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SYS-CON MEDIA Authors: Mike Kavis, Elizabeth White, John Treadway, SmartBear Blog, Liz McMillan

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Head of largest federal employee union calls for 4% pay raise in 2015

AFGE president says President Obama must send strong show of support for federal workforce

WASHINGTON, Feb. 25, 2014 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- American Federation of Government Employees National President J. David Cox Sr. today called on President Obama to provide federal employees with a 4% pay raise next year.

AFGE

Obama's fiscal 2015 budget, to be unveiled next week, will propose a 1% across-the-board pay raise for federal employees and members of the military. But that is a pitiful amount that does little to help federal workers recover from a three-year pay freeze, higher retirement contributions and the loss of pay due to sequestration-related furloughs last year, Cox said.

"A 4 percent pay raise is a modest and affordable increase that will help employees keep up with rising living costs, including higher retirement and healthcare expenses," Cox said.

Wages for federal employees have gone up just 3 percent since 2010, while prices have risen 9 percent – not counting additional out-of-pocket expenses for sequestration-related furloughs, retirement contributions and healthcare premiums. In salary alone, federal employees are more than 6 percent worse off under President Obama.

Federal employees had their pay frozen for three consecutive years, and new workers are being forced to pay substantially more toward their retirement. Without counting the losses due to sequestration furloughs, these cuts amount to $120 billion in lower wages and benefits for federal employees during the next decade.

"The president must send a strong message that inflicting pain on federal employees was a miserable failure. The administration punished federal workers in order to endear itself to those who despise the federal workforce, and it didn't work," Cox said. "If the president truly wants to put an end to austerity and the decline of the middle class, there is no better place to start than with his own employees."

The American Federation of Government Employees (AFGE) is the largest federal employee union, representing 670,000 workers in the federal government and the government of the District of Columbia.
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SOURCE American Federation of Government Employees

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