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AFGE logo.png
Full name American Federation of Government Employees
Founded August 18, 1932
Members 288,374 (2014) [1]
Affiliation AFL-CIO
Key people Jeffrey David Cox, president
Office location Washington, D.C.
Country United States
Website www.afge.org

The American Federation of Government Employees (AFGE) is an American labor union representing over 650,000 employees of the federal government, about 5,000 employees of the District of Columbia, and a few hundred private sector employees, mostly in and around federal facilities. AFGE is the largest union for civilian, non-postal federal employees and the largest union for District of Columbia employees who report directly to the mayor (i.e., outside of D.C. public schools). It is affiliated with the AFL-CIO.


AFGE was founded on October 17, 1932, by local unions loyal to the American Federation of Labor (AFL) and left the National Federation of Federal Employees (NFFE) when that union became independent of the AFL (NFFE has in recent years become part of the IAMAW, which is affiliated with the AFL-CIO).

AFGE is a federation of local unions, with each local maintaining autonomy through operating under local constitutions that comply with the AFGE National constitution ratified originally during its founding in 1932.

Federal employees' right to organize and bargain binding labor contracts was established in law by the Civil Service Reform Act of 1978, which AFGE helped to draft, and which states that collective bargaining in the federal sector is in the public interest while also barring the right to strike.

AFGE logo2.png

AFGE has played a crucial role in the struggle for women's rights and civil rights in the federal sector, and was one of the first unions to establish a Women's Department and a Fair Practices Department, with the officer over those Departments holding a seat on the NEC and with Women's and Fair Practices Coordinators elected in each AFGE District since the early 1970s.

AFGE's December 2009 court suits stopped aspects of the George W. Bush Administration's "National Security Personnel System" (for DOD) and MAXHR (for DHS), and AFGE also won recent changes to law that make the contracting out process more balanced in regard to federal employees' interests. In 2010, the Obama Administration issued an Executive Order for the Federal Government to focus on insourcing Federal jobs rather than outsourcing them overseas or to contractors.

AFGE's motto was established as "To Do For All That Which No One Can Do For Oneself".

AFGE's original emblem was a shield with the stars and stripes and the words "Justice, Fraternity, Progress" and the current emblem is three workers supporting a globe with a map of the United States and the words "Proud to Make America Work".

In June 2011, AFGE also won the historic largest single nationwide consolidated bargaining unit election of over 44,000 employees of the Transportation Security Administration, part of the Department of Homeland Security. AFGE is working for a change in law which will give them the same collective bargaining rights as other federal employees.


Jeffrey David Cox, National President of the AFGE, visited with U.S. Border Patrol agents in Arizona and Texas in 2014

AFGE is led by a National Executive Council, made up of National President Jeffrey David Cox, National Secretary Treasurer Eugene Hudson Jr and National Vice President, Women's and Fair Practices, Augusta Thomas, elected at a triennial National Convention, and 12 National Vice Presidents who oversee geographic districts and are elected at District caucuses. Previous National Presidents going back to the 1960s include Bobby L. Harnage, Sr., John N. Sturdivant, Kenneth Blaylock, Dennis Garrison, Clyde Weber, John Griner, and James Campbell. David Glass was the first AFGE National President. Early National Presidents include John A. Shaw, E. Claude Babcock, Charles I. Stengle, Cecil E. Custer and James B. Burns, and James G. Yaden. National Secretary-Treasurer Berniece Heffner served as Acting National President three times during transition periods due to retirement or death during her twenty years in office.

Labor relations in the federal sector are governed by the Federal Labor Relations Authority, an independent federal agency, and federal sector unions have recourse to binding arbitration and to the Federal Services Impasses Panel to resolve impasses which might lead to a strike in the private sector.

For AFGE, collective bargaining responsibilities are delegated to Councils of Locals at major agencies, including the Veteran's Administration, the Food Safety Inspection Service (USDA), HUD, the Social Security Administration, the Bureau of Prisons (DOJ), major components of the Department of Defense, such as the Air Force Materiel Command and the Marine Corps, and major components of the Department of Homeland Security, including the Border Patrol, Federal Protective Service, ICE, CIS, and the Coast Guard. The VA Council is the largest and currently accounts for over one third of the federation's membership.[citation needed] Alma L. Lee is the current president of the VA council.


All union membership in the federal sector is entirely voluntary, as the law does not allow for the "closed shop"; federal employees are barred from being candidates for partisan political office, and no dues money may be spent on partisan political campaigns.

