Q & A

From Arizona Question: During an Administrative Investigation, can an employee of equal rank question you? (i.e., a police sergeant interview a police sergeant). Answer: Unless there’s a provision in a collective bargaining agreement or local law to the contrary, we know of no prohibition on individuals performing internal affairs investigations on other employees of equal […]

Union Must Label Grievance As Class Action To Receive Class-Wide Remedy

The Fraternal Order of Police (FOP) filed a grievance solely on behalf of Andrew Markowitz, a police officer with the City of Miami. The grievance claimed that the City was required to provide but denied light-duty work to Markowitz as he recovered from an off-duty injury. The FOP, on behalf of Markowitz, went through each […]

Male Officer Not Entitled To Maternity Leave

Ronald Wahl is a police officer for the Suffolk County, New York Police Department. Wahl’s child was born on December 20, 1999, and on January 14, 2000, Wahl requested that he be permitted to take maternity leave and deduct the days taken from his accrued sick leave. Department rules and procedures and the applicable collective […]

Officer’s Time As Teacher Does Not Count Towards Police Retirement

Charles Loftus became a member of the Arizona State University Public Safety Personnel Retirement System when he was hired in 1986 as a police officer for Arizona State University. In the fall of 2005, ASU’s Department of Criminal Justice and Criminology hired Loftus as a faculty associate to teach certain courses. Loftus’s employment as a […]

Calling Officer A ‘Pain’ Not Gender Or Race Discrimination

Sharon Davis, an African-American, was employed as a police officer with the Newark, New Jersey Police Department. Davis filed a seven-count lawsuit against the City, alleging that she was retaliated against for raising issues of racial and gender discrimination. The federal Third Circuit Court of Appeals rejected all of Davis’s claims. The Court held that, […]

Officer Has No Right To Be Exempt From TASER Exposure

Ray Robert began working with the Hamilton County, Indiana Sheriff’s Department in 1979 as a merit deputy police officer. Beginning in 2003, Robert suffered from neck/back pain for which he underwent surgery in November 2004. He returned to work eight weeks later. Despite his back problems, Robert was able to perform the duties, trainings, and […]

Union, Not Officer, Is Party To Arbitration Challenging Officer’s Termination

Lazario Ruiz was a police officer with the City of North Las Vegas, Nevada. Ruiz was a member of the North Las Vegas Police Officers Association. When the City fired Ruiz for untruthfulness, the Association challenged the decision in arbitration. An arbitrator upheld Ruiz’s discharge, finding that the City had just cause for its decision. […]

Court Upholds $300,000 Award To Officer For Transfer

Byron Hickey, a police officer employed by the Columbus Consolidated Government in Georgia, sued the City, claiming he was retaliated against for opposing unlawful discrimination. When a jury awarded Hickey $306,969, the City asked the trial court to overturn the award on the grounds that inadequate evidence supported Hickey’s claims. The Court rejected the City’s […]

If Employee Does Not Request FMLA Leave, Employer Cannot Demand Certification From Doctor

The Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) allows employers to request medical certification from employees who request leave under the Act. The FMLA also allows an employer to unilaterally designate leave taken by an employee as FMLA leave, even over the employee’s objections. A New Jersey appellate court recently had to decide whether employer-designated FMLA […]

Employer Can Assign Officers On Light Duty To Different Schedule

The collective bargaining agreement between the Kings Point Police Benevolent Association and the Village of Kings Point, New York has an “hours of work” clause that mandates a 12-hour rotating shift as the “sole schedule” for members of the bargaining unit. When a police officer who suffered a work-related injury that disabled him for more […]

Firefighters’ Immunity From Driving Liability Does Not Violate Constitution

On May 19, 2007, two fire trucks from the city of Waterbury, Connecticut were among other fire rescue vehicles responding to a report of a kitchen fire on Eastern Avenue in Waterbury. Joseph Fischetti operated Engine 12 while John Keane rode in the front passenger seat. William Mahoney operated Truck 1. As the two trucks […]

Fire union president wants chief removed from internal and external investigations of firefighters

The president of the Lawrence firefighters union has requested in writing that Lawrence Douglas County Fire Medical Chief Mark Bradford be removed as sole authority in investigations of internal and external complaints filed against department members. Lt. Kathy Elkins, president of the International Association of Firefighters Local 1596, contends that Chief Bradford “knowingly made false […]

Albuquerque Fire Chief Under Political Attack

From KOAT.com: The fallout continues after Darren White’s retirement as Albuquerque public safety director. Fire chief James Breen is under attack for not standing up to White after the former public safety director claimed paramedics weren’t equipped to take his wife to the hospital after a car accident. Breen, who faces a no-confidence vote next […]