Broward Sheriff’s Office Deputies Association
Local I.U.P.A 6020
February 4th 2020
To All Members,
In our continuing efforts to keep everyone informed, the Union would like to take a minute to discuss the following with you.
Town Hall Debate: On November 30th 2019, the Broward Sheriff’s Office Deputies Association mailed/emailed each declared candidate for the position of Broward County Sheriff an invitation to attend a Deputies Union sponsored Town Hall debate. This gave each candidate sixty five (65) days’ notice to RSVP and one hundred seven (107) days’ notice to save March 16th 2020 in their calendars. Candidates that declared their intent to run for Broward County Sheriff after the initial mailing were also invited. However, ALL candidates had the same deadline to RSVP, which was Monday, February 3rd 2020.
The debate will take place from 6-8pm on Monday March 16th 2020 at the Lauderhill Performing Arts Center. The debate will be moderated by local radio show personalities live on their stations and livestreamed on social media platforms. Local and national media will also be invited to attend the debate and the opportunity for media outlets to ask specific approved questions to the candidates will be afforded.
The Deputies Association clearly recognizes the significance of the 2020 Broward Sheriff election and how it will impact not only this Union, but all of the employees who work at the Broward Sheriff’s Office, and their families. Therefore, immediately after mailing / emailing invitations to all candidates, the Deputies Association began reaching out to the unions representing the Department of Detention, Child Protective Investigations Section, and Fire Rescue in order to provide this opportunity to all 5,500 employees of the Sheriff’s Office. All seven (7) Collective Bargaining Units within the Broward Sheriff’s Office will in some way, use this Town Hall debate to decide who is worthy of their Unions’ endorsement.
On Tuesday March 17th 2020 an electronic survey will be emailed to all Local 6020 Union members who have provided their home email address to the Union. This electronic survey will ask whom you wish your Union to endorse for Sheriff of Broward County and in other local political races. The survey will remain open through Monday March 23rd until 2pm. The candidate with the most votes will receive the Union endorsement. This Union has consistently been the only Union that allows the membership to dictate who gets an endorsement through a fair democratic process. There will be a press conference at the Deputies Association Union office on March 23rd 2020 at 4pm to announce the results of the endorsement survey.
The Lauderhill Performing Arts Center has the capacity to seat almost 1,200 people. In order to ensure that Deputies Association Union members have first priority to seating, the Union is making this a ticketed event. Tickets are free and additional information on how to obtain free tickets at the Union office will be announced in a later email. Once 6020 Union members have had a chance to obtain free tickets, the Union will then start giving free tickets to BSO employees who wish to attend the event. Anyone who attends the event without a ticket will be turned away by event staff. There is ample parking for the event, and security will be on the premises as well.
Peer Coordinator Program: Not too long ago, an email was sent out by the Sheriff’s Office to all BSO employees about a “Peer Coordinator” program that the Sheriff’s Office will be implementing in the future. In Theory, the program is supposed to offer another avenue for employees to reach out to peers and talk to one another about things that are bothering them before a mental health crisis erupts.
At this time, the Union cannot support or recommend any of our Union members to participate as a Peer Coordinator due to the potential for civil, criminal and administrative liability. The Union has identified several concerns to the Sheriff’s Office that could adversely affect Union members who wish to become a Peer Coordinator. As it stands right now, the following areas of concern have already been identified by the Union. 1) There is ZERO confidential/privileged communication between the employee in need and a Peer Coordinator. 2) Possible Internal Affairs cases could be opened up against a Peer Coordinator for what was told to them. 3) No ability to stop a Peer Coordinator from voluntarily disclosing information told to them as a Peer Coordinator. 4) Exposure to employee and “Peer Coordinator” if an employee discloses an act that violates the law. 5) Lack of criminal representation for a Peer Coordinator if the wrong advice is given to an employee which results in a criminal charge. 6) Exposure to civil liability to a Peer Coordinator if a suit is filed for lack of proper or correct advice. 7) The inability to ensure confidentiality within the Sheriff’s Office. 8) NO STATE LAW in Florida currently protects a Peer Coordinator. 9) There is no statutory requirement that the Sheriff’s Office provide legal representation to a “Peer Coordinator” subject to criminal or civil actions per FSS 111.065
The Union cannot emphasize enough that we ARE NOT suggesting that if an employee is in need or is in crisis that he or she should not reach out to a friend or co-worker. Furthermore, the Union is NOT suggesting to employees “not work” or “slow down” their law enforcement duties because of issues that we have identified. Mental health needs to be addressed properly and employees who act as “Peer Coordinators” need to be protected as well. Until certain issues can be addressed, the Union strongly recommends using the 1-800 number on the back of your healthcare card for confidential mental health assistance.
