NAPO meets with Senator Murkowski's staff to discuss reintroducing the Public Safety Employer - Employee Cooperation ActOctober 10, 2013
On October 9, 2013, NAPO met with Senator Murkowski's (R-AK) Legislative Assistant, Ms. Leila Kimbrell, to discuss reintroducing the Public Safety Employer-Employee Cooperation Act. (Senator Murkowski is a member of the Senate Health, Education, Labor, & Pensions Committee).
During the meeting, NAPO stressed that passing legislation to extend collective bargaining rights to public safety officers is one of our top legislative priorities. NAPO also provided an in-depth summary of the legislation. The following tenets of the bill were highlighted during the meeting:
- The Public Safety Employer-Employee Act would:
- Extend basic collective bargaining rights to state and local public safety officers.
- Give public safety officers the right to bargain over wages, hours, and working conditions.
- Give public safety officers the right to form and join a union or association of their own choosing.
- Prohibit strikes.
- Not call for mandatory arbitration.
- Provide for fact finding and mediation to resolve disputes.
- Not overturn current collective bargaining laws – it would only provide the most basic of collective bargaining rights to those who currently do not have those rights.
- States that offer equal or greater collective bargaining rights would be exempt from this federal statute.
Ms. Kimbrell expressed appreciation for NAPO's explanation of our proposal and plans to bring the issue to Senator Murkowski's attention. Alaska recognizes collective bargaining rights for all public employees. We are hopeful that Senator Murkowski will assist NAPO with efforts to ensure that all public safety officers are afforded the same rights to collectively bargain over wages, hours, and working conditions that public employees in Alaska enjoy.
In addition to discussing the Public Safety Employer-Employee Cooperation Act with Ms. Kimbrell, NAPO took the opportunity to provide background on our organization and discuss other legislative priorities, including passing the National Blue Alert Act of 2013 and the Justice and Mental Health Collaboration Act.
If you have any questions about the Public Safety Employer-Employee Cooperation Act, please contact Melissa Nee at: firstname.lastname@example.org.