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Buena Vista, FL is the Site of WIFLE’s 2012
Leadership Training Conference

WIFLE has selected the Buena Vista Palace Hotel in Buena Vista, FL as the site of the 2012 Leadership Training Conference.  Ideally located on the shores of Lake Buena Vista, the hotel is in the WALT DISNEY WORLD® Resort.  Planning is underway to make this next training conference as vibrant and productive as 2011.  The hotel offers plenty of state-of-the-art conference and meeting venues, plus upscale entertainment, shops, and restaurants are conveniently situated across the street.

Mark this one on your calendar!  Stay tuned to www.wifle.org for future updates on the 2012 Leadership Training Conference.  Don’t miss 2012 with WIFLE in Orlando.  

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“Pauley Perrette of the hit TV show “NCIS” at WIFLE Awards Banquet”

WIFLE’s 12th Annual Leadership Training Conference a Rousing Success!

WIFLE’s 12th Annual Training Conference in June 2011 in Long Beach, California, exceeded all our expectations.  The 695 attendees made it the largest conference in WIFLE history and, from the Pre-Conference training sessions to the Post Training Celebration at the Laugh Factory, everyone enjoyed a week of informative training, agency meetings, and a myriad of exciting networking opportunities.

Highlights of the conference included:

The Julie Y. Cross Memorial Golf Tournament, held at the beautiful SeaCliff Country Club in Huntington Beach, CA, and the Silent Auction raised over $13,000 for the WIFLE Scholarship Fund.

WIFLE, in partnership with Deloitte, sponsored the launch of its Executive Leadership Institute.  Due to attendee demand, the Institute’s initial seminar (limited to GS-14/15 and SES attendees) was increased to 65 participants. 

The gala Awards Banquet, held on Wednesday evening, featured Director Stacia A. Hylton of the United States Marshals Service as the Keynote Speaker.  Twenty-five WIFLE awards were presented at the banquet, as well as the announcement of the 2011 scholarship winners.  WIFLE awarded $13,000 to the six 2011 scholarship recipients.  To the delight of all those present, special guest Pauley Perrette, who plays Abby Scuito on the CBS hit television show “NCIS”, attended both the VIP reception and the WIFLE Awards Banquet.

The United States Marshals Service, in collaboration with WIFLE, held a successful Recruitment and Career Day, including special workshop sessions for prospective applicants.  The event was open to the public and attracted over 150 participants.

Photographs from the conference are available on-line at www.shutterfly.com.  Please use email address wiflelongbeach@aol.com and password:  longbeach2011 to log in.

WIFLE thanks all the attendees, speakers and vendors for making the conference such a success!

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Marist College Offers Special Scholarships 
for WIFLE Members

If you’ve been thinking about a return to school to pursue a graduate degree, this couldn’t be a better time.  Marist College’s 100% online Master of Public Administration for Law Enforcement and Emergency Services program will prepare you for your next career step – and ,with Marist’s generous scholarships for WIFLE members, you’ll save more than 50% off the standard tuition rate.  Classes start in January 2012, with an application deadline of December 1.  

The Marist MPA also offers students the choice of three distinct concentrations as part of their graduate program.  Each three-course concentration can be completed 100% online and allows you to specialize in a particular area of interest – Public Management, Ethical Leadership, or Health Care Administration.

Why should WIFLE members consider the Master of Public Administration degree?  The skills and knowledge attained through these programs typically stress three important areas:

1)      understanding the political, legal, ethical and social context of public sector administration;

2)      achieving proficiency in a full range of management techniques as well as developing an understanding of organizational behavior; and

3)      developing the ability to apply quantitative and qualitative methodologies to solve important problems, conduct policy analysis, and program evaluations.

While these skills are important for advancement within the law enforcement field they are also valuable for public safety leadership positions within education, health care, government, and many other fields.

Marist College, a WIFLE-endorsed academic partner, has offered the MPA since 1980 and, for 20 years, has partnered with the New York Police Department and the New York State Police to deliver the program to their academies.  Marist also offers a 100% online MPA for law enforcement.  This program is designed exclusively for law enforcement and emergency services personnel and students represent a diverse mix of professionals from local, state, and federal agencies throughout the nation.  This combination of experience provides for a rich and beneficial learning environment and allows students the opportunity to widen their professional networks.

