Don’t fear the polygraph, fear the examiner!

June 28th, 2016

imageThee polygraph con-job continues!

DHS continues to stand behind polygraph examinations for new Agents. Clearly, polygraphs have discovered some people who are disqualified because they are less than forthcoming with relevant background information. But what happens when the examiner has a hidden agenda?

In light of DHS’ position, the only remaining conclusion is that it is intentionally failing applicants to keep the Border Patrol understaffed!

In 2010, Director for CBP Internal Affairs James Tomsheck testified at Senate sub-committee that the CBP polygraph failure rate was 60%. Although DHS has refused to update that number in any public statement, we believe the polygraph failure rate is now around 80%, especially for potential employees who reside in a border state. But what applicants are failing during the polygraph exams and why remain a mystery. However, the one consistent fact discerned from interviews of applicants who failed the exams appears to be the bias of the polygraph examiner.

A recent Border Patrol applicant gave us a very precise account of their experience with one examiner in Arizona that left us puzzled and raised questions about the professionalism of these examiners.

“The polygraph examiner came into the room and began to explain to me how important the polygraph was and how high the internal crime rate was in the Border Patrol. The examiner also stated that Border Patrol Agents in the field were against the polygraph and the examiner believed it was for a certain reason.”

Can it get more clear cut than that! The very first thing the examiner asserts is how high the internal crime rate is within the Border Patrol. He then says that Border Patrol Agents are against such exams. This latter statement is true but not because we are opposed to investigations or fact-finding. Agents are against polygraphs because decades of studies have established that they are insufficiently reliable as a truth-discerning tool. Supporters forward junk science to bolster their claims for the reliability of polygraphs when actual science has established that the government should not rely on them for important decisionmaking. Despite numerous attempts, state and federal courts continue to preclude polygraph examinations as evidence in court.

But why would a polygraph examiner make these comments? Why introduce this type of conversation into an applicants pre-screening? We have heard the same about examiners in other states. They apparently believe that all Border Patrol Agents are dirty and, of course, that anyone wanting to be a Border Patrol Agent must also be dirty. So who monitors the examiners, who checks their work, who ensures they are doing their job correctly?

In the end, certain questions remain unanswered. Why is BP applicants failing at such high rates? What part of the polygraph examination are they failing? Are there legitimate integrity issues or are polygraph examiners barring applicants from the Academy because of some hunch of wrongdoing? And why do so many Border Patrol applicants who fail go on to find jobs with other law enforcement agencies that also employ pre-employment polygraphs? At a time when the Border Patrol’s Tucson Sector is in need of about 600 agents, the Agency should question whether its polygraph examiners are employing the best practices available or are acting as an artificial bar to Border Patrol employment.

 

Do as I say, not as I do

June 28th, 2016

Microsoft Word - Document1So here we are are again, another DHS employee caught up in an email scandle. What will be their discipline? Will it be a counseling statement, days off, termination? Most likely not,  because this employee has been exempted from the department wide ban on checking personal email from a government computer. But how can an employee be exempt from a policy, it’s easy! Just say you like to check your email at work and you get an exemption and of course, be the Secretary of DHS.

This type of action is not new to the Border Patrol Agents in the field, we see such things happen all the time. Managers skipping mandatory training, excluding themselves from reading and initialing policy changes or mandating job assignments they would never do themselves. But in a day and age, where the ability to check your personal email is just one touch away on a “smart phone”, it makes you wonder how smart our top leaders are.

As a reminder: employees of DHS should not conduct any personal business on a government computer…unless you are Jeh “LEAD BY EXAMPLE” Johnson.

Read more HERE

Polygraph con-job

June 14th, 2016

polyUnder the leadership of David Aguilar the Border Patrol made some questionable hires in past years. Aguilar dropped standards, lowered expectations, shortened the Academy, told us we weren’t “immigration officers”, said our job wasn’t to arrest illegal aliens and was widely considered a one man wrecking crew for Border Patrol morale. He could write a book on bad hiring practices. This is no reflection on the good men and women hired when Aguilar was running things. We all come in under the conditions that are present when we’re hired. Nothing any of us can do about it.

