The History of NYSPIA
In 1994 two New York State Troopers PBA BCI delegates and an alternate delegate organized and led a movement of BCI members to separate from the New York State Troopers PBA. The New York State Police Investigators Association (NYSPIA) was formed and was intentionally structured to limit its membership solely to the members of the BCI, namely Senior Investigators and Investigators. NYSPIA believed that the working environment and missions of the BCI were unique, not only in comparison to other members of the Division, but to the members of law enforcement agencies generally. Recognizing New York as a state where the AFL-CIO presence was strong and positive in state government, the BCI representatives purposely sought to align itself with the larger organized labor movement and IUPA was an international with the AFL-CIO structure. By joining IUPA, NYSPIA became eligible to join the NYS AFL-CIO, one of the most powerful labor organizations in the USA. By joining AFL-CIO, NYSPIA accessed not only unionized police agencies from across the country, but we began to interact with Arthur J. Wilcox, NYS Public Employee Director, who became a mentor and close friend to NYSPIA in its foundation phases. NYSPIA began utilizing the networking available among unions and elected officials and quickly rose to a level of influence that far exceeded its membership numbers. The AFL-CIO was instrumental in NYSPIA obtaining binding arbitration.
NYSPIA, upon winning certification, quickly held elections to establish representatives within the organization. NYSPIA made the nomination of candidates a process that was easy to comply with and accessible to any member that wanted to seek office and immediately opened the Office of President to any member, instead of limiting it to only elected Board members. The process was simplified to allow any member that was truly interested to obtain a spot on the ballot. NYSPIA established the traveling board meetings where each Troop would host a meeting each year. NYSPIA wrote the constitution so that all operating funds entered through the general account and made the general account documents available for review by any member at every meeting. NYSPIA openly engaged in the political process, something unprecedented in State Police unions before NYSPIA.
The members themselves voted to form and fund the NYSPIA PAC Fund as well as the Emergency Assistance Fund. The Emergency Assistance Fund was later renamed the Investigators Relief Fund and the Emergency Assistance Fund name became synonymous with NYSPIA’s current 501(c) (3) charitable organization. This organization was created by the NYSPIA Board of Directors in 2012 and continues to assist and support members of the law enforcement community in times of emergency and personal tragedy.
Today, NYSPIA continues to provide quality representation to its members, protects their contractual rights and looks to improve the terms and conditions of employment. In addition, NYSPIA strives for the finest representation in the collective bargaining process, endeavors to achieve legislative improvements, and promotes the overall welfare of the membership.