LRIS on 02/04/2023

Firefighter Schedule Change Illegal Discrimination

Anthony Copeland, a former firefighter of 26 years, was elected mayor of the City of East Chicago, Indiana in 2010. Shortly after he was elected, Copeland implemented certain cost-cutting measures to address the City’s deficit. One such effort was freezing the salaries and benefits of East Chicago f

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LRIS on 02/04/2023

Union Fails To Timely Demand To Bargain Over Pension Changes

Deputy sheriffs in Orange County in California are represented by the Association of Orange County Deputy Sheriffs (AOCDS). The Orange County Employees Retirement System (OCERS) provides retirement benefits for AOCDS members. The County makes employer pension contributions to OCERS and collects empl

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LRIS on 02/04/2023

No Religious Freedom Exception To Photographs In Uniform

Thomas Swartz was a firefighter working for the Bourne Fire Department in Massachusetts. All members of the Department had an identification card as well as an accountability tag. Both featured a picture of the firefighter. The photographs on the identification cards and accountability tags were inc

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LRIS on 02/04/2023

Council Member’s Comments Do Not Establish Bias

Steve Jones was a supervisor for the paramedic program within the City of Loma Linda’s Fire Department in California. In January 2014, one of the employees who Jones supervised punched a patient. The employee told Jones about punching the patient. Jones failed to report the incident and when the inc

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LRIS on 02/04/2023

Sergeant Has Privacy Interest In Dropbox Account Created With Employer’s Email

This is a follow-up to the article Qualified Immunity Shields Employer From Liability For Illegal Dropbox Search in the June 2022 issue of Public Safety Labor News.Steven Bowers was a detective sergeant for the Taylor County Sher­iff’s Department in Wisconsin. In February 2017, the Department was wo

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LRIS on 02/04/2023

PTSD Caused By Shooting, Not Gradual Stress

William Marx was employed by the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Depart­ment for 21 years and was a member of the SWAT team during the last ten years of his employment. In August 2018, Marx was involved in a shooting with an armed suspect who was barricaded inside the bathroom of an apartment for abou

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LRIS on 02/04/2023

Officer Loses Job To Facebook Post

Shaina Kirkland served as a patrol officer with the City of Maryville’s po­lice department in Tennessee. While in that role, Kirkland periodically used her Facebook account to criticize the County Sheriff. Kirkland’s supervisors became concerned that her posts would under­mine the Department’s relat

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LRIS on 02/04/2023

Officer’s T-Shirt Was Racially Insensitive But Not Overtly Racist

Jeffrey Layman is a police officer in Peoria, Illinois. On January 10, 2018, the City received a complaint from a local pastor about social media posts made by Layman. One post showed a photo on social of Layman wearing a t-shirt with the word “POLICE” on it, under which were the letters “BDRT” and

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LRIS on 01/05/2023

Not Unconstitutional To Bar Recording IA Interviews

Cincinnati residents may lodge police misconduct complaints with the City’s Citizen Complaint Authority. The Authority consists of a team of investigators, an executive director appointed by the city manager, and a seven-person board appointed by the mayor. In response to a complaint, the Authority

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LRIS on 01/05/2023

Member Cannot Bring Bad Faith Bargaining Charge Against Union

Lodge 93 of the Fraternal Order of Police represents two collective bar­gaining units at the Orange County Sheriff’s Department in Florida. One is made up of deputies and another of sergeants and corporals.On August 4, 2022, the Sheriff’s Negotiation Team presented a wage proposal to address several

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LRIS on 01/05/2023

Reasonable Accommodation And Cold Baths

Sergeant Cardell Bright worked for the jail in St. James Parish, Louisiana. When Bright was hired in April 2015, he had a medical problem with his bowels, was recovering from rectal surgery, and was diabetic. Bright’s diabetes is sensi­tive to stress, which causes low blood sugar and, ultimately dia

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LRIS on 01/05/2023

Unsubstantiated Rumors Do Not Start Bill Of Rights Statute Of Limitations

Andrew Shouse was a captain with the Riverside County Sheriff’s Office in California. In April or May of 2016, Chief Lyndon Wood learned of a ru­mored intimate relationship involving Shouse and Deputy Karen Birchard. The rumors indicated Birchard was saving photographs or text messages on her cell p

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LRIS on 01/05/2023

Firefighter Loses Free Speech Lawsuit Over Voicemail

Scott Millspaugh was a firefighter for Cobb County, Georgia. Millspaugh assisted with the scheduling of staff in his battalion and regularly discussed staffing with his Battalion Chief, John Graham, as part of his job duties. Millspaugh sometimes received notifications from other firefighters regard

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LRIS on 01/05/2023

Due Process And Changing Disciplinary Charges

Steven Rodgers is a correctional sergeant with the Department of Cor­rections and Rehabilitation in Califor­nia. In 2018, the Department notified Rodgers that it was sustaining disci­plinary charges against him and would be reducing his salary by 10% for two years. The Department alleged that while

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LRIS on 01/05/2023

Back Pay Can Include Overtime

In 2020, the North Carolina De­partment of Public Safety terminated Christopher Stockli’s employment at the Pasquotank Correctional Institu­tion. Stockli challenged his termination through a contested case in North Caro­lina’s Office of Administrative Hearings. An administrative law judge entered a

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LRIS on 01/05/2023

Court Upholds Arbitrator’s Award On Leave And COVID Quarantine

Jacob Donley is a police officer em­ployed by the Village of West Salem in Wisconsin and is a member of the West Salem Police Association. In September 2020, Donley attended a work-related training event and was exposed to an individual who tested positive for the COVID-19 virus. As a result of this

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LRIS on 01/05/2023

Officer With Bipolar Disorder Loses ADA Claim

Tyler Sapp was a police officer for the Forest Preserves of Cook County in Illinois. Among other duties, Forest Preserves police officers are expected to respond to emergency calls for service and provide direction and assistance during emergencies such as serious illness or injury, severe weather,

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LRIS on 01/05/2023

Corrections Officer Entitled To ‘Assault Pay’

Jeffrey Howell was a corrections offi­cer for Essex County, Massachusetts. On January 2, 2018, Howell was working in the Essex County Correctional Facility when, in a different building, one inmate took another inmate hostage by holding a razor blade to his neck. An officer called Howell to help car

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LRIS on 01/05/2023

No Obligation To Bargain Over Selection Of Fire Chief

Local 143 of the International Association of Firefighters represents firefighters employed by Everett, Mas­sachusetts. Local 143 is the exclusive bargaining agent for all privates, lieu­tenants, captains, and deputy chiefs, excluding the fire chief, who holds a managerial position. When the fire ch

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LRIS on 01/05/2023

Q & A

From Illinois:Question: Several years ago the City bargained for random drug testing of police officers. The contract states: “Employees covered by this Agreement shall be subject to random drug testing, so long as all sworn Department members are subject to the same such testing.” This is where the

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LRIS on 12/10/2022

Garrity Immunity Is Self-Executing

John Scatchell was a police officer for the Village of Melrose Park in Illinois. In late 2017, he went on paid sick leave to recuperate from an injury to his neck, back, and arm he suffered while on duty, which left him with pain and numbness. Shortly after Scatchell went on leave, however, someone

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LRIS on 12/10/2022

Reasonable Accommodation And A Corrections Lieutenant’s Job

Larry Tate has worked for the Sheriff of Cook County, Illinois, in the Department of Corrections since 2007. In his third year as a correctional officer, Tate suffered a back injury. He returned to work under medical restrictions that required him to “avoid situations in which there is a significant

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