Several years ago it was decided that CBP would implement polygraph testing to weed out bad apples such as those that Aguilar let slip in. But what has really happened?

Polygraphs are junk science. They are ripe for abuse by overzealous people who administer them with a certain agenda and only have to say, “I don’t believe you.” or “I don’t think you’re telling me everything.” to terminate a new hire. No avenue of appeal, no new background investigation, no follow up at all…just an “opinion” by a person who has been made judge, jury and executioner. We have heard failure rates for Border Patrol hires of 70% to 80% and possibly higher failure rates among applicants that reside on the southwest border as compared to the rest of the country.  The poly-con administration is of course a super secret organization and we’re not sure who they report to. On the surface you may think that those who fail the polygraph are all bad people who should never wear a Border Patrol uniform and cannot be trusted. But we have been hearing one story after another for years about poly-con testing that are extremely troubling and raises several questions about its legitimacy.

In government there is a longstanding abuse called “kingdom building”. That takes place when a new program or idea comes around and certain government employees decide they need to show how valuable said program is, no matter how worthless the program may really be. There is often a self-interest involved with the employee because they don’t want to do the job they were hired for or they just want to show how valuable their new program is to keep a job that is virtually worthless. In the business world none of these people and programs would survive because they produce nothing of real value. But in government, real results often take a back seat to other considerations. This is just a fact. CBP has never in its history used poly-con testing for new hires until recently. So what is the goal? Is it to truly weed out bad people or is it to build a kingdom by showing how effective and wonderful the poly-con program is? We would argue it’s the latter, hands down.

For example, a military intel officer with two tours in the middle east working at finding terrorist and terrorist cells is repeatedly asked about his “association with known terrorists”. Well, his job in the military, was to gather information on terrorists and distribute that information. But wait, the poly-con person keeps saying that he doesn’t believe this military veteran, who is telling him everything. The military veteran has a spotless military record and has already passed every other test to get into the Border Patrol, including a background investigation. After grilling this military vet for hours the poly-con person dismisses him because he thinks this former Military Officer is being dishonest and sees to it that his employment offer is terminated. All this based on junk science with no right of appeal and absolutely no way for this decorated military veteran to set the record straight and the Border Patrol loses a potential great employee.

We have heard about applicants being detained by the poly-con man for 8 or 9 hours straight as they hammer away at a petty issue. And we say “petty issues”, we aren’t talking about rape, murder, burglary or other serious issues, we’re talking about whether the applicant drank to excess a few times when they were a teenager and other similar things. And worse, the applicant may very well be telling the truth, but the poly-con person is a master of confusing the issue, making the applicant think they know something they don’t and generally fostering seeds of doubt in the applicant’s mind. For example, applicants know that background investigators have already talked to their friends, family and acquaintances prior to the poly-con test. What did those people say? Did one of them try to throw a monkey wrench in the hiring because of a past grudge? This is how it works. We have also heard of polygraph examiners telling potential hires that they cannot wait till they can start giving polygraphs to current Border Patrol Agents, “because they all have something to hide”.  A perfectly honest person can easily fail a polygraph test and a mass murderer can pass a polygraph test. They are junk science and are inadmissible in court for a reason.

We have received one email and phone call after another from frustrated agents who have been privy to this abuse by the poly-con folks. Further, we know of some applicants whose applications were terminated by CBP polygraph administrators and then went on to pass a polygraph test from another law enforcement agency that resulted in their hiring. How does this happen? How can a person fail a Border Patrol polygraph and then pass another law enforcement agency’s polygraph? Who is reviewing the work of the polygraph examiners working for CBP and how are they held accountable? We submit that they are not held accountable. As previously mentioned, they are judge, jury and executioner when it comes a Border Patrol applicant’s hiring process. They are given the power to stop careers based on a whim, a personal dislike or any other “reason”. We have also heard from many who believe the poly-con program is being used by the Obama Administration to slow the hiring of Border Patrol agents. That’s right, we have reason to believe that the current administration is encouraging the failure of polygraphs to further their immigration agenda. We are well aware that the administration does not truly want to fully staff the Border Patrol and give us the Agents we need to do the job. This “junk science” is only one way they use to stop the hiring of potentially great employees.

