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Resolutions & Amendments

37th International Convention - Chicago, IL (2006)

Civil Service Reform

Resolution No. 27
37th International Convention
August 7-11, 2006
Chicago, IL

Civil service laws serve an important purpose in protecting the public and public employees from corrupt government by regulating practices for appointment, testing and selection, discipline, layoff and various other safeguards designed to eliminate political patronage; and

Many affiliates of AFSCME have attempted to proactively remedy perceived inefficiencies in civil service processes that may hamper flexibility through the development of joint high-performance workplaces, joint workforce development programs and the quality services initiatives and have not been consulted in any meaningful way for input in developing recommended revisions proffered by various states; and

State, federal and municipal governments have historically pre-positioned themselves to prevail in contract negotiations by securing revisions to civil service laws and subsequently using the changed law to influence neutral mediators and fact-finders that the changes they seek in bargaining should be awarded since the changes have been codified; and

Civil service laws have been targeted by conservative administrations in Florida and Ohio as undermining the government's ability to function effectively; and

The absence of meaningful civil service protections allows an environment that can be dominated by a particular political influence to include hiring processes, advancement and retention of employment, and privatization; and

Civil service laws provide protections against unsupported job loss; and

Unsupported loss of civil service jobs paves the way for privateers to profit from the public's need for services; and
Civil service reform initiatives in Florida and Ohio have been based on recommendations from private sector corporations, some of which stand to directly benefit from manipulation of government.

That AFSCME support attempts to revise civil service regulations to the extent that changes truly improve civil service, but reject attempts to reform civil service laws in a way that interferes with the basic protections that prevent political patronage, coercion and influence in public service.
SUBMITTED BY: Ronald C. Alexander, President and Delegate
Kathy Stewart, Secretary/Treasurer and Delegate