CAHN.US - California Association of Hostage Negociators

  Posted on: Thursday, January 29, 2015
January 2015


January 2015


Happy New Year to all.  As we mentioned in our last email we had some board members from the regional boards move on to bigger and better things! As most of you know, Russ Moore and Rex Osborn have moved on as your regional directors. Patti Salas and Paul Woodward from the southern region and Chris Stevens a regional representative from the north had also decided to not run again. I would like to take just a moment to thank everyone who has given their time to serve this membership body and to sit on the respective boards and be a part of helping this organization to thrive. I would also like to take this moment to welcome aboard the new members to the regional boards and representation to the state board:


Southern Region Director - Mauricio Estrada                                                                                         
Northern Region Director - John Gerges

Southern Region Secretary - Justino Flores                                                                                              
Northern Region Treasurer - Patti Seffens

Southern Region Representative - Bill Allison                                      
Northern Region Representative - Maris Goldsborough


I look forward to working with you all in the future.


In our last board meeting we discussed the POST certification. We have voted as a board to suspend the POST certification at this time. POST requirements have become very labor intensive and we have liability concerns for the board and our membership, regarding attendance and training. Many different facets were discussed concerning this issue, in particular the training hours. As many of you know your departments are not reimbursed for the conference as POST has suspended all but supervision/leadership and ICI classes which are mandated by law. This doesn't lessen the importance of attending the conference as we discuss/present many real life scenarios to learn from.  These are important issues to learn about and POST certification or lack of has not changed the product that we produce for you to learn. As a police officer I know that the required perishable skills and other required hours (ie: tactical communication, DV, etc...) will provide you with 3/4 of the required time needed to maintain your certificate.  If this becomes an issue the board will revisit the POST certification at a later date.   


We also discussed the voting procedures in our last meeting. The delegate system does not seem to be working right now. We have delegates that sign up yet don't vote, or wait until the last minute or better yet after the election closes to try and vote. This process is very labor intensive for the State Secretary. We want your input and vote on the positions that come up for election! We are going to explore other options in the coming months ranging from open the election process up to the entire membership to us appointing the delegates so we don't have to beg for a name that may or may not vote.  If you have any input on how we can get the involvement, please, please, please contact us. This process was chosen so every team, and not just a large agency, would have a voice and not just those who went to a particular regional training where a vote took place or the conference where 1/3 to 1/2 of our members maybe in attendance. Again, please contact us with any suggestions you may have. 


Lastly we discussed term limits for officers on the board. The largest issue concerning term limits is losing the institutional knowledge from a board. Term limits were proposed and voted on to help "breath" new life onto the state and regional boards.  Another concern was, as some of you may know, we used to have to go and "strong-arm" folks to run for positions to fill any vacancies. This is becoming somewhat easier as we are seeing new interest on the board. Then the last issue is someone "may not want" to run against an incumbent. I would encourage anyone who has an interest and meets the qualifications to run, to please do so, no matter if the incumbent is myself or someone else. New ideas are always good. If you don't want to run but would like to somehow be involved, please contact any one the state or regional board members and we can see what we can do to get you involved.


Missy Morris, Conference Chair, is hard at work on the agenda for this year’s conference, please be patient. Last year we put out an agenda early on and the whole thing changed. Please also understand that any agenda/speakers that are posted are always TENTATIVE and they can cancel at any moment because life happens. Please don't count on a certain speaker being there.  As soon as we get some confirmations on TENTATIVE speakers we will provide them to you via the website. Check back there often and know we are working hard and will post a TENTATIVE agenda as soon as we possibly can. If it is not there yet, be patient and don't bombard State Secretary Patricia Larrigan with emails and phone calls.


The conference this year is again in Anaheim. Please don't wait to book your rooms as they sell quickly. Book your rooms and if you don't need it then contact me and we will get your room reassigned to someone who can use it or we can cancel it if need be.  Better yet let’s book the hotel with our membership. 


These past several months have been very difficult on our brothers and sisters in the law enforcement community. We have lost officers, we have been bombarded by the public, and our politicians seem to be on the offensive and looking for things we have done wrong. Sadly they lump all of us in together as group when one or two in our profession may not treat someone right. We all know that each situation is different and needs to be handled separately. There is no magic wand we can wave and make every situation be handled in the same way. We know this because this is what we do, this is our mission as negotiators, no two incidents are the same! Keep your guard up, back each other up and please stay safe. You are good at what you do, don't let the vocal minority get you down.  Fight the good fight, but most importantly, make sure you go home to your families at the end of each and every day!


As always, this is YOUR association and we always welcome and look forward to your input, so please feel free to contact anyone on the board with your ideas or any questions you may have. If you see or read about an interesting event that would relate to what we do please contact one of your regional representatives and they will explore it to see if we can utilize it in one of our regional or annual training conferences.


Stay safe and keep up the passion for negotiations that you all have.



Matt Thomas                   


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