In closing, we know for a fact that many accomplished veteran Border Patrol agents would have NEVER been hired had they been subjected to the current polygraph examinations. Not because they are bad people or that they were criminals before they applied to become Border Patrol agents, but because the poly-con kingdom has a track record of simply failing the majority of the applicants they interview based on their “opinion”. They are given a license to legally discriminate against anyone they don’t like and it’s shameful. This program has been abused and misused and it still continues to this day.

We have absolutely no issue with terminating an applicant who admits to lying on his or her application or background questionnaire, someone who has serious issue that wasn’t disclosed or someone with a criminal past. None of us want to work with someone like that. But we do have a serious problem with the failure rates based on an unproven opinion of a person with dubious personal objectives. And we haven’t even discussed the tremendous amount of resources that have already been invested in these applicants with the testing, oral boards, medical evaluations and background investigations that turned up nothing to keep them from being hired.

And we leave you with this; the government will not allow private business to use polygraph testing in their hiring practices. Why? Because they know it’s junk science. They know it can be used to discriminate and get rid of anyone for any reason regardless of their qualifications. And we’re not necessarily talking about racial discrimination, reverse discrimination or any discrimination outside whatever is in the mind of the poly-con examiner at the time they administer the test. Do some managers red flag certain applicants for failure? Or does the polygraph examiner not like the way you comb your hair or the way your shoes look. But the real question is, why then does the same government that forbids the use of poly-con testing for private employers use the same junk science to discriminate and stop careers? How many tremendous young men and women have we failed to hire because of an agenda? And why don’t the same Congressmen and Congresswomen who thought this was such a great idea subject themselves to such testing before they can take office? If it’s so valuable, certainly they should use it as well to weed out bad politicians who are privy to all kinds of classified government information.

Fortunately, one potential new-hire, gave a us copy of their complaint about their polygraph examiner. This one person, was so offended by how they were treated and what was said, they decided to act and file a complaint. We will see if CBP will take their complaint seriously or dismiss it like so many others. We will discuss their complaint in another posting.

Meeting update

June 9th, 2016

The June 8, 2016 General Membership meeting was canceled due to lack of quorum.

 

DHS dropping more illegals at bus stations!

June 3rd, 2016

Here we go again! For months, we have been informed of illegal aliens being dropped off at Arizona bus stations and finally someone listened.

Judical Watch finds proof that DHS, once again, is allowing illegal aliens to go free. As in the summer of 2014 and 2015, we began hearing reports that van loads of illegal aliens were being dropped off at bus stations by a DHS contract company. We can only hope that someone in Congress will finally take a stand to this absurd practice.

Read more HERE

 

 

 

Update on St. David sign

June 1st, 2016

imageOn May 25, 2016, a sign was found by a roadway near St. David, AZ,that stated “The Mean Green Unionized Killing Machine”. Tucson.com published a column about the author.

Unfortunatly, there was mention of a key element about Border Patrol Agents: WE ARE NOT ABOVE THE LAW!

Following any use of force, including the use of deadly force, Agents face severe scrutiny. And if a local or federal prosecutor believes there is any wrongdoing, they can indict the offending Agent. That means if a federal prosecutor  does not bring charges against the Agent, the Agent could still face criminal charges from a state or local prosecutor. All Agents are innocent until proven guilty. But,  the couple who created the St. David sign, obvisouly believe Agents should be presumed guilty before any trial.

Tucson.com column also noted that the  NBPC  has become more outspoken on political issues. Of course we have become more outspoken on political issues. We, more than anyone,  understand the dangers of  an “open border”. We see  criminal illegal aliens cross everyday, we read daily headlines of illegal aliens committing crimes against Anerican Citizens. We see the amount of drug smugglers moving their cargo across our land. Of course we are upset and outspoken.

But isn’t it  funny, that there is no mention of AFGE or ALF-CIO and their continual support of certain candidates. Why is it that when our Union supports certain candidates, it becomes a big deal?

