FOP Lodge 89

Health Care Trusts

Using the Fort Worth, Texas Firefighters as an example, Will discusses health care trusts as an option for delivering health coverage for public safety employees. Michael Glynn, president of the Fort Worth Firefighters, talks about why the association considered a health care trust, how they got the

M Marc Fuller

Spouse Loses Workers’ Compensation Claim For Officer’s Suicide

Sandy Delacruz was a police officer for the Village of Freeport, New York. On December 22, 2016, Delacruz, who was on duty at the time, was found dead in her parked police car from a perforating gunshot wound to the head and brain. Delacruz’s death certificate indicated that the cause of her death w

W Will Aitchison

LEOSA Does Not Require An Agency To Issue Retirees Identification

The Law Enforcement Officers Safety Act (LEOSA) allows “a qualified retired law enforcement officer who is carrying the identification required by the Act” to carry a concealed firearm, notwithstanding most state or local restrictions. Camille Burban was an officer with the Neptune Beach, Florida Po

W Will Aitchison

Merits Of Grievance For Arbitrator, Not Court, To Resolve

The City of Yonkers in New York and the Yonkers Fire Fighters, Local 628 of the IAFF, are parties to a collective bargaining agreement. Article 33 of the CBA, which contains various provisions concerning the City’s EMS Program, includes a provision stating that the “EMS Program shall mean the level

W Will Aitchison

Favored Treatment To Fellow Officer Violates Ethics Statute

Edward McGovern is an Agawam, Massachusetts police lieutenant. On the evening of June 29, 2012, at about 9:15 p.m., the neighboring West Springfield Police Department received an anonymous 911 call reporting a wrong-way driver on Route 5 North. Three responding officers found Agawam Police Officer D

W Will Aitchison

Arbitrator Can Consider Conduct Of Parties In Construing Contract Language

Pursuant to the terms of the collective bargaining agreement between Local 3111 of the IAFF and Anderson Township, Ohio, Lieutenant William Tillett received notice that disciplinary proceedings were being initiated against him because he had surrendered his fire-inspection certification. When the De

W Will Aitchison

Text Messages Do Not Violate Duty Of Fair Representation

Sanja Drinks-Bruder has been employed as a Niagara Falls, New York police officer for approximately 25 years and is represented for bargaining purposes by the Niagara Falls Police Club. On October 20, 2016, at approximately 6:10 a.m., she was sent to the scene of a fatal traffic accident. Despite he

W Will Aitchison

Arbitrator’s Fire Watch Decision Does Not Violate Federal Law

The collective bargaining agreement between Local 146 of the IAFF and the City of Lawrence, Massachusetts provides that the City must require a fire watch detail at the site of any demolition work in its boundary. The agreement contains provisions requiring the City to “act as custodian of the funds

W Will Aitchison

Corrections Officer’s Repeated Dishonesty Costs Her Job

Tia Smith was a corrections officer with the Camden County Department of Corrections in New Jersey. In the years following her hire in 2011, Smith displayed a variety of performance problems. Most significantly, Smith was found to have engaged in conduct unbecoming and neglect of duty in 2015. She l

W Will Aitchison

Corrections Officers Win $113 Million In Wage-And-Hour Lawsuit

The collective bargaining agreement between the Missouri Department of Corrections (DOC) and the Missouri Corrections Officers Association provides that the DOC “will comply with the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA).” The DOC’s policy manual similarly states it is intended “to ensure departmental com

W Will Aitchison

All Things Body Cameras

Will discusses body cameras with Mike Rains and Rocky Lucia of the law firm Rains Lucia Stern St. Phalle & Silver, PC. They look at the history of body camera use in California, body cameras and criminal prosecutions of police officers, privacy matters, and what issues regarding body cameras are typ

M Marc Fuller

In Some Parts Of The Country, Patronage Is Still Legal

Though it seems like an anomaly in many places, in some areas of the country political patronage systems still exist. In such systems, employees can be discharged because of their political affiliations or activities. While the areas of the country where patronage systems exist are few and are shrin

W Will Aitchison

No Due Process Right For Probationary Employees To Remain On Layoff List

Good news is not on the way when a court starts its opinion in your case by writing: “A chance at a job is not a right to it. When the government has broad discretion to take a benefit away from its employees, that benefit is not a constitutionally protected property interest.”The case began when co

W Will Aitchison

Officer Not Allowed To Sue Black Lives Matter Protest Organizer

On July 9, 2016, a protest took place by blocking a public highway in front of the Baton Rouge Police Department headquarters in Louisiana. This demonstration was one in a string of protests across the country, often associated with Black Lives Matter, concerning police practices. The Department pre

W Will Aitchison

County Not Liable For Sergeant’s Assault On Deputy

Angela Branford was a deputy sheriff with the Washington County Sheriff’s Office in Oregon. Branford met Sergeant Jonathan Christensen when he led a training session. Sometime in 2013 or 2014, Branford and Christensen began a consensual romantic and sexual relationship. During the course of the rela

W Will Aitchison

‘An Investigation Is Not An Object That Can Be Measured With A Ruler’

Officer Todd Furlong, who worked for the City of Inglewood, California, crashed his patrol car on La Brea Avenue while speeding to respond to an emergency call. The Department assigned Traffic Investigator Jeffrey LaGreek to the accident. LaGreek noted La Brea Avenue has two northbound and two sout

W Will Aitchison

‘Witness’ Entitled To Weingarten Representative

Maylee Bardelas is a police officer with the City of Doral, Florida. Bardelas was accused by Sergeant Eric Fernandez of “intentionally driving away from an active shooter scene” and was charged by the Department with “cowardice.”Eventually, the investigation determined that “there was insufficient e

W Will Aitchison

Subjective Hiring Criteria For Fire Chief Are Not Necessarily Illegal

When the City of Americus, Georgia failed to hire Roderick Jolivette as its fire chief, Jolivette sued, claiming he was discriminated against because he is African-American and in retaliation for suing his former employer for unlawful employment practices. A federal trial court found that the legiti

W Will Aitchison

Deputy Doubles Down On Dishonesty, Loses Job

Deputy Mark Montez worked as a corrections officer for the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department. On September 27, 2010, Dequan Ballard, an inmate in the jail, stole items from a commissary cart. The theft was reported to Deputy Omar Lopez, who informed Montez. Lopez and Montez took Ballard to an

W Will Aitchison

Workers’ Comp Judge Should Not Have Heard Trooper’s Claim

Scott Ledford is a former lance corporal with the South Carolina Highway Patrol. Ledford was injured in two separate work-related accidents. In July 2010, Ledford sustained injuries to his spine after being tasered during a training exercise. Ledford settled the 2010 claim with the State. In March 2

W Will Aitchison

Termination For Theft ‘Shocks Conscience’ Of Court

The New York Police Department’s Internal Affairs Bureau conducted an integrity test whereby an undercover officer acted intoxicated while parked illegally near a fire hydrant. A video of the incident shows Officer Richard Arroyo going into the undercover officer’s vehicle, taking $55 from the cente

W Will Aitchison