Lost Wages Related to OWCP Cases

Lost Wages Related to OWCP Cases

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The NBPC has been made aware that injured employees may have been improperly paid for absences under the Federal Employees’ Compensation Act (FECA). If you received payment due to work injury related absences, change of position due to the injury, or a scheduled award, you may have been paid improperly. In cases seen so far, payments failed to properly calculate shift and other premiums including night differential, Sunday pay, Sunday night differential, Holiday pay and AUO/BPAPRA. This could be a substantial amount of unpaid money due to injured employees. Lost wages can be claimed even if you are retired, separated from Service, or have changed positions. There is no time limit to request correction and payment of lost wages.

If you are a bargaining unit member and believe that you have been paid improperly under the FECA for any amount of compensable time, please contact Jonathan Perkins (perkins@bpunion.org). In your email, you must provide:

• OWCP case number
• Date of injury
• Date of birth
• PDF of Earnings and Leave Statements from the date of injury back 12 months
• Dates/time missed from work due to the injury
• if you have your pay stubs from DOL OWCP that would be beneficial as well).

Upon review, if it is determined that you were paid improperly, step by step instructions and a template memo can be provided to support your claim.

Border Patrol agent Killed in Vehicle Accident

Border Patrol agent Killed in Vehicle Accident

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It is with a heavy heart, and deep sadness, that we report the loss of one of our Border Patrol agents. This agent was stationed in the Big Bend Sector and was killed in an automobile accident early this morning. Our thoughts and prayer are with his family.

This tragedy is a reminder that danger often accompanies this profession we have chosen. We hope his family can find comfort in knowing he kept our nation and our communities safe. Please remember him in your prayers and hug your family a little tighter tonight, as we never know when our end of shift could come.

Operation Invisible Shield highlights Border Patrol’s use of force policy

Operation Invisible Shield highlights Border Patrol’s use of force policy

By JULIO MORALES, Staff Writer | Posted: Wednesday, April 13, 2016 1:40 am

IMPERIAL — It should take no more than .38 seconds for a highly trained U.S. Border Patrol agent to determine whether they will have to use force to detain a subject during the course of their duties.

Likewise, it should take an agent the same amount of time to determine whether they are in a position to deploy tactics to help de-escalate an already dangerous situation, said Border Patrol Agent and defensive tactics instructor Alessio Faccin.

“We spend a lot of time teaching agents how to de-escalate a situation,” Faccin said. “It’s probably one of the hardest things we have to do.”

Much like any other law enforcement officer, a Border Patrol agent has to make split-second decisions in possibly dangerous and rapidly evolving circumstances. But unlike many other law enforcement agencies, the Border Patrol has launched on a venture called Operation Invisible Shield that provides the public an opportunity to learn about its use of force policy and training, as well as try their hand at being an agent in the field — albeit from the safety of the sector’s headquarters.

On Saturday, the El Centro Sector hosted a few members of the community and the media to take part in Operation Invisible Shield, so-named to allow the public a glimpse of the faces behind the badges.

Border Patrol officials also took the opportunity to make it clear that such use of force encounters are far from the norm.

“In 90 percent, if not more (of encounters), there is no consideration of use of force,” said Assistant Chief Patrol Agent David Kim.

Locally, the El Centro Sector reported 65 reported use of force incidents in fiscal year 2016, none of which deployed a firearm and 59 of which deployed less lethal action, according to data provided by the agency.

Those figures closely reflect reported incidents from 2015, which also had no reported use of firearms, and 57 reported uses of less lethal action, which can include hand and feet strikes, pepper spray or a baton.

Aside from an agency-issued firearm, Border Patrol agents are also required to carry on their person their choice of a less lethal instrument such as a collapsible baton or pepper spray, or both, officials said.

The agency’s use of force policy and training also makes many references to case law, and in particular two U.S. Supreme Court cases, that has greatly impacted how force can and can’t be deployed to seize a suspect wanted in connection to an alleged crime or investigation.

Agents also must undergo such extensive classroom and defensive tactics training four times a year.

“It’s not a lot, but we’re one of the agencies that do it the most,” Faccin said.

In the last two years, the agency has bolstered its efforts to have agents retain as much of that applicable legal knowledge as possible, he said. Yet, Faccin also acknowledged that such concepts are hardly at the forefront of an agent’s mind when faced with a dangerous situation.

“What I will do in a given situation is determined mainly by the behavior of the subject,” he said.

As part of the interactive public outreach program, participants learn about the “use of force continuum” that governs the level of force an agent can legally deploy in response to corresponding levels of a subject’s compliance or resistance.

Afterward, participants are given the opportunity to put their newly acquired knowledge to the test by taking part in simulated field operations no different from the exercises that agents themselves perform as part of their annual training.

In one training exercise, participants are “armed” with laser-emitting replica firearms and less than lethal instruments and placed in a room with projection screens arranged in a nearly 360 degree panoramic view. As a scenario plays out on screen, participants must decide whether the situation calls for any use of force, or quite possibly deadly use of force.

In another exercise, participants face off against a “suspect” whose behavior is supposed to also test one’s newly learned defensive tactics.

Although he was left a little sore from the physical demands of Operation Invisible Shield, Tomas Oliva said it was nonetheless an eye-opening experience that gave him a newfound appreciation for the work of law enforcement officials.

“I can only imagine the level of training they have to go through to be comfortable in any situation, especially a physically intensive one,” he said.

During the simulated field operation in the projection room, Oliva had the misfortune of shooting an unarmed suspect that had attempted to flee the scene at the exact same time that another suspect had opened fire from an opposite location on the projection screens.

Afterward, he couldn’t help but think that maybe he wasn’t exactly cut out to make such split second life or death decisions.

“It stays with you, and you’re very mindful of it,” said Oliva, who took part in Operation Invisible Shield in his capacity as a senior field representative for Congressman Juan Vargas.

Staff Writer Julio Morales can be reached at 760-337-3415 or at jmorales@ivpressonline.com

Response to NY Times OP-Ed Piece

Response to NY Times Op-Ed Piece

As President of the National Border Patrol Council, the union that represents over 16,500 Border Patrol Agents, I take issue with the editorial published April 5th in reaction to the union’s endorsement of Donald Trump.

As someone who has been involved in border protection for over 18 years, I can tell you the border is not secure and the situation is getting worse. Apprehensions are only one factor that needs to be considered. The fact that the editorial board chose to cherry pick one statistic is not only inaccurate – it is bad journalism.

Let me explain. When I started in the Border Patrol we were apprehending well over 1 million illegal immigrants a year. Almost all of the illegal immigrants were from Mexico and were simply looking for employment in the United States. Although violence did occur, it was the exception not the rule.

That has all changed with the emergence of the Mexican drug cartels. In Mexico, over 150,000 people have been killed in cartel related violence. They have killed police officers, judges, elected officials, and ordinary civilians who have crossed their path with impunity. These same drug cartels responsible for all the violence in Mexico control both the narcotics and illegal immigrant smuggling along our border.

To the cartels, illegal immigrants are simply another product. Currently illegal immigrants from Mexico and Central Americas are paying the drug cartels $10,000 each to be smuggled across the border. Higher value illegal immigrants from the Middle East pay double this figure. The drug cartels are making hundreds of millions of dollars a year from illegal immigrant smuggling and the profit helps to underwrite an operation that is responsible for the drugs on our streets.

The cartel related violence was once confined to Mexico but that is no longer the case. Border Patrol Agents in Arizona have encountered cartel members with automatic weapons more than 50 miles north of the border. Last year a CBP helicopter was shot down in Laredo, Texas by cartel gunmen. These are two things that would have been unimaginable when I started my career with the Border Patrol.

Although apprehensions are down, the type of individual we are apprehending today is entirely different. Approximately 20 percent of the illegal immigrants that we apprehend are criminal aliens. Criminal aliens are illegal immigrants who have been convicted of a felony and have been deported to their home country. We have deported, in many cases multiple times, yet they are right back on our doorstep. This is not hyperbole or scaremongering as you assert in your editorial – it is a fact.

Our union endorsed Donald Trump because he is the only candidate, Democratic or Republican, who is speaking to what is actually going on at the border. He was the only candidate in fact that reached out to seek our endorsement.

Do we agree with every statement Mr. Trump he has made in this campaign – no. Do we like the tenor of this entire campaign – no. But Mr. Trump he has offered to listen about how we can improve border security and that is something that no other candidate in this race has done.

Border Patrol union endorses Trump

Border Patrol union endorses Trump

By JULIO MORALES, Staff Writer | Posted: Wednesday, March 30, 2016 3:59 pm

The National Border Patrol Council, which represents about 16,500 agents nationwide, announced Wednesday that it had endorsed Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump.

The endorsement, which marks the first time the organization has endorsed any presidential candidate, was prompted largely in part by Trump’s pro-military and law enforcement stances, according to a NBPC press release.

The endorsement was the result of recent discussions and a subsequent consensus among the union’s various chapters, said NBPC Local 2554 President Lombardo Amaya.

Although a survey of the agency’s rank and file wasn’t conducted prior to the endorsement, Amaya said that the Local 2554’s board members had discussed the issue among themselves and had arrived at a consensus to endorse Trump based on input from agents in the field.

In contrast to the many of the other presidential candidates who had sought an endorsement, Trump was the only candidate that had made an effort to speak directly with Border Patrol agents, and make a public commitment to support the agents’ efforts to secure the border and help improve their job conditions, Amaya said.

 

http://www.ivpressonline.com/quicknews/border-patrol-union-endorses-trump/article_09f10ad8-f6cb-11e5-8172-13b3204fee66.html

National Border Patrol Council Endorses Donald Trump for President

National Border Patrol Council Endorses Donald Trump for President

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The National Border Patrol Council is the official organization representing our nation’s Border Patrol Agents. We represent 16,500 agents who selflessly serve this country in an environment where our own political leaders try to keep us from doing our jobs.

The NBPC has had a longstanding practice of not endorsing presidential candidates in the primaries. We will not, however, shy away from voicing our opinions as it pertains to border security and the men and women of the United States Border Patrol. As such, we are breaking with our past practice and giving our first-ever endorsement in a presidential primary. We think it is that important: if we do not secure our borders, American communities will continue to suffer at the hands of gangs, cartels and violent criminals preying on the innocent. The lives and security of the American people are at stake, and the National Border Patrol Council will not sit on the sidelines.

As an organization we expect our elected officials to aggressively pursue the interests of the country. America has already tried a young, articulate freshman senator who never created a job as an attorney and under whose watch criminal cartels have been given the freest border reign ever known.

Unlike his opponents, Donald Trump is not a career politician, he is an outsider who has created thousands of jobs, pledged to bring about aggressive pro-American change, and who is completely independent of special interests. We don’t need a person who has the perfect Washington-approved tone, and certainly NOT another establishment politician in the W.H. Indeed, the fact that people are more upset about Mr. Trump’s tone than about the destruction wrought by open borders tells us everything we need to know about the corruption in Washington.

We need a person in the White House who doesn’t fear the media, who doesn’t embrace political correctness, who doesn’t need the money, who is familiar with success, who won’t bow to foreign dictators, who is pro-military and values law enforcement, and who is angry for America and NOT subservient to the interests of other nations. Donald Trump is such a man.

Mr. Trump is as bold and outspoken as other world leaders who put their country’s interests ahead of all else. Americans deserve to benefit for once instead of always paying and apologizing. Our current political establishment has bled this country dry, sees their power evaporating, and isn’t listening to voters who do all the heavy lifting. Trump is opposed by the established powers specifically because they know he is the only candidate who actually threatens the established powers that have betrayed this country.

You can judge a man by his opponents: all the people responsible for the problems plaguing America today are opposing Mr. Trump. It is those without political power – the workers, the law enforcement officers, the everyday families and community members – who are supporting Mr. Trump.

Mr. Trump will take on special interests and embrace the ideas of rank-and-file Border Patrol agents rather than listening to the management yes-men who say whatever they are programmed to say. This is a refreshing change that we have not seen before – and may never see again.

Mr. Trump is correct when he says immigration wouldn’t be at the forefront of this presidential campaign if months ago he hadn’t made some bold and necessary statements. And when the withering media storm ensued he did not back down one iota. That tells you the measure of a man. When the so-called experts said he was too brash and outspoken, and that he would fade away, they were proven wrong. We are confident they will be proven wrong again in November when he becomes President of the United States.

There is no greater physical or economic threat to Americans today than our open border. And there is no greater political threat than the control of Washington by special interests. In view of these threats, the National Border Patrol Council endorses Donald J. Trump for President – and asks the American people to support Mr. Trump in his mission to finally secure the border of the United States of America, before it is too late.

NBPC President Brandon Judd’s March 23rd Testimony Before House Judiciary Committee

NBPC President Brandon Judd’s March 23rd Testimony Before House Judiciary Committee

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President Obama continues to demonstrate that enforcing the law is not his priority. Today NBPC President Brandon Judd testified under oath in front of the House of Representative Judiciary Committee. In his testimony, Judd confirmed the existence of what has become known as “catch and release”. This program directly violates the President’s “Priority Enforcement Guidelines” by refusing to process and deport those who have entered the US illegally after December 31, 2013.

Why have Guidelines if your not going to follow them? Under oath Judd testified that Deputy Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas stated to him ““Why would we NTA those we have no intention of deporting?” He also stated, “We should not place someone in deportation proceedings, when the courts already have a 3-6 year back log.” This group included individuals who entered illegally into after the December 31, 2013 deadline.

Americans are tired of being ignored. In caucuses and primaries across the nation, Americans are voting against the establishment. They are frustrated that they are being ignored. The public has demanded border security for far too long. However, President Obama is tone deaf to their calls. He and his cronies continue to mislead and misinform them as they expand amnesty and weaken enforcement and security.

Five Questions all Americans should be asking:

# 1: If the President was expanding his amnesty programs why not just be straight with the American people? President Obama is an outstanding communicator. If he felt like he was doing was right, he should be confident enough that the American people would understand his reasoning and support his efforts. So why hide the expansion? The reason is the public does not support his continued expansion of amnesty.

#2: Does this expansion put our communities at risk? American’s shake their heads in sorrow and disbelief when they read the heartbreaking stories of five people killed as part of Missouri/Kansas crime spree, or how a daughter was shot while sharing a gorgeous San Francisco day with her dad, or how Border Patrol Agent Javier Vega bravely protected his family as thieves attacked them while they were fishing in South Texas. These tragedies may have been prevented if Obama’s priority was to protect our citizens and not pandering to the ACLU and other pro-illegal immigrant groups. It appears that President Obama’s priority is not and will never be enforcement but amnesty.

#3 : Is the Commissioner power hungry or incompetent? Either he has to go. This hearing should put the spotlight on Commissioner Kerlikowske’s leadership and ability to head U.S. Customs and Border Protection. The Commissioner has demonstrated he is unfit or unable to do the job at hand. Someone has to be accountable.If he was following directives from the President then the President owes the public an explanation why he kept this a secret. If the President was unaware of the program he needs to restore public trust by removing those responsible. It is sad that after seven years, Obama’s has no plan to enforce our nation’s immigrations laws.

# 4 : Why not ask for additional resource to address the court backlog? If the Administration was concerned with the court’s backlog why not request additional funds to expedite the case by either hiring more judges or expanding Operation Streamline. Simply put, the Administration is not be interested in fixing a problem they intentionally created. They have manipulated the situation to expand their amnesty programs without Congressional or pubic consent.

# 5: Isn’t this just a page torn from the “Dreamers Playbook” ? The main argument “Dreamer” made was by no fault of their own they were here illegally and should not be held responsible this act and therefore granted citizenship. It is reasonable that those not issued NTA as part to “Catch and Release” program will make the same claim as part demand for amnesty. The Administration and the Democrats must believe this is good politics.

AT&T Cellular Plan Enrollment Suspended

AT&T Cellular Plan Enrollment Suspended

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The AT&T plan will be suspended until further notice. An influx of members going to AT&T stores and questions sent to AT&T’s general customer service has caused AT&T to reevaluate their position with the program.

In the meantime, please do not go to any stores or call customer service regarding these government plans. They do not have direct access to these plans, cannot answer questions about them, or enroll members in them. The original intent was for it to be strictly run by an NBPC administrator, who would process all applications and equipment.

A petition has been submitted to AT&T and we are awaiting an answer to remedy the situation. If the program is reestablished, we will notify members Local Presidents.  For the time being, all information regarding these plans will be withheld off of social media and websites as requested by AT&T’s corporate offices.

Thank you for understanding.

Andrew Brady

Plan Administrator

The “Green Wall”- Protecting Bad Managers

Local 2554 supports our Border Patrol agents and union representatives that are and have been victims of abuse from these immature and unprofessional managers. The Intimidation, Retaliation, and Reprisal must STOP!

The “Green Wall” – Protecting Bad Managers

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Kuhn

Over the past several years, the Vermont Sector of the Border Patrol has steadily deteriorated in every way imaginable.

The refusal of the Office of Border Patrol to address the myriad of issues has done nothing but emboldened the already poor managers who are trusted with fostering a professional work environment.

The problems are highlighted by Paul Kuhn, one of, if not the worst Patrol Agents in Charge (PAIC) in the entire Border Patrol. Beecher Falls Station has suffered a mass exodus that includes the Deputy Patrol Agent In Charge (DPAIC) busting down to a line agent to get away from PAIC Kuhn. In addition, another agent with nine years in the Patrol transferred there only to walk away from the job after just four days at the station. This has led to manpower issues that not only has compromised national security, but the safety of the agents stuck working there. The Swanton Sector has serious leadership issues and the overarching affect has been a decrease in border security, which is an issue no one should tolerate.

Unfortunately, it does not end with just this one bad manager. It starts at the top with Chief Patrol Agent (CPA) John Pfiefer and works its way down from there. It is wasting taxpayer money that quite frankly the government cannot afford to lose. CPA Pfeifer and his managers routinely ignore Agency policy and in some cases the law. Due to management’s unwillingness to address the problem, the price tag and litigation fees are mounting.

Pfeifer

The situation has become so bad that the National Border Patrol Council (NBPC) will be contracting a private investigator to look into potential witness intimidation tactics on the part of management in the deplorable felony assault case recently filed against Supervisory Border Patrol Agent Bryan McDonald. Although we will wait until we have a full report from one of the most reputable PI firms in the southwest, we will tell you that if early reports are correct, the “Green Wall” culture that is fostered and encouraged by management is alive and well.

The NBPC will not stand idly by and allow Swanton Sector Management to act with impunity by trampling on the rights of the hard working men and women of the Border Patrol to the detriment of border security and this once great nation. The NBPC will continue to bring its substantial resources to bear in this failing sector until all of the issues are properly addressed once and for all.

The NBPC stands unwavering by its members and stewards of Local 2266.

Brandon Judd
President

NBPC President call DHS budget “A Break from Reality”

NBPC president calls DHS budget “A Break from Reality”

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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact: Shawn Moran
National Spokesman
(855) 278-6466 Ext 806
smoran@bpunion.org

NBPC president calls DHS budget “ A Break from Reality”
Cutting 300 Agents Defies Logic

(Feb. 25, 2016) — Americans have been demanding stronger border security for far too long. But at a time of increased threats from ISIS and domestic terrorists, not to mention a flood of unaccompanied minors and family units, the administration’s DHS budget recommendations call for a reduction of 300 agents in FY 2017.

This defies logic, says Brandon Judd, president of the National Border Patrol Council. “Only at DHS can it make sense to reduce Border Patrol agents when our nation is facing threats from foreign and domestic terrorists, our communities are battling a heroin epidemic, and drug cartels are getting more violent as they battle to get their dangerous drugs and contraband into our country.

“The Obama administration, sadly, has made every attempt to dismantle, demoralize and disrupt the Border Patrol and our mission to enforce our nation’s immigration laws,” he added. “Instead of supporting tougher enforcement to deter future waves of illegal entrants, the administration created phantom amnesty programs like DACA and DAPA, along with ‘Catch and Release.’ These programs have only resulted in more people crossing into our nation illegally.”

Now is not the time to weaken America’s first line of defense, Judd said. “Now is the time to invest in the men and women who work tirelessly to keep our communities safe. We need stronger political support, investments in equipment and training, and leaders who understand the challenges of securing our borders.”

Judd also addressed the fact that CBP is currently operating at 1,500 agents below the level mandated by Congress. In addition, the agency must begin planning for the retirement of a large percentage of agents as they approach mandatory retirement at age 57.

Moreover, Judd said, CBP should address the top-heavy supervisor-to-officer ratio before it considers cutting the number of agents in the field. CBP has roughly one supervisor per 4 agents, he said, as opposed to the 1:9 ratio seen at most major police agencies.

“We need less people behind a desk and more agents behind the wheel of the vehicle helping to secure our borders and keep our communities safe,” he said.