activity by asserting rights to equal employment opportunity (EEO).    Dr. Francis joined the Department of Labor (DOL) in June 2007 to serve as Chief of the Branch of Budget Formulation and Implementation in the Office of Management.    READ ON     ..  COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       Apr 26, 2019 .. 6th Cir.:  Hunt v.  Monro ..  Monro employed Hunt as an automotive technician in Medina, Ohio from August 2016 to November 2017. In that role, Hunt was responsible for diagnosing and repairing vehicles.    From late 2016 to early 2017, the Medina store’s management altered several of Hunt’s time records after concluding Hunt’s time entries were inflated—he would, for example, punch in early or not punch out for lunches or at the end of his shift.    And he sometimes logged back in to the POS system and re-altered the time entries. Monro commenced an investigation, but ultimately could not “confirm whether Hunt was ever present in the [Medina] Store during the time that he alleged that he was working.” ..  DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       Apr 26, 2019 .. 6th Cir.:  U.S. v. Wise ..  A federal grand jury indicted Battle and Wise—along with fifteen other individuals—as part of a conspiracy to distribute cocaine around northern Ohio.    As the district court put simply, Battle “has just been a drug trafficker his entire life.” And Wise adds fifteen convictions of his own, including drug trafficking, possession of crack cocaine, and various thefts.    The district court sentenced Wise to 33 months in prison—12 months longer than recommended by the Sentencing Guidelines. Battle received 210 months. Both sentences included ten years of supervised release following release from prison.    Each defendant now appeals his sentence for various reasons.  ..  COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       Apr 25, 2019 .. A.F.C.C.A.:  U.S. v. Lundby ..  Appellant was assigned to Pope Army Airfield, Fort Bragg, North Carolina, where he was a frequent visitor to the two Army and Air Force Exchange Service (AAFES) facilities, commonly referred to as the North Post Exchange (North PX) and the South Post Exchange (South PX).    At some point in 2015, AAFES customer service personnel began reporting unusual activity to the loss prevention department. Specifically, they reported that Appellant was returning multiple high-dollar items for refund. Over the course of the following year, the loss prevention department began tracking Appellant’s in-store and online transactions.    Their investigation revealed that Appellant would place an order through the AAFES website and then present the receipt to return the item in-person at the North or South PX. Shortly after making the in-person return, often within less than an hour, Appellant would present the same receipt to return an identical item to the other PX. The source of the second item Appellant returned was unknown.    Appellant was convicted of having made 18 fraudulent claims, each time presenting the same AAFES online-order receipt for two separate returns. In total, Appellant was refunded approximately $6,871.18 more than the amount he purchased through AAFES.  ..  COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       Apr 25, 2019 .. 7th Cir.:  Brown v. Wal-Mart  ..  Brown, who is African American, did not get along with his colleagues in the bakery department. A month into his employment, he was confronted about his job performance by a coworker. She called him “rug rat” and “boy,” and, when Brown pointed his finger at her, she slapped his hand. Brown reported the incident to a manager, who told him that it would be addressed.    Brown also filed a complaint about the incident with Wal-Mart’s ethics office. Two weeks later, Brown filed a second complaint against his coworker as well as the bakery department’s supervisor, who, he believed, retaliated against him for his earlier complaint by assigning him additional duties.    Wal-Mart investigated Brown’s complaints, concluded that the coworker had acted inappropriately by slapping his hand, and reprimanded her. But Wal-Mart concluded that Brown’s claims of retaliation were not substantiated. Meanwhile, Wal-Mart granted Brown’s request to be transferred to the electronics department.    Shortly after his transfer to the electronics department, however, Brown was tardy for his shift. His tardiness meant that he had accumulated a certain number of unauthorized absence “points” that, under company policy, subjected him to termination. The next day his new supervisor fired him for accruing too many unauthorized absences.    After receiving a right-to-sue letter from the EEOC, Brown brought this suit asserting discrimination based on his race, color, and sex, as well as retaliatory discharge for filing two internal complaints against his colleagues.  ..  COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       Apr 24, 2019 .. D.C. Cir.:  U.S. v. Thompson ..  Appellants Oral Thompson and Dwight Knowles appeal their convictions for conspiracy to distribute and possess with intent to distribute cocaine (5 kilograms or more) on an aircraft registered in the United States or owned by a United States citizen.    Neither stepped foot in the United States, and they argue that the conspiracy crime does not have an extraterritorial reach.  ..  COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       Apr 24, 2019 .. 11th Cir.:  McQueen v. ADT ..  Mr. McQueen, who was represented by counsel in the proceedings below, asserted race discrimination claims based on unequal pay, 2 a hostile work environment claim, and a retaliation claim against ALDOT and the State.    Mr. McQueen also asserted a claim [...] against the Individual Defendants, alleging that they allowed the creation of a racially hostile work environment and retaliated against him [...] .    We review a district court’s order granting summary judgment de novo [...] .    COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       Apr 24, 2019 .. 7th Cir.:  Phillips v. Baxter ..  Garfield Phillips, a former employee of the Illinois Department of Human Services, quit his job because, he says, his supervisors harassed him and discriminated against him.    He sued the Department and four of his former supervisors, alleging national-origin and ethnicity discrimination, retaliation, conspiracy, and intentional infliction of emotional distress.    The district court granted a motion to dismiss the complaint for failure to state a claim and then denied leave to file a proposed amended complaint for the same reason.    Because Phillips stated a claim for discrimination, we partially vacate the dismissal and remand for further proceedings.  ..  COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       Apr 23, 2019 .. Fed. Cir.:  Hiller v. DHS ..  Susan J. Hiller appeals from a decision of the Merit Systems Protection Board.    Ms. Hiller worked as a full-time attorney-instructor at the Office of Training and Development (OTD) at the Im- migration and Customs Enforcement Academy in Charles- ton, South Carolina.    She, along with a contract attorney in Charleston and nine full-time attorney-instructors in Glynco, Georgia, taught section 287g and other basic legal classes to law enforcement officers.    In 2011, Ms. Hiller filed complaints with the Office of Inspector General and the Office of Special Counsel about workplace safety concerns and the misuse of government vehicles.  ..  COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       Apr 23, 2019 .. 3rd Cir.:  LaRochelle v. Wilmac ..  Defendants hired Riker as a Certified Nursing Assistant (“CNA”)7 in 2009. Riker claims that starting in 2010, CNA Teddy Bernard subjected her and other female staff to sexual harassment and that she complained to supervisors about Bernard’s behavior several times before June 2011.    In June 2011, Riker informed the Director of Human Resources that Bernard came from behind and hugged her, that his “behavior has largely been ignored by licensed staff,” and that she “fear[ed] retaliation” for reporting his conduct.    Bernard was suspended pending the investigation and ultimately terminated.    During 2011, Riker sought workers’ compensation for two injuries she identified as work-related.    The last day Riker worked for Defendants was in early January 2012. In early January, Riker’s physician told her that she could return to work later that month if she performed light duty with weight restrictions.    Riker faxed this report to the Director of Human Resources. The Director of Human Resources informed Riker that Defendants would not accommodate non-work-related injuries. Riker subsequently filed for unemployment compensation and began collecting unemployment benefits the first week of February 2012.  ..  COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       Apr22, 2019 .. 5th Cir.:  O'Daniel v. ISS ..  Plaintiff-Appellant Bonnie O’Daniel sued her former employers for firing her allegedly because of “the Plaintiff’s sexual orientation [heterosexual] and Ms. Huber’s reaction to the Plaintiff’s pro-heterosexual speech.”  ..  COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       Apr 22, 2019 .. 2d Cir.:  Atkins v. Rochester CS ..  The following facts are undisputed. Atkins, an African-American woman in her mid- sixties, was assigned to be principal of the Freddie Thomas High School (“Freddie Thomas”) for the 2012-13 school year. Freddie Thomas was one of ten schools in the District that had been targeted for phase-out and closure.    During the 2012-13 school year, Principals received a total score based on several categories, and that numerical score corresponded to one of four ratings: highly effective, effective, developing, and ineffective. In September 2013, Atkins received a rating of “developing” for the prior school year of 2012-13.    She appealed the rating, but her appeal was denied by a unanimous appeals panel.    The parties dispute whether the District calculated Atkins’s underlying APPR score in accordance with the agreed-upon criteria, and whether the appeals panel properly affirmed the “developing” rating.  ..  COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       Apr 19, 2019 .. 11th Cir.:  Murphy v. Army ..  Amy Murphy appeals the district court’s order dismissing her discrimination claims under the Rehabilitation Act of [...] MSPB’s decision affirming the DOA’s determination to remove her from federal service because the DOA committed harmful procedural errors and rendered an unreasonable decision.    First, Murphy argues that the district court erred [..] because her claims implicated the DOA’s decision to suspend and revoke her security clearance. Next, she argues that the district court abused its discretion by denying her two motions to amend her complaint.    Lastly, she argues that the district court erred by affirming the MSPB’s decision affirming the DOA’s determination to remove her from federal service because the DOA committed harmful procedural errors and rendered an unreasonable decision.  ..  COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       Apr 19, 2019 .. 2d Cir.:  Shojae v. HHC ..  Pari Shojae appeals from a judgment of the District Court (Forrest, J.)    As to Pari Shojae’s timely NYCHRL discrimination claims with respect to certain adverse actions, it appears that Shojae provided at least some admissible evidence that she was treated “less well” based on her gender, race, or national origin.    In particular, Shojae testified that Khan, while acting as her supervisor, altered the terms of Shojae’s job, made derogatory comments to her about her gender, identity as a Shia Muslim, and Persian ethnicity, and openly favored employees of Pakistani origin.    We therefore vacate the dismissal of Shojae’s NYCHRL discrimination claims against Khan and the Hospital.  ..  COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       Apr 19, 2019 .. 11th Cir.:  Arrington v.  Alabama Power ..  Plaintiff Lucille Yvette Arrington, proceeding pro se, appeals the dismissal of her claims for discrimination, hostile work environment, and retaliation, in violation of Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, the Americans with Disabilities Act, and the Family and Medical Leave Act, as well as her personal injury claim for “workplace hazard.”    On appeal, Plaintiff recounts the events that led to her alleged constructive discharge and asserts that she established a prima facie case of retaliation.  ..  COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       Apr 19, 2019 .. 2d Cir.:  Natofsky v. New York ..  Plaintiff-Appellant Richard Natofsky who suffers from a hearing disability, brought this action alleging violations of Section 504 of Rehabilitation Act of 1973.    Natofsky claims that, during his tenure working for the New York City Department of Investigation (the ʺDOIʺ), he experienced several adverse employment actions because of his hearing disability, including his eventual demotion.    He also claims that the DOI failed to accommodate his disability and retaliated against him.  ..  COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       Apr 18, 2019 .. Fed. Cir.:  Fed. Cir. v. United States (Postal) ..  On April 24, 2009, Ms. VanDesande filed suit in the Court of Federal Claims.    In her suit, she alleged that the United States Postal Service (“Postal Service”) had breached the Stipulation Agreement Regarding Damages that she and the Postal Service had entered into in June of 2003.    The purpose of the Stipulation Agreement was to finally resolve a proceeding brought by Ms. VanDesande before the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (“EEOC”).  ..  COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       Apr 18, 2019 .. 2d Cir.:  Spillers v. NYC H&H ..  Mark Spillers sued his former employers, the New York City Health and Hospitals Corporation and Kings County Hospital Center, claiming, among other things, that they violated the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) by failing to provide reasonable accommodations for his mental disability.  ..  COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       Apr 18, 2019 .. 9th Cir.:  Washington v. Ryan ..  At around 11:45 p.m. on the night of June 8, 1987, two men forced their way into Ralph and Sterleen Hill’s Yuma, Arizona home in what turned out to be a disastrously violent home invasion. The men forced the Hills to lie face down on the floor of the master bedroom and bound their hands behind their backs. One of the men intermittently “screwed” a pistol in Ralph’s ear while both men yelled at the couple demanding that the Hills give them drugs or money. Ralph glimpsed one of the assailants as he ransacked the drawers and closets in the room. The Hills were discovered lying face down in their bedroom. Both had been shot in the back of the head. Ralph survived the horrendous shot to his head, but was seriously injured. Sterleen did not survive the shooting.   Police arrested Fred Robinson shortly after the incident.      In 1987, a jury found Washington guilty of six crimes involving the robbery and murder of Sterleen Hill in her Arizona home.      The court sentenced Washington to death.      Arizona state prisoner Theodore Washington appeals the district court’s denial of his petition for a writ of habeas corpus ... .    COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       Apr 17, 2019 .. A.F.C.C.A.:  U.S. v. Easterly ..  A general court-martial composed of officer members convicted Appellant, contrary to his pleas, of attempted premeditated murder in violation of Arti- cle 80, Uniform Code of Military Justice (UCMJ), 10 U.S.C. § 880.    The members adjudged a sentence of a dishonorable discharge, confinement for seven years, forfeiture of all pay and allowances, and reduction to the grade of E-1. The convening authority approved the sentence as adjudged.    Appellant asserts six assignments of error:  ..  COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       Apr 17, 2019 .. FLRA:  Homeland v. NBPC ..  Statement of the Case:    In this decision, we hold that the Arbitrator may not substitute her own judgment and second-guess a determination made by the Agency’s ethics official that the grievant’s outside employment would create an appearance of a conflict of interest.[1]    The grievant requested permission to work during his off-duty time as an emergency medical technician (EMT). The Agency sought the advice of its ethics officer and found a potential conflict of interest between the grievant’s duties as a border patrol agent to report suspected undocumented immigrants and his duty as an EMT to maintain patient confidentiality under Texas law.    Based on that advice, the Agency denied the grievant’s request.    Arbitrator Kathy L. Eisenmenger determined that the Agency violated the parties’ collective‑bargaining agreement when it denied the grievant’s request to work off-duty.  ..  FLRA DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       Apr 16, 2019 .. D.D.C.:  Hall v. EEOC ..  Plaintiff Steven Hall, proceeding pro se, is a former employee of the Department of Homeland Security (“DHS”). He brings this suit challenging the rescission of his Workers’ Compensation benefits and his termination from federal service.    Plaintiff, an African-American male and a disabled veteran, began working for DHS on August 2, 2010.    In August 2012, Plaintiff suffered from “illnesses/injuries” at a construction site at St. Elizabeth’s Hospital, where he presumably was assigned to work.    On November 20, 2012, he filed a claim with the Department of Labor’s Office of Workers’ Compensation Programs (“OWCP”).    His request for benefits was approved in January 2013.    By letter dated January 22, 2013, Gary Myers, a DHS Program Manager/Policy Advisor, requested that the OWCP overturn its decision and preclude Plaintiff from receiving benefits due to an insufficient causal link between Plaintiff’s job placement at St. Elizabeth’s and his respiratory issues.  ..  COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       Apr 15, 2019 .. 10th Cir.:  Romero v. H&P ..  Silo Romero worked on an oil rig for Helmerich & Payne, and was fired after an extended dispute concerning workers’ compensation. Romero sued H&P alleging the company either actually or constructively discharged him in retaliation for pursuing his workers’ compensation claim.    At trial, the jury found H&P both actually and constructively discharged Romero.  ..  COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       Apr 15, 2019 .. 3rd Cir.:  Andujar v. GNC ..  General Nutrition Corporation (GNC) appeals a $258,926 judgment in favor of Santos Andujar, a former GNC store manager who sued for age discrimination after the company fired him.    Andujar was a GNC store manager for some thirteen years before he was terminated at age 57. He was evaluated annually through GNC’s Performance Evaluation Process (PEP). The maximum score for a PEP was 500, with 300 as the passing score. GNC also audited inventory and recordkeeping at each store through its Critical Point Audits (CPA). A passing CPA score was 90%, but Andujar’s store earned scores of 88% in 2010, 68% in 2011, 79% in 2012, and 88% in 2013.    On January 23, 2014, Andujar received a failing PEP score of 287. That same day, GNC manager Christian Gosseaux imposed a Red Store Action Plan, which gave Andujar 30 days to make improvements. Approximately one month later, Gosseaux fired Andujar for failing to comply with the Action Plan.    GNC replaced him with a man in his twenties.    Andujar sued GNC in New Jersey state court, alleging wrongful termination in violation of the New Jersey Law Against Discrimination (LAD).  ..  COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       Apr 12, 2019 .. VA OIG:  Review of Delays in Clinical Consult Processing at VA Boston Healthcare System, Massachusetts:    The VA Office of Inspector General (OIG) conducted a healthcare inspection in response to a complaint that staff at the VA Boston Healthcare System in Massachusetts inappropriately discontinued consults (healthcare providers use consults to request an opinion, advice, or expertise regarding patients’ specific problems).  vaoig

♦       Apr 11, 2019 .. IL App:  Liu v. Four Seasons ..  Plaintiffs filed a class action complaint, alleging that their employer, Four Seasons Hotel, Ltd. (Four Seasons), violated the Act in its method of collecting, using, storing, and disclosing their biometric data, namely, their fingerprints for timekeeping purposes. Four Seasons filed a motion to compel arbitration, arguing that the plaintiffs signed an employment agreement that required four types of employment disputes, including “wage or hour violation” claims, be submitted to an arbitrator. ..  COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       Apr 9, 2019 .. 2d Cir.:  Davis-Garett  v. Urban Outfitters ..  From September 2012 until early October 2013 Garett was employed by Anthropologie, a nationwide retailer that sells women's apparel and accessories, home furnishings, decor, gifts, and "found objects."    Garett filed a complaint alleging principally that Anthropologie and its corporate parent Urban Outfitters, Inc., discriminated against her on the basis of age by maintaining a hostile work environment and retaliated against her for lodging discrimination complaints.  ..  COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       Apr 9, 2019 .. 11th Cir.:  Wilburn v. U.S. (OSHA) ..  Wilbur served as a compliance safety and health officer for the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA). His amended complaint alleges that in November or December of 2011, the area director (AD) for OSHA’s Mobile, Alabama office “performed a crude and sexually obnoxious behavior” in which the AD simulated a sexual act. Wilbur, finding the AD’s behavior “morally offensive,” reported the AD to his union representative, but nothing came of it.    In January 2012, the AD did the same thing in front of a new employee. This time Wilbur reported the behavior to the assistant area director, but again nothing came of it.    Wilbur continued to complain, but the assistant area director warned him “not to continue making waves in the office.”    Wilbur’s work life quickly went downhill from there. In March 2013, he was “verbally admonished” regarding one of his inspections. In June, he received a poor mid-year performance evaluation. There were smaller slights as well:  ..  COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       Apr 8, 2019 .. FSIP:  AIR FORCE v. AFGE ..  This case [...] concerns the issuance of a local dress code standard for civilian Instructors who work in the classrooms, out on the flight line, and on the hanger floor in the 82nd Training Wing of the Sheppard Air Force Base in Wichita Falls, Texas (Agency).    The dispute was filed pursuant to §7119 of the Federal Service Labor-Management Relations Statute (the Statute). ..  FSIP DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.rtf)

