Civil Servants in a Political Age
Debate season is in full swing as the races for the Republican and Democratic nominees for the 2016 presidential election begin to kick into high gear.
However, the spoils system began to show its ineffectiveness, especially in changes in administration, when workers with experience and institutional knowledge were routinely shown the door in favor of newcomers affiliated with the new president. The United States began to institute serious civil service reform, highlighted by the Pendleton Act of 1883, which strove to establish a professional body of federal employees whose positions were achieved through competency, not affiliation. This ethos has stuck with the civil service, and in the current day the overwhelming majority of government employees are not direct appointees of the president.
Even with that in mind, many federal employees get concerned about their career when a new administration takes office. With President Obama term-limited, the 2016 election will result in a new administration, whether Democrat or Republican. While the new administration may differ in substantive ways (policy goals, budget allocations) the job of the vast majority of federal employees will remain the same, especially the responsibilities and liabilities of individual jobs.
Most employees can expect to continue performing their duties as they always have, regardless of the administration. However, federal employees in “high-profile” agencies may see an increase in administrative or Congressional oversight. Agencies that have been beset by scandals during the Obama administration (IRS, VA, Secret Service and others) may find themselves under the close scrutiny of a new administration determined not to allow the same mistakes to happen, or driven to show the public that it will not be “business as usual” for these agencies under a new president. In these instances, employees of those agencies, especially those higher up the chain of command, may be forced to testify before Congress or undergo administrative investigations.
Regardless of whether a change in administration will ever affect your job as a federal employee, it is extremely important to protect your career from the real dangers: administrative complaints, investigations, and job-related civil lawsuits. The best way to do this is with a professional liability insurance (PLI) policy from Federal Employee Defense Services (FEDS), which protects you in these instances with top-quality federal employment attorneys ready to defend you through the action. With coverage up to $1 million in legal fees and indemnification, getting a FEDS policy for only $290 annually is a no-brainer. To find out more about FEDS, call 866.955.FEDS or visit fedsprotection.com today.
FEDS $1,000,000 policy is available for $290 per year. All federal managers are eligible for reimbursement up to half the cost of this insurance for a net premium of $145 annually. You can enroll over the phone M-F 8:30 am – 6pm at 866.955.FEDS or anytime at fedsprotection.com.
FEDS provides professional liability insurance for the entire federal management community. For information on your specific exposures, how professional liability insurance protects you, or how the FEDS program differs from other insurance programs, visit us at fedsprotection.com.
Posted in Manager Matters