About MAP

By Jennifer Gomori, MAP Editor

Woodhaven Police Detective Lt. Gary McSweeney has served in every position on the Local Union Patrol and Command boards, so he took the logical next step when he accepted a MAP Labor Relations Specialist position.

With over two decades of labor relations experience, McSweeney has participated in six contract negotiations and at least 20 grievances. He’s also participated in mediations and arbitrations. “Negotiations directly affect my benefits and I’ve always enjoyed having a hand in that,” he said. “We’ve had a few grievances that have come up and it’s always interesting to negotiate some of that.”

Labor Relations Specialist Gary McSweeney

“I find (mediations and arbitrations) are similar to criminal cases. You have to do research,” he said. “It’s putting your case together to present to a judge or mediator.”

MAP Labor Relations Specialist Jim Steffes encouraged McSweeney to pursue the part-time labor specialist position after learning of his upcoming retirement in December, following 28 years of service with Woodhaven PD. McSweeney will transition to a full-time MAP staff member by January 2021.

“I had a great conversation with (Executive Director) Fred (Timpner) and (Executive Administrator) Julie (Palmquist) and I was offered the position,” McSweeney said.

“We’ve been with MAP a good 10 years,” he said of Woodhaven Command. “That’s been good to have Jim (Steffes) with us the whole time.”

Over the years, McSweeney has learned contract interpretation can be a matter of perspective. “The funniest thing about all that is what side of the table you’re on seems to determine how you interpret the language,” McSweeney said. “At the time you think you have it figured out, then later we read it one way and the City reads it another way.”

“The clearer and the more unambiguous you can be the better it is for everybody,” he said. “The same thing goes for criminal cases. I put more information in my reports to take the ambiguity out of what I’m trying to say.”

Staying safe during COVID-19

By Fred Timpner, MAP Executive Director

This country is facing a state of emergency like no previous generations of Americans have ever faced before. It is frednot the time for politics, blame or recriminations. If one wants to engage in that sort of thing, there will be plenty of time for that later. Now is the time that we all should band together to support the effort to combat this insidious disease.

As first responders and public employees, the very nature of our professions puts us in the forefront of the battle against the spread of COVID-19. Our work puts us in high risk of being exposed, if not infected with the virus.

As such we are advising everyone to put your safety and that of your family first. We are insisting for those of us who continue to work, the Employer provide the appropriate personal protection equipment (PPE) recommended by the CDC and the medical profession. In other words, N95 or greater masks, disinfectant etc.

If the Employer balks at issuing appropriate PPE or refuses to follow CDC guidelines, then please notify your labor representative immediately so that we may bring pressure to force the Employer to comply. After all, isn’t it to their advantage to see to it that we are protected? We are of no use if we become sick or infected. We then become spreaders of the virus infecting others we come into contact with, including our Employer, co-workers and members of the public.

By Jennifer Gomori, MAP Editor

Cross trained as a police officer and firefighter, Beverly Hills Public Safety Lt. Chad Trussler has served his department in a variety of capacities and his comrades as a local Union board member.

Over the past 20 years Trussler has accumulated an abundance of police, firefighting and EMS experience in addition to representing local members. Now he’s taking his knowledge to the next level as a part-time MAP Labor Relations Specialist.

Labor Relations Specialist Chad Trussler

A MAP member for the past 13 years, Trussler served on the Beverly Hills Public Safety Officers Association MAP local union board as a former Steward and Treasurer and has been Local Union President for Beverly Hills Command Officers Association since 2015.

“The Command unit was always MAP since the beginning,” Trussler said. “I was pleased to come back to MAP when I was promoted to Sergeant in 2015. I’ve been the Local Union President for five years.”

A Lieutenant since 2017, Trussler has been with Beverly Hills Public Safety Department since January 2001, serving as a Detective/Public Safety Officer, Sergeant and Detective Sergeant. Prior to that, he served as a Romeo Village Police Officer and Pleasant Ridge Police Officer.

“I’ve always been attracted to labor and I’ve been an active member,” Trussler said. “I come from a family that benefited from being in unions. My great grandfather was actively involved in railroad union. My father was in the UAW. My mother was involved in the union in Utica Schools and my grandfather and father were members of Plumbers Local Union #98.”

The first in his family to become a Public Safety Officer, Trussler has a vast array of experience including serving as a former Field Training Officer (FTO) and current FTO Coordinator and Commander. As a state licensed Medical First Responder, he has responded to hundreds of medical complaints. He is a Certified Taser Instructor and ALICE Instructor, having achieved several law enforcement and firefighting certifications. Trussler has conducted and supervised firefighting and police operations, conducted training, written grants for equipment and projects, and presented public safety information during public events. He also served as a School Resource Officer for Birmingham Public Schools for four years.

By Jennifer Gomori, MAP Editor

MAP’s new Legal Counsel Bryan Davis may be young, but he’s accomplished, earning a bachelor’s degree from Michigan State University (MSU), two master’s degrees, a law degree and working on a third master’s degree.

MAP Legal Counsel Bryan Davis

With a bachelor’s degree in Psychology, a master’s in Rehabilitation Counseling, a Master of Jurisprudence in Legal Doctrine and Analysis and a Juris Doctorate, the 26-year-old joked, “I’ve been a lifelong Michigan State student.” Davis is continuing to pursue a master’s in Human Resources and Labor Relations at MSU. However, his experiences beyond the classroom are just as noteworthy.

He worked as an intern in Career Planning and Consultation for Peckham, Inc., a community rehabilitation organization helping individuals with disabilities find employment. He also participated in Spartan Project SEARCH at MSU, which focuses on employment readiness for individuals with developmental disabilities. “High school students were utilizing this program for their final year in order to gain employment skills to find work after graduation,” Davis said.

While he didn’t take a traditional route into labor law, he said, “I found the Rehab Counseling master’s program and did get a lot of background in employment readiness for individuals with disabilities. A lot of the stuff I learned focused on disability rights in general, which are all things that I took with me when I got to law school.”

He understands the importance of unions when it comes to protecting workers’ rights. “My family has a pretty substantial relationship with unions,” Davis said. “My father, all of his brothers and his father were all carpenters. To this day my dad is still a business agent for the Local 687. “

“The bulk of my courses I tried to focus in labor and employment law,” Davis said of his Juris Doctorate. He put his law degree to work for the Michigan Employment Relations Commission (MERC) from January to October 2019. “A professor at MSU, Mary Bedikian suggested I reach out because the Bureau of Employment Relations was looking for a law clerk. I was fortunate enough to be offered a position there,” Davis said.