Q: Why was this Grievance filed?
A: The NAGE VA Council filed a grievance alleging that the VA was violating the Collective Bargaining Agreement, and other laws, rules, and regulations, by failing to pay Environmental Differential Pay (EDP) to certain categories of bargaining unit employees.
Q: Which groups of employees were covered by this Grievance?
A: The grievance was filed on behalf of Housekeeping Aids, Laborers, Laundry Equipment Mechanics, and Laundry Workers who were bargaining unit employees at facilities in which the NAGE VA Council was the exclusive representative.
Q: What types of duties were alleged to require EDP?
A: The grievance alleged that these categories of employees were performing work with, or in close proximity to, objects, surfaces, and/or materials infected with bloodborne pathogens, urine, feces, sharps (e.g., needles, scissors, syringes), other micro-organisms, and/or biohazardous waste which when introduced into the body are likely to cause serious disease or fatality, or injury.
Q: Was a decision issued by a court or arbitrator in this case?
A: No. The Parties resolved this case with a mutually agreed upon settlement which was reached by each side factoring in the various litigation risks.
Q: How much money will I be receiving?
A: Each employee will be receiving a share of the settlement based upon how long they were in an impacted position, how many hours they worked, and other similar factors. The final calculations are not yet available because the Union is waiting on additional data from the Agency.
Q: Who will be sending me my portion of the settlement?
A: NAGE has hired Class Action Implementation Group (CAIG) to distribute the settlement. A representative from CAIG will be in touch with you in the coming months so that payments can be made.
Q: Do I have to pay taxes on my portion of the settlement?
A: Yes. Payments from this settlement are legally classified as wages and are taxable. CAIG will provide detailed payment breakdowns and a tax explanation upon the commencement of the distribution phase.
Q: Will I be receiving EDP pay moving forward?
A: As part of the settlement, the Agency has agreed to review its practices and policies as it relates to EDP payment for these groups of employees and implement certain changes no later than October 1, 2023. If the Union does not believe that the new policy is legal it will file a new Grievance.