PAD 525 WEEK 6 DISCUSSIONs Employment Law

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WEEK 6 DISCUSSION 1

“Employment Law.” Please respond to the following:

Analyze Garcetti v. Ceballos, to determine whether or not the Pickering balancing test is applicable to this case and state why or why not. 

Many states are facing budget constraints that are shining a light on public employees’ pay and benefits, which have led to debates about state employees’ collective bargaining rights. From a public administrator perspective, speculate to the short-term and long-term effects if limited collective bargaining is adopted. Hint: Look at all the stakeholders involved.

“Employment Law.” Please respond to the following:

Analyze Garcetti v. Ceballos, to determine whether or not the Pickering balancing test is applicable to this case and state why or why not. 

Many states are facing budget constraints that are shining a light on public employees’ pay and benefits, which have led to debates about state employees’ collective bargaining rights. From a public administrator perspective, speculate to the short-term and long-term effects if limited collective bargaining is adopted. Hint: Look at all the stakeholders involved.

 

This law governs the rights and duties between workers and their employers. It is also referred to as the labor law. This rule ensures that the rights of employees are protected by fair treatment, and also protects the interests of the employers as well. These laws also deal with the minimum wage, overtime pay, discrimination at the workplace among others.

In the case of Garcetti v. Ceballos, the Pickering balancing test is very much applicable. The test is applied when the interests of a public employer need to balance with the right of the employee to free speech. There are a number of considerations that have to be made which include the following: whether the individual demonstrated that his/her speech addresses a matter or matters of public concern and interest. Whether the individual demonstrated that his/her speech was significant or motivating factor in the decision of the employer. If the court balanced the individual’s interest as regards commenting on matters of public interest and the interest of the public employer in promoting the efficiency of public service. An individual’s First Amendment rights have to be respected in this process.

In this case (Garcetti v. Ceballos), the Supreme Court dealt with a challenge of the First Amendment of a deputy district attorney. The attorney had alleged receiving retaliatory actions from his employer when he brought to attention concerns regarding potential misconduct by the police to his supervisors through a memorandum. The focus was on whether his speech was made on the official duties of the district attorney whereby the powers of the employer were expanded over his speech. It was found out that the memo was done on official capacity; it was found that Ceballo was not raising the concerns as a citizen on matters of public concern and therefore was not protected by the First Amendment. The Pickering test applies here because he was speaking on official job capacity.

Collective bargaining

Collective bargaining is made up of negations involving the employer and a group of employees in order to determine employment conditions. It allows employees to join a trade union that bargains on their behalf. It is important that these rights are not limited as they may have both long-term and short term effects. The short-term effects of limiting this rights is that employers will be able to control the amount pay and benefits offered to employees which means that they will be able to to offset their budgets. Long-term effects however, include loss of arbitration as a solution to employee upheavals, increased strikes from employees and a lot of court cases due to violation of the employee rights.

 

Feda, M. (2016). Labor and Employment. Illinois State Bar Association. Retrieved 7 November 2016, fromhttps://www.isba.org/sections/laboremploymentlaw/newsletter/2011/12/publicemployeesandfreespeech

Week 6 Discussion 2

 “Tort Law.” Please respond to the following: 

Examine the Federal Tort Claims Acts (FTCA). Discuss whether these laws reduce the risk to citizens or does it serve a compelling state interest. Analyze Dolan v. United States Postal Service. 

As a public administrator, discuss which view you find more persuasive – that sovereign immunity should be narrowly or broadly construed. State why with examples or evidence to support your position.

“Tort Law.” Please respond to the following:

Examine the Federal Tort Claims Acts (FTCA). Discuss whether these laws reduce the risk to citizens or does it serve a compelling state interest. Analyze Dolan v. United States Postal Service. 

As a public administrator, discuss which view you find more persuasive – that sovereign immunity should be narrowly or broadly construed. State why with examples or evidence to support your position.

Tort Law

I think that the Federal Tort Claims Act (FTCA) does not reduce the risk to citizens but serves a compelling state interest. This is evidenced by the case of Dolan v. United States Postal Service. In this case, the petitioner Barbara Dolan had sustained serious injuries as a result of tripping over a stack of letters, packages and other mail that had been negligently left  by an employee of the USPS at her home. She sued the federal government and the postal service for the injuries under the Federal Tort Claims Act. Her case was dismissed by the district court as well as by the Supreme Court who cited that her claim was not covered or included by the law as it was under the statutory exception to the FTCA. According to the exception, actions caused by “negligent transmission” of mail by their employees cannot be compensated.

The question here is whether the exception for “negligent transmission” of mail by employees of the postal service applies to claims of physical harm to individuals as a result of employee negligence in delivering mail, or is it limited to claims of mail damaged by negligence of employees (Feda, 2016). These laws therefore do not reduce the risks to citizens but only serves their interests. By not clearly defining what the “negligent transmission” entailed, the state refused to compensate Dolan for her injuries that were as a result of negligence by the state’s employees. So the state was only protecting their own interests due to lack of clarity on the law.

Sovereign immunity

I think that sovereign immunity should be broadly interpreted. This doctrine holds that the UNITED States government cannot be sued without its consent (Feda, 2016). In this regard, Congress passed the law of FTCA to forego the powerful protection shielding the government from liability and enable the states to be liable for monetary damages resulting from harm of individuals by federal employees. Some exceptions were made to this law such that there are some cases where the government will not be liable especially in areas where the government is very vulnerable.

Sovereign immunity needs to be broadly interpreted to that it is well understood and clear to the areas where individuals are able to seek for damages and in the cases where they cannot. This means that certain sections such the “negligent transmission” needs to be clearly indicated as to what it means and what the citizens are protected from. This will also protect citizens from injuries caused by federal employees due to their negligence as in the case of Dolan.

References

 

Dolan v. United States Postal Service (04-848). (2016). LII / Legal Information Institute. Retrieved 7 November 2016, fromhttps://www.law.cornell.edu/supct/cert/04-848

Feda, M. (2016). Labor and Employment. Illinois State Bar Association. Retrieved 7 November 2016, fromhttps://www.isba.org/sections/laboremploymentlaw/newsletter/2011/12/publicemployeesandfreespeech




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