Nebraska Association
of Public Employees

Scottsbluff Supply Technician Has Unjust Discipline Overturned

NAPE/AFSCME member Terry Allgayer, a Supply Technician II at the Western Nebraska Veterans Home (WNVH) prevailed in a grievance after the Nebraska Department of Veterans Affairs (NDVA) disciplined her without just cause.

WNVH issued Terry a written warning, alleging that she had used a space heater to intentionally manipulate temperatures in her work area, thus risking substantial loss of perishable medical products. This allegation was not true and Terry called her NAPE/AFSCME union representative right away and a grievance was filed on her behalf. 

“When I was accused of doing something like this, it was very hurtful,” she said. 

Terry sometimes used a space heater in the winter to combat low temperatures in the warehouse. Her supervisor knew this and never told her not to use it. Moreover, Terry only used it for a few hours in the morning and it was never oriented in such a way that it could cause damage to materials in the warehouse. NDVA charged that because of Terry’s alleged actions, thousands of dollars of medical products could have been destroyed. 

The only problem with NDVA’s allegation was there was absolutely no evidence to suggest Terry did anything to cause damage to NDVA property. Terry knew that she could fight and win with her union on her side. 

“My integrity was on the line, and my character was on the line. My representative understood that and we knew that we could win,” she said. “It was a long process and it was very stressful. To be accused of something like that by a leader made me feel beyond underappreciated.”

NAPE/AFSCME successfully argued that the allegations against Terry were untrue. A hearing officer ordered the written warning to be removed from her personnel file. 

“Nobody would’ve listened to just me if I was fighting it. Those accusations would have stayed in my file and followed me,” she said. “But our union had my back and that made my voice louder.”

Terry did the right thing by reaching out right away to file a timely grievance. She wants all State of Nebraska employees to know that joining our union is the best way to make your voice heard and stand up for yourself when your rights are violated. 

“I want other people who go through this to know that they can’t let the bullies win,” she said. “Pick yourself up and don’t be afraid to call our union.” 

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Nebraska Association of
Public Employees