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NTEU Prevails in Two Cases Involving Sick Leave and Doctors’ Notes

CBP cannot require a doctor’s note for a 2-hour sick leave absence in an employee’s regular shift simply because they were given an overtime assignment, according to two different arbitrators who recently ruled in NTEU’s favor.

The two grievances were filed by NTEU Chapter 132 in Baltimore, where CBPOs had taken the sick leave for the remainder of their regular shifts and then did not work the overtime. The agency lost the first case and then tried again with a new argument, also unsuccessfully. These two decisions effectively put all of CBP on notice that the agency’s demands for doctors’ notes were becoming excessive and unnecessary. Or as the arbitrator in the second case said explicitly: The request for a doctors’ note for sick leave in these circumstances is an invasion of the employee’s privacy.

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