I work for a County government with a very weak employee union to defend us.
My job requires that I keep certain training/job certificates current. Normally, and as in the past my employer has sent me and other employees to recertification classes so that I/we remain current and be able to fulfill my job requirements.
Now, they have decided that I no longer need to go to those recertification courses, mainly due to the expense involved and manpower shortages.
But. Here is the problem.
Lesser tenured employees, even part-time and probation employees are being sent to the recertification courses on the County’s dime while I am being left out.
We have heard through the grapevine there may be upcoming lay-offs this next year. As such, it is supposed to be on a seniority basis. The exception to this is; that if the county can show the lesser tenured employee has special skills that need to be retained, they can skip.
My concern is this. They set up the scenario to where i will have lesser training/skills, and more likely to be the one they try to lay-off if that should occur.
Do I have any protection outside of the union process? And what can I do, to help an Attorney win my case, should I have a case to pursue?
1 Answer from Attorneys
You got to use the union process (see your MOU) first. Any lawsuit will just be a waste of time and money before that as it will be dismissed for failing to do so. About a case, if you're over 40 there COULD be something here. I would need to check the MOU to know.
In the meantime, you're better off taking the courses on your own dime. There are tax implications for doing so. As this is public and free, I'm not addressing it here.