Union says Pathways Program retains hiring 'circumvention'

Thursday - 10/6/2011, 6:56pm EDT

By Jolie Lee
Federal News Radio

The National Treasury Employees Union says the program that replaced the Federal Career Internship Program does not do enough to level competition in the federal hiring system.

The Pathways Program is a three-track system that replaced FCIP in March. The three tracks are for current students, recent graduates and the Presidential Management Fellowship.

FCIP had been criticized by federal unions, who contend that agencies have used it to circumvent rules mandating merit selection procedures and hiring preferences for military veterans.

But Pathways doesn't do enough to make federal hiring more fair.

NTEU President Colleen Kelley said she found it "perplexing that the federal government would seek out and prefer applicants with little or no relevant experience over those with proven success in their fields to perform the important work of the federal government," according to a letter Kelley submitted this week to the Office of Personnel Management.

Kelley said the lack of a cap on the number of hires under the program is "the single most disappointing aspect" of Pathways.

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