GN; Apparently The state don’t like to lose especially when the union that wins shares that information with its thousands of members. The NEPBA Union just won a case and they received a request from people within the Gov’t that the Union not share that info. The Unions Lawyer says that will not happen.
It is my understanding that your firm’s website contains information about the recent Award in the Coughlin arbitration, and a link to the Award itself.
As I indicated in my email to the American Arbitration Association last week, it is the MSO’s position that the Award should not be publicly disseminated. This is consistent with the proposed protective order that I understand has been circulated to Attorney Pfaff, Coughlin’s attorney in the civil litigation.
In addition, the AG’s Office is in the process of filing a privilege log in the civil litigation that lists the Award, both of the arbitration briefs, and other documents that contain confidential, personnel information about Coughlin. Your publicly posting information about the Award, and the Award itself, will make it more difficult to protect Coughlin’s personnel information.
For these reasons, and in the interest of mutual cooperation in the civil litigation, I’m asking that you cease dissemination of this material.
GN: Union Lawyers reply:
Whether AAA publishes or not has no effect on the union. The union and not the officer was the party to this case. The union is not a party to the civil case. I know of nothing that prohibits the Union or my office from posting the decision and believe it is in no way against Lt Coughlin’s interests, given the initial negative findings released by the MSO that appear to have formed the basis for the complaint in this case. The union has a policy of transparency and posts these cases as we have obligations to the membership.
I will be happy to discuss with Atty Pfaff next week if he wants.
Gary G. Nolan
GN: When I asked The Unions Executive Director Jerry Flynn for his reaction to the request to stop sharing information, in part, this was his emailed response.
The union is not part and parcel to any civil action regarding any member and furthermore the NEPBA is the charging party NOT the individual member.
In addition, AAA publishes all their findings and as a labor organization with full transparency the NEPBA also publishes our “WINS” and loses on our website, on social media sites and thru various law enforcement/labor law contacts.
As you are well aware, we work very hard to protect the rights and benefits of our members and they pay us to protect them from all sorts of discipline, including frivolous acts of discipline by their employer and the mere fact that MSO is once again found to be negligent in it’s decision making process is NOT our problem.
With regards to a Ms. Heather Hall’s email below requesting we cease dissemination of this material, I don’t know who she is or what she does; but last I checked she doesn’t work for NEPBA and we have NO desire to entertain her request that we “cease dissemination of this material”.
Perhaps, if the MSO refrains from administering discipline against innocent members, we wouldn’t have to litigate frivolous case and the MSO wouldn’t have to worry about those cases being made public and their findings being published.