The Minnesota Chiefs of Police Association and the Cornell ILR School Professional Programs are partnering to bring you an Arbitration Advocacy in Law Enforcement Virtual Workshop

A key issue facing law enforcement is a proper discipline of officers under principles of Just Cause and Progressive discipline; cases that will ultimately be decided by a neutral arbitrator.

Learn both the science and art of arbitration advocacy with this hands-on training. Appropriate for those managing labor relations, lead advocates and those playing the important support role in arbitration, such as HR representatives.

Cornell ILR has been running practical workshops in labor relations for over forty years.  It is not a typical university class or conference because it is heavily practice based, mixing expert lecture and best practices with small group work and simulations. Instructor Dan McCray is the Director of Labor Relations Programs and has worked with hundreds of students across dozens of organizations in the private and public sector in the United States, Latin America and Europe. (Click here to read his bio.)

Class size is limited to allow for individual participation and feedback.

Who Could Benefit:

  • Deputies who are responsible for labor relations
  • Human resources professionals who support labor relations
  • Municipal attorneys involved in arbitration advocacy

The Program is divided into six, three-hour virtual training blocks via Zoom from 7:00am to 10:00am twice a week for three weeks starting the week of November 30, 2020 through the week of December 14, 2020.

Upon completion, participants will receive an Arbitration Advocacy Immersion certificate from Cornell ILR School. 

Participant Price is $995.00 per participant. 


Sessions #1 and Sessions #2: December 1 and December 3, 2020 7am-10am
Case Analysis, Preparation and Opening Statements

From the perspective of both the union and management, participants will practice how to develop a clear and effective theory of the case, create a proposed issue statement to be presented at the hearing, identify witnesses and evidence and prepare opening statements.  Participants will draft opening statement and receive feedback.  Key areas of emphasis include:

  • Developing an overall theory of the case that is simple, contractually based, easy to explain and engages the arbitrator
  • Identifying the pieces of evidence that support and contradict your theory
  • Determine how to best present that evidence to an arbitrator
  • Persuasively sequencing contractual requirements and facts to reflect your theory of the case within an opening statement
Sessions #3 and #4:  December 8 and December 10, 2020 7am-10am
Evidence and Direct Witness Preparation and Examination

This module is broken into two basic parts.  The first teaches mechanical aspects, including basic evidentiary principles, preparing and introducing documents and witness testimony, including:

  • The relationship and differences among argument, evidence and opinion
  • Admissibility versus weight
  • Foundation and competence
  • Other rules of evidence such as:
    • Hearsay, Non-Hearsay and Exceptions
    • Best Evidence Rule
    • Parole Evidence Rule
    • Offers of Compromise and Privilege
    • Expert testimony
    • Marking and introducing documents

The second portion of the module focuses on developing and executing a logical and persuasive flow of evidence, including:

  • Preparing witnesses for their testimony
  • Sequencing evidence submission for maximum effect
  • Creating the “story-telling” dynamic with witnesses and documents
Sessions #5 and #6:  December 15 and December 17, 2020 7am-10am
Cross Examination and Closing Statements

Cross examination is one of the most important but often poorly used parts of an advocate’s case.  This module drills important skills in preparing for and executing an effective cross, while identifying commonly made errors.  Areas of special focus include:

  • The different purposes of cross
  • Letting your theory of the case guide cross
  • How phrasing questions allows advocate to control and avoid risks
  • Understanding the traditional “rules” of cross examination
  • Special issues in cases without “discovery”
  • Combative witnesses
  • Knowing when to stop

Participants will also practice wrapping up cases in a persuasive closing.  The module teaches how to evaluate the evidence actually presented and organize it thematically and persuasively for the arbitrator.  Special emphasis is placed on simplicity and precision. 

Click here to register for workshop