♦       Apr 8, 2019 .. ISC:  Slaughter v. DUC.OM ..  Plaintiff appeals summary judgment dismissing claim that medical school failed to accommodate her mental disability and evidentiary ruling declining to impute confidential knowledge of psychotherapist to the school.    The medical school expelled her based on her failing grades and lack of academic promise.    The student filed a complaint against the medical school with the Iowa Civil Rights Commission and then filed this district court action alleging the school failed to accommodate her mental disability.  ..  COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       Apr 5, 2019 .. FLRA:  VA v. AFGE ..  In this case, the Authority holds that the Agency is obligated to provide bargaining unit employees (BUEs) and their Union representatives recordings and transcripts it agreed to provide in the parties’ collective-bargaining agreement.    Arbitrator John B. Dorsey found that the Agency violated the parties’ collective-bargaining agreement (CBA) by failing to provide employees and the Union certain investigation-related materials. As a remedy, the Arbitrator directed the Agency to provide these materials to employees and the Union.    The Agency files essence and exceeded-authority exceptions, and argues that the award is impossible to implement.  ..  FLRA DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       Apr 5, 2019 .. 7th Cir.:  Hernandez v. Nieves ..  Daisy Hernandez alleges that, in January 2013, Jessifer Home Health Agency, Inc., constructively discharged her based on her age, sex, and national origin.    Afterward, she asserts, her former supervisor stalked, surveilled, and threatened her [...].    We also understand Hernandez to blame her supervisor for the fact that she has not held any job for longer than a year since she left the Agency. Hernandez also appears to allege an overarching conspiracy to harm her, and, in her participating in this appeal.  ..  COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       Apr 5, 2019 .. D.D.C.:  Torres v. UHL 25 ..  In October 2016, the Gaylord Hotel terminated Plaintiff, Cesar Parada Torres (Torres) for (1) leaving his work station, (2) striking a colleague named Ms. Byrd with two pieces of bread at her work station, and (3) threatening her to “take it outside.    Torres was a member of the Unite Here union's Local 25 bargaining unit. {Local 25}.   Local 25 represented Torres at the first-step grievance hearing with the Gaylord Hotel and advocated that Torres “be returned to work with full back pay and no loss of seniority.    After Gaylord denied the first-step grievance, Local 25 decided against further representing Torres, in mediation, the next phase of the disciplinary review process.    It based its decision on several factors, including Plaintiff’s three disciplinary issues in the prior eighteen months (including two separate instances of yelling at a coworker and using profanity at a coworker), video evidence and witness testimony of the altercation with Ms. Byrd that did not corroborate Torres’s version of events, and the fact that Torres confronted Ms. Byrd at her work station.    On July 30, 2017, Torres filed a charge of discrimination against Local 25.  ..  COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       Apr 4, 2019 .. FLRA:  Air Force v. IAFF ..  In this case, we reaffirm that employees may be considered confidential under § 7103(a)(13) of the Federal [Labor-Management] Statute even if they do not personally negotiate contracts or grant and deny grievances. ..  FLRA DECISION:  (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       Apr 4, 2019 .. 5th Cir.:  Davis v. TCH ..  Texas Children’s Hospital fired its employee Ms. Tina Davis.    Davis then sued the hospital for: (1) discrimination (2) harassment (3) retaliation.    One example Davis gives:   Ms. Conchita was yelling at Davis, and so Davis walked away.   At which point, Ms. Conchita supposedly grabbed Davis from behind.    Next, Ms. Davis claims that [Mr.] Omar screamed at her that he “would do what he wants.”   And Davis also alleges that during this altercation, [Mr.] Omar was face to face with her, inches away, so that his spit hit her face.    Ms. Davis claims that she then sought transfer, but in response, her supervisors fired her.   So Ms. Davis filed an EEOC complaint.   And next, Davis sued.  ..  COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       Apr 4, 2019 .. 3rd Cir.:  Komosa v. Postal ..  John Komosa worked for the U.S. Postal Service (U.S.P.S.) in Pittsburgh as a mail carrier beginning in 1999. In 2013, Komosa suffered a stroke that, according to Komosa and his doctor, required him to avoid climbing steps, a limitation that U.S.P.S. initially accommodated.    In 2015, Komosa began working under a new manager whose approach to Komosa’s accommodation differed, leaving Komosa unable to continue working his previous routes. Komosa filed an [E.E.O.] complaint making discrimination claims under the Rehabilitation Act.    As a federal employee, Komosa was required to file his complaint with the Equal Employment Opportunity division of U.S.P.S., and he did so, filing both an informal complaint and a subsequent formal complaint that included an allegation of retaliation against Komosa following his informal complaint.  ..  COURT DECISION:  (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       Apr 3, 2019 .. FLRA:  AFGE v. Agriculture ..  THE AGENCY FILED A ULP ..  In 2008, the parties ratified their existing collective-bargaining agreement.    Article 38 of that agreement contains a reopener provision, which provides, as relevant here, that the parties will renegotiate the agreement if either party timely serves its written demand to bargain along with “initial written proposals, which may be supplemented during renegotiations.”    In 2017, the Agency served the Union with a demand to bargain a new agreement along with proposed negotiation ground rules.    The Union responded that the Agency had failed to satisfy the terms of Article 38 because the Agency did not submit all of its substantive proposals with its demand to bargain.    The Union refused to bargain.    The Agency filed an unfair-labor-practice (ULP) charge against the Union.  ..  FLRA DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       Apr 2, 2019 .. FLRA:  Agriculture v. NAAE ..  Arbitrator Leonard M. Shapiro found that the Agency violated a U.S. Office of Personnel Management (OPM) rule when the Agency determined that the seven grievants did not satisfy the minimum educational requirements for their positions and when it denied one of those grievants a promotion.   The Agency filed exceptions to the award.  ..  FLRA DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       Apr 2, 2019 .. (5th Cir.:  Heath v. Southern ..  Dr. Panagiota Heath is an associate mathematics professor at Southern University at New Orleans (SUNO).   Dr. Mostafa Elaasar became Heath’s supervisor in 2003. Since that time, Heath alleges that Elaasar has harassed her continuously, creating a hostile work environment.   She claims that the harassment was due to her race, religion, sex, or national origin, in violation of Title VII and 28 U.S.C. § 1983.   She seeks to hold both the university and Elaasar liable for the harassment under Title VII and Elaasar responsible under section 1983.   Heath is a Christian female of Greek descent, while Elaasar is a male, and he is Muslim and of Egyptian descent.  ..  COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       Apr 2, 2019 .. D.C. Cir.:  Guedes v. ATF ..  In October 2017, a lone gunman armed with bump-stock-enhanced semiautomatic weapons murdered 58 people and wounded hundreds more in a mass shooting at a concert in Las Vegas, Nevada.    In the wake of that tragedy, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (“Bureau”) promulgated through formal notice-and-comment proceedings a rule that classifies bump-stock devices as machine guns under the National Firearms Act.    See Bump-Stock-Type Devices, 83 Fed. Reg. 66,514 (Dec. 26, 2018) (“Bump-Stock Rule”).    The then-Acting Attorney General Matthew Whitaker initially signed the final Bump-Stock Rule, and Attorney General William Barr independently ratified it shortly after taking office. Bump-stock owners and advocates filed separate lawsuits in the United States District Court for the District of Columbia to prevent the Rule from taking effect.  ..  COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       Apr 1, 2019 .. Fed. Cir.:  AFGE v. EEOC ..  In 2017, the [EEOC] removed David Hamilton from his position as an agency mediator.    Mr. Hamilton’s union filed a grievance challenging the removal. Pursuant to the collective bargaining agreement with the agency, Mr. Hamilton elected to have the challenge to his removal heard by an arbitrator rather than by the [MSPB].    Following a hearing, the arbitrator overturned Mr. Hamilton’s removal, but denied the union’s request for an award of attorney fees.    AFGE, has petitioned for review of the denial of attorney fees.  ..  COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       Apr 1, 2019 .. D.D.C.:  Grant v. Mnuchin (IRS) ..  Aaron Darnell Grant worked as a Special Agent conducting criminal investigations for the Internal Revenue Service (IRS or Agency), an agency within the Department of the Treasury. He was discharged for various forms of misconduct in 2010.   Mr. Grant was reinstated to the IRS on September 4, 2012, after the Merit Systems Protection Board (MSPB) found errors in the Agency’s handling of his discharge but without reaching the merits.1 Notice, Ex. 32, 2014 MSPB Initial Decision.   On his first day back at work after his reinstatement in 2012, Mr. Grant met with his first- and second-line supervisors, Supervisory Special Agent (SSA) Troy Burrus and Special Agent in Charge (SAIC) Rick Raven, respectively.   SAIC Raven, who had had no role in any of the relevant prior events, told Mr. Grant that he would review the whole matter and, upon doing so, might re-propose Mr. Grant’s removal.   On November 9, 2012, Mr. Grant filed an EEO complaint, alleging discrimination based on his alleged disability (alcohol dependence) and retaliation for his successful appeal to the MSPB.  ..  COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       Mar 29, 2019 .. 11th Cir.:  Worthy v. UPS ..  McGuire has been employed by United Parcel Service since September 1996. In March 2010, McGuire injured his shoulder and hand while working as a package-car driver.    McGuire sought treatment from Dr. Jorge Rodriguez following that injury, filed a workers’ compensation claim, had shoulder surgery, and was out of work for approximately one year.    Dr. Rodriguez cleared McGuire to return to his position as a package-car driver in January 2012. Approximately one month later, McGuire reinjured his shoulder at work. Once again, McGuire sought treatment from Dr. Rodriguez, applied for and received workers’ compensation benefits, was out of work, and had shoulder surgery.    ...    Worthy McGuire appeals the district court’s order granting summary judgment to UPS on his disability-discrimination claims under the [ADA].  ..  COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       Mar 29, 2019 .. 5th Cir.:  Perez v. Brennan (Postal) ..  Perez, who is Hispanic and of Mexican-American heritage, worked for the USPS at the Brownsville Post Office. In 2007, a new postmaster arrived and, according to Perez, called Hispanic employees “lazy.” On December 26, 2012, Perez’s supervisor accused him of smelling of alcohol and ordered him to go home.    On January 9, 2013, Perez gave written notice that he intended to retire effective February 1, 2013. Perez stopped coming to work on January 13, 2013.    On January 22, 2013, Perez was issued a letter of warning admonishing him for unacceptable attendance. That same day, Perez’s supervisor and union steward agreed to “hold off on all pending discipline.” On January 24, Perez was issued a “Notice of Suspension” for his alleged on-duty impairment. The USPS later agreed to expunge the notice.    In March 2013, Perez filed an equal employment opportunity complaint with the USPS, alleging racial discrimination, retaliation, and a hostile work environment.  ..  COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       Mar 29, 2019 .. 11th Cir.:  Dukes v. Shelby ..  Kenneth Dukes, an African-American male, started working for Shelby County Schools in 1986 as a substitute bus driver. He became a regular bus driver in 1988. Dukes sued the Shelby County Board of Education, five of its members, Aubrey Miller, Peg Hill, Jimmy Bice, Jane Hampton, and Kevin Morris (collectively, the “Board Members”), and Randy Fuller, Shelby County Schools Superintendent. Dukes claims the Board, the Board Members, and Fuller discriminated against him by failing to promote him on account of his race.  ..  COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       Mar 28, 2019 .. 5th Cir.:  Canada v. TMIC ..  Plaintiff - Appellant is a black woman. For 28 days between June 28, 2016, and August 8, 2016, she was temporarily assigned to TMIC by Evins Personnel Consultants to fill a vacant policy-support-clerk position.    While temporarily employed, Plaintiff applied for three permanent positions at TMIC. The application centrally at issue here was for the position of permanent policy support clerk—essentially, the same job she was provisionally staffing.    Plaintiff applied for the support clerk position on June 29, her second day of work.    On July 21, Thibodaux, Plaintiff’s immediate supervisor, told her that TMIC had hired Ryan Johnson, a white man, for the support clerk position.    That same day, without informing anyone at TMIC, Plaintiff filed a complaint with the City of Austin’s Equal Employment and Fair Housing Office. ..  COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       Mar 28, 2019 .. (Fed. Cir.:  Patacca v. Navy ..  Petitioner seeks review of the decision of the Merit Systems Protection Board (“MSPB” or “Board”) affirming the Department of the Navy decision to remove her from her position as an administrative support assistant.    BACKGROUND:    From May 18, 2015, through June 30, 2017, Petitioner was a civilian employee of the Navy at the Marine Corps Recruit Depot in San Diego, California, serving as an administrative support assistant in the Religious Ministries Office (“RMO”).    On April 19, 2017, CPO Gaston issued a Notice of Proposed Removal for Petitioner [with] three charges: (1) delay in carrying out work assignments; (2) failure to follow supervisory instructions; and (3) inappropriate conduct.  ..  DECISION:  (pdf)   (html)

♦       Mar 28, 2019 .. D.D.C.:  Doe v. GWU ..  The plaintiffs filed this civil action, using the pseudonyms Jane Does 1 to 5, against George Washington University (“GW”) and Kyle Renner, a GW employee being sued in his capacity as GW’s General Operations Manager and the plaintiffs’ supervisor (collectively, “the defendants”), [...] alleging that the defendants (1) created a hostile work environment, (2) retaliated against them for their complaints of sexual harassment, (3) discriminated against them because of their gender), and (4) aided and abetted the discriminatory and retaliatory conduct.  ..  (pdf)   (html)

♦       Mar 27, 2019 ..  USGS MANAGER ADMITTED TO INAPPROPRIATE COMMENTS TO SUBORDINATE ..  The OIG investigated allegations that a United States Geological Survey (USGS) manager made unwelcome and inappropriate comments of a sexual nature to a female subordinate.     We found that the USGS manager provided inconsistent statements and demonstrated a lack of candor during interviews, ..     (summary)    .PDF

♦       Mar 27, 2019 ..  FORMER NPS CONTRACT SPECIALIST VIOLATED ETHICS REGULATIONS ..  We found that an NPS contract specialist attempted to steer contracts to a vendor because of a personal relationship with the vendor. ..     (summary)    .PDF

♦       Mar 27, 2019 .. D.D.C.:  Sellers v. Duke ..  Ms. Sellers has worked for the [Dept] of Homeland Security (“DHS”), Immigration and Custom Enforcement (“ICE”) for over 30 years.    She alleges that DHS has subjected her to several types of discrimination and harassment on the basis of her gender and care-taker status beginning in October 2013 after she took leave in connection with the adoption of her daughter.    Two broad categories of discriminatory actions are alleged in Ms. Sellers’ complaint: (1) DHS’s gradual removal of Ms. Seller’s substantive responsibilities with the purpose of putting her in a marginal role; and (2) DHS’s denial of several promotions and other career-advancement opportunities from 2014 to 2017. ..  DECISION:  (pdf)   (html)

♦       Mar 27, 2019 .. 3rd Cir.:  Spade v. United States (Justice) ..  INCLUDED MY SSN, DOB, ADDRESS, WORK HISTORY—TO AN INMATE IN RESPONSE TO A FOIA REQUEST ..  Appellant works as a correctional officer at the United States Penitentiary in Lewisburg. He alleges that the Department of Justice confused the redacted and unredacted copies of his personnel file, providing the unredacted copy—which included his social security number, date of birth, home address, and work history—to an inmate in response to a FOIA request.    As word spread among the inmates, several threatened to use the information gleaned from his personnel file to harm him and his family.       After the District Court issued its opinion, the Pennsylvania Supreme Court decided Dittman v. UPMC, 196 A.3d 1036 (Pa. 2018), which held that an employer owes a duty to exercise reasonable care “in collecting and storing [e]mployees’ data on its computer systems.”    Dittman further held that the economic-loss doctrine did not bar the employees’ suit, alleging that their employer’s inadequate safeguards for storing their personal information caused a data breach.  ..  COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       Mar 25, 2019 .. D.D.C.:  McManus v. Kelly (FEMA) ..  Plaintiff is an African American woman.   At all times relevant to the present suit, Plaintiff was employed as a Grants Management Specialist within the Grants Program Directorate (“GPD”) of FEMA at level GS-13/8.   Plaintiff first began working at FEMA in 1993, and, with the exception of two years, has worked at FEMA ever since.   Throughout her tenure at FEMA, Plaintiff alleges that she was denied various management positions to which she applied because of her age and race and in retaliation for her protected EEO activity.   Ten non-selections are the subject this lawsuit.   Ms. E. Harman was the final decision maker for the hiring decisions. ..  COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       Mar 25, 2019 .. Fed. Cir.:  Hickey v. DHS ..  Petitioner Brendan Hickey seeks review of two Merit Systems Protection Board (“MSPB”) final decisions that granted-in-part his request for attorney fees and denied-in-part his request for consequential and compensatory damages.    BACKGROUND:     Mr. Hickey was employed by the Department of Homeland Security (“DHS”) as a Special Agent assigned to work in DHS’s Providence, Rhode Island office.    The Providence office serves as a satellite office to the Boston, Massachusetts office.    In January 2013, Mr. Hickey filed a Complaint of Possible Prohibited Personnel Practice with the U.S. Office of Special Counsel (“OSC”), alleging DHS retaliated against him in response to his whistleblowing activity.    Specifically, Mr. Hickey asserted that he disclosed to both his supervising officials and to OSC that he “refused to obey an order that would” have “require[d] him to violate the law.    Shortly thereafter, DHS reassigned Mr. Hickey from his home and official Post of Duty in Providence [to an office] which was located sixty-three miles away in Boston, suspended him twice, and denied him a performance award.  ..  COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       Mar 25, 2019 .. P.S.C:  Renna v. PPL ..  We begin with a summary of the relevant facts in the record. Renna began employment with PPL on June 10, 2013. At the time Renna’s employment with PPL ended in 2015, he was 61 years old.    PPL has a collective bargaining agreement (CBA) with the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers Local 1600 (the Union). Pursuant to the CBA, Renna had to undergo a six-month probationary period, after which he would become a member of the Union beginning on December 10, 2013.    Throughout his employment, PPL employed Renna as a facilities management worker, and Renna worked the second shift cleaning PPL’s facilities along with his co- workers Nicholas Varec, Harry Von Oehsen, Al Rice, and Troy Bundy.  Renna’s Relationship with Varec and Von Oehsen    According to Renna, he initially got along with Varec and Von Oehsen, but the relationship soured around October 2013.  Renna testified that Von Oehsen told him Renna was doing too much work and taking overtime away from Varec and Von Oehsen.  Renna believed this was the first incident that caused relations to deteriorate.    In his deposition, Renna testified that his direct supervisor, Joseph O’Rourke, told him that Varec and Von Oehsen resented Renna because they were afraid he would surpass them in the line of job progression. ..  DECISION:  (pdf)   (html)

