Seminar Information


Grievances, Arbitration And Past Practices

September 27 to September 29, 2017
Las Vegas, Nevada
The Flamingo Las Vegas



September 27, 2017

9:00 am – Introduction And Recent Developments In Public Safety Labor Issues

Recent developments from around the country in the area of public safety labor relations.

  • Recent court decisions and laws enacted by Congress.
  • Pending or recent changes in state public sector bargaining laws.
  • Discussion of the ADA, the FMLA, physical fitness plans, sexual discrimination, the Garrity Rule, the Weingarten Rule, and affirmative action.
  • A review of national trends on wages and benefits.

Will Aitchison

10:30 am – The Impact Of Past Practice On Collective Bargaining

  • How a past practice is important not only in interpreting a collective bargaining agreement, but also in limiting an employer’s ability to make changes in policies, rules and operations.
  • The continuing nature of the duty to bargain and how past practices can require mid-contract negotiations.
  • The topics that are mandatory for bargaining, including hours of work issues, disciplinary standards and proceedings, “civilianization,” staffing, residency, and more.
  • What makes a past practice binding, and the steps an employer must follow if it desires to make changes in past practices.

Will Aitchison

12:00 pm – Lunch (Included in registration)

1:00 pm – The Impact Of Past Practice On Collective Bargaining

Continued from the morning session.

2:00 pm – Basic Principles Of Grievances And Arbitration

  • A discussion of the pros and cons of common grievance procedure language.
  • What is “grievable” and what is not.
  • The level of detail is necessary on a grievance.
  • Time limits in a grievance procedure, and what happens if the time limits are not met.
  • How to research and select arbitrators.
  • The basics of how an arbitration hearing is conducted, and how much an arbitration hearing will likely cost.
  • What does it mean than an arbitration decision is “final and binding”?.
  • The relationship between grievance procedures, unfair labor practices, and lawsuits in court.

Will Aitchison

4:00 pm – Adjournment

4:15 pm – Hosted Reception

September 28, 2017

9:00 am – The Special Case Of Social Media

  • The negotiability of social media rules.
  • The First Amendment, labor law principles, and off-duty social media use.
  • The types of social media speech likely to be protected and unprotected, and why.
  • How arbitrators consider social media questions

Anil Karia

10:00 am – Arbitration In Action – Overtime Disputes

  • Basic principles of overtime – the FLSA, state wage and hour laws, and overtime provisions in labor agreements.
  • How arbitrators look at typical public safety overtime issues, including overtime minimums, shift-extension overtime, call-in and call-back overtime, work while on sick leave and vacation, the calculation of the overtime rate, compensatory time off, and how overtime is allocated.

Anil Karia

12:00 pm – Lunch (Included in registration)

1:00 pm – Principles Of Just Cause And Disciplinary Grievances

A point-counterpoint discussion featuring management and labor perspectives:

  • The 12 elements of the requirement of just cause for discipline and how they arise in public safety disciplinary grievances.
  • The principles of progressive discipline, such as disparate treatment, clear and understandable work rules, the timeliness of disciplinary action, and proportionate punishment.

Tim Davis and Christopher Platten

4:00 pm – Adjournment

September 29, 2017

8:30 am – How An Arbitrator Looks At Grievances

  • When an arbitrator will look beyond the language of the contract to determine the meaning of the contract.
  • The types of evidence considered in interpreting contracts, including bargaining history, past practice, and evidence of practices under other contracts.
  • From an arbitrator’s perspective, the factors that make a past practice binding.
  • The “interpretation aids” arbitrators use in interpreting and applying contract language.
  • How arbitrators decide who has the burden of proof, and how much proof is necessary?
  • The rules of evidence in arbitration, including issues of hearsay and relevance.
  • The decision-making process – what’s convincing and what is not?

