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      Cameron County Sheriff Deputy's Association spreading the word on collective bargaining

      Cameron County Sheriff Deputy Luis Mendieta is the president of the deputy's association.

      Come November 8, he hopes his department will follow in the footsteps of other law-enforcement groups like the Brownsville Police Department, and get voters to approve collective bargaining.

      He said it's been an issue deputies have been talking about since the 1990s. Mendieta adds it's time to take care of those who have dedicated their lives to taking care of others.

      "We have officers working over 25 years and they cant retire, Mendieta said. It's not fair for an individual (who has ) 27 years in the line of duty - benefits are not (good) there."

      Mendieta said collective bargaining is a topic the community might not know much about, so the association is spreading the word on their free time.

      "We're out with our family and friends talking to people, educating people on what collective bargaining is all about, Mendieta said. It's not about what they (put out) about our taxes - our taxes have already gone up and it TMs not because of collective bargaining."

      Mendieta realizes it will be a challenge to get the referendum approved, especially when some county leaders have stated they oppose collective bargaining.

      None the less he TMs said the association is ready for the challenge.

      "We are ready, we feel strong, we know there's a lot of community supporters that are out there that will go out and vote," Mendieta said.

      Mendieta said he hopes to serve his community for many years to come that TMs why he wants things to improve.

      "It's real dangerous out there and we TMre out exposing ourselves, and for the jailers too, Mendieta said.

      We're struggling, helping our families and friends " trying to protect, (and that TMs) what we're doing - protecting this community."