UPS management’s compliance with the law protecting workers serving in the military has had its ups and downs. The law is the Uniformed Services Employment and Reemployment Rights Act (USERRA) of 1994. It offers a number of protections, such as the mandate that employers continue to provide medical coverage and that they contribute to pension plans for the period of leave.
USERRA also says that employers must make employees whole upon their return to work in terms of seniority rights they would have exercised during their period of leave.
Cases have come to light showing that UPS management sometimes violates the intent of the law. In a Florida case, management has refused to let an employee exercise his proper seniority rights (which would have put him in the feeder classification). They have also stonewalled on pension credits.
In a Virginia case, management has taken an opposite track on seniority rights – claiming that an employee currently on leave has the right to bid during semi-annual bids, even though he will continue to be on leave and not available to actually fill positions. Neither the USERRA law or the contract provide for this, with USERRA stating that employees can exercise their seniority rights upon return to work.
There have also been reports of UPS delaying payment of pension contributions to pension funds.
If you have information on how UPS is mis-applying the USERRA law, please contact TDU. If you need information on USERRA rights, go to the fact sheet on the TDU website or to www.esgr.com">http://www.esgr.com">www.esgr.com