Read more HERE

Local 2544 endorses Sen. John McCain

June 1st, 2016

imageWe are pleased to announce our endorsement of Arizonan Republican Sen John McCain (AZ). Sen McCain was instrumental in passing the Border Patrol Pay Reform Act and one of the few elected officials who listens to rank and file Agents of the U.S. Border Patrol.

In a press conference at the Local 2544 office, Sen McCain pledged his continued support for true border security but “for the Agents who have such a hard job securing the border”. He also said “it’s important to focus not only the job they do but to focus on the men and women who do the job.”

During the meeting, Local 2544 President Art Del Cueto discussed closing Forward Operating Bases, getting better locality pay for all Agents living in remote location along the border, and creating a system for reporting border related statistics.

“Sen. McCain has always taken my calls, even on a Saturday, when we needed help with problems that management is unwilling to fix.”  said Del Cueto.

Sen. McCain continues to be an outspoken supporter or true border security and he  has a in-depth understanding of what it takes to make that happen, to include: adding border camera towers, stronger sentencing for drug smugglers, and allowing Border Patrol Agents to do their job.

Del Cueto stated “We will always support candidates who truly listen to our Union’s needs, especially when it comes to getting a compressed work schedule and closing Forward Operating bases”

 

Read more HERE Read the rest of this entry »

St. David, Arizona Resident Chastises Border Patrol Union

May 25th, 2016

image

A resident on a one acre property in St. David has gone to great lengths to advertise that Border Patrol agents are “KILLERS” who are “Protected by Their UNION”. This despicable display of ignorance and hatred is sad. Inciting people to violence against law enforcement officers seems to be a national trend that started with Barack Obama chastising cops when he didn’t have his facts straight. Riots, cop killings and other senseless violence seems to almost be accepted these days as some sort of payback for perceived wrongs of the past…as if law enforcement officers deserve to be shot, stabbed, rocked, mocked, wrongly sued and completely disrespected. It is the height of hypocrisy to spew hateful rhetoric and incite senseless violence while preaching love, respect, harmony and peace. We see this hypocritical nonsense constantly as rioters carry signs preaching against “hatred” while they scream profanities, riot in the streets, destroy property and call for things like killing law enforcement officers.

The argument that Border Patrol agents don’t deserve to have a union watching their backs is nonsense. Who else is going to stick up for rank-and-file agents? Border Patrol agents are falsely accused every single day. It’s become fashionable. And worse, those who make accusations against us, even when it’s proven that they are just concocting stories to elicit sympathy, or for monetary gain or lenient treatment for their crimes, face no penalties for lying. None. If an illegal alien or any other person was actually charged and held accountable for making blatantly false allegations against Border Patrol agents the allegations would shrink down to near zero. We have the lowest percentage of allegations upheld for the number of people we arrest than any law enforcement agency in the nation. Think about it. And to those who think law enforcement officers are not entitled to the same due process that any other American (and illegal alien) gets, they should really think about what they are saying. We are a nation founded on rules and laws, even though those rules and laws are selectively enforced by this Administration.

We noted the nice pastel colored mailbox with peaceful flowers painted on it outside this property. One can only assume that the mailbox was decorated by someone other than the person who had the shameful sign made.

We take our mission seriously. “Protecting Those Who Protect Our Borders” isn’t just a motto to us, it’s something that we believe in and something that the men and women putting their lives on the line every day DESERVE.

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Phoenix PD LODD

May 19th, 2016

Phoenix Police Officer Davd Glasser has succumb to his wounds and passed away earlier this morning. Please join me in extending our condolences to his family, friends and our colleagues in PLEA during this difficult time.

~Art Del Cueto

L2544 President testifies at Congressional Field Hearing

May 10th, 2016

Local 2544 President Art Del Cueto testified in front of a Congressional field hearing in Sahuarita Az yesterday.

The panel included US House of Representatives Martha McSally and Steve Pearce and focused on examining border security through the eyes of local residents and local law enforcement.

I will always oppose the use and implementation of Forward Operating Bases in Tucson Sector, stated Del Cueto. They are no longer needed and are only used for dog and pony shows to impress elected officials. We need to make rational decisions on the use of Forward Operating Bases, FOBs had a time and place years ago but are an incredibly inefficient use of resources today

Read more HERE