The online law enforcement MPA provides a special scholarship reducing the tuition cost to $333 per credit ($999 per course) for WIFLE members.  This represents a savings of over 50% from Marist’s standard tuition of $2,085 per course and results in a total tuition cost of approximately $13,000.  Classes start every January and September.  

If you have any questions about the online law enforcement MPA or any of Marist’s other programs, please contact Brian Scott or Laura Zurowski at 888-877-7900, or via email at graduate@marist.edu.  Contact us to learn how obtaining a graduate degree in Public Administration (MPA) can help differentiate you from the competition and provide valuable management and leadership skills. 

(URL link:  www.marist.edu/admission/graduate/partnerships)

About Marist College:
The Marist campus is located on the Hudson River midway between New York City and Albany. Founded in 1929, the College is accredited by the Middle States Association of Colleges and recognized by the U.S. Department of Education. The Princeton Review named Marist one of the best 368 colleges in the country and for seventeen years, U.S. News & World Report has consistently ranked Marist in its top tier. The College offers over 50 undergraduate degrees and 11 graduate programs, many of which can be completed online.

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As part of its partnership with WIFLE, FEDagent includes a news column in WIFLE-eNews to provide members with the latest news in federal law enforcement.  CLICK HERE for the latest (PDF format).

Hot off the Press!!! The Ultimate Career Survival Guide
By June Werdlow Rogers, PhD

I’m still writing about right.  Before moving on to another project, I felt compelled to rewrite my first book and ethical guide for criminal justice majors and recruits.  Now it’s “smaller and better.”  In addition to being more concise, there are more Life Application Exercises, a new chapter on Electronic Communications (Facebook, text messages, etc.), and a new publisher.  If you know anyone trying to break into the business, they need this book!

My heart sank.  There was no way to reach her now.  The local who had almost been killed working along side us simply was not going to be hired - no matter how hard she worked, how good she was or how much I pushed.  And the reason was even more implausible and upsetting - fellow law enforcement officers had misled her.

It turns out way back when the local graduated and was seeking employment, some cop friends told her not to be forthright about marijuana use.  Since it had happened when she was a teen only a couple of times, and therefore regarded as experimental, the local probably would have still gotten the job.  But since she lied on the application and the first prospective employer found out - they didn’t hire her because she was untruthful.  She’d learned her lesson, and from that point on she told the truth and got the next job. But when our background check identified the discrepancy - there was just no way to erase the lie and so my hands were tied.

That heart-breaking story is just one among the many that prompted me to write a book to warn young people about the importance of wholesome living and ethical decision-making - especially if they’re planning on a career in federal law enforcement.  I am convinced that any one of you could have written Now Hiring Criminal Justice Professionals, An Insider’s Tips on Seizing the Ethical Edge.  There’s a section in the book that contains all of the advice you already give those you mentor about avoiding drugs; proper comportment on social networking sites; and eliminating criminal associations, just to mention a few.  There’s a segment on what to expect during the application and background processes.  And the last part contains career advice and personal exercises designed to facilitate thriving and surviving to retirement with your integrity in tact. 

Where you are, among the elite ranks of federal law enforcement is a major accomplishment in and of itself.  You were subjected to a rigorous background investigation and passed!  A poll reveals that many believe yours is a model politicians should strive for.  Stand tall in the knowledge that even many of the elected officials that make decisions about you and your agencies are not held to the highest standards that you are.  In the words of the final section of my book: “you got it, now keep it!”   

If you are looking for some private professional development at your own pace; want to give someone you are mentoring a gift that will guide them in the right direction; or just want to add to your personal library, check out the ordering information for Now Hiring Criminal Justice Professionals, An Insider’s Tips for Seizing the Ethical Edge using the following links: CablePublishing or Amazon.

