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House Committee Rebukes FLRA Chair for Anti-Union Bias

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By AFSCME Staff Explore the Issues Workers' Rights

The head of the Federal Labor Relations Authority (FLRA), Colleen Duffy Kiko, faced strong criticism this week at a hearing of the House Subcommittee on Government Operations. Kiko was rebuked for anti-union bias in her management of the agency, which enforces and interprets the rights of federal employees to join unions and bargain collectively.

The subcommittee chairman, Virginia Rep. Gerald E. Connolly, said Kiko’s anti-union bias “seems to be present, if not extreme.”

He went on to say, “The agency she leads has not prosecuted a single violation since 2017, and her mismanagement has demoralized and dismantled the capacity of the principal enforcement agency of federal service law.”

In addition, Kiko was rebuked for “drafting rogue, unfounded legal opinions that ignored congressional intent and Department of Justice precedent,” according to a subcommittee press release.

The release also noted, “Republican subcommittee members agreed with some of the concerns of Democrats, noting that the right to organize and collectively bargain is a foundational right of federal employees.”

The FLRA was created in 1978 with passage of the Federal Service Labor Management Relations statute, which codified collective bargaining rights for federal workers. The subcommittee hearing, held Tuesday, focused attention on the policies and management of the FLRA under the Trump administration, which has been hostile to federal employee unions and their collective bargaining rights.