State Sets Date for Agency Law Enforcement Services (ALES) Election
Monday, June 13, 2011
PBA of New York State Call for Timely Vote Granted; Announces Launch of Website: www.pbanys.org.
New York State officials today sanctioned an election, and established that it would distribute ballots next month following a request from the Police Benevolent Association of New York State, Inc. (PBA of New York State) to determine union representation for approximately 1200 members of law enforcement working at New York State’s universities and colleges; parks and historic sites; and across the state as environmental conservation officers and forest rangers.
The election, which is under the control of the Public Employment Relations Board (PERB) calls for ballots to be mailed to all eligible members of the Agency Law Enforcement Services (ALES) Unit on July 18.
“For more than five years, ALES members have been working without a contract and waiting for their union leadership to provide certainty and predictability,” said Manuel Vilar, President of the PBA of New York State and a Park Police Sergeant on Long Island. “Today, University and Park Police, EnCon Officers and Forest Rangers know with great certainty that the key to their future is being mailed to them on July 18, and it will open the door to representation that is credible, reliable and fully engaged.”
These recent actions follow a period of extended dissatisfaction with Council 82. In the last month a majority of ALES members requested a vote that would allow the PBA of New York State to represent their interests in matters ranging from state contract negotiations to local grievances. At today’s session, held in PERB’s Colonie-based offices, Council 82 declined to participate, and is seeking to delay the vote.
“Nearly 70 percent of the ALES statewide membership has indicated they want to break with Council 82 – as quickly as possible,” said Dan De Federicis, Executive Director of PBA of New York State. “It appears that Council 82’s attempt to delay the vote reflects its commitment to collecting bi-weekly dues, rather than the intentions and interests and of its members.”
The sanctioning of the election coincides with PBA of New York’s launch of a newly developed website: www.pbanys.org. The site provides an opportunity for ALES unit to receive exclusive member communications; election updates; and access to law-enforcement and union discussion groups.
“Our members are on duty 24/7 from Niagara Falls to Montauk Point and in remote locations across the entire state,” said Vilar. “While not a replacement for face-to-face conversation, an up-to-date and dynamic website is a tool to make real-time communication accessible to virtually every one of our members.”