fbpx

Physical Agility Tests

Legality of Physical Agility Tests

Will interviews Rae Gross and Sarah Kuehnel of the management-side law firm Ogletree Deakins about physical agility tests (PATs). Using a recent blog post on the topic the two attorneys authored as a starting point, the discussion includes the following topics: Why is it that PATs can raise issues under federal law (Title VII, the ADA, the ADEA, the EEOC, and the Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs)? The…

Read More

Hair Test For Drugs Ruled Unreliable

The Boston Police Department requires applicants for officer positions to be screened for drug use via a hair sample test. The Department outsources the testing of hair samples for illegal narcotic use to Psychemedics Corporation, a company that has licensed laboratories in approximately 22 states. The bulk of Psychemedics’s work consists of testing hair samples for the presence of controlled substances such as cocaine, opiates, amphetamines, and marijuana. The…

Read More

Arbitrator Can Award More Than FLSA Requires

Local 1953 of the International Association of Firefighters represents the firefighters who work for Perkins Township in Ohio. When the parties were unable to reach agreement on a new contract the matter was referred to “binding conciliation,” the phrase Ohio uses to describe binding arbitration. When the Township challenged the Arbitrator’s award, the matter wound up before the Ohio Court of Appeals. The Court upheld the validity of the…

Read More

Evaluation System Violates State Ticket Quota Law

The Policemen’s Benevolent Labor Committee represents police officers working for the City of Sparta, Illinois. On January 13, 2013, the City put into place a new performance evaluation policy. The policy used a system of monthly activity points to track and evaluate the performance of the Department’s officers. All full-time officers were required to meet the monthly activity points minimum. Some of the activities that produced points included issuing…

Read More

Pre-Statement Video Review Is A Negotiable Topic

Lodge 1 of the Fraternal Order of Police represents officers of the Pittsburgh Police Department. On January 19, 2018, the City implemented Order 69-03 “Body Worn Camera (BWC) Recording and Digital Evidence Stored System.” The order mandated the use of body worn cameras and established guidelines and procedures for utilization of body worn cameras by police officers. The order largely prohibited pre-statement review of video, providing that the viewing…

Read More

Officer Required To Pay City’s Attorney Fees

Michael Marciano is an officer with the Los Angeles Police Department. In 2014 and 2015, Marciano was a patrol officer in the North Hollywood Division. Marciano had problems with his supervisors, his performance, his purported lack of issuing citations, and his desire to be assigned to a partner the Department wished to separate him from based upon various discipline issues. Marciano and his partner eventually filed a complaint against…

Read More

Officer’s Conviction Of Assault While On Military Leave Results In Loss Of His Gun And Job

Franklin Hernandez was both a police officer with the City of Perth Amboy, New Jersey Police Department and a member of the New Jersey Army National Guard. In May 2014, Hernandez received orders mobilizing him to active duty and he was deployed to Qatar. Although fraternization between non-commissioned officers and junior enlisted soldiers was prohibited, in September 2014, Hernandez, a sergeant, began a romantic relationship with a specialist. Despite…

Read More

Employer May Not Unilaterally Impose Waiver Of Right To Bargain

In a “meet-and-confer” environment, an employer has the right to break a contract impasse by unilaterally implementing its last best offer. What is not often recognized is that the only thing an employer can implement are changes to issues that are mandatory for bargaining. An employer has no right to unilaterally implement a waiver, as waivers of the right to bargain such as those often found in management rights…

Read More

Firefighter Staffing Per Shift Negotiable

Local 46 of the International Association of Fire Fighters represents firefighters, paramedics, captains, and the battalion and assistant chiefs working for the City of Everett, Washington. Since 1974, a provision in Local 46’s collective bargaining agreement established a minimum number of firefighters on duty for each shift. In 2014, the City and Local 46 engaged in negotiations for a successor collective bargaining agreement. In response to the significant increase…

Read More

Indefinite Leave Of Absence Not Required Under ADA

Thomas Monroe worked as a corrections officer with the Florida Department of Corrections. Monroe was diagnosed with PTSD and requested an indefinite leave of absence. Shortly thereafter, the Department terminated his employment. Monroe sued, claiming he was the victim of disability discrimination. The federal 11th Circuit Court of Appeals disagreed and dismissed Monroe’s lawsuit. The Court began by reciting the standard rubric for analysis of ADA claims. As the…

Read More

City ‘Interfered’ With Union By Shutting Down Fire Department

Local 4725 of the IAFF represents the five full-time firefighters in the City of Brainerd, Minnesota. In 2010, the City experienced a budget deficit following a decrease in both property tax values and state aid. The City attempted to restructure its fire department by replacing its full-time firefighter positions and their duties with paid on-call (POC) firefighters, who receive nominal compensation and limited benefits. The City Council passed a…

Read More

Tattoo Policy Ruled Non-Negotiable

From 1988 to the summer of 2016, the City of Philadelphia did not have a policy regulating or restricting tattoos for police officers applying for a position with or during their tenure as officers for the City. During the summer of 2016, the Democratic National Convention was held at the Philadelphia Convention Center. During the Convention, a protestor posted on social media that they were offended by a bicycle…

Read More

Alternative Dispute Resolution For Workers’ Comp Claims

ADR and Wokers Comp Claims

Will Aitchison interviews Los Angeles Police Protective League Director Mark Cronin and Judge Steve Siemers on how the LAPPL and LAPD are using alternative dispute resolution, or ADR, to resolve workers’ compensation claims. Timestamp Topic 03:56 About the LAPPL 05:38 What inspired Mark to become involved in the ADR process? 07:40 What were the problems with the traditional workers’ comp resolution system? 11:50 What is an ADR program and…

Read More

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 city to buy into the idea and what the results have been thus far. Ron Kirkpatrick, CEO/President and Founder LBG Advisors, LLC,…

Read More

For Whistleblowing Claim To Exist, Decisionmakers Must Be Aware Of Whistleblowing

Bridgette Bott was a deputy sheriff for Palm Beach County, Florida. On July 11, 2012, the Sheriff’s Office dispatched Bott to investigate an attempted suicide. Dispatch told Bott that a woman “advised her boyfriend took a lot of antidepressants last night and is now swinging the swifter at her because she won’t tell him where his gun is.” Bott spoke with the couple briefly and did not inquire about…

Read More

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 was suicide from a self-inflicted gunshot wound. In February 2017, Delacruz’s husband, Christian Delacruz, filed an…

Read More

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 Police Department for more than ten years before she retired from service in 2013. In October 2016, she asked the Department to issue her the…

Read More

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 of services provided as of the date of this Agreement.” Local 628 filed a grievance regarding a paramedic training…

Read More

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 Danielle Petrangelo sitting on the guardrail next to the passenger side of an SUV, crying. The responding officers noticed damage on the passenger side…

Read More

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 Department eventually demoted Tillett, Local 3111 challenged the demotion in arbitration. At the arbitration hearing, Tillett testified that he served as president of Local 3111 for approximately 18…

Read More

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 her repeated requests to be relieved from the assignment, she was forced to work overtime from 7:30 a.m. to 12:15…

Read More

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 collected as a result of Fire Watch Duty” and to create an escrow account “for payment of all detail…

Read More

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 lied during that investigation, and the Department imposed a 180-day suspension. In 2016, she was suspended for three days for…

Read More

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 compliance with FLSA rules.” In 2012, a group of corrections officers brought a class action suit against DOC alleging a breach of contract for failure to pay…

Read More

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 typically negotiated between a department and labor union. Studies cited in the podcast: Journal of Experimental Criminology Temple University…

Read More

Powered by WishList Member - Membership Software