Fred Grimm’s Sept. 5 column, Firing kid at Arby’s easier than bad cop, unfairly contributes to an atmosphere of union bashing that is too prevalent today. By not stating the legal reasons why each bad-seed police officer was reinstated, he fails to maintain fair context to support his point.
Disciplinary methods can be complex and detailed processes. If a police suspect is arrested and not read his Miranda rights, a defense attorney is required to build a defense around that violation of rights. If management violates procedures or due process in disciplining an employee, the union is required to make those deficiencies part of the employee’s defense.
I was a firefighter union president for 20 years. I won numerous disciplinary cases because someone in management made legal or procedural mistakes. I would bet that most of the examples cited by Grimm were reinstated for similar errors and violations. Doing the job that is required and expected doesn’t make union officials bad guys, and I’m offended that Grimm portrayed it that way.
Russell R. Chard, Hollywood