♦       Mar 22, 2019 .. D.D.C.:  Richardson v. FRBG ..  Edward Richardson, who suffers from asthma, sues the Federal Reserve Board of Governors, his former employer, alleging workplace discrimination and discharge because of his disability, in violation of the Rehabilitation Act. The government argues that Mr. Richardson was terminated due to problems with his background security check and performance issues.    ....    From June 8, 2009, until June 7, 2010, Edward Richardson was employed by the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (the Board) as a provisional Law Enforcement Officer (LEO) in the Law Enforcement Unit (LEU).    Board officers are responsible for the physical security of Board premises and stand a variety of posts at the Board’s facility in Washington, D.C. Pursuant to the job description, a Board LEO “[w]orks under demanding mental and physical conditions,” “[m]ust successfully pass a background investigation,” “[m]ust be prompt,” and “[w]orks rotating shifts, weekends and holidays as dictated by the unit’s need to provide sufficient security coverage on a 24 hour basis, 7 days a week.”  ..  COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       Mar 21, 2019 .. 6th Cir.:  Tinsley v. Caterpillar ..  This case is about an employee, Cindy R. Tinsley, whose distaste for her supervisor’s managerial decisions was so severe— particularly the fact that he permitted her co-workers to bounce stress balls off the ground—that it triggered her post-traumatic stress disorder (“PTSD”).    Tinsley asked her employer, Caterpillar Financial Services (“Caterpillar”), to assign her to a new supervisor or to permit her to take medical leave. Caterpillar approved eighteen weeks of intermittent medical leave for Tinsley, but denied her request for a new supervisor or additional leave. Tinsley eventually resigned, and filed a lawsuit against Caterpillar.    In her lawsuit, Tinsley alleges that the company discriminated against her in violation of the Americans with Disabilities Act (“ADA”) by failing to accommodate her disability and constructively discharging her.  ..  COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       Mar 20, 2019 .. DOI OIG:  Harvard Study on Sugary Drinks and Early Death May Spell the End of Soda:    The paper used data on over 100,000 men and women over roughly 30 years to show that men who drank at least two sodas a day had a 29 percent higher risk of death compared to people who drank less than one soda a month. Women who drank at least two sodas a day had a 63 percent higher risk of death.  inverse.com

♦       Mar 20, 2019 .. D.D.C. :  Cooper v. Nielsen ..  Plaintiff is an African American woman who worked for FEMA as a GS-7 legal secretary.   Working full-time, plaintiff provided administrative support to various attorneys from October 22, 2011 until she was terminated.    Plaintiff filed this action alleging race discrimination, retaliation, hostile work environment, harassment and wrongful termination.  ..  COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       Mar 20, 2019 .. 6th Cir.:  Liogghio v. Salem ..  Carol Liogghio claims that the Salem Township Supervisor, Gary Whittaker, forced her to quit her job because of her political activity. The district court found that Liogghio had raised material disputes of fact and thus denied Whittaker qualified immunity.   In 2001, Salem Township hired Liogghio to work as an administrative assistant to the Township Supervisor. Her responsibilities included answering questions at the front counter and other clerical duties. In August 2012, the incumbent Township Supervisor, Robert Heyl, ran for re-election; Liogghio ran for Township Clerk as his running mate. They lost, and Heyl’s competitor, Gary Whittaker, was elected the new Supervisor.   Heyl later met with Whittaker to discuss the transition. At this meeting, Whittaker apparently asked Heyl to fire Liogghio from her position as administrative assistant. Heyl refused. Some time later, Whittaker told a resident of the Township that he did not plan to fire Liogghio, but that he would “force her to quit.”  ..  COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       Mar 19, 2019 .. 6th Cir.:  Bogart v. UK ..  Adam Bogart, a former lab technician at the University of Kentucky (UK), claims that UK violated his Whistleblower Act and Civil Rights Act when it terminated him.  According to Bogart, he was fired for telling his supervisor that statistical data she purchased from an outside company was seriously flawed. Bogart also alleges UK fired him because he has Tourette syndrome.  ..  DECISION:   (pdf)   (html)

♦       Mar 19, 2019 .. 4th Cir.:  Spencer v. VSU ..  Dr. Zoe Spencer, a sociology professor at Virginia State University (VSU), sued the VSU under the Equal Pay Act and Title VII for paying her less than two male professors, allegedly because she is a woman.   Spencer earned about $70,000 per year—a median salary when compared to the men who were also full professors in Sociology, Social Work, and Criminal Justice.   But Spencer’s lawsuit proposes comparing her pay to that of two former VSU administrators, Drs. Michael Shackleford and Cortez Dial, who each earned over $100,000 per year as professors in other departments.   While Spencer asserts that the difference in pay was due to her sex, VSU provides a different explanation.  ..  DECISION:  (pdf)   (html)

♦       Mar 19, 2019 .. D.D.C.:  Krukas v. Aarp ..  The plaintiff challenges AARP’s role in soliciting, marketing, and administering Medigap policies, a state-regulated form of health insurance to supplement Medicare.   Since at least 1997, AARP has held, in its name, group Medigap policies underwritten by UnitedHealth Group [...] and offered participation in those group policies to individual AARP members and the general public.   The plaintiff alleges that AARP’s administration and provision of other services in support of these group Medigap policies amounted to acting as an unlicensed insurance agent, that the “royalties” paid to AARP as a percentage of premiums constituted illegal commissions, and that AARP materially misrepresented the nature and source of the “royalties,” causing consumers to pay more for AARP Medigap policies than they otherwise would. ..  COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       Mar 19, 2019 .. DOI OIG:  Former Social Security Administration Employee Admits Stealing Thousands of Dollars in Benefits intended for the elderly and the disabled:    Nam-Phong Hung Le pleaded guilty to two felony charges.  Justice.gov

♦       Mar 18, 2019 .. 7th Cir.:  Gaylor v. Mnuchin (Treasury) ..  Since the Founders crafted the Religion Clauses of the First Amendment, courts have grappled with the “play in the joints” between them.   This case calls us to do so once more. Freedom From Religion Foundation (“FFRF”) claims that a longstanding tax code exemption for religious housing, 26 U.S.C. § 107(2) of the Internal Revenue Code, violates the Establishment Clause.   The district court agreed.   The U.S. Treasury Department and several intervening religious organizations ask us to reinstate the exemption, asserting that the survival of many congregations hangs in the balance.   We must decide whether excluding housing allowances from ministers’ taxable income is a law “respecting an establishment of religion” in violation of the First Amendment.  ..  COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       Mar 18, 2019 .. D.D.C.:  Piper v. NRPC (Amtrack) ..  Plaintiff Karen Klotzbach-Piper brought this suit against Defendant the National Railroad Passenger Corporation (“Amtrak”) on July 20, 2018, claiming that she was discriminated against on the basis of her gender, age, and disability while working at Amtrak between 2014 and 2018.    Amtrak now moves to dismiss five of the ten claims Klotzbach-Piper brings in her complaint. ..  COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       Mar 18, 2019 .. IL App:  People (Holloway) v. Oakridge ..  On February 7, 2011, Jane Holloway, an employee of Oakridge Convalescent Home (Convalescent), filed a charge of discrimination against [Oakridge Healthcare].   Holloway obtained an administrative judgment of $30,880.   When Oakridge Center failed to satisfy the judgment, the State filed a complaint against Oakridge Healthcare, as the successor of Oakridge Center, to enforce compliance with Holloway’s judgment.   Oakridge Healthcare filed a motion for summary judgment, which the circuit court granted.   The State appeals and argues that it presented sufficient evidence to create a material issue of fact that Oakridge Center transferred its assets for the fraudulent purpose of escaping Holloway’s judgment.   Furthermore, the State urges this court to look to federal common law, where successor liability is recognized as the default rule in employment discrimination cases.   The State maintains that recognition of successor liability in employment discrimination cases aids victims to enforce judgments against employers involved in discriminatory practices who might otherwise escape liability.    Reversed and Remanded. ..  COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       Mar 15, 2019 .. D.D.C.:  Ham v.  Ayers ..  Donald Kay Ham worked for the Architect of the Capitol as a sheet metal mechanic from 1991 to 2015.   Mr. Ham now sues his former employer, alleging that he suffered a hostile work environment in violation of the [ADA].  ..  COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       Mar 15, 2019 .. OPM:  Emergency Leave Transfer:  For Federal Employees Adversely Affected By The November 2018 California Wildfires.

♦       Mar 15, 2019 .. NY Slip Op:  Zervos v. Trump ..  SHE SAID: "Trump Sexually Ravaged Me" ... TRUMP: "While I'm President -- You Can't Touch This." ..  Defendant, Donald J. Trump, appeals from an order of the Supreme Court, New York County (Jennifer G. Schecter, J.), entered March 21, 2018, which denied his motion to dismiss the defamation complaint or in the alternative to stay the action, and denied his special motion to strike the complaint under California's anti-SLAAP statute.    This case raises a constitutional issue of first impression: whether the Supremacy Clause of the United States Constitution requires a state court to defer litigation of a defamation action against a sitting President until his terms end.    Factual and Procedural Background    This defamation lawsuit was commenced by Summer Zervos, a former contestant on the "Apprentice," a reality show starring defendant Donald Trump. Plaintiff alleges that in 2016, when defendant was a Presidential candidate, he wrongly smeared her by claiming that her allegations of sexual misconduct against him were lies.    Specifically, on October 14, 2016, plaintiff held a press conference to recount two separate incidents in which defendant had made unwanted sexual advances towards her. The first incident allegedly occurred when she met with defendant at his New York office in 2007, where he kissed her on the lips upon her arrival, and after stating that he would love to have her work for him, kissed her on the lips again as she was about to leave. The kisses made her feel "very nervous and embarrassed" and "upset."    The second encounter occurred soon thereafter. Ms. Zervos went to meet defendant for dinner at a restaurant in the Beverly Hills Hotel. Instead, she was escorted to his bungalow, where he kissed her "open mouthed," "grabbed her shoulder, again kissing her very aggressively, and placed his hand on her breast." After she pulled back and walked away, defendant took her hand, led her into the bedroom, and when she walked out, turned her around and suggested that they "lay down and watch some telly telly." ..  COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       Mar 14, 2019 .. D.D.C.:  King  v.  Kate Spade ..  King, hired as a “sales muse” by Kate Spade, alleges that in December 2017 she informed her supervisor of her nascent pregnancy.   Within two weeks, the company ceased scheduling her for regular shifts and deprived her of other work privileges and incentives.    She ultimately filed a Charge of Discrimination on October 24, 2018.  ..  COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       Mar 13, 2019 .. DOI OIG:  Alleged Favoritism And Misconduct By BIA Supervisor:   The OIG investigated anonymous complaints that a Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA) supervisor showed favoritism toward employees with whom she had personal relationships and allegedly made unwelcome and offensive comments of a sexual nature in the workplace. The complainant also alleged that the supervisor falsified time and attendance records.:  DoiOig.gov