The Cause and Effect of Secondary Traumatic Stress
by Federal Employee Defense Services (FEDS)
Provider of Professional Liability Coverage for WIFLE Members

On Monday August 22, 2011, a California man shot and killed himself right in front of a police officer.  According to the Orange County Register, while the officer was questioning the man during a routine vehicle stop, the man abruptly jumped into his car and shot himself in the head with a handgun in his vehicle.  A few months prior, another officer also witnessed a handgun to the head suicide while pursuing a subject on foot through an alleyway.  These events should serve as a powerful reminder that at some point in your career in law enforcement, you will be impacted very seriously by your work and you will have to recognize and employ strategies to protect yourself from compassion fatigue, vicarious traumatization, post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), and/or job burnout – all terms that are also often associated with secondary trauma.

You are not immune - and you can't un-see this type of tragedy!  So, understanding and recognizing your exposure to and the potential implications of secondary traumatic stress is critical in warding off the effects so many in law enforcement choose to ignore – or deal with using particular ‘coping strategies’ that often make things worse. 

Extremely simplified, secondary trauma is your exposure to victims of disaster and the traumatic events of others, often defined by three contributing factors: 1) exposure to the stories (or images) of multiple disaster victims, 2) your empathic sensitivity to their suffering, and 3) any unresolved emotional issues that relate to the suffering seen.  You have some control over the 3rd factor, however, the first two factors are outside of your control and inevitable for most who choose careers in law enforcement. 

Secondary traumatic stress results from having knowledge of or responding to a traumatizing event that has been experienced by another individual and the stress from witnessing, helping or wanting to help.  Secondary traumatic stress is nearly identical to PTSD with the exception that the exposure to the stressor is indirect – such as law enforcement officers working on crimes against children or sex crimes; border patrol agents enforcing laws and complying with the agency’s mission while empathizing with a non-criminal’s desperate desire; or your role in a mass response to a serious critical incident defined by a unique set of circumstances in which death is likely to occur, if not imminent (such as a suicide, shooting, hostage, or terrorist situation similar to that of 9/11). 

Workload pressures, time constraints, and ineffective procedures – these are typical work associated stresses not confined to law enforcement personnel.  These types of stresses are generally short term and are resolved after the completion of a project, a vacation, a transfer, etc.   Secondary traumatic stress, which is prevalent among law enforcement personnel, cannot be avoided by implementing these same stress reducing strategies.  And unfortunately, the devastating effects of unrecognized or untreated secondary traumatic stress include the loss of your family values and connections, healthy relationships, and even the ability to continue to do your job.  Alcohol abuse as well as the onset of depression or depressive episodes leading to complications in personal relationships or the ability Article by Federal Employees Defense Services (FEDS) to do the job is often triggered by the exposure to secondary trauma.  Furthermore, personality traits common amongst those in law enforcement - including (whether stereotypes or not) the over protectiveness of family members, the constant hyper vigilance and the divided loyalty between work and family - are traits that play an important role in job stress and exposure to secondary trauma in law enforcement officials.  When concerns for personal safety, mistrust of instincts, and disruptions in basic beliefs, assumptions and expectations of yourself become distorted, your career then becomes at risk.

Believing that you are stronger than those, or more experienced than those affected by this type of stress is also extremely common – everyone thinks it won’t happen to them.  And unlike burnout prevailing more amongst young law enforcement officers, secondary trauma can have a negative impact at any time throughout your career.  Many in this field cannot or will not be able to recognize the emotional implications of secondary traumatic stress in themselves.  If you work in the law enforcement profession, expect this - and watch for the signs in your co-workers – regardless of their time spent in this field.

For many exposed individuals, participation in well-run Critical Incident Stress Debriefing groups can help resolve upsetting experiences quickly, as long as the participation is voluntary.  Group debriefings may be adequate for most, but brief individual sessions might be needed for 10 – 20% of the group.  In fact, one value of debriefing groups is to help identify those employees needing additional attention.  Support, understanding and expertise in specialized trauma treatment are available - take advantage of and encourage others to seek help through the Employee Assistance Program (EAP) or other agency programs.  Remember, it is repeated and emphatic exposure that causes work-related, secondary trauma; so while a current incident may have a minimal effect on you, it could be the turning point for your coworker. 