Take Home Cars: When our current Collective Bargaining Agreement was signed, Article 44 was significantly changed to eliminate restrictions on who could take a car home out of county and who could not. These changes had a significant positive impact on the membership. Article 44.1 specifically states that “bargaining unit members assigned vehicles shall be authorized to take their vehicles home as long as they reside in the tri-county area (i.e, Dade County, Broward County, Palm Beach County). The language is specific that unless you are one of the “grandfathered” members specifically identified on page 78 of our current contract, you must reside in the tri county area to take your car home.
Because of an incident, an issue has come up on whether or not a person who “resides” outside of the tri-county area and who is not one of the specifically identified individuals on page 78 of the current Contract should be able to take their assigned vehicles outside of the county. This is a legitimate question that was brought to the Union from the Sheriff’s Office because the Contract does say “reside”.
Fortunately, the Union has been able to come to an agreement with the Sheriff’s Office. The new MOU will not change a single thing for anyone residing within the tri-county area. The MOU only addresses members who chose to live outside the tri-county area and where they must leave their assigned vehicles when traveling home.
44.1 Upon contract ratification, bargaining unit members assigned vehicles shall be authorized to take the vehicles home as long as they reside in the tri-county area (i.e. Dade County, Broward County, Palm Beach County). Effective pay period beginning October 12, 2019, any bargaining unit members hired on or after October 1, 2019, who reside in Dade or Palm Beach County, or who reside outside of the tri-county area and chose to leave their vehicles in a secured location in Palm Beach or Dade County rather than at their assigned work location will be charged twenty-five dollars ($25.00) per pay period. Additionally, any bargaining unit members hired on or after October 1, 2019, whose residence becomes Dade or Palm Beach County will be charged twenty-five dollars ($25.00) per pay period.
If you reside outside of the tri-county area and leave your car in Broward County, you will not be required to pay the $25 per pay period fee.
Elections: The Union will soon be conducting elections for the two alternate Executive Board Member positions. Currently, Tony Hierrezuelo occupies one position (doing a great job) and the second position is vacant. Alternate Executive Board positions will be open for 6020 Union members only. Furthermore, only Union members will be allowed to vote during this election. If you are interested in becoming one of the two alternate Executive Board members, please submit an email to JBell@iupa.org with your intent to run no later than Friday February 17th 2020. Once the Union knows how many people are running, an election date and ballot will be established. If two or fewer people submit their names as candidates, then those two names will automatically be appointed to the two vacant positions. District Representative elections will be held immediately after the alternate Executive Board election
Holiday Food: Thank you again to everyone who helped the Union deliver enough food to feed more than 1,600 employees of the Sheriff’s Office during the first week of December. This Union has consistently given more back to its membership than any other Union in this State. As stated in the past, a Union should never just take dues from its members. A Union should ALWAYS give back to the membership. As long as this Union is at the Broward Sheriff’s Office, we will continue to give back to the membership each year.
Broward Sheriff’s Office Deputies Association Local 6020 900 South State Road 7, Plantation Fl. 33317 (954) 960-3257 Fax (754) 200-8802