July 20, 2020
As America Celebrates National Probation, Parole, & Pretrial Week, Board of Supervisors To Consider Ballot Measure to De-Fund Public Safety

Op-Ed: Reimagining Justice In Our Communities
by Hans Liang, President, AFSCME Local 685
In this time of reimagining community safety and rehabilitation of those who break the law, there is considerable debate on the appropriate ongoing role of police officers, social workers, and mental health workers. These discussions are critical; however, they omit one spoke in the wheel – the probation officers who dutifully serve the community in the chasm among these three disciplines.

Supervisors Kuehl & Solis Introduce Motion to Defund Public Safety
On Tuesday, July 21, the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors will consider a motion by Supervisors Kuehl and Solis to place “an amendment to the Charter of the County of Los Angeles to set a baseline minimum threshold of at least 10%, phased in by 2024, of our locally generated unrestricted revenues in the general fund (“Net County Cost”) to be allocated on an annual basis for the following primary purposes:

  1. Direct Community Investment
  2. Alternatives to Incarceration

You can watch or listen live to tomorrow’s Board meeting, which starts at 9:30 AM, here:

(877) 873-8017
Enter the access code when prompted.
  • Access Code for English: 111111
  • Access Code for Spanish: 222222

Members of the public can address the Board during the live virtual meeting by calling (844) 767-5651 and entering the participant code 9676434 starting at 9:30 a.m.

Written public comments may be submitted through our website at: https://publiccomment.bos.lacounty.gov , which will become part of the official record.
Probation Covid-19 Stories
Local 685 member DPO Carlos Leon from (Dorothy Kirby) announced on his Facebook page that he has been suffering from COVID-19. This was very interesting because many of us don’t know if certain symptoms mean we have the virus or just a cold or the flu. 

“I started feeling sick on Sunday, June 28. On Wednesday July 1st took COVID 19 test and came out positive. That first week was the worst. Loss of appetite and extreme fatigue. 2nd week cough and insomnia. Mild fever throughout. I am feeling much better. Hopefully this is the last few days of this virus.”

Local 685 Treasurer DPO Theodore Cha shares his COVID-19 experience. Theodore is very meticulous and careful about the way he organizes his life, so we were not surprised when he shared that he has chosen to get frequent tests. What was a surprise was the day DPO Cha tested positive. 

“I never had any symptoms, but when I saw this positive result, I immediately went home to quarantine,” he explained. “I even quarantined at my home, staying away from my family and mainly staying in one room. I was constantly taking my temperature and I never had a high temperature. I realized this was very dangerous because I had no symptoms, which means I could have infected anyone. I was the asymptomatic person that we frequently heard about. One week later, I took another test and this one was negative, that was amazing, for the next days I was taking my temperature every hour, at one point I developed a slight headache, but that went away pretty quickly, I ended up being in quarantine for about two weeks.”

If you have an experience with Covid-19, please consider sharing your experience by contacting Local 685 at (213) 386-5860 or send an email to clommel@afscme685.com .
In the News – Stay Informed!
Workplace Rights During a Pandemic 

Local 685 members are expressing concern that the Probation Department is not telling them when some of their co-workers or juveniles they are supervising are ill so they can be certain they have proper protective equipment. NBC news explains what your rights in the workplace that affect you in this COVID-19 environment. Watch here.
Juvenile’s Family Files Lawsuit After DHS Provides Estrogen for Behavioral Disorder

It goes without saying that we don’t make medical decisions on behalf of the juveniles in our care, so we were as appalled as everyone when we saw that a doctor prescribed estrogen for a teenager diagnosed with Oppositional Defiant Disorder (ODD). Read story here.
CCTP Unit Provides Food to Those in Need
The Community Camp Transition Program Unit (CCTP) is all about supporting our communities, so as the COVID-19 pandemic loomed over Los Angeles, Local 685 members assigned to CCTP organized one of their fabulous food giveaways to be certain those in needy communities had what was necessary.
This unit consistently scouts for community organizations to partner with such as the Sam Simon Foundation, which they have worked with for the past ten years, Community Build, and PV Jobs. The CCTP unit also interacts with many of the churches in the community to assist them in reaching out to those most needy. 

The main members involved in this program are SDPO Michael Allen, the supervisor of the group, DPO Blanton, DPO Miller, and DPO Loudermilk.
General Membership & Stewards Meetings Canceled for July

Due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic and orders from local, state, and federal officials, the Local 685 General Membership and Stewards Meetings are canceled for the month of July 2020. 

Please stay safe and healthy in these difficult times!
COVID-19 Resources

This page is a resource for Local 685 members to have access to official County/Department forms and memos from the County regarding COVID-19's impact on County operations and County employees. Please check here routinely for the latest update from the County and the Centers for Disease Control (CDC).