D.P.O.A. Scholarship Packages

D.P.O.A. Scholarship Packages are Ready for Pick Up

D.P.O.A. Office 8:30 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.

1938 E. Jefferson

Detroit, Mi. 48207 

ALL APPLICATIONS ARE DUE BACK BY MONDAY APRIL 10, 2017 @ 4:00 PM IN THE D.P.O.A. OFFICE.

any questions or concerns contact the D.P.O.A. Office 313-567-8770

Sergeant-at-Arms Report

Pay boost badly needed to attract and retain police officers

SERGEANT-AT-ARMS REPORT – By LINDA BRODEN

When Mayor Duggan was campaigning for mayor of this great city, if I can recall, he stated that the Detroit Police Officer’s starting pay should be at least $60,000. Well, Mayor Duggan and Chief Craig, we are still waiting. Our salary has not made any improvements in the last several years. We Detroit Police Officers have always worked harder than our surrounding counterparts for so long, for far less pay.

Detroit Police salaries are the lowest of any major cities, with all the take away and increased health insurance, driving our members from the force to better pay and health care. Last year more than half of our members did not have to pay a premium in health care. This year we all have to pay. So that 4 percent raise we recently received must now be utilized in premium costs and co-pays.

The average starting salary in the surrounding suburban departments starts at least at $43,000. They seldom have to run between houses or have to chase after “ray, ray.” The continued decrease in pay and benefits is driving our members away, out of state and to other suburban departments. Our members have been recruited to agencies as far away as Hawaii, Seattle (four from TRU), Denver and Houston. These agencies that are recruiting Detroit’s Finest are getting qualified candidates. We are losing good officers. Recruiting can’t get people in the door fast enough to fill the slots.

During the quarterly period of 2016 the following members have separated from this department – January 2016: 44 members, April 2016: 58, July 2016: 41 and in October 2016: 45.

These officers that are leaving for higher pay are not able to make ends meet on this salary. Most of us that remain have to work at least two jobs to better provide for our families. Most of our members, their second job is the overtime they are sometime forced to work, and some are happy to work it, but others are exhausted.

Just recently the secretary of state imposed a big 20 percent increase in our vehicle registration and the governor a 9 percent tax hike on gas. Plenty of money is being expanded in this City; in a few months there will be lots and lots of foot traffic all around this place. Yes, Detroit is looking great. We will need more and more officers to assist with this greatness.

While Detroit is being made into a first-class city, our members are making second-class peanuts in wages. All we are asking for is at least a measly 15 percent wage hike for our men and women in blue who put their lives on the line each and every day. That will measure up to the 10 PERCENT we lost and the 5 PERCENT that the city is still holding onto from 2012. That is a lot of interest.

The 15 percent increase will almost put us in comparison with a five year officer from Southfield, approximate wage of $62,000, Sterling Heights: $75,500, Warren: $64,000 and Farmington Hills (this is where three of our members just ventured to): $71,400. So, Mayor Mike Duggan and Chief of Police James E. Craig, Detroit’s Finest are waiting. Open the books.

ARTICLE 21: FURLOUGH SELECTION AND CANCELLATION

The drawing for Summer Furlough is Wednesday, Feb. 15. You may elect to sell up to one (1) week of furlough time, five (5) consecutive days per furlough period. The selling of your furlough time shall be at the time of the Furlough draw. If you are sick or disabled IMMEDIATELY prior to your furlough and if you provide medical proof of such illness or disability, the furlough shall be rescheduled to a date that is mutually acceptable to you and the commanding officer.

ON DUTY INJURIES, WHAT INFO IS PROVIDED TO WHOM

If you incurred a duty related injury and you or your partner are conveyed to one of the approved Occupational Health Care Facilities for treatment of the injury or illness, please do not give your home address or your insurance information to the medical facility. If you give them your personal information you may be responsible for that bill. If you get a medical bill that you believe is the City’s responsibility, immediately contact Police Medical and the Association. If you ignore that bill it will end up in collection or garnishment of your wages.

When you are transported to a medical facility either by your partner or EMS, only submit to the admission personnel your name and address where you work with the responsible party being:

CITY OF DETROIT

MEDICAL SECTION

DETROIT PUBLIC SAFETY

HEADQUARTERS

1301 3RD ST., 6TH FLOOR

DETROIT, MI 48226

PHONE: (313) 237-3100

HOPE EACH AND EVERY ONE OF YOU HAS A HEALTHY AND PROSPEROUS NEW YEAR.

QUOTE OF THE QUARTER: “Nobody gets to live life backward, look ahead, that is where your future lies.”

— Ann Landers

Report of Secretary-Treasurer

Year-end pay stub can be helpful with tax prepartion

REPORT OF SECRETARY-TREASURER – By DONNA LATOUF

A very happy and prosperous New Year to all. A reminder to the officers who itemize their deductions on their 2016 income taxes — save your year-end pay stub, paid Dec. 23, 2016, as it has the following useful information:

● Code 44010 — DPOA dues paid for the year

● Gross annual earnings

● Federal, state and city income tax amounts withheld

These amounts are useful in tax preparation. In addition, for those hired after March 1986, “MEDC” deduction should amount to the 1.45 percent of your earnings, contributed to the Medicare system. This should be brought to the attention of your tax preparer. Do not confuse the deduction with your medical insurance deductions, which are listed as “Hospital.”

Please make sure that all your beneficiaries are correct and up to date. Every officer has at least two mandatory life insurances and a pension annuity.

As always, if you need any assistance with any of your life insurance policies, medical health insurance or supplemental insurances under code 40654, contact me at the office.

Questions and assistance with your Medical, Dental and Vision Benefits can be directed to the Benefits Express: 1-855-224-6200.

Condolences to the family of Myron Jarrett, who was killed in the line of duty. Condolences also to the families of officers Hadi Mahmoud and William Hamilton, who both died while active. Our prayers will always remain with you.

In the year 2016, we’ve had 10 classes start the Academy, with a total of 306 placed on payroll. There are currently 86 officers on FMCA’s, and two on military leave.

Recent Department Data

Vice President’s Report

Officers continue to leave for better-paying jobs elsewhere

VICE PRESIDENT’S REPORT – By RON THOMAS

I would like to start off by offering sincere condolences to the families of Cpl. Myron Jarrett, Capt. Ken Steil of the Detroit Police Department and Sgt. Collin Rose of the Wayne State Police Department.

Chief Craig was gracious enough to promote both Jarrett and Steil posthumously. Please bear in mind that these are only ceremonial actions. The DPOA currently is working to have pension benefits for officers killed in the line of duty increased for future officers killed in the line of duty, but this change will take time. Anything we can do for the families of slain officers is never enough.

More time has gone by; hiring and retention is still an issue. Our officers continue to leave for better-paying departments and entities (Seattle, Border Patrol, DEA). Available jobs in law enforcement are at an all-time high due to a national shortage of qualified applicants, and people willing to pursue a career in law enforcement.

Honestly, I don’t blame them. Had I known 20-plus years ago it was going to turn out this way, I wouldn’t have either. These departments and entities all have the same things in common: better pay, better retirement plans, RETIREE HEALTHCARE, better equipment, better training, etc. Yet the city continues to drag its feet and the numbers continue to dwindle. It makes no logical sense for an officer to stay, when they have to go work a second career for 20-plus years so they can have RETIREE HEALTHCARE for the member and their spouse.

When Jones Day came and raped municipal employees of OPEBs (other post employment benefits), the reasoning was we will all be covered under the ACA (Affordable Healthcare Act). Now with “proposed” changes to ACA, and the possible repeal of the act, will RETIREE HEALTHCARE be restored? Don’t hold your breath.

Like I said before, officers are only a number to this organization. Certain promises were made when we were ALL hired and they continue to break their promises. Nothing Jones Day and the bankruptcy did were employee friendly. Hell, they didn’t care, not like they were going to stay here after that. They collected their money and moved on to the next location. Now we are left trying to piece it back together.

Changes to the contract that may work well in the private sector just do not work here. Yes, we have been able to make some changes and modifications here and there, but the major restorations take years to correct.

One thing I have noticed recently is “patrol,” the backbone of police work, is where a majority of discipline comes from. Not only are they the most overworked part of our membership, they are the most scrutinized and monitored by the Department.

Patrol is the most underappreciated essential function that we provide. For the last three years, we have heard the same old BS about obtaining a pay increase/patrol bonus for our front-line police officers, who unselfishly put their lives on the line every day, but that remains unfulfilled.

I have to remind members that we have two full-time attorneys that work directly out of the DPOA office. When served with a Garrity Notice, immediately contact the DPOA office, and your steward, to ensure you will have an attorney present during your interview. Make sure you provide them with the date, time and location of the interview.

Refrain from attending these interviews without an attorney. Whether you are the focus or not, things can quickly change during your interview and make you the focus. Do not put yourself in that situation. Legal representation is provided by the Association, and it is your best interest to take advantage of that. The attorneys can also assist you with any questions you may have.

There seems to be a lot of confusion regarding exactly when Garrity rights are attached. Majority of supervisors do not understand Garrity themselves. When involved in a shooting, or anything similar in nature, and you are “ordered” to answer questions, those responses CANNOT be used against you for criminal proceedings because you are being compelled to answer those questions under conditions of employment. When you are in doubt, simply ask if you are being “ordered” to answer.

