Hope you all are enjoying a nice autumn season wherever you live in the United States – or around the world.
I encourage you to take a look at this We the People petition below that was recently submitted to the White House:
Federal Employees have dealt with pay freezes and furloughs over the past few years. Giving federal employees an extra holiday on Dec. 26th, 2014 would be a good gesture to improve morale of the federal workforce. Some bases are forcing their employees to take leave or LWOP because of base shut-downs on this day. This is also consistent with past practice. President Obama provided a full-day Monday Dec. 24, 2012 and a half-day off on Thursday, Dec. 24, 2009. President George W. Bush provided a half-day holiday on Wednesday, Dec. 24, 2002, as well as several full days off the day before or after Christmas: Tuesday, December 24, 2001, Thursday, December 26, 2003, Tuesday, December 24, 2007, and Thursday, December 26, 2008. We urge President Obama to issue an executive order.
Please note – granting federal employees an extra Christmas holiday (be it Christmas Eve, the day after Christmas, etc.) is non- partisan. For example:
While most federal employees are joining their families around the Thanksgiving table today, tomorrow they’ll be looking ahead to the next day off, Christmas. Or could it be Christmas Eve? This year, Christmas falls on a Tuesday. It is, of course, already a federal holiday. Traditionally-but not always-the White House has given federal employees an extra day off when Christmas falls on a Tuesday or a Thursday. So it’s possible-but not certain–that President Bush will give federal employees the day off on Monday, Dec. 24. Since 1956, Christmas has fallen on a Tuesday six times. According to Office of Personnel Management records, here’s what happened each of those times:
- In 1956, President Eisenhower issued a memorandum on Nov. 23 that granted federal employees a full day off on Christmas Eve.
- In 1962, President Kennedy issued an executive order on Nov. 21 that granted federal employees a full day off on Christmas Eve.
- In 1973, President Nixon issued an executive order on Dec. 13 that granted federal employees a full day off on Christmas Eve.
- In 1979, President Jimmy Carter issued an executive order on Dec. 11 that granted federal employees a full day off on Christmas Eve.
- In 1984, President Reagan’s Office of Personnel Management Director, Donald Devine, issued a memorandum on Dec. 3 that made employees come to work on Christmas Eve but allowed supervisors to let workers leave up to three hours early.
- In 1990, President George H. W. Bush issued an executive order on Dec. 17 that gave federal workers a half day off on Christmas Eve.
While Reagan was a Grinch in 1984, he did give federal employees an extra holiday in 1986, when Christmas fell on a Thursday, giving workers the day off on Dec. 26. President Clinton did the same on Friday Dec. 26, 1997.
If the petition obtains 100,000 signatures in 30 days, there will be an official response from the White House.
As of October 25, 2014, the petition still has about 76,000 signatures to go before the November 19, 2014 deadline.
While it’s likely that President Obama will follow the tradition of previous years and grant the long weekend through an executive order despite the petition, federal employees cannot necessarily bank on that decision.
Please tell your fellow federal employees, your friends, your relatives, your alumni – whoever you know – to sign this petition.
Have a great weekend!!