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  • President's Message - February 2017
    Updated On: Feb 28, 2017

    Is Miami-Dade Chicago Bound?

    The year 2017 truly started out with a bang. Ten people shot in the first two days of the year and not much fanfare. Certainly no outcries from community activists or organizations that portray themselves as guardians of impoverished areas. No elected official called for town hall meetings. 
    No repetitive news coverage on the issue. But, one good police shoot and the false claims in front of the TV cameras spark an outrage causing all sorts of ill-advised actions to be taken.

    News outlets replayed the false claims ad nauseam, and generated the rehashing of old incidents, already declared justified. Outlandish remarks against the police officer and the department also ensued. And, through all that noise, not a single person who claimed to have seen the shooting on camera has come forward. Not one willing to assist the investigation to prove the officer wrongly shot the perpetrator. Not one, because no one, at least who spoke on camera, saw anything but they already had their five seconds of fame and can laugh about what they said on camera. 

    There is nothing new about these allegations and we will undoubtedly hear more of the same expressions for some time to come. That’s exactly how the problems in the city of Chicago started. Then the officers slowed down proactive enforcement and the murder rate hit record numbers. Now, the same organizations that criticized the police officers’ every action are the very same ones complaining that the officers aren’t doing their jobs. Interesting to say the least.

    Installation of Officers

    Congratulations to all the elected officials installed last month as they embark on their new terms in office. There were too many to try to mention here but a few notable ones were: Miami-Dade Property Appraiser Pedro Garcia; the County Commission Chair Esteban Bovo and Vice Chair Audrey Edmundson; Monroe County State Attorney Dennis Ward; Martin County Sheriff Bill Snyder (former MDPD police officer and former state representative); Palm Beach County Sheriff Ric Bradshaw; and a dear friend Chris Nocco, who is the first incumbent Pasco County Sheriff to run unopposed since before World War II.  

    While some names mentioned may not be from Miami Dade, they are deep-rooted friends to this 
    organization and support law enforcement in immeasurable ways.  

    Legislative Session

    Legislative Committee weeks has commenced in preparation for the upcoming session set to begin in March. Our legislative team is ready to push our issues and fight against hurtful legislation. Pension reform is always on someone’s radar but we will remain vigilant and attempt to slowly restore it as best as possible. 

    One bill that has already been filed by Miami-Dade Senator Frank Artilles is to have an elected sheriff in Miami-Dade County. Thus far, we are the only county, out of 67 Florida counties, that do not have an elected sheriff. We expect strong resistance from the Mayor’s office as they gave last year. The Florida PBA will be putting out updates throughout the session and we will keep you informed. 

    Workers’ Comp

    I have repeatedly mentioned that workers’ comp is not your advocate. I’m referring to every department, every city or county. Their job is to pay out as little as they can and to put you back in service as soon as possible. The problem is that your health may in jeopardy. And once you’re gone, they wash their hands of you and your problems.  

    If you have high blood pressure, as an example, take the steps to file for the Heart Bill. From what I’ve seen, 100% of the time, workers’ comp will say that you don’t qualify, which might not be true. Contact us and we will put you in touch with a worker’s comp specialist lawyer to guide you. And, it costs you nothing. 

    Another example, especially for older members who might be nearing retirement and have ringing in your ears; prepare a first report of injury before you leave. Again, workers’ comp will certainly deny you, but your condition may very well have been caused by the loud noises you have encountered throughout your career (i.e. sirens blaring; gun shots at the firing range, etc.). Your department may be on the hook for hearing aids (which are extremely expensive) for the rest of your life. 

    Simply put, don’t let your employer convince you that because you’re overweight, or smoke, or because of your family history or other nonsense, that you are not qualified. Let someone who is on your side guide you, thus not letting these governments keep money/assistance that rightfully belongs to you.

  • Dade County Police Benevolent Association

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