Back in 1951, a cadre of deputy sheriffs, county marshals and district attorney investigators created an association to protect their bargaining rights, which is known today as the Los Angeles County Professional Peace Officers Association (PPOA). As we enter 2021, PPOA will be celebrating 70 years of service to its now-9,000-plus members. From these humble beginnings, a credit union was formed (POPAFCU), a charitable organization was established (the Star & Shield Foundation) and a spin-off union known as the Association for Los Angeles Deputy Sheriffs (ALADS) was created.
Today, PPOA continues to protect its members of the Sheriff’s Department, Medical Examiner’s Office and District Attorney’s Office, representing five separate bargaining units and 24 different classifications of County employees. PPOA is proud to be affiliated with the Los Angeles County Coalition of Unions, the Los Angeles County Federation of Labor, the California Coalition of Law Enforcement Associations, the Southern California Alliance of Law Enforcement, the California Peace Officers’ Memorial Foundation and, of course, the Fraternal Order of Police. Our mission continues to be a “Tradition of Success” in serving our membership through an effective and expanding professional association, as well as protecting and enhancing their individual and collective rights.
As we go into the 70th year of the organization, we come out of the year 2020 and its historically unprecedented difficulties. PPOA has led the fight against COVID-19 through our efforts to educate our members and partner employers of the dangers of this disease, as well as the requirements to combat it in the workplace. We have remained extremely busy moderating the political battles during these emotionally driven times of social justice. And as if that were not enough, we have also fought to protect the jobs and assignments of our members from being impacted by the continued budget shortfalls and concerns.
One of my recent mentors often reminds me, “Tough times never last, but tough people do!” Moving forward from the difficulties of 2020 is critically important, as everyone needs to focus on and be grateful for what we have. Reflect on the fact that while we may have first-world inconveniences, many in our county, state and country are experiencing third-world problems at a much higher rate. Homelessness, unemployment, hunger, violence, illness and death are impacting and influencing our lives like never before.
Every review of the previous year provides an opportunity to reflect and the prospect of improvement. During 2021, we at PPOA will not dwell on the difficulties of 2020, but instead will continue to address this new world and its challenges, of which there will be many. Besides combating “COVID complacency,” we know that 2021 will be a year of financial uncertainty, legislative challenges and political skirmishes. Your Board of Directors and the staff of PPOA look forward to accepting these challenges on your behalf, always remembering our history and reflecting on our mission.
Thank you for being a member of the PPOA family.