Disciplinary action follows employee’s refusal to report to a new workstation

Disciplinary action follows employee’s refusal to report to a new workstation
New York City Human Resources Administration v Griffin, OATH Index # 941/12

An employee of the City of New York was reassigned* to a new location. She, however, continued to report to her old work location and then stopped reporting to work altogether.

This resulted in the individual's being served with disciplinary charges alleging that she had refused to report to her assigned workplace, insubordination and AWOL.

Rejecting the employee’s arguments in defense of her actions, including her claim that she wanted a reassignment to another location closer to her home, OATH Administrative Law Judge Kevin F. Casey found the employee guilty of the charges filed against her.

Judge Casey recommended that the individual’s employment be terminated.  

*N.B. Although the decision characterizes the movement of the individual from one workstation to a different workstation within the same agency as a “transfer,” it technically constituted a “reassignment.” The term "transfer" is used to describe a change of employment where the employee leaves the jurisdiction of one appointing authority and enters the jurisdiction of another, different, appointing authority. In contrast, the term "reassignment" is used to describe personnel change by the appointing authority within the same department or agency.

Except where there is a "transfer of function," transfers typically required the approval of both appointing authorities and the consent of the individual to be transferred [see Civil Service Law §70.1]. In contrast, a "reassignment" may be made without the agreement or consent of the employee concerned unless otherwise required by a collective bargaining agreement.

The decision is posted on the Internet at: