Arbitrator Upholds Discharge of California Corrections Deputy for His Sexual Misconduct Toward Female Inmates

By Jordan L. Jones

women in prisonIn County of Yuba, 133 LA 361  Arbitrator William Riker held that there was just cause to discharge a corrections Deputy Sheriff for his interactions with female inmates, which included inappropriate touching and searches.

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Terminated New Jersey Police Officer’s First Amendment Claim Fails After Federal Court Finds Retaliation Based on Mistaken Perception of Free Speech Not Actionable

By Emily Nelson

free speechJeffrey Heffernan, a police officer in the City of Paterson, New Jersey, sued the City for retaliation after he was demoted from Detective to Patrol Officer for engaging in protected speech. Heffernan was demoted the day after other police officers observed him meeting with a Mayoral Candidate’s Campaign Manager to pick up a campaign lawn sign for his ill mother while he was off duty. However, in Heffernan v. City of Paterson, a Federal District Court dismissed Heffernan’s claims, finding that an employee cannot bring a first amendment retaliation claim based on an Employer’s mistaken perception that the Employee is engaging in political speech—there must be some evidence that the individual actually engaged in the speech for which they are retaliated against.

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Mitigating Factors Saves Job of Florida Firefighter that Failed to Respond to Calls

By Jordan L. Jones

negligenceIn Village of Key Biscayne, the Arbitrator held that the Fire Department (“Department”) did not have “just cause” to discharge a Fire Captain (“Grievant”), despite his failure to respond to a call for assistance.

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Firefighter with Only One Good Eye Still May Retain Employment Rights

By Emily Nelson

panning_firetruckAnthony Rorrer, a firefighter for the City of Stow, Ohio, alleged the City violated the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) by firing him after he completely lost vision in one eye in a non-work related accident. In Rorrer v. City of Stow, a Federal Court of Appeals reversed a lower court’s grant of Summary Judgment to the City, allowing Rorrer’s ADA claims against the City to proceed.

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As Expected, Supreme Court Acknowledges First Amendment Speech Protection for Public Employee that Testifies Pursuant to Subpoena

By Jim Cline

whistleblower1

As had been widely anticipated, the United States Supreme Court in Lane v. Franks overturned a ruling by the 11th Circuit Court of Appeals that had found that a Georgia community college administrator was unprotected by the first amendment when he was retaliated against following his sworn court testimony.

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Arbitrator Upholds Discharge of Texas Sergeant that Disobeys Orders not to Post Name Clearing Report

By Anthony Rice

???????????????????????????????????????????In City of Waxahachie, the Arbitrator upheld the termination of a Sergeant for numerous department violations where the Sergeant used city equipment to disseminate investigative findings that dismissed a subordinate’s complaint against the Sergeant, despite a clear order from the Chief not to do so.

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In Closely Watched Decision, Supreme Court declines to Hold Mandatory Union Dues Clauses Unconstitutional — For Now

By Jim Cline

Supreme Court JusticesIn a decision on a case that had presented significant financial and operational important to Public Employee Unions, the United States Supreme Court held this Monday in Harris v Quinn that the Illinois law, as applied to a special class of home health care workers, unconstitutionally imposed a “fair share” dues payment  requirement.

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Superior Officers’ Actions Against African-American Correctional Officers Sufficient to Make out Prima Facie Harassment and Retaliation Claims.

By Oliver Enquist

police badgeIn Ellis v. Houston, the Eighth Circuit Court of Appeals ruled, in part, in favor of five African-American Correctional Officers who brought claims against five of their Supervisors for race-based harassment and retaliation.

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Six to Ten Late Reports a Month Gives the City Just Cause to Fire an Officer

By Anthony Rice

 

LateIn City of W. Carrollton, Ohio, the Arbitrator found the City terminated an officer for Just Cause, because he was filing 6 to 10 late reports a month. Noting previous suspensions for the same violation, the Arbitrator concluded the officer had received the progressive discipline he was due.

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Dispatcher’s Termination Upheld Pursuant to an Enforceable Last Chance Agreement

By Anthony Rice

911

In City of Sunrise, the Arbitrator concluded his hands were tied by a Last Chance Agreement (LCA) signed by a dispatcher, where the LCA was enforceable and the dispatcher violated its terms.

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