I’ve been accused of many things, gotten in trouble at whatever job I had at the time, taken to state and even federal courts. Do I fear being in trouble? Well I do a little, but I’ve taken the bull by the horns several times and a few times by its balls.
To my surprise, I’m in trouble at work for speaking my mind — my rights under the First Amendment of the US Constitution (possible retribution for me taking them to court for out-of-title violation
“PERSONNEL SERVICES BULETINS (PSBs)
Subject: Out-of-Title Work
Supersedes: Personnel Services Bulletin No. 100-3
Source: Civil Service Law, Sections 61 and 100
Date: April 9, 1998
Out-of-title work is defined as assignment to duties which are substantially different from those appropriate to the employee’s title. Assignment to out-of-title work is prohibited by Section 60 of the Civil Service Law. In addition, many collective bargaining agreements list assignment to outof-title and out-of-level work as a grievable matter. Therefore, agencies should take all the necessary steps to ensure that employees are performing tasks consistent with their current civil service titles and assignment levels.”
of the union contract).
“Among other cherished values, the First Amendment protects freedom of speech. The U.S. Supreme Court often has struggled to determine what exactly constitutes protected speech. The following are examples of speech, both direct (words) and symbolic (actions), that the Court has decided are either entitled to First Amendment protections, or not.
The First Amendment states, in relevant part, that:
‘Congress shall make no law… abridging freedom of speech.'”
As a union member and almost-elected officer, I know my rights and I’d be using my Weingarten Rights (420 U.S. 251 (1975))
“If this discussion could in any way lead to my being disciplined or terminated. I respectfully request that my union representative, officer, or shop steward be present at this meeting. Without representation, I choose not to participate in this discussion.” — text usually read to management when in risk of discipline or termination
“In 1975 the United States Supreme Court, in the case of NLRB v. J. Weingarten, Inc., 420 U.S. 251 (1975), upheld a National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) decision that employees have a right to union representation at investigatory interviews. These rights have become known as the Weingarten Rights.
During an investigatory interview, the Supreme Court ruled that the following rules apply:
Rule 1: The employee must make a clear request for union representation before or during the interview. The employee cannot be punished for making this request.
Rule 2: After the employee makes the request, the employer must choose from among three options:
- grant the request and delay questioning until the union representative arrives and (prior to the interview continuing) the representative has a chance to consult privately with the employee;
- deny the request and end the interview immediately; or
- give the employee a clear choice between having the interview without representation, or ending the interview.
Rule 3: If the employer denies the request for union representation, and continues to ask questions, it commits an unfair labor practice and the employee has a right to refuse to answer. The employer may not discipline the employee for such a refusal.
In July 2000, the NLRB under the Clinton administration extended the Weingarten Rights to employees at nonunionized workplaces. On June 15, 2004, the NLRB under the George W. Bush administration effectively reversed the previous ruling by a three to two vote.”
if the powers-that-be want to fuck me up, damaging my credibility during my upcoming court day against them — how convenient.
Surprisingly two weeks have passed and no one’s said anything to me face to face regarding this issue. Most people simply blow hot air while enjoying the sound of their own voices.