Most supervisors think that they are putting you under some type of duress by ordering you to answer questions, but if they understood Garrity V. New Jersey, they would know it is actually protecting your rights. Under NO circumstances can an investigator, detective or corporal “order” you to answer any question.

Investigators, detectives and corporals have no supervisory powers, nor can they order you to do anything. It is imperative that officers understand that to better protect your rights. Regardless of the relationship that you have with your supervisor, please adhere to these rights. Don’t let your supervisor put him, or herself, in a position where they have to unwillingly testify against you because they unknowingly made that mistake.

In closing I would like to wish everyone a Happy New Year and continue to take care and watch over each other. In times like this it is imperative. If you see someone on a traffic stop, check up on them and make sure they are OK. It only takes a moment. It’s better to be safe, and back each other up, rather than wishing you had. Stay safe

President’s Report

We look forward to achieving great things in the coming year

PRESIDENT’S REPORT – By MARK DIAZ

On behalf of the Detroit Polices Officers Association Union leadership, we wish all of our members, our friends, families and the many supporters of our great law enforcement family a safe and wonderful 2017.

This past year was not without its challenges as we made changes within the organization that were long overdue. If we proved anything, it is that where there might be comfort in the status quo, all too often the status quo is not the very best for our members. We must continue to explore ways to improve the services our Union provides for our members. The DPOA leadership is always open to ideas that will better serve our members. If there’s one thing we’ve all seen in the past is some people only have ideas to improve the OUR Union when they’re campaigning. We are Union brothers and sisters together. Improving our Union benefits us all and sharing ideas to improve our Union is an exercise in unity.

We look forward to achieving great things this year on behalf of our membership. We started off on a great note already as I was seated, through legislation, on the MCOLES Board. This prestigious seat was lost by the DPOA in 2011 but through solid lobbying, our seat has been restored. Being the largest Police Department in the State of Michigan, it is imperative we are represented and preserve our position on the MCOLES Board.

The New Year has started off wonderfully with our citizens speaking out in a very loud voice that they support us. The Wayne County Prosecutor’s attacks on the law enforcement community have been answered by our citizens, who declared in that one loud voice that Police Officers Charles Lynem and Chancellor Searcy are NOT criminals!

Not to be outdone, the Honorable Qiana Lillard, in a separate case, declared a mistrial for Officer John McKee and Officer Steve Fultz who the Wayne County Prosecutor was yet again trying to portray as criminals. Let’s not forget though, in Wayne County it isn’t considered an act of terrorism to spray paint on walls messages to kill police officers, nor is it an act of terrorism to post to social media messages directing people to kill all white cops. I believe the response from the Wayne County Prosecutors office was something to the point of it isn’t a crime if it they were in a different area code or something like that. Thank God for Attorney General Bill Schuette, who heard us and picked up where we were failed. Thank God for the jurors, who rendered a decision of NOT GUILTY for Lynem and Searcy in less than a half hour of deliberating. Thank God for Judge Lillard, who immediately identified the inappropriate prosecution of McKee and Fultz and declared a mistrial. Yes, 2017 is looking better already.

We are anxiously waiting the final costing on the request for pricing from the City of Detroit for active member health insurance. As discussed with the Mayor’s Office, when we get a better plan the City will host a sp ecial open enrollment for Public Safety. We sincerely appreciate Mayor Duggan meeting with the DPOA leadership and agreeing to a pay raise inside of the bankruptcy contract but the cost for health insurance in 2017 has not only absorbed that raise we received in January of 2016 but costs more.

With people leaving the Department at a steady pace to seek employment anywhere else that pays their employees properly and provides adequate benefits, I’m afraid the war on attrition is rapidly approaching a point where services to our citizens are being greatly diminished. The solution is simple. Detroit has to start paying more than other police departments and living up to promises to take care of our retirees in their golden years. If not, all of the hard work and investments in the City of Detroit is going to be all for not and in 10 years Detroit will look like it did in the 1990s.

Though last year had its good times, I can’t help but think of the attacks on Police Officers. With the senseless killing of Ken Steil and Myron Jarrett while people throughout our nation protested against police officers accusing us of being criminals, I am hopeful 2017 will find us going in a new and better direction. I am hopeful 2017 will find us going in a direction that does not entail the Wayne County Prosecutors Office waging war on our peacekeepers. I am hopeful 2017 does not find us going in a direction of legislators attacking what’s left of our benefits after bankruptcy stripped so much away. I am hopeful 2017 will find our brothers and sisters coming together and putting radicals and their divisive rhetoric behind us.

Most important, I am hopeful 2017 will be the year all of our brothers and sisters come home safely at the end of their shifts.