♦       Mar 13, 2019 .. 3rd Cir.:  Komis v. OSHA ..  Komis filed more than sixty EEO complaints while employed by OSHA.   Allegedly in retaliation for those and other EEO complaints filed a decade earlier, Komis contends her employer created a hostile work environment.   [...]   The disciplinary actions at issue include a written reprimand, suspension, denial of access to training opportunities, and removal from a particular assignment.   We observe that all the hostile acts Komis alleges appear to be discrete personnel actions [...].   In August 2008, Komis was issued a notice of proposed removal. ..  DECISION:  (pdf)   (html)

♦       Mar 13, 2019 .. 7th Cir.:  Cotton v. MATC ..  Rhonda Cotton, an African-American employee at the Milwaukee Area Technical College, applied for several promotions. When the College did not select her, she sued for race discrimination and retaliation.   The College hired Cotton as a part-time instructor in 2001. (As of 2014 she is also a full-time, limited-term educational assistant.) After 12 years in that role, she applied for full-time positions including student service specialist, educational assistant, instructor, and office technology instructor, but she was not selected for these jobs. Rather, the College hired other candidates, changed the qualifications for the positions for which she applied, or eliminated the positions entirely. Cotton maintains that she was the best candidate for the positions based on the information she gathered from publicly available finance, personnel, and operations records and from her familiarity with her coworkers, though she acknowledges that she does not know all of the other candidates’ qualifications.  ..  COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       Mar 12, 2019 .. D.D.C.:  Workagegnehu v. WMATA ..  Plaintiff Teshome Workagagnehu brought this action against defendants Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority (“WMATA”), Paul J. Wiedefeld in his official capacity as General Manager of WMATA, and Martin Van Buren, a former employee of WMATA [...] asserting claims of assault and battery (Count I) and intentional infliction of emotional distress (Count II).   Plaintiff seeks “damages in an amount equal to all of his accumulated lost wages and benefits, including back pay, front pay and benefits; and compensatory damages for the physical injury and emotional harm caused by WMATA et al. in an amount not less than $500,000,” as well as attorneys’ fees and costs.  ..  COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       Mar 12, 2019 .. 2d Cir.:  Noel v. Wal-Mart ..  Noel was formerly employed by Defendant-Appellee Wal-Mart Stores (“Walmart”) as a pharmacist manager.   In April 2016, Walmart announced that, beginning on April 16, 2016, all new pharmacy employees would be required to be certified to administer immunizations and all incumbents would be required to be so certified by October 16, 2016.   Noel, who suffers from trypanophobia (or needle phobia), sought an “exemption from this alteration of his job description. ..  COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       Mar 12, 2019 .. D.D.C.:  Lawrence v. Newsham ..  Plaintiff has brought this action against defendants District of Columbia and Chief of Police Peter Newsham, alleging that the District, acting through the Metropolitan Police Department (“MPD”), exceeded the statutory 90-day time limit to commence an adverse action to terminate him.   Plaintiff also alleges that the MPD discriminated against him on the basis of race.   Plaintiff was formerly employed as an officer with the MPD.   On November 25, 2013, he was arrested in Maryland in connection with a domestic dispute with his wife.   After plaintiff’s arrest, MPD placed him on “non-contact status.”   He was indicted in Maryland state court on December 19, 2013 for attempted first-degree murder, attempted second-degree murder, first-degree assault, second-degree assault, and two counts of carrying a weapon with intent to injure.   On May 7, 2015, the jury found him not guilty on all charges in the indictment.   MPD terminated Plaintiff from the MPD in August 2016.  ..  COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       Mar 11, 2019 .. ASC:  Reynolds-Rogers  v. DHSS ..  A former employee of the Department of Health and Social Services (DHSS) brought a wrongful discharge suit against the State.   At the time of her termination she had four union grievances pending against DHSS, and her union filed another based on the termination. The union settled all five grievances in exchange for a payment to the employee.   She later sued DHSS for wrongful termination, alleging both [...] retaliatory discharge and failure to accommodate her disabilities. ..  COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       Mar 11, 2019 .. Fed. Cir.:  Hairston v. DVA ..  Mr. Hairston was hired as a housekeeping aid at the Martinsburg VA Medical Center in West Virginia (“VA”) in December 2015.   Mr. Hairston appeals the final decision of the Merit Systems Protection Board sustaining his removal from employment with VA based on a Charge Of Conduct Unbecoming Of A Federal Employee.  ..  COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       Mar 11, 2019 .. FLRA:  IUPEDJ v. PBGC ..  The General Counsel (GC) issued two complaints alleging that the Union violated § 7116(b)(1) and (5) of the Federal Service Labor-Management Relations Statute (Statute)[2] when it refused to accept the terms of the parties’ collective-bargaining agreement for the selection of arbitrators, the payment of arbitrators, and the arbitration procedures and, thereby, failed to continue existing personnel policies, practices, and matters to the maximum extent possible.   [The Union motions the Authority to reconsider the GC's conclusion.]  ..  FLRA DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       Mar 8, 2019 .. 7th Cir.:  Sansone v. Brennan ..  Tony Sansone, who is confined to a wheelchair, needs a parking place with room to deploy his van’s wheelchair ramp. For years, the Postal Service, his employer, provided him one.   But in 2011, it took that spot away and failed to provide him with a suitable replacement. Sansone then retired and sued the Service under the Rehabilitation Act for failing to accommodate his disability.   A jury returned a verdict in his favor and Sansone recovered compensatory damages, as well as back and front pay.   The Postal Service [appeals].  ..  COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

       Mar 8, 2019 .. 5th Cir.:  Judon v. EP Energy ..  La Tonya Judon sued EP Energy for retaliation under the Family and Medical Leave Act (the “FMLA”) and for hostile work environment.   The district court granted summary judgment for EP Energy and Judon appeals. ..  COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       Mar 7, 2019 .. US GAO:  VA PROCUREMENT AND SECURITY CLEARANCE PROCESSING LAND ON GAO’S HIGH-RISK LIST:   The Veterans Affairs Department suffers from “fundamental management weaknesses and is one of the most challenged in the federal government,” Comptroller General Gene Dodaro told a Senate panel on Wednesday.    Leadership instability, high-level vacancies and a lack of accountability are all problems at the sprawling, decentralized VA, which appears three times on the newly released biennial list of high-risk programs compiled by GAO.:  govexec.com

♦       Mar 7, 2019 .. 2d Cir.:  Fox v. Costco ..  Plaintiff-Appellant Christopher Fox (“Fox”) has worked at Costco for 21 years. He has suffered from Tourette’s Syndrome (“Tourette’s”) and Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (“OCD”) since birth.    Fox brought claims against Costco under the Americans with Disabilities Act (“ADA”) alleging hostile work environment, disparate treatment, failure to accommodate, and retaliation.  ..  COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       Mar 7, 2019 .. 2d Cir.:  Connolly v. Equity ..  Plaintiff-appellant Brendan Connolly appeals from a judgment entered July 24, 2018, dismissing his claim of constructive discharge brought under the Family and Medical Leave Act.   On appeal, Connolly argues that the district court erred in concluding that he failed to plead a plausible constructive discharge claim precipitated by the decision of defendants-appellees to reduce his annual bonus after Connolly used extended paid leave to cope with the death of his wife and unborn child. ..  COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       Mar 7, 2019 .. 4th Cir.:  Hately v. Watts ..  Patrick Hately, a former student at Blue Ridge Community College, continued to use his student email account after he graduated in 2013.   Patrick Hately brought this action alleging that David Watts unlawfully accessed messages in Hately’s web-based email account in violation of the Virginia Computer Crimes Act and the federal Stored Communications Act.   But the district court found (1) that Hately failed to demonstrate the requisite statutory injury under state law, and (2) that Hately’s previously opened and delivered emails stored by a web-based email service were not in statutorily protected “electronic storage” under federal law. ..  COURT DECISION:  "We Disagree With Both Determinations"   (pdf)   (html)

♦       Mar 6, 2019 .. DOJ OIG:  FWS MANAGER VIOLATED FEDERAL REGULATIONS AND FWS POLICIES:   We found that an FWS manager violated Federal regulations and FWS policies related to an indecent exposure incident and the refuge’s Friends organization.:  DoiOig.gov

♦       Mar 6, 2019 .. DOJ OIG:  UNFOUNDED ALLEGATIONS OF IMPROPER LEADERSHIP DECISIONS AND HOSTILE WORK ENVIRONMENT:    The OIG investigated complaints that Grand Canyon National Park (GRCA) Superintendent Christine Lehnertz, proposed a disciplinary action against a GRCA senior official for an improper purpose; created a hostile work environment; and engaged in bullying and retaliatory behavior against senior leaders, particularly male leaders, at the GRCA. The complainant also alleged that Lehnertz authorized unnecessary renovations:  DoiOig.gov

♦       Mar 5, 2019 .. NEWS:  FLRA PLAN TO REVIEW ARBITRATION STANDARDS ALARMS UNIONS   the Federal Labor Relations Authority announced last week that it would review how it determines whether to award attorneys’ fees in some cases, renewing fears of politicization of the body.   FederalTimes

♦       Mar 5, 2019 .. ADNSC:  Mejia v. T.N.888  ..  Plaintiff's supervisor's stray remark about her age did not raise any triable issue of a hostile work environment. Plaintiff could not recall with any specificity the times that she was referred to as a "drug dealer" or criminal, based on her nationality, nor was she able to raise any triable issue as to whether Greek waiters were given preferential treatment over Hispanic waiters.   COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       Mar 4, 2019 .. 10th Cir.:  Davis v. BAE ..  Andrew Davis sued his former employer, BAE Systems Technology Solutions & Services Inc., claiming BAE’s refusal to rehire him was in retaliation for reporting sexual harassment. ..  COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       Mar 4, 2019 .. NEWS:  MSPB'S LAST BOARD MEMBER JUST LEFT THE ROOM.    Who Will Handle Federal Employee Appeals Now?  ..  The end of Mark Robbins term as a member of the Merit systems Protection Board marks an unprecedented lack of leadership at the agency.    March 1 marks the first day in the entire history of the Merit Systems Protection Board that none of the three member positions will be filled, a situation that could have significant repercussions for federal employee watchdogs and the disciplinary appeals process.  ..     FederalTimes