Clean Record Agreements: Expectations and Exceptions
By Peter J. Jeffrey, Esq., Member and Director of Litigation, and 
Kelly S. Kylis, Law Clerk 
Mahoney & Jeffrey, PLLC,
The Federal Employee’s Law Firm®

Clean record agreements are very common in settlements of federal sector employee terminations.  These agreements generally require, in part, that an agency expunge any records of proposed or effectuated adverse action (e.g., termination) from the employee’s official personnel folder (OPF) and replace those records with an SF-50 reflecting the employee’s voluntary resignation for personal reasons.  The agency is then further obligated to give only a neutral reference to prospective new employers.

The United States Merit Systems Protection Board (MSPB) and the Federal Circuit Court of Appeals have upheld a broad policy of nondisclosure on the part of the agency with regard to these clean record agreements.  Generally, the agency cannot disclose anything about the rescinded adverse action to prospective employers, and must only represent the information that is reflected on the official SF-50.  In addition, the MSPB has held that a clean record agreement includes an implied provision requiring the agency not to disclose information to third parties even if such provision is not expressly stated.  See Doe v. Dep’t of the Army, 116 MSPR 160 (2011). 

However, there is an important public policy exception to the broad rule of nondisclosure.  If there exists a public interest in disclosure that outweighs the employee’s interest in enforcement of the settlement agreement, then the agency may disclose that information.  See Gizzarellli v. Dep’t of the Army, 90 MSPR 269 (2001). 

 

For example, in Gizzarelli, the parties resolved a removal appeal with a settlement agreement that provided, among other things, that the Department of the Army would only provide prospective employers with the information about Ms. Gizzarelli permitted under 5 C.F.R. § 293.311(a). See id.,¶ 2.  Thereafter, when Ms. Gizzarelli was appointed to a position with another federal agency and was subjected to an OPM background investigation, the Army's Crime Records Center provided to OPM a Military Police report which stated that Ms. Gizzarelli had acknowledged stealing government property, transporting the stolen property in a government-owned vehicle, and using agency employees to remodel her home. See id., ¶¶ 2-4.  Thus the MSPB found that under the circumstances in the Gizzarelli matter, public policy overrides the terms of the settlement agreement. See id., ¶ 15.  This public policy exception also applies to background investigations for security clearances and Giglio reviews.  See Cunningham v. OPM, 110 MSPR 398 (2009); see also Davis v. Dep’t of the Treasury, 306 Fed. Appx. 596, 599 (Fed. Cir. 2009).  However, misconduct or performance-based issues are not covered by this public policy exception.  See Cunningham v. OPM, 110 MSPR 398 (2009). 

Although in many cases a clean record agreement may be the best deal for a terminated employee, it is important to note that a “neutral reference” can still have a negative impact and raise red flags to prospective employers.  The best way for an employee to protect herself under such an agreement is to make sure that the agreement provisions are drafted with as much specificity as possible, even though the agreements will generally be construed broadly.  For example, the agreement should specifically state what information the agency can disclose to third parties (e.g., position title, dates of employment, salary).  Further, the agreement should include instructions that the human resources department, NOT the immediate supervisor or co-workers, will serve as the point of contact to disclose such information.  Moreover, given the public policy exception to the broad rule of nondisclosure, and the requirement that an applicant for a security clearance authorize such disclosure, a clean record agreement may still not cure a Giglio­ impairment or ineligibility for access to classified information.

Because settlement agreements are binding contracts between the agency and the employee, the principles of contract law apply and the plain meaning of the words in the agreement only will be specifically enforced.  Therefore, in clean record agreements, specificity is the key to a proper and effective settlement.

If you have any questions regarding the drafting and enforcement of settlement agreements, contact Mahoney & Jeffrey, PLLC, at 202-312-7100 or www.MahoneyJeffrey.com.

The information contained in this article is of a general nature and is subject to change; it is not meant to serve as legal advice in any particular situation.  For specific legal advice, the author recommends you consult a licensed attorney who is knowledgeable about the area of law in question.

Federal Benefits Open Season
by Saundra Harman

The Federal Benefits Open Season will occur this year as usual mid-November through mid-December (November 14, 2011 through December 12, 2011).  However, there is a lot of information currently available and things to consider well before the open season.  It is no longer just about your Federal Employees Health Benefits (FEHB).  You should reevaluate your FEHB coverage, but during the same open season you need to decide on your Flexible Spending Account (FSA) (both Health Care and Dependent Care) and your Federal Employees’ Dental and Vision Insurance Program (FEDVIP) coverage.

The following is a checklist for the 2012 Plan Year:

2011 Open Season Checklist for 2012 Plan Year

 

Federal Flexible Spending Account Program (FSAFEDS)

Federal Employees Dental and Vision Insurance Program (FEDVIP)

Federal Employees Health Benefits Program (FEHB)

Materials You May Need

Access to www.FSAFEDS.com

 

Access to www.opm.gov/insure

 

Guide to Federal Benefits www.opm.gov/insure/health/planinfo/guides/index.asp

 

Want to read more about this Program?  Go to www.opm.gov/insure and under “Quick Links” click on Federal Benefits FastFacts.

 

Dental or vision plan brochure

 

Guide to Federal Benefits www.opm.gov/insure/health/planinfo/guides/index.asp

 

Access to www.opm.gov/insure

 

Access to www.BENEFEDS.com and your password

 

Want to read more about this Program?  Go to www.opm.gov/insure and under “Quick Links” click on Federal Benefits FastFacts.

 

Health plan brochure

 

Guide to Federal Benefits www.opm.gov/insure/health/planinfo/guides/index.asp

 

Access to www.opm.gov/insure

 

Your password for electronic enrollment systems (if required by your agency)

 

Want to read more about this Program?  Go to www.opm.gov/insure and under “Quick Links” click on Federal Benefits FastFacts.

 

Getting Started

Estimate what your annual health/dependent care out-of-pocket expenses run each year.

 

If you have predictable dental or vision expenses for you or your family, first see whether your health insurance plan covers them.

 

Check to see if your current health plan is leaving the Program next year or if its service area is changing.

 

Check the premium you will pay next year for your current health plan.

 

Open Season runs from November 14 through December 12, 2011.

The 2012 premiums will be available at www.opm.gov/insure in early October.

The 2012 Plan information section at www.opm.gov/insure will be available in early November.

 

Aging in Place with the Federal Long Term Care Insurance Program

Long term care is ongoing assistance with some of the most basic activities of daily living such as eating, bathing, dressing, or getting in and out of bed or a chair.  The need most often stems from disability, chronic illness, or cognitive impairment (such as Alzheimer's disease), and it is far more common than most people think.

The term long term care used to be synonymous with nursing home care, but nowadays people have more and more options and many have found solutions outside of the nursing home.  Armed with the right tools and equipment, along with quality care provided by formal and informal caregivers, numerous care recipients are now able to remain at home, where they most want to be.

Unfortunately, not everyone plans ahead for long term care, or if they do, they are unable to save enough money to pay for the tools or services that they need or want, severely limiting their options.  In order to help Federal employees and their qualified relatives, the U.S. Office of Personnel Management sponsors the Federal Long Term Care Insurance Program (FLTCIP).

Here is a brief look at some of the FLTCIP's most popular benefits:

  • Services provided by formal and informal caregivers at your home are reimbursed up to 100% of the daily benefit amount, which is the maximum amount the insurance will pay for a single day of long term care services.  When informal care is provided by family, services are reimbursed up to 500 days in an enrollee's lifetime.
  • The stay-at-home benefit allows for care planning visits, modifications to your home (such as installing a wheelchair ramp or handle bars in your bath), emergency medical response systems, durable medical equipment, caregiver training (training an informal caregiver to perform personal care services at the enrollee's home), and home safety checks.
  • Respite services are covered up to 30 times your daily benefit amount per calendar year.  This means that if a friend or family member is providing your care, the FLTCIP will pay for formal services so that your caregiver can take a break from his/her caregiving responsibilities.

For a detailed listing of benefits, visit www.LTCFEDS.com/programdetails/index.html.

In considering whether the FLTCIP is right for you, think about how you would like to receive care and who you would want to provide it if the need were to arise.  Keep in mind that even when home care is provided by a licensed professional, a small amount of informal assistance can often make the difference in whether you are able to stay at home or need to move to a facility setting.  And being able to reimburse your informal caregiver can sometimes make the difference in whether he or she is able to provide the care you need.

More about the FLTCIP

Established by an act of Congress in 2000, and overseen by the U.S. Office of Personnel Management, the FLTCIP is designed to meet the specific needs of the Federal family.* The FLTCIP provides industry-leading benefits and offers flexible options that allow enrollees to tailor coverage to meet their needs.

To learn more about the FLTCIP's features and benefits, visit www.LTCFEDS.com, or call us at 1-800-LTC-FEDS (1-800-582-3337) TTY 1-800-843-3557.  A certified long term care insurance consultant will speak with you about your particular situation, your coverage options, and the application process, and of course will answer any questions you may have.

*Certain medical conditions, or combinations of conditions, will prevent some people from being approved for coverage. You need to apply to find out if you are eligible for this coverage.

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Calibre Press to Present the Bulletproof Mind Seminar by Lt. Col. Dave Grossman

Calibre Press has partnered with Lt. Col. Dave Grossman to offer a two-day Bulletproof Mind seminar.  Because of the partnership between WIFLE and Calibre Press, WIFLE members receive a 20 percent discount to attend any Bulletproof Mind seminar scheduled throughout the United States.

Col. Grossman is a former West Point psychology professor, professor of military science, and an Army ranger.  He is one of the nation’s leading law enforcement trainers and is the author of the Pulitzer-nominated book “On Killing”.  He has served as a trainer and keynote for all major national and international law enforcement training organizations (including FLETC, IALEFI, ASLET, NTOA and PPCT) and has taught the representatives of literally thousands of federal and regional agencies in the U.S., Canada, New Zealand, and Australia.

Among the topics covered in the Bulletproof Mind seminar are:

  • Post traumatic stress indicators and management
  • Surviving gunshot wounds
  • Active shooter response
  • The Sheepdog/Warrior mentality
  • What if our firearms don’t work
  • Combat preparation for your spouse
  • The killing enabling process
  • Survivor guilt
  • School & workplace violence and terror
  • The new Killer in the 21st century
  • Asymmetrical warfare
  • Violent visual imagery
  • Combating the mindset created in children by violent images and games


The next Bulletproof Mind seminars are scheduled for:

October 20-21
Georgia Tech Research Institute GTRI Conference Center
Atlanta, GA
Hosted by: Atlanta Police Department

December 13-14
Fort Worth Convention Center Fort Worth Convention Center, Fort Worth, TX
Hosted by: Fort Worth Police Department

To learn more or to register, please contact Kisty Fairchild at Calibre Press at 1-800-323-0037 Ext. 5316 or e-mail kisty.fairchild@calibrepress.com

Don’t Miss the 9/11 Exhibit at the Smithsonian

To commemorate the 10-year anniversary of 9/11, the Smithsonian’s National Museum of American History will present an exhibit, “September 11: Remembrance and Reflection.”  The display will be open to the public from September 3-11, 2011, and feature artifacts from the World Trade Center, the Pentagon, Shanksville, PA, and the Transportation Security Administration. 

WIFLE, Inc. Vice President Kimberley Thompson of the Federal Air Marshal Service will be a FAM “Curator” and available to answer questions.  She will be on duty at the display, located in the Museum’s Hall of Instruments on the third floor, on September 3, 6, and 11.  Stop by to see the exhibit and say “hello” to Kimberley.

More details at: http://americanhistory.si.edu/september11/


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WIFLE Travels to Curacao for Presentation

WIFLE Foundation President Margaret Moore travels to Curacao on September 3 to speak on the status of women in law enforcement in the United States.  The Caribbean women in police agencies are celebrating their 40th anniversary that women have been allowed to serve as police officers.

WIFLE assisted the Caribbean women police in establishing a non-profit organization to offer leadership training seminars to their colleagues and serve as a support network.  Cassandra Martha, Curacao Police Department and President of the MUA (Caribbean police women’s organization), invited President Moore to attend the event as a featured speaker.  WIFLE is honored to stand with our sisters in law enforcement in the Caribbean and to celebrate their contributions.

 


WIFLE
You can reach WIFLE in several ways:
 
Mail: WIFLE
2200 Wilson Boulevard
Suite 102, PMB-204
Arlington, VA 22201-3324
Tele: 301-805-2180
Fax: 301-560-8836
Email: membership@wifle.org
Website: www.WIFLE.org