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Wed Jun 3, 2020, 11:46 AM

Tired of bad cops? First, look at their labor unions.

By Daniel DiSalvo
June 3, 2020 at 9:57 a.m. EDT
Daniel DiSalvo is a senior fellow at the Manhattan Institute and professor of political science at the City College of New York-CUNY.



The purpose of policing is to promote public safety and uphold the rule of law so that individuals and communities can thrive. The purpose of police unions, however, is to win members better salaries and benefits and to protect their job security — specifically by pushing for safeguards against investigation, discipline and dismissal. These protections can make it difficult for police chiefs to manage their forces effectively and can allow a few bad officers to act with impunity, poisoning an entire organizational culture in the process.



The most notorious example of this problem emerged from Chicago after the 2014 killing of 17-year-old Laquan McDonald by officer Jason Van Dyke. Before that fatal incident, Van Dyke had been the subject of 20 civilian complaints, 10 of which alleged excessive use of force. But under the union rules then in place, the complaints proved toothless. As a task force appointed by Mayor Rahm Emanuel in the wake of the shooting reported, “The collective bargaining agreements between the police unions and the City [had] essentially turned the code of silence into official policy.”

To be sure, many of the protections demanded by police unions reflect the unique challenges of policing. Because of the nature of their work, law enforcement officers tend to have adversarial relationships with the citizens and communities they serve. False or exaggerated complaints are inevitable, and it is understandable that labor representatives would want to protect their members against these threats.

Problems arise when these provisions are exploited to help cover for bad policing. In many American cities, police union contracts limit the amount of time an officer accused of misconduct can be interviewed, who can interview him and when an interview can occur. Houston and Louisville, for example, allow for delays of up to 48 hours before an interview with an officer accused of wrongdoing. On one hand, these rules protect officers who, because they must make statements on the record, surrender as a condition of their jobs their constitutional right to remain silent. On the other hand, this grace period can be used as time for officers to “get their story straight.”

https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/2020/06/03/tired-bad-cops-first-look-their-labor-unions/

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Reply Tired of bad cops? First, look at their labor unions. (Original post)
octoberlib Jun 3 OP
WhiskeyGrinder Jun 3 #1
empedocles Jun 3 #2
Wellstone ