In U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, 56 FLRA No. 117 (2000), the Authority concluded that the Respondent violated section 7116(a)(1) of the Statute by interrogating a Union steward concerning a unit employee's confidential statements to the steward, and by presenting the steward with a settlement agreement requiring him to refrain from engaging in particular types of protected activity. The Authority held that the Respondent's duty to investigate an equal employment opportunity (EEO) complaint by a supervisor against the steward did not permit the Respondent to conduct the investigation in a manner that was inconsistent with the Statute. As remedies, the Authority directed the Respondent to: post a notice wherever employees of the local bargaining unit are employed; direct the highest management official at the location where the violations occurred to sign the notice; and distribute copies of the notice to its EEO investigators and the head of its EEO program. The Authority denied the General Counsel's request that the head of the Respondent's nationwide EEO program be directed to sign the notice.
In Dep't of the Air Force, 315th Airlift Wing, Charleston Air Force Base, Charleston, S.C., 57 FLRA 80 (2001) (Chairman Cabaniss dissenting), the Authority adopted an Administrative Law Judge's (ALJ) decision finding that an Agency's suspension of a Union representative for union activity violated ß 7116(a)(1) and (2) of the Statute. The Agency had suspended the representative because, during a dispute as to whether a bargaining unit employee was entitled to representation at a meeting, the representative had assumed an intimidating posture so close to a supervisor that there had been some touching. The Authority rejected a per se rule that any touching constitutes "flagrant misconduct," and based upon its consideration of the facts, concluded that no "flagrant misconduct" occurred. In so concluding, the Authority adopted the ALJ's findings that the incident occurred outside the presence of nonsupervisory employees, was impulsive, and was somewhat provoked by the supervisor. Chairman Cabaniss, in dissent, would have found that the representative's conduct constituted "flagrant misconduct" or, as an assault and battery, was otherwise outside the boundaries of protected activity, and was thus unprotected by the Statute. (Judicial review pending in the D.C. Circuit.)
In Federal Bureau of Prisons, Office of Internal Affairs, Washington, D.C. and Federal Bureau of Prisons, Federal Correctional Institution Englewood, Littleton, Colorado, 53 FLRA No. 137, the Authority found that the Office of Internal Affairs did not commit an unfair labor practice by its investigation of an alleged assault following a Union meeting, but that the Federal Correctional Institution did commit an unfair labor practice by suspending the Union President for walking out of a counseling meeting.