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Course Catalog

Supervisor Liability for Public Safety


  • Matt Dolan
    Attorney & Director, Dolan Consulting Group, NC

A promotion to a supervisory position is an invitation to enter the world of personnel management.  This course will provide attendees with the knowledge necessary to recognize the most common and costly personnel liability issues confronting supervisors in public safety.

Far too many supervisors are learning about these challenges through the process of trial and error—at great expense to the agencies and themselves. In this course, federal and state statutes and case law will be utilized to illustrate the potential pitfalls of employee relations in public safety administration and the means by which those liability risks can be managed.  

This course is designed to prepare public safety supervisors to take preventative steps to limit supervisor liability, maintain organizational standards and protect employee rights under the law.

Course Objectives:

  • Understanding summary judgment and the costs associated with the appearance of unlawful discrimination
  • Making legally defensible hiring decisions
    • Long-term liability associated with “bad hires”
    • Failure-to-hire liability
    • Legally defensible job requirements
  • Discriminatory discipline
  • Retaliation liability
  • Performance evaluations—are they helping or hurting us?
  • Confronting Sexual Harassment
    • Sexual harassment misconceptions
    • Harassment policy components
    • Agency obligations when investigating harassment complaints
  • Effective nepotism and fraternization policies
  • Disability discrimination and reasonable accommodation
  • Light duty, lawsuits and officer safety
  • Progressive discipline policies
  • Officer termination and the liabilities incurred by the failure to act
  • Ending employment through separation agreements

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