NRP Class Action: Representing Workers Affected by the USPS National Reassessment Process
McConnell v. U.S. Postal Service, EEOC Case No. 520-2008-00053X
The National Reassessment Process (NRP) is a USPS program that reviews all injured-on-duty employees serving in limited duty and/or rehabilitation positions. The NRP has been rolled out in most USPS districts across the nation.
In 2006, Sandra McConnell was reviewed under the NRP in the USPS Western New York District. Ms. McConnell had been working in a rehabilitation modified carrier position for over eight years. However, after the NRP review, Ms. McConnell was stripped of her modified position and ordered to go home with "no work available."
Ms. McConnell filed a class action discrimination complaint under the Rehabilitation Act on behalf of all USPS workers affected by the NRP. The disability discrimination class action was certified by the EEOC Administrative Judge in 2008. After the USPS appealed that decision, the EEOC again granted certification of the class action in 2010. To view the class certification
notice click here.
You are already a member of the McConnell class if: You are or were a permanent rehabilitation or limited duty employee of the Postal Service who was subjected to the NRP from May 5, 2006 through July 1, 2011.
If you meet the criteria to be a member of the class, you are not required to do anything at this time in order to remain a part of the class.
What You Should Do
If you are affected by the NRP, you should do the following:
- Fill out the NRP Class Action Questionnaire by clicking here
- With respect to the claims covered in the class definition, you do not need to do anything now to preserve your right to make a claim later. If you have any claims that may not be covered by the class definition, these claims must be processed by you with an EEO Counselor within 45 days of the action complained of.
Current Status of the Case
Initial Decision Finds NRP Discriminated Against Class
The Administrative Judge recently issued a favorable decision in favor of the class on most of the claims in the case. This means that the Administrative Judge ruled in favor of the class and against the USPS. Specifically, the Administrative Judge decided that the NRP violated the Rehabilitation Act on four claims: (1) Wrongful Disclosure of Medical Information—USPS failed to require redaction of an employee’s medical information as part of the NRP; (2) Failure to Provide a Reasonable Accommodation—USPS sent employees home with no-work available or partial no-work available determinations, or sent employees to new assignments as part of the NRP; (3) Disparate Treatment of Injured on Duty Employees—USPS targeted employees and sought to compel retirements under the NRP; (4) Harassment—USPS created a hostile work environment under the NRP.
USPS has indicated that it will appeal the Administrative Judge’s decision. We do not know how long it will take for the appeal to be decided. The claim process for individual class members will not begin until after the appeal process is completed. It is anticipated that the appeal process may take at least one year.
It is very important to emphasize that the Judge's decision does not provide any guarantee that any particular class member will obtain personal relief. Instead, the order finds in favor of several class-wide claims, and individual class members will be able to file personal claims in the future (if the Judge's decision is upheld on appeal). Also, even if the Judge's decision is upheld on appeal, the Agency may still attempt to prove that individual class members were not personally treated improperly or personally harmed under the NRP.
We will continue to update this website with information on the status of the case, and as always, we appreciate your patience with this legal process.
Check for updates on the case status here.