Advocates for Labor and Progressive Institutions

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Fraternal Order of Police, Lodge 35, Prevails in Maryland Court of Appeals

August 2012

The Maryland Court of Appeals, the state’s highest court, recently upheld the right of Montgomery County Fraternal Order of Police, Lodge 35, to grieve the County’s unilateral rejection of a twenty-year practice allowing Lodge 35’s trainee shop stewards to observe officer interrogations for training purposes. 

With the assistance of Bredhoff & Kaiser, Lodge 35 successfully argued that the union’s right to grieve the unilateral discontinuance of this practice under the applicable collective bargaining agreement is not preempted by the Maryland Law Enforcement Officer’s Bill of Rights (“LEOBR”)—a comprehensive statutory scheme that outlines the procedural rights of individual law enforcement officers who are subject to disciplinary proceedings.  Pursuant to the Court of Appeals’ ruling, Lodge 35 may now proceed to arbitration regarding the merits of this dispute.