(April 13, 2011)
The Unified Court System (UCS) has formally notified court employee unions, including CSEA, of its intent to lay off approximately 400-500 employees, with the possibility of thousands of other employees being displaced. OCA offices will be laying off 50-70 employees (as part of that total number). UCS asserts that these layoffs are made necessary by a budget cut of $70 million in UCS's proposed budget for this fiscal year. All of the unions representing court employees met with UCS on Monday, April 11th in New York City. At this point, UCS has not yet determined what positions will be abolished, much less which employees will be affected.
A number of our members have asked CSEA to negotiate some agreement with UCS whereby all members would agree to a furlough or a lag payroll as a way to make the layoffs unnecessary. In our judgment, that is not possible. UCS has indicated that it would not consider either a lag or furlough unless all eleven unions agreed to it and nine of the unions have already vetoed the idea. Therefore, we are unable even to entertain the idea of either option.
It is important to note that CSEA is not implementing layoffs. It is being done by the Unified Court System and it is up to that system to answer employee questions and explain the process to affected employees. CSEA Local representatives are available to double check responses from management if a member has any questions. Employee inquiries should first be directed to their personnel office or other appropriate management operation for such information.
CSEA Local Presidents met today in Albany to review the legal procedures concerning the layoff process and methods of displacement. Until UCS publishes their plan of implementing layoffs, we do not have all the specifics, but we can provide the following tentative timeline:
OCA Employee (Administrative Offices) Layoffs
All Other Layoffs in UCS
CSEA will continue to monitor the situation and update the membership through the Local Presidents and the web site.