National Treasury Employees Union Chapter 128 represents 1700 Customs and Border Protection employees in the National Capital Region.
Union Member Rights and Officer Responsibilities under the Civil Service Reform Act
The standards of conduct provisions of the Civil Service Reform Act of 1978 (CSRA), among other statutes, guarantee certain rights to Federal employees who exercise their statutory right to become a member of a union representing Federal employees. The provisions also impose certain responsibilities on officers of these unions to ensure union democracy, financial integrity, and transparency. The Office of Labor-Management Standards (OLMS) is the Federal agency with primary authority to enforce many standards of conduct provisions. If you need additional information, please contact OLMS at 1-866-4-USA-DOL. If you suspect a violation of these rights or responsibilities, you should refer to your union’s constitution and bylaws for information on union procedures, timeliness, and remedies. Complaints may be filed with OLMS after exhaustion of reasonable internal union remedies. See 29 C.F.R. §§ 452.135, 458.54.
Bill of Rights - Union members have (1) equal rights to participate in union activities; (2) freedom of speech and assembly; (3) voice in setting rates of dues, fees, and assessments; (4) protection of the right to sue, and (5) safeguards against improper discipline.
Collective Bargaining Agreements - Union members (and certain nonunion employees) have the right to receive or inspect copies of collective bargaining agreements.
Constitutions, Bylaws, and Reports - Unions are required to file an initial information report (Form LM-1), copies of constitutions and bylaws, and an annual financial report (Form LM-2/3/4) with OLMS. Unions must make these documents available to members and permit members to examine the records necessary to verify the financial reports for just cause. The documents are public information and copies of reports are available from OLMS and at
Officer Elections - Union members have the right to (1) nominate candidates for office; (2) run for office; (3) cast a secret ballot; and (4) protest the conduct of an election within the time limits set by the union’s constitution and/or bylaws.
Officer Removal - Local union members have the right to an adequate procedure for the removal of an elected officer guilty of serious misconduct.
Trusteeships - A union may not be placed in trusteeship by a parent body except for those reasons specified in the standards of conduct regulations.
Protection for Exercising CSRA Rights - A union or any of its officials may not fine, expel, or otherwise discipline a member for exercising any CSRA right.
Prohibition Against Violence - No one may use or threaten to use force or violence to interfere with a union member in the exercise of his or her CSRA rights.
As a bargaining unit employee, one of your most important protections is your Weingarten Rights:
Unless you can assure me that the discussion I am being asked to enter into will not lead to disciplinary action being taken against me, I ask that my steward or another union representative be present. Unless I have union representation, I respectfully choose not to participate in this discussion.
(This is my right under a Supreme Court decision called Weingarten.)