The National Association of Government Employees (NAGE), which represents more than 100,000 employees nationwide, including thousands of employees at the United States Department of Veterans Affairs (VA), won an $8.4 million settlement for certain current and former housekeeping employees who were exposed to environmental hazards during their employment with the VA.
The settlement results from a national-level Grievance NAGE filed asserting that the VA violated applicable laws and regulations by failing to give Environmental Differential Pay to pay housekeeping employees who were exposed to various hazards through their employment. The Grievance alleged that thousands of employees were entitled to premium pay based on their exposure to specific hazards such as blood, feces, and other hazardous medical waste.
“I commend the Biden administration and the VA for doing the right thing and agreeing to resolve this matter while avoiding unnecessary litigation,” said NAGE National President David J. Holway. “The covered employees will at last receive the long overdue pay they deserve due to the hazardous work they perform in service to our nation’s veterans. I also want to thank the legal team for their hard work in getting this matter to a resolution for NAGE members – this is a great victory!”
The majority of the settlement’s proceeds will be distributed to covered individuals by the Class Action Implementation Group (CAIG), a company that administers class action claims. Who is eligible for payment and to what amounts shall be determined based on various factors and data that NAGE is still in the process of receiving from the VA. Once all necessary information is received, CAIG will begin contacting covered individuals.
The distribution process is expected to take several months. Updates will be published on the Settlement Updates page of this site. See the Settlement F.A.Q. for answers to frequently asked questions about the settlement and distribution process.
Employees who believe they may be covered by this settlement may register at the secure CAIG portal.
NAGE was represented in this grievance by its in-house counsel and the law firm Snider & Associates, LLC, which has resolved many similar cases against federal government agencies nationwide.