Since his inauguration in 2017, President Donald Trump has issued 193 executive orders. Hist latest, however, has alarmed federal employee advocates.
On Oct. 21, Executive Order 13957 was handed down from the Oval Office. It demands the reclassification of certain federal employees working in a “confidential, policy-determining, policy-making, or policy-advocating character” into a new category called “Schedule F.”
This category, it seems, would make it easier to hire and terminate these federal workers by removing certain civil service and due process protections. That’s at least what the National Treasury Employees Union (NTEU) is arguing in a lawsuit filed on Oct. 27.
NTEU further alleges in its lawsuit that Trump and his administration are exceeding the authority of the executive branch by attempting to circumvent the merit-based system used to evaluate applicants for government positions or remove current occupants from employment.
Critics Fear Order Could Allow Trump to ‘Purge’ Disloyal Employees
Almost as quickly as news of Trump’s executive order broke, critics feared it could amount to enabling the president to “purge” dissenting opinion in government – that is, opinion dissenting from Trump’s, personally.
The order prompted the voluntary resignation of Ronald Sanders, now-former chairman of the Federal Salary Council (FSC). Sanders wrote in a letter announcing his departure that he believed Trump’s order was “nothing more than a smokescreen” for the president to “require the political loyalty” of those who advise him.
“I simply cannot be part of an Administration that seeks to do so,” Sanders wrote, “to replace apolitical expertise with political obeisance. Career Federal employees are legally and duty- bound [sic] to be nonpartisan; they take an oath to preserve and protect our Constitution and the rule of law…not [sic] to be loyal to a particular President or Administration.”
Seek Legal Assistance from Pines Federal
If you are a federal employee and believe your employment rights were violated, reach out to our attorneys at Pines Federal for help. We advocate on behalf of federal workers when it comes to employment matters that uniquely affect them.
For more information about how we can help, please contact us online or call (888) 898-9902 today.