Andrea Dooley

11:30 am – Adjournment

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Hotel And Travel

The Flamingo Las Vegas

3555 Las Vegas Blvd South
Las Vegas, NV 89109
702-733-3111 • 800-732-2111


LINQ Hotel

(adjacent to The Flamingo)
3535 Las Vegas Blvd. South
(702) 733-3111 • (888) 373-9855

Register online at

You can also call the hotel directly and request the group rate for this seminar. For the Flamingo, use Group Code SFGAP7. Room rates Tuesday through Thursday nights are $109 per night, plus a $29 per room, per night resort fee and 12% tax. Rates Friday and Saturday nights are $139 plus resort fee and tax.

For the Linq, use Group Code SQGAP7. Room rates Tuesday through Thursday nights are $110 per night, plus a $32 per room, per night resort fee and 12% tax. Rates Friday and Saturday nights are $145 plus resort fee and tax. A limited number of rooms are available at these rates on Friday and Saturday nights, so book early if you plan to stay over. Reservations must be made by September 1, 2017. Reservations received after this date will be on a space-available basis only and at the prevailing rate.

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Will Aitchison

Mr. Aitchison is a Portland, Oregon attorney who has, over the course of his career, represented over 100 law enforcement and firefighter labor organizations in five western states. He is a veteran of hundreds of public sector labor negotiations. He received his Doctor of Jurisprudence from Georgetown University Law Center in Washington, D.C. and is the author of several books on public sector labor matters, including The Rights of Law Enforcement Officers (6th Edition), and The Rights of Firefighters (4th Edition).

Timothy L. Davis

Mr. Davis is a partner in the California law firm of Burke, Williams & Sorensen, and is Chair of the firm’s Labor and Employment Law practice group. He has negotiated numerous labor agreements between cities and their employee groups, including police, fire, general employees, and management groups. He is a graduate of the University of the Pacific, McGeorge School of Law.

Andrea Dooley

Arbitrator Dooley has been working in the labor and employment field since 1997. She has participated in national and local collective bargaining in the healthcare, entertainment, building trades, and service industries, as well as the public sector. Prior to becoming an Arbitrator, Ms. Dooley was an advocate in hundreds of arbitrations, administrative hearings, mediations, state and federal litigation, and advised unions and employers on practical and legal matters related to contract interpretation, representation issues, employment law, election law, ERISA and occupational safety and health.

Anil Karia

Mr. Karia is a lawyer with the Public Safety Labor Group in Portland, Oregon. He specializes in representing public safety labor organizations, including the Portland Police Association, in all aspects of their labor relations. He is a graduate of the University of Oregon School of Law.

Christopher Platten

Mr. Platten received his B.A. degree from San Diego State University and his Doctor of Jurisprudence from the University of San Francisco, where he was a Law Review candidate and won both the John L. Brennan Trial Competition and the U.S.F. Advanced Moot Court Competition. He has served in union positions as an officer and business agent for a retail clerks’ local union and specializes in labor law and employment discrimination.

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CLE And POST Certification

P.O.S.T. Certification
Peace Officer Standards and Training (P.O.S.T.) credits may be available on a state-by-state basis. If you would like information on your state, please contact POST/CLE Coordinator Tanja Olson at (503) 282-5440 or prior to the seminar.

Continuing Legal Education Certification
LRIS has been approved as a CLE provider by the State Bar of California. This program will qualify for 12.5 hours of MCLE credit by the State Bar of California. If you require certification from any other state, please call POST/CLE Coordinator Tanja Olson at (503) 282-5440 or prior to the seminar.

Fees And Other Information


Registration fees are $695 per person; $595 per person if three or more attend from the same organization. Registration fees include attendance, lunch on the first two days of the seminar, all seminar materials, and a hospitality reception on the first evening.


Each attendee will receive a notebook containing extensive written materials pertaining to each of the subjects addressed.


Reservations may be canceled up to ten days prior to the seminar with a full refund. Cancellations made within ten days are subject to a $150 fee. Substitutions may be made at any time.

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