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Legislative Update

FLEOA LEGISLATIVE UPDATE-
 
FLEOA ADVOCATES FOR AMANDA BY REQUESTING AN EXECUTIVE ORDER FROM PRESIDENT TRUMP

In May 2012, DOD, INTERPOL and the Malagasy government requested a subject matter expert in extracting intelligence on the operations of pirates in Madagascar. FLEOA member and NCIS Special Agent Amanda Kopke was selected based upon her extensive knowledge of the Somali language, piracy operations and piracy financing. The United States Central Command (CENTCOM), Unified Combatant Command of the U.S. Department of Defense (DOD) ordered Amanda to Madagascar.  During the course of her operation, Amanda was infected by an unknown parasite under her skin. After multiple hospitalizations and a difficult journey back home to the US, Amanda was denied access to the necessary medical treatment and benefits she deserved. Amanda's only treatment of these parasitic worms in her body is anti-parasitic chemotherapy. Unfortunately, the Office of Personnel Management (OPM) and Department of Labor (DOL) does not view Amanda's condition as a disabling condition. The Veterans Administration, however, does categorize the parasite as a disabling condition. While Amanda was on DOD orders and embedded with the US Navy, the soldiers working with her received a greater level of medical protection than she had access to.  Today, Amanda's health is rapidly declining. Chemotherapy has failed to illuminate the parasite. Recent medical tests show escalated disease progression. Additionally, Amanda now has an auto-immune connective tissue disease. Amanda's immune system is attacking her own cells as if it were a foreign virus. In between chemotherapy sessions, Amanda is expected to work a regular 50-hour work schedule at NCIS. Veteran's status would instantly allow her to retire disabled and focus her energy towards fighting her illness.  FLEOA believes DOD and INTERPOL's use of Amanda's expertise, talent and ability to apprehend dangerous international pirates more than qualifies her for veteran status. FLEOA eagerly requests an Executive Order to retroactively resolve Amada's situation and any other federal civilian law enforcement officer who may find themselves similarly situated moving forward.
 
 
FLEOA ATTACKS SEX TRAFFICKERS AND BACKPAGE.COM

There is no question today that unfettered access to the internet has put our children at risk to various types of sexual predators. No doubt the moral fabric of our nation has been polluted with the sale of underage children on the most hidden parts of the internet called the "Dark-Net." On these dangerous websites one can purchase sexual services from children trapped in the human sex trafficking trade.  This bill would allow state law enforcement to go after websites like Backpage.com (an adult classified site that advertises about 80% of America's sex trafficking victims) and to let sex trafficking victims exercise their private right of action against the websites that knowingly advertise them. States must be able to enforce sex trafficking laws in their jurisdictions, yet the courts have interpreted section 230 to circumvent that right and give broad immunity to online criminal enterprises. The Senate Subcommittee on Investigations held a hearing in January after a year-long investigation of the website, concluding that Backpage.com facilitates online sex trafficking. The investigation uncovered the truth about Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act, which acts as a freedom law that provides a safe haven for website publishers to advertise for underage sex.
 
FLEOA ATTACKS GUN TRAFFICKERS & STAW PURCHASERS

There is no lack of illegal firearms polluting our city streets. Many urban centers such as Chicago, Baltimore, Detroit, and many other US cities have become more dangerous than war torn Iraq and Afghanistan. Gun violence has become one of the most visible threats to the safety and security of our youth. It is time to act now to prevent these weapons from becoming artillery for drug dealers and gang members to viciously murder innocent children walking home from school every day.  This legislation will provide the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms & Explosives with the tools to keep illegal firearms from making their way into the hands of convicted felons who move guns across the southern border, utilizing a network of straw purchasers in the United States. These straw purchasers act as an intermediary party for organized crime networks and the cartels by purchasing guns on their behalf.

FLEOA URGES UNITED AIRLINES TO ACTION

It has come to our attention that United Airlines no longer allows LEOs to pre-board flights when flying armed and discreetly identify themselves and their status prior to general boarding. If this is a new policy change at United Airlines, we are deeply concerned for a multitude of reasons.  Primarily, the threats again the United States are at an all-time high. There are domestic and foreign enemies who seek to do harm to the US in any way, shape or form. Iran, Russia, China, North Korea and others openly express animus against the United States. Additionally, extremist groups have attacked innocent civilians all over the globe. These extremists typically target public areas to unleash heinous acts of terror on people traveling. We already know all too well that domestic planes are prime targets.  Secondarily, forcing LEOs to identify themselves to the captain during general boarding in view of the public exposes the safety of the LEO and jeopardizes the entire flying-while-armed operation. With operation security compromised, any would-be extremist, terrorist and mentally challenged individual can target the LEO for his/her weapon and create an imminent threat of danger or loss of life situation aboard a United Airlines flight. It is for these reasons FLEOA urgently requests that United Airlines reverse its policy and allow LEOs to pre-board flights when flying armed and identify and check-in with the captain prior to general boarding.

 
FLEOA will continue fight for its members' pay and benefits and advocate for public safety and justice legislation.

 
Dominick Stokes
Vice President for Legislative Affairs
Federal Law Enforcement Officers Association