April 19, 2007 – In the 2004 National Defense Authorization Act, under the guise of national security, Congress granted the Department of Defense (DoD) the authority to establish a new human resources system and to modify certain labor relations provisions for federal employees under what is called the National Security Personnel System (NSPS).
NSPS is an extreme departure from the merit system principles that have been standard in the federal government for decades upon decades. Contrary to Congressional intent, NSPS strips federal employees of their right to collectively bargain, eliminates any semblance of a fair appeals process, and shifts workers to a pay system that is entirely subjective and more likely to bring down employee morale than to achieve its stated purpose of improving employee performance.
Throughout history, Defense workers have always stood ready to ensure that our military receives the best support possible to accomplish their mission. These compromising reforms will do nothing to enhance national security and will only prove to demoralize federal employees, many of whom wore the uniform of our country and defended the very freedoms that DoD is prepared to take away.
Moreover, DoD has consistently understated what it will cost to implement NSPS. Many have estimated that the costs will be three to seven billion dollars. With our nation in the midst of a global war against terrorism, this is not the time to implement an ill-conceived personnel reform that will take away much needed resources from our men and women in uniform as they defend our nation.
It is time for Congress to repeal NSPS. I urge you to support this action to restore fairness and dignity to the federal workforce. I look forward to your response.
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