AFGE has been growing in membership in recent years and now has more than 278,000 dues paying members in about 1100 AFGE Locals at more than 100 federal agencies. AFGE represents almost every type of worker in the American economy, blue collar and white collar, and covers a variety of professional, technical and support personnel—including nurses, doctors, machinists, electricians, aircraft mechanics, astronauts, scientists, safety inspectors, mine inspectors, food inspectors, environmental specialists, accountants and accounting technicians, fire fighters, police officers, correctional officers, cowboys, engineers, administrative assistants, janitors, radio and TV broadcasters, procurement specialists, quality assurance specialists, benefits administrators, housekeepers, lawyers and paralegals, boiler plant operators and many more.[2]

See also[edit]


External links[edit]

Original courtesy of Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/American_Federation_of_Government_Employees — Please support Wikipedia.
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9849 videos foundNext > 

AFGE and Me 2015

AFGE is on the scene representing you and me! This music video explains all of the careers covered by the American Federation of Government Employees.

SHUTDOWN: Picketing by American Federation of Government Employees

Picketing by American Federation of Government Employees Local 3854 protesting furloughs due to gov't shutdown.

AFGE DEFCON Orientation Video

The American Federation of Government Employees represents more than 250000 employees within the Department of Defense. This video provides an ...

Rally for a Government that Works for America

AFGE is the nation's largest federal employee union, representing 670000 federal and D.C. government workers. More than 500 AFGE members who were in ...

Ways & Means Hearing on SSA Field Office Service Delivery, Witold Skwierczynski Testimony

Witold Skwierczynski, President, National Council of SSA Field Operations Locals, American Federation of Government Employees, AFL-CIO, delivers his ...

Walking the Line: In Harm's Way

Like most law enforcement officers, Border Patrol agents don't know what's in store for them when they head out to work each day. But for agents stationed along ...

The Impact of Government Shutdown

J. David Cox Sr., American Federation of Government Employees (AFGE) joins Thom. Two years after the last one - a new government shutdown is looming on ...

Full Show 9/24/15: Mainstream Media Still Not Feeling the Bern

Thom discusses the Pope's congressional address with Americans United For Separation of Church & State's Rob Boston, the true cost of another government ...

AFGE Leg Con 2013 Rally

About 1500 union activists from the American Federation of Government Employees and the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees ...

AFGE Makes History with 300,000 Members!

The American Federation of Government Employees has reached 300000 active members for the first time in modern history, an historic milestone that caps 24 ...

9849 videos foundNext > 

2606 news items

PR Newswire (press release)

PR Newswire (press release)
Thu, 29 Oct 2015 08:55:53 -0700

American Federation of Government Employees National President J. David Cox Sr. praised passage of the Wounded Warriors Federal Leave Act, which will give veterans an additional 104 hours of sick leave to treat their service-connected issues during .

PR Newswire (press release)

PR Newswire (press release)
Fri, 30 Oct 2015 05:45:00 -0700

The two-year budget deal approved by Congress will allow federal employees to continue providing valuable services to the American public without the threat of budget cuts looming over their heads, American Federation of Government Employees National ...

Washington Post

Washington Post
Tue, 24 Nov 2015 15:26:41 -0800

J. David Cox Sr., president of the American Federation of Government Employees, said the survey might reflect more on Congress than the VA, where his union represents much of the staff. The VA is “still the no. 1 health care delivery system in the ...


Tue, 24 Nov 2015 06:00:20 -0800

He worked here 22 years as a respiratory therapist and he was the president of AFGE -- American Federation of Government Employees.” Mrs. Thomas says her husband's union members kept coming to him, saying, “we don't have any opportunities.
National Legal and Policy Center
Wed, 25 Nov 2015 14:30:00 -0800

On October 23, federal prosecutors announced the indictment of Davis, ex-president of American Federation of Government Employees Local 1119, in U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York on one count of wire fraud and two counts of ...
National Legal and Policy Center
Wed, 25 Nov 2015 09:48:45 -0800

For Stephanie Hicks, the bill for more than a half-decade of thefts has come due. Last Tuesday, November 17, Hicks, former president of American Federation of Government Employees Local 2207, was sentenced in U.S. District Court for the Northern ...

Washington Post

Washington Post
Sun, 22 Nov 2015 14:30:00 -0800

SSA would have violated its contract with the American Federation of Government Employees (AFGE) had it withheld bonuses from 34 employees who are union members. “We are currently in the process of reviewing our award policies. Any changes to the ...

PR Newswire (press release)

PR Newswire (press release)
Mon, 16 Nov 2015 10:33:45 -0800

In a new video from the American Federation of Government Employees, Diane says she's worried that she may lose her home due to federal budget cuts that have forced HUD to eliminate vouchers for 85,000 people since 2013. "If I lose my Section 8 ...

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