Michigan Association of Police Organizations (MAPO) recently sent a letter urging Governor Gretchen Whitmer and the state legislature to come up with a budget deal generating over $2 billion tomapo fix Michigan roads.

The letter discourages reductions in General Fund revenue to fix roads, which reduces funding to public safety and first responders. A proposed change in the sales tax on fuel could cause an additional $200 million loss to General Fund revenue, according to MAPO.

Click here to view MAPO’s Road Budget Recommendation.

Photo by Mike Kunath, MAP Executive Board Vice President                                                                    Sterling Heights Police Officers Bob Wojciechowski (left) and Mike Kunath (right) present Blessings in a Backpack – Utica Fundraising Chairperson Bob Maynard with a donation to the program. The Sterling Heights Police Officers Association is the primary sponsor of the program at Havel Elementary in Sterling Heights.


By Jennifer Gomori, MAP Editor

MAP Executive Board Vice President Mike Kunath, a Sterling Heights Police Officer, got to know Bob Maynard through his son’s high school baseball team. Maynard, a grandfather of one of the players and Kunath, a coach, later teamed up to help feed local children.

Maynard is fundraising chairperson for Blessings in a Backpack – Utica, a program that provides weekend meals for needy children at three Sterling Heights elementary schools throughout the school year. Every Friday children, who receive free breakfast and/or free lunch at school during the week and are signed up for Blessings in a Backpack through their schools, pick up their backpacks filled with six meals, which are easy for kids to prepare themselves.

“There might not be an adult who’s there to help prepare the meal,” Maynard said. “Everything that is done is coordinated so it can be prepared by a kid.”

When the weekend is over, they return their backpacks to school to be refilled by program volunteers. This 40-week program is made possible by corporate and community donations and volunteers.

“Mike came to me after hearing more about what we do. He basically said we’d like to be involved,” Maynard said. “He asked if we would consider adding Havel Elementary and that he would try to get us as much support as he could for it. (Officer) Bob Wojciechowski and Mike have worked very hard. Based on Mike and Bob’s input we added Havel. They’re funding comes up to roughly 25 percent of the money needed for that school.”

Sterling Heights Police Officers Association donates to the program throughout the school year. They are even planning to produce a police calendar to sell with proceeds going to Blessings in a Backpack.

“Our organization started in January 2018 to help feed students at Havel Elementary,” Kunath said. “We donated money for the second semester at Havel Elementary and we donated enough money for the school year for 2019. They made us the keynote marquee sponsor for Havel Elementary,” Kunath said.

“We could not do that third school without their assistance,” Maynard said. “They also have come to (backpack) packing. They’ve given us support through the bowling fundraiser - they show up. We’re going to have a run in Shelby River Bends Park in October. I’m confident that the Sterling Heights POA is going to support that event in some fashion. It’s not just writing out a check. It’s showing up and giving the human support that’s needed, and they do that.”

Excerpted from news media

Trenton Police Officers used a new device to rescue a man who fell through the ice on a canal at Elizabeth Park Feb. 3. The man’s dog ran out on the ice and the owner chased him.

While the dog made it off the ice, the man fell through and police found him clinging to a piece of ice. Trenton Police used a newly acquired water rescue throw bag to rescue the man.

The department purchased these devices following a December 2018 police water rescue. An officer in that incident boarded a nearby kayak when a car drove into the Detroit River and the driver was completely submerged. The Trenton Officer was able to break the car window with the kayak paddle, free the female driver and pull her to safety, said Trenton Police Lt. Mike Hawkins, MAP Executive Board President.

Trenton Police now keep the throw bags inside their vehicles.

“Within the first week or two of getting these in we’ve already saved a life and it’s come in handy and saved our officers and helped out the community,” Hawkins said in a Fox 2 News interview.

For more on the water rescues, please see the following links to the rescue articles:

http://www.fox2detroit.com/news/387782822-video

https://www.officer.com/tactical/news/21060050/michigan-police-officers-rescue-man-who-fell-through-frozen-canal

http://www.thenewsherald.com/news/man-clinging-to-life-rescued-by-trenton-officer-after-falling/article_f4d52f2e-28ce-11e9-8889-6794a5dd3f12.html

https://www.clickondetroit.com/news/trenton-officer-finds-kayak-uses-it-to-rescue-woman-inside-car-sinking-in-detroit-river

https://www.freep.com/story/news/local/michigan/wayne/2018/12/17/trenton-police-woman-detroit-river/2343749002/

https://www.wilx.com/content/news/Police-body-camera-footage-shows-officers-rescue-of-woman-from-Detroit-River--503213321.html

By Jennifer Gomori, MAP Editor

While some people are concerned about what they post, text and otherwise share online, just as many view this as their First Amendment right to freedom of speech. No matter your view on the subject, legal advisors for MAP are urging members to think twice before posting or texting anything sexual, racial or even political.

“You have a First Amendment right to say whatever you want to, but you don’t have a constitutional right to your job,” said MAP Legal Counsel Catherine Farrell.

Public Employees should understand specific restrictions detailed in their contracts. “Look to the CBA to make sure you don’t violate it,” said Farmington Hills Attorney Arthur J. Weiss, who joined Farrell in a Social Media discussion with Union members during the MAP Annual Open House in December.

MAP members are encouraged to visit the Michigan Association of Police Organizations (MAPO) website to register for Members Only alerts and access to resources available only to mapomembers. MAP members are also encouraged to download the MAPO App for Iphones and Androids. The App will provide members with easy to use mobile access to the MAPO website and Members Only resources to keep registered users up to date on issues affecting them.

Click on the links below to for more information:

Register for MAPO Members Only resources and notifications.

MAPO App for iPhones.

MAPO App for Androids.