♦       Mar 4, 2019 .. Fed. Cir.:  Sharpe  v. DOJ ..  CONCLUSION FROM THE FEDERAL CIRCUIT:    "Because we hold that the MSPB abused its discretion by excluding the Tomaski email and SAIC Sherman’s testimony, we vacate the MSPB’s decision and remand for further proceedings. In light of the remand, we need not reach Mr. Sharpe’s other evidentiary arguments on this appeal; the MSPB should consider all the evidence in reevaluating the USERRA claim once it conducts appropriate proceed- ings in light of our ruling today."    VACATED AND REMANDED ..  COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       Mar 4, 2019 .. Fed. Cir.:  Hornseth v. Navy ..  Hornseth was an employee of a secure Navy facility that houses nuclear powered vessels. His position requires a security clearance.   The Navy learned that Hornseth had used marijuana during his employment.   On December 12, 2016, Hornseth received a letter informing him of intentions to suspend his access to classified information and his assignment to a sensitive position.   Three days later, Hornseth was notified that his security clearance was suspended and was issued a proposed indefinite suspension.   Hornseth petitions for review of the final decision of [MSPB] affirming his indefinite suspension without pay. ..  COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       Feb 28, 2019 .. 9th Cir.:  Wadler v. Bio-Rad ..  In this whistleblower retaliation case, Bio-Rad Laboratories, Inc. (“Bio-Rad” or “the Company”) and its CEO, Norman Schwartz, appeal an $11 million jury verdict in favor of Bio-Rad’s former general counsel, Sanford Wadler.   The jury found that Defendants violated the Sarbanes-Oxley Act (“SOX”), the Dodd-Frank Act, and California public policy by terminating Wadler’s employment in retaliation for his internal report that he believed the Company had engaged in serious and prolonged violations of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (“FCPA”) in China.   On appeal, Defendants argue that the district court erred.  ..  COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       Feb 28, 2019 .. MCA:  Chema v. MCS ..  CONSTRUCTIVE DISCHARGE ? ..  Defendant was a small medical practice and plaintiff worked in its billing department since 1991.   By all accounts, plaintiff was an extremely competent employee and valued by defendant. Plaintiff acknowledged that she enjoyed a generous salary and many fringe benefits.   Plaintiff testified that everything changed in June 2014 when defendant hired Stacey Wilson to be the office manager.   Over the span of just a few days, plaintiff received a negative performance review, was issued numerous warnings, and was threatened with termination if another warning occurred.   Wilson told plaintiff that “it’s better if you retire now than get fired.”   Plaintiff resigned immediately following the meeting with Wilson.   Wilson told plaintiff “now I can hire people that are younger and cheaper than you.”  ..  COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       Feb 27, 2019 .. FLRA:  SSA v. NTEU ..  The grievant is an SSA attorney-advisor who handles disability benefits appeals. For the 2015 fiscal year, the grievant disagreed with her successful rating and believed that her performance warranted an outstanding rating.    The Union filed a grievance alleging that the Agency failed to provide a fair appraisal in accordance with the Agency’s policy.    Arbitrator John Paul Simpkins determined that the Agency failed to give proper consideration to the contributions described in the grievant’s self-assessment.  ..  FLRA DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       Feb 27, 2019 .. 6th Cir.:  Jenkins v. UM ..  Plaintiff, an African- America woman, worked for The Regents of the University of Michigan Health System (“U-M”) for ten years before being terminated for time-card fraud. Jenkins successfully challenged her termination through U-M’s grievance process, and U-M converted her termination into a two-week disciplinary layoff.    As a condition of reinstating the Plaintiff's employment, U-M placed her on a stringent performance plan.    When Plaintiff’s department underwent reorganization, U-M informed her that she was ineligible for promotion because she had failed to adhere to the performance plan.    Plaintiff sued.  ..  COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       Feb 27, 2019 .. 8th Cir.:  Voss v. Housing ..  Appellant resigned from his position as maintenance supervisor at the Housing Authority of the City of Magnolia, Arkansas (“Housing Authority”) and soon after filed a lawsuit against the Housing Authority and his direct supervisor, Richard Wyse, asserting various discrimination, retaliation, and constitutional claims.    Appellant appeals the district court’s1 order granting summary judgment in favor of the Housing Authority and Wyse. ..  COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       Feb 26, 2019 .. FLRA:  ARMY v. NFFE ..  FLRA:  WE SET ASIDE AN IMPLAUSIBLE CONTRACT INTERPRETATION. ..  In order to fill several vacancies, ARMY requested and received a certificate that listed the best-qualified candidates for the vacant positions (referral certificate). Thereafter, ARMY convened an interview panel to evaluate the candidates on the referral certificate.    NFFE filed a grievance, alleging that the interview panel violated [the parties’ agreement] which requires, in relevant part, that “[a]ll rating[-]panel members must be in, or have served in, positions that are in the same series or family of trades which they are evaluating [...]”    It is undisputed that only one of the four interview panelists satisfied those requirements.  ..  FLRA DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       Feb 25, 2019 .. 4th Cir.:  Rangarajan v. Hopkins ..  Mitra Rangarajan, who claims that she was constructively discharged as a nurse practitioner at the School of Medicine of Johns Hopkins University — whether because of discrimination and retaliation, as she contends, or because of her performance, as Johns Hopkins contends — commenced four separate actions against the University.  ..  COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       Feb 25, 2019 .. D.D.C.:  Vance v. O'Rourke ..  This matter comes before the court on a single-count complaint, which alleges a hostile work environment on the basis of race.    Plaintiff Reginald Vance is an African American male employed by [Veterans Affairs] (“VA”).    From July 2013 to January 9, 2017, Plaintiff held the position of Supervisory Program Supervisor in the VA’s Veteran Affairs Learning University (“VALU”).  ..  COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       Feb 25, 2019 .. D.D.C.:  Payne v. DYRS ..  Plaintiff’s Complaint for age discrimination pursuant to the Age Discrimination in Employment Act of 1967 (“ADEA”); gender discrimination pursuant to the Civil Rights Act of 1964; and sexual orientation discrimination.  ..  COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       Feb 22, 2019 .. Fed. Cir.:  Capitol Police v. OOC ..  Christopher Donaldson, a former officer with the Police, was involved in an off-duty domestic incident. The Police’s Office of Professional Responsibility investigated the incident and ultimately recommended that he be terminated.    The Disciplinary Review Board then heard the matter and, although it agreed that Officer Donaldson should be punished, it recommended only a forty-five day unpaid suspension.    The Chief of Police reviewed the evidence and recommendations and decided to terminate Officer Donaldson.    The Chief of Police then refused to engage in arbitration of the resulting grievance. ..  COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       Feb 22, 2019 .. FLRA:  NFFE v. ARMY ..  This matter is before the Authority on exceptions to an award of Arbitrator Richard B. Danehy filed by NFFE under § 7122(a) and part 2425 of the Authority’s Regulations.    NFFE argues that the award is: contrary to law or government-wide regulation; contrary to an agency-wide regulation; incomplete, ambiguous, or contradictory as to make its implementation impossible; and deficient.  ..  FLRA DECISION:  (pdf)   (html)

♦       Feb 22, 2019 .. 7th Cir.:  Gates v. BOE ..  Plaintiff Fred Gates testified that his direct supervisor, Rafael Rivera, addressed him with the N-word twice, and once threatened to write up his “black ass.”    The district court granted the employer’s motion for summary judgment on Gates’s claim for a racially hostile work environment under the Civil Rights Act of 1964.    COURT DECISION:  The district court’s grant of summary judgment on Gates’s hostile work environment claim is REVERSED and the case is REMANDED for further proceedings [...] .    (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       Feb 21, 2019 .. SCOTUS:  Timbs v. Indiana ..  SUPREME COURT SAYS CONSTITUTIONAL PROTECTION AGAINST EXCESSIVE FINES APPLIES TO STATES.  ..  POLICE STOLE HIS $42,000 VEHICLE.  ..  Justice Clarence Thomas wrote in a recent opinion that civil forfeitures have “become widespread and highly profitable.” “This system — where police can seize property with limited judicial oversight and retain it for their own use — has led to egregious and well-chronicled abuses,”  ..  SUPREME COURT DECISION (timbs_v._indiana):   (.pdf)   (.html)     WashingtonPost

♦       Feb 21, 2019 .. 5th Cir.:  Wallace v. Tesoro ..  Kevin Wallace worked for Tesoro Corporation AS A VICE President of Pricing and Commercial Analysis.    Wallace brings his claim under the anti-retaliation provision of the Sarbanes-Oxley Act (“SOX”).    While Wallace was investigating internal comparative profitability and accounting for taxes, the Tesoro human resources department began investigating Wallace. It found a pattern of unacceptable behavior, including favoritism and fostering a hostile work environment.    Tesoro terminated Wallace and asserts it was for his poor performance. Wallace claims he was terminated in retaliation for reporting Tesoro’s practice of booking sales taxes as revenues.  ..  COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       Feb 20, 2019 .. DOJ OIG:  Findings of Misconduct by a U.S. Marshal and Chief Deputy U.S. Marshal for Harassing and Making Retaliatory Statements About a Supervisory Deputy U.S. Marshal, Retaliating Against Another Deputy U.S. Marshal for Filing a Grievance, and Lack of Candor:  Justice.gov

♦       Feb 20, 2019 .. 4th Cir.:  Hannah P v. Daniel Coats ..  Appellant Hannah (“Hannah”), a former employee of the Office of the Director of National Intelligence (“Appellee”), asserts that Appellee discriminated against her pursuant to the “Rehabilitation Act” and violated the "Family and Medical Leave Act" by not hiring her for a permanent position.  ..  COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       Feb 19, 2019 .. NEWS:  TERMINATION DAY:   Management & Employee.   Both Sides Knew It Was The Other's Last Day.  ..  Authorities in the Chicago suburb (Aurora, Il) said Martin was called into a meeting at the Henry Pratt Co. warehouse.   After he was told he was being fired, he began shooting, killing the three employees who were at the meeting and two others who were nearby.  ..  WashingtonPost    PERMERICA EXTRA:  No one knows exactly what transpired during the meeting.   Everyone in the meeting (hr director, hr intern, plant manager) ... killed by the shooter.   Police killed shooter.

♦       Feb 19, 2019 .. FLRA:  Homeland v. AFGE ..  The border patrol agents (agents) involved in this case conduct inspections of vehicles and occupants traveling through a border-security checkpoint.   The Agency became aware that some of the agents “were failing very badly” at intercepting fraudulent and imposter vehicles and documents.   [Homeland issued a memorandum to fix the problem.  AFGE filed a grievance.]  ..  FLRA DECISION:    (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       Feb 19, 2019 .. 3rd Cir.:  McKinney v. Pitt ..  Jerome McKinney, a longtime, tenured professor at the University of Pittsburgh’s Graduate School of Public and International Affairs, challenges the University’s decision to reduce his salary as a violation of the Due Process Clause.   The District Court agreed, granting summary judgment for McKinney.   the University of Pittsburgh appealed The District Court decision.  ..  COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       Feb 15, 2019 .. FLRA:  FAA v. NATCA ..  FAA and Union both filed petitions to clarify the bargaining-unit status of fifty-five positions in FAA’s headquarters office and nine regional offices.   As relevant here, FAA contends that four employees in three administrative positions are confidential employees and should be excluded from the bargaining unit under §§ 7103(a)(13) and 7112(b)(2) of the Statute.  ..  FLRA DECISION:  (pdf)   (html)

♦       Feb 15, 2019 .. State OIG:   OIG found that many of the State Department’s Schedule B appointments to fill scientific, professional, and technical positions did not comply with Department policy and OPM regulations. Several individuals lacked special qualifications in foreign policy matters, and, of the appointments reviewed, almost a fifth were appointments to positions that are inherently policy-determining or confidential.  StateOig.gov

♦       Feb 14, 2019 .. Fed. Cir.:  Cerwonka v. DVA ..  Eric R. Cerwonka seeks review of the [MSPB] decision affirming the Department of Veterans Affairs decision to remove him from his position as a clinical psychologist at the Alexandria, Louisiana VA Medical Center.  ..  DECISION:  (pdf)   (html)

♦        Feb 14, 2019 .. Fed. Cir.:  Ryan v. Defense ..  James Ryan appeals from a decision of the Merit Sys- tems Protection Board (“the Board”) sustaining three charges against Ryan for lack of candor, conduct unbecoming a police officer, and unauthorized use of a computer, and removing him from service as a police officer in the Pentagon Force Protection Agency (“PFPA”).  ..  COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       Feb 14, 2019 .. D.D.C.:  Haynes v. Library of Congress ..  Mr. Haynes worked for the Library for nine years before the Library fired him in 2001 for performance issues.   In 2017, Mr. Haynes re-applied for a Library position as a reference librarian, specializing in music.   The Library did not hire him.   Alleging discrimination and retaliation, Mr. Haynes filed an informal complaint and then a formal complaint with the Library’s Equal Employment Opportunity (“EEO”) Office.   Mr. Haynes, proceeding pro se, now seeks relief in federal court, alleging that the Library refused to hire him as a “reprisal for [his] prior complaint and to discriminate against [his] disability.”  ..  COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       Feb 13, 2019 .. FLRA:  SATCO v. AirForce ..  Previously, Federal Labor Relations Authority (FLRA) Administrative Law Judge Charles R. Center (the Judge) found that the Union violated § 7116(b)(5) of the Statute[3] by refusing to recognize the Agency’s duly authorized representatives during negotiations over a new collective-bargaining agreement.   The Union filed exceptions to the Judge’s decision.  ..  FLRA DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       Feb 13, 2019 .. N.M.C.C.A. :  U.S. v. Washington ..  HE SAID - HE SAID : MARINES SEX ASSAULT CASE. ..  The appellant, met Sgt W on the gay website.   Sgt W invited the appellant to his barracks room.   The appellant came to Sgt W’s barracks room around 10:30 pm. According to Sgt W, he then fell asleep.   The next morning, Sgt W text'd the appellant and confirmed they had sex on “Monday night,” ..  COURT DECISION:   caution explicit sex   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       Feb 12, 2019 .. FLRA:  DVA v. AFGE ..  This matter is before the Authority on exceptions to an award of Arbitrator Charles J. Murphy filed by the Agency under § 7122(a) of the Federal Service Labor-Management Relations Statute and part 2425 of the Authority’s Regulations. ..  FLRA DECISION:  (pdf)   (html)

♦       Feb 12, 2019 .. 10th Cir.:  Franken v. Zinke ..  Plaintiff Kevin Franken claims that the [Department of the Interior] and a supervisor violated his rights when, at the end of his employment, they prevented him from accessing all of the personal electronic files he had saved on his government work computer and did not give him the “symbolic wooden arrow” that is customarily given to departing long-term employees. ..  DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       Feb 11, 2019 .. Fed. Cir.:  Redmond v. DVA ..  John Paul Redmond appeals the decision of the Merit Systems Protection Board denying him relief under the Whistleblower Protection Act from personnel actions taken against him by the VA Northport, Ny Medical Center.    Mr. Redmond was employed by the VA as a contract specialist between October 2013 and September 2017, when he resigned.    The central dispute on appeal concerns Mr. Redmond’s claim that he was unlawfully reprimanded after disclosing problems with certain contractors at the Northport VAMC.  ..  COURT DECISION:  (pdf)   (html)

♦       Feb 11, 2019 .. AMTRAK OIG:   Amtrak Foreman was disqualified from position, for one year for misuse of Amtrak computers:  Amtrakoig.gov

♦       Feb 11, 2019 .. AMTRAK OIG:  Amtrak Conductor, 2 Assist Conductors, and an Usher/Gateman were disciplined.… Read more:  Amtrakoig.gov

♦       Feb 8, 2019 .. Fed. Cir.:  Anoruo v. U.S. (VA) ..  Dr. Joseph Anoruo, an employee of the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA), brought this action against the United States in the Court of Federal Claims. He claimed that he was entitled to receive, but did not receive, student loan reimbursement payments under certain programs established by VA, namely, the Education Debt Reduction Program and the Student Loan Repayment Program.  ..  DECISION:  (pdf)   (html)

♦       Feb 8, 2019 .. NYSC:  Abe v. NYU ..  Plaintiff held part-time darkroom lab manager and photography adjunct teaching positions at Defendant New York University (NYU).    Defendant, NYU, which was facing an uncertain financial future after the 2007-2008 fiscal crisis, directed each Department to reduce expenses.    Defendants demonstrated a legitimate nondiscriminatory reason why they eliminated plaintiff's positions, citing budget cuts.    Did the Court properly dismiss plaintiff's claim because he failed to [allege that] defendants' reason for terminating him was pretextual ?  (pdf)   (html)

♦       Feb 7, 2019 .. 8th Cir.:  Jones v. Douglas ..  The complaint was a deputy sheriff for Douglas County.  She used prescription pain medication for migraine headaches and chronic neck and back pain.  After her health deteriorated, she failed a remedial qualification for the Emergency Services Unit.  Douglas County tried to remove her from that unit despite retaining a male with health issues.  She later requested accommodations [...].  The head of that unit denied her request, transferred her, and disciplined her for objecting to the transfer and requesting accommodations.  ..  COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       Feb 7, 2019 .. FLRA:  Passport v. NFFE ..  The grievants are passport specialists who work under a production quota. Disruptions or outages of Agency computers (downtime) can prevent passport specialists from meeting their quota.    Arbitrator Joshua M. Javits found that the Agency violated a settlement agreement by failing to timely notify employees of disruptions. The Agency filed [...] exceptions to the Arbitrator’s award.  ..  FLRA DECISION:  (pdf)   (html)

♦       Feb 6, 2019 .. DOJ OIG:  Findings of Misconduct by an FBI Supervisory Special Agent for Making False Representations, Working for an FBI Contractor, Accepting Gifts from an FBI Applicant, and Misusing a Government Vehicle and Cell Phone:  Justice.gov

♦       Feb 6, 2019 .. FLRA:  Justice (Prisons) v. AFGE ..  The grievants are correctional officers in the Agency’s prison complex. Since at least 2008, the Agency has paid employees overtime later than the regular payday for the pay period in which they actually worked the overtime hours. On April 22, 2015, the Union filed a grievance alleging that the Agency violated the FLSA[1] by untimely paying overtime. ..  FLRA DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       Feb 6, 2019 .. FLRA:  FOP v. Defense ..  Arbitrator James Oldham issued an award sustaining the Union’s grievance and reversing the grievant’s fourteen-day suspension.     However, in response to the Union’s statement that it sought attorney fees, the Arbitrator denied the Union attorney fees because the Union made no attempt to demonstrate a statutory entitlement to the fees before he issued the merits award.     The Union files a contrary-to-law exception claiming that the denial of attorney fees is premature.  ..  FLRA DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       Feb 6, 2019 .. FLRA:  VA v. AFGE ..  The Union originally filed a grievance concerning office space and access to that office space. The Arbitrator found that the Agency had violated the parties’ agreement as well as a memorandum of understanding (MOU).    In VA I, the Authority found that the awarded remedy—ordering the Agency to grant the Union vice president a personal-identity-verification (PIV) card—was contrary to law and remanded the case to the parties for submission to the Arbitrator, absent settlement, “to formulate an appropriate, alternate remedy, if any.”    In VA II, the Authority considered the Agency’s exceptions to the remedy ordered in the remand award—that the Agency allow the Union vice president to undergo the PIV-credentialing process. The Authority found that the Arbitrator’s remedy was contrary to an OPM memo dated July 31, 2008.  ..  FLRA DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       Feb 01, 2019 .. DOJ OIG:  Former FBI Special Agent Pleads Guilty To Embezzlement Of Government Funds:  Justice.gov
♦       Jan 30, 2019 .. DOJ OIG:  Findings of Misconduct by Two Current Senior FBI Officials and One Retired FBI Official:  Justice.gov

♦       Jan 30, 2019 .. 7th Cir.:  Cervantes v. Ardagh ..  Juan Cervantes brought this action against his employer, Ardagh Group, alleging violations of Title VII of the Civil Rights Act [...]. The complaint asserted that Ardagh had refused to promote him, had issued him performance warnings, and had demoted him because of his race and national origin and in retaliation for previous complaints about discrimination and harassment.  ..  DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       Jan 30, 2019 .. D.D.C.:  Jin v. Parsons ..  Plaintiff Jin O. Jin worked for Defendant Parsons Corporation for over twenty years. Parsons fired him in 2018, and he sued, alleging discrimination and retaliation in violation of the Age Discrimination in Employment Act. Parsons has moved to stay proceedings and compel arbitration. According to Parsons, Mr. Jin assented to an arbitration agreement by remaining at Parsons after being told that continued employment constituted acceptance of the agreement.  ..  COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       Jan 29, 2019 .. 1st Cir.:  Roy v. Correct Care  ..  This case raises important issues about employer liability for a hostile work environment created by third parties and about non-employer liability for employment-related discrimination.    Tara Roy, the plaintiff, worked as a nurse, employed by Correct Care Solutions, LLC (CCS), at a Maine Department of Corrections (MDOC) prison.    After MDOC revoked her prison security clearance and CCS terminated her employment in October 2014, Roy sued.    She alleged that discrimination and sexual harassment by the prison's corrections officers made her work environment hostile and that she was retaliated against for complaints about the hostile work environment and for other whistleblowing.  ..  COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       Jan 28, 2019 .. 3rd Cir.:  Desantis v. NJT ..  This is a civil rights action brought by Anthony DeSantis against New Jersey Transit (“NJT”) and two of its employees, Alan Wohl and Fred D’Ascoli for failing to hire DeSantis for a management position.  ..  COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       Jan 28, 2019 .. 5th Cir.:  Thomas v. Tregre ..  Thomas, an African-American man, worked as a deputy in the St. John the Baptist Parish Sheriff’s Office (the “Sheriff’s Office”) from July 1, 2012, to April 7, 2015. Sheriff Michael Tregre, also an African-American man, was at all relevant times the chief law enforcement officer of the parish.    While working in the narcotics division of the Sheriff’s Office in February 2014, Thomas took part in an operation that led to the arrest of criminal suspect Darnell Randle. Thomas later informed Major Walter Chappel, then the commanding officer of the narcotics division, that blood found on the floor of the scene belonged to Randle.    Thomas also told Chappel he saw fellow officer Justin Bordelon striking Randle. Another officer, Hardy Schexnayder, also reported that he saw Bordelon strike Randle. Bordelon denied using force to intentionally injure Randle. Schexnayder and Chappel are African-American. Bordelon is Caucasian.    The internal affairs division opened an investigation into the Randle incident.  ..  DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       Jan 28, 2019 .. Fed. Cir.:  U.S. Capitol Police v. OOC ..  The Union filed charges with the OOC alleging that the refusal by the Police to comply with the arbitrator’s decision constituted an unfair labor practice, and the General Counsel of the OOC filed an unfair labor practice complaint with the Board. The hearing officer assigned to the complaint sustained the charge, and on review the Board agreed with the hearing officer.    Before the Board, the Police argued on the merits that the arbitrator lacked jurisdiction over the subject of employee termination. Without jurisdiction, the arbitrator’s award would be of no effect, and consequently refusal to comply with the arbitrator’s decision could not constitute an unfair labor practice.    In addition, the Police argued that the Union’s unfair labor practice charge was untimely filed, and consequently the hearing officer’s decision has no effect.  ..  DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       Jan 24, 2019 .. Cal. Ct. App.:  Mackey v. CalState  ..  Five African-American women on the basketball team at California State University at San Marcos (CSUSM) sued head coach Sheri Jennum and the Board of Trustees of the California State University, claiming Jennum had engaged in race-based discrimination and retaliation. They alleged she derogatorily referred to them as "the group," reduced their playing time, afforded them fewer opportunities, punished them more severely and generally singled them out for harsher treatment as compared to their non-African-American teammates.  ..  (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       Jan 24, 2019 .. 7th Cir.:  Kleber v. CareFusion ..  REVERSAL :  Age Discrimination Law Only Applies To Employees, Not Job Applicants. ..  Applicant, Dale Kleber, an attorney, applied for a senior in-house position in CareFusion’s law department. The job description required applicants to have “3 to 7 years (no more than 7 years) of relevant legal experience.”    Kleber was 58 at the time he applied and had more than seven years of pertinent experience. CareFusion passed over Kleber and instead hired a 29-year-old applicant who met [...] the prescribed experience requirement.    Kleber responded by bringing this action and pursuing claims for both disparate treatment and disparate impact.  ..  COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)
REUTERS NEWS ARTICLE: - A divided U.S. appeals court on Wednesday (Jan 23) dealt a setback to older job applicants, saying they cannot invoke a federal law against age bias in employment to challenge hiring policies they believe have a discriminatory impact.      In an 8-4 decision, the 7th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Chicago said the “plain language” of the Age Discrimination in Employment Act (“ADEA”), which forbids discrimination against people 40 and older, showed that Congress intended that law to cover current employees, not outside job applicants.    (Reuters)    7th Cir No. 17-1206

♦       Jan 24, 2019 .. Tenn. Ct. App.:  Weinert v. Sevierville ..  Plaintiff was hired as a patrol officer in mid-2008.    She became a field training officer in 2013. She unsuccessfully applied for a promotion to the rank of Sergeant in 2014. Defendant awarded the promotion to plaintiff’s fellow patrol officer, Rebecca Cowan.    Subsequently, plaintiff reported that she had been sexually harassed by two other officers. Capt. Ayers forwarded the information to Chief of Police Don Myers, and the City opened an investigation.    Ayers testified that he believed the accused officers were not disciplined because of a lack of corroborating proof uncovered by the investigation.    Plaintiff filed a complaint with the [EEOC] alleging sexual discrimination.  ..  (pdf)   (html)

♦       Jan 23, 2019 .. 3rd Cir.:  Fawole v. NBIH ..  Due a complaint by Fawole's supervisor, members of the Center’s human relations department began an investigation.    The investigators reviewed footage from security cameras, which showed Fawole and two other employees under his supervision, sleeping.    The videos also showed two other employees, who were under Fawole’s supervision, sleeping. The Center gave the three employees the choice to resign or be terminated; Fawole and one other employee chose to resign, and the third employee was fired.    After resigning, Fawole filed a complaint with the U.S. EEOC alleging that he had been fired based on age discrimination and that he had been retaliated against. ..  COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       Jan 22, 2019 .. D.D.C.:  Kangethe v. D.C. ..  Pro se Plaintiff John Kangethe, an employee of the District of Columbia Department of Employment Services (“DOES”), brings retaliation, hostile work environment, and negligent hiring and retention claims against his employer.    Plaintiff alleges that he has faced numerous adverse actions in his employment stemming from formal and informal complaints that he made regarding his supervisor, Saikou Diallo. Plaintiff contends that these adverse actions have resulted in a hostile working environment.    He further alleges that it was negligent of DOES to hire Mr. Diallo and to retain him in a supervisory position.  ..  COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       Jan 18, 2019 .. D.D.C.:  Hall v. Nielsen ..  After Defendant, Department of Homeland Security, terminated Plaintiff Steven H. Hall's employment, he sought administrative relief for a variety of forms of alleged discrimination. Before the case ever reached court, the parties entered into a settlement awarding Hall $55,000.    But, at least from Hall’s perspective, the battle was only beginning. He subsequently filed a flurry of pro se lawsuits in various courts seeking damages against the agency and an attorney who represented him during the settlement process, Rosemary Dettling.  ..  COURT DECISION:  (pdf)   (html)

♦       Jan 18, 2019 .. 11th Cir.:  Borden v. Cheaha ..  LaShunda Borden, an African-American female, began working at Cheaha in 2007.    In 2010, she filed a charge with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, alleging that Cheaha racially discriminated against her by electing to promote a less-qualified white woman over her.    In 2014, Ms. Borden was terminated for failing to perform her receptionist duties, among other issues.    Ms. Borden subsequently filed a pro se complaint alleging that Cheaha terminated her because of her race and in retaliation for her 2010 EEOC charge.  ..  DECISION:  (pdf)   (html)

♦       Jan 16, 2019 .. 7th Cir.:  Arnold v. Visiontek ..Wallace Arnold sued his former employer, asserting that he was subjected to a hostile work environment based on his race and that he was later terminated in retaliation for complaining of racial discrimination.  ..  COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       Jan 16, 2019 .. D.D.C.:  Tyes-Williams v. Sessions (Justice) ..  Mary Tyes-Williams, an African-American woman, has worked in various chaplaincy positions for the Federal Bureau of Prisons (BOP) since 2004.    She describes the first decade of her career as a steady climb marked by superior performance reviews and robust skills development.    After 11 years with BOP, however, she ran into trouble with two coworkers who at various times held supervisory positions over her and received promotions that Tyes-Williams sought for herself.    From Tyes-Williams’s perspective, these coworkers unlawfully discriminated against her by treating her condescendingly, interfering with her career advancement, and depriving her of advantages routinely offered to white, male employees.  ..  COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       Jan 15, 2019 .. 4th Cir.:  David v. Winchester ..  Mary David worked as an at-will nursing director at Winchester Medical Center (“WMC”). On September 3, 2014, WMC informed David that she could not maintain her employment there. The overarching dispute here is whether WMC dismissed David because she was reporting misbehavior or because she herself was misbehaving.  ..  COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       Jan 15, 2019 .. Fed. Cir.:  Do v.  HUD ..  WAS THE CANDIDATE QUALIFIED OR NOT ? ..  Hanh Do petitions for review of a decision of the Merit Systems Protection Board (“Board”). The Board sustained the Department of Housing and Urban Development’s (“HUD’s” or “agency’s”) action demoting and suspending Do.     In its notice of proposed action, HUD charged Do with “negligence of duty” for hiring and later promoting an employee when Do knew that the employee did not have a college degree, which the agency viewed as a requirement.     On appeal, the Board agreed with Do that a college degree was not required and that the employee could alternatively qualify for the positions by having a combination of education and experience.     The Board, nonetheless, sustained the charge, concluding that Do was negligent because she failed to ensure that the em- ployee met the alternative qualification requirements.     We hold that Do’s due process rights were violated be- cause the Board exceeded the scope of the agency’s charge, relying on a new ground to sustain the discipline.     We reverse and remand.  ..  COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       Jan 11, 2019 ..   DOL OIG INVESTIGATIONS NEWSLETTER.   Volume XIX   (October 1 – November 30, 2018)  ..  (.pdf)

♦       Jan 11, 2019 .. D.D.C.:  Smith v. Ergo ..  AN INTERESTING AND MEATY SEXUAL HARASSMENT CASE TO PERUSE. ..  Ergo is a private health care services company with four owners.    Beginning in 2007, Ergo had a formal employee policy and procedure manual, which included a “zero tolerance” sexual harassment policy.    Under that policy, sexual harassment complaints were to be directed to the complainant’s direct supervisor or to a corporate compliance officer.    The complainant and alleged harasser were to be physically separated during an investigation into alleged conduct, and an employee could be suspended for violating the policy. ..  COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       Jan 10, 2019 .. 4th Cir.:  Coleman v. Schneider ..  THEY FAILED TO PROMOTE ME DESPITE BEING THE BEST QUALIFIED APPLICANT ! ..  To establish a failure to promote claim under Title VII, a plaintiff must first make a prima facie showing “that [she] (1) is a member of a protected class; (2) applied for the position in question; (3) was qualified for the position; and (4) was rejected for the position under circumstances giving rise to an inference of unlawful discrimination.”  ..  COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       Jan 10, 2019 .. Fed. Cir.:  Lepore v. OPM ..  Mr. Lepore was employed with the U.S. Department of the Treasury and the U.S. Department of Justice for more than twenty years, over seven of which were in “law enforcement service,     Effective on or about April 16, 1983, Mr. Lepore retired under the disability provisions under the Civil Service Retirement System (“CSRS”).     In April 2016, Mr. Lepore appealed OPM’s denial of his request to recalculate his retirement salary in favor of an enhanced annuity.  ..  COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       Jan 9, 2019 .. 8th Cir.:  McKee v. Reuter ..  AFTER WINNING THE ELECTION AGAINST HER, HE WENT MEDIEVAL ON HER ASK ..  Ms. McKee began working for the Circuit Court of Jefferson County, Missouri in 1989. In 1998, she became the chief deputy clerk. In 2014, she was both the highest ranking and the highest paid deputy clerk, and she was nominated to run as the Democratic candidate to replace the outgoing clerk of court.     Her opponent in the general election was Mr. Reuter, the Republican candidate.     During the course of the campaign, Ms. McKee publicly commented that Mr. Reuter had been accused of domestic violence.     Mr. Reuter won the election and took office on January 2, 2015. ..  COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       Jan 9, 2019 .. 4th Cir.:  Stewart v. Iancu (PTO) ..  Stewart worked as a patent examiner for the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (“PTO”). He suffers from bulging discs in his lower back and radiculopathy, resulting from compression of his sciatic nerve, as well as post- and continuous-traumatic stress disorder.     Because of these medical conditions, Stewart filed a reasonable accommodation request with the PTO.     Specifically, he requested that he not be required to (1) come into work at a specified, mandatory time; (2) report his work schedule to his supervisor; and (3) schedule his meetings before 12:00 p.m., as his pain medications caused morning grogginess.  ..  COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       Jan 8, 2019 .. Fed. Cl.:  Philbert v. U.S. (VA) ..  Plaintiff Curtis Philbert brings this action under the Equal Pay Act ("EPA"), 29 U.S.C. § 206(d). He alleges that the Department of Veterans Affairs ("VA") Loma Linda Medical Center discriminated against him based on his sex when it paid female health technicians-who were allegedly performing the same work as he-at a GS-7 salary level, while paying him at only the lower GS-6 level. ..  COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       Jan 4, 2019 .. D.C. :  McCrea v. D.C. Fire ..  Petitioner Ms. McCrea, a fifteen-year veteran of the District of Columbia Fire and Emergency Medical Services Department (“Department”), was involuntarily retired on April 30, 2015, by respondent District of Columbia Police and Firefighters’ Retirement and Relief Board (“Board”) upon its determination that she was mentally disabled and incapacitated due to a diagnosis of Adjustment Disorder with Anxiety and Depression (“ADAD”).    The Board concluded that her disability was not incurred in the “performance of duty” (“POD”) and was therefore NOT compensable under the higher annuity rate.    Ms. McCrea challenges her involuntary retirement.    In the alternative, she seeks a reversal of the Board’s determination, claiming that she is entitled to receive retirement benefits at the higher "POD" annuity rate.  ..  COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       Jan 4, 2019 .. Fed. Cir.:  Koester v. US Park Police ..  WHY IN THE WORLD DID THE FEDERAL CIRCUIT VACATE THIS COP'S REMOVAL ? ..  The morning before his shift, Mr. Koester had trouble sleeping before his shift.    Mr. Koester decided to go to work anyway, brought a half-pint bottle of vodka in his work bag, and consumed some of it during his shift.    Video evidence and witness testimony demonstrates that he showed signs of intoxication while attempting to perform routine tasks.    After Mr. Koester made incoherent and concerning radio transmissions, a supervisor approached him and observed his inebriated state. Mr. Koester admitted he had been drinking but refused to take a breathalyzer test.    His supervisor took his weapon, ammunition, and badge, suspended him, and drove him home.    Mr. Koester was placed on administrative leave.    The Park Police proposed removing Mr. Koester from the Federal Service for both consuming alcohol while on duty and being impaired while on duty due to alcohol consumption.  ..  COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       Jan 3, 2019 .. Fed. Cir.:  Jenkins v. MSPB ..  CONSTRUCTIVE REMOVAL ? ..  For nearly thirty-three years, Mr. Jenkins was employed by the U.S. Department of the Army (“Army”), and prior to his retirement, worked as a [Supervisor].    From August 2010 to January 2012, Mr. Jenkins continually failed performance reviews.    Mr. Jenkins was put on a Performance Improvement Plan (“PIP”).    In February 2012, Mr. Jenkins’s first-level supervisor proposed his removal for unacceptable performance. After receiving the Notice of Proposed Removal, Mr. Jenkins retired.  ..  COURT DECISION:   (.pdf)   (.html)

♦       Jan 2, 2019 .. Fed. Cir. :  Hansen v. DHS ..  Following a positive drug test, the Department of Homeland Security removed Jeffrey Hansen from his position as an Information Technology Specialist for U.S. Customs and Border Protection. The [MSPB] affirmed the agency’s decision. Mr. Hansen now appeals, arguing that the Board improperly assigned him the burden of proving that he inadvertently ingested marijuana, that it erred in finding his position was subject to random drug testing, and that even if it was subject to such testing, he lacked required notice of that fact. ..  COURT DECISION:  (pdf)   (html)

♦         OPM ISSUED THE FOLLOWING COMPENSATION POLICY MEMORANDA :  (1)  Executive Order for 2019 Pay Schedules   (Including Pay Frozen at 2018 Levels)     (2)  Fiscal Year 2019 Prevailing Rate Pay Adjustments     (3)  2018 Annual Review of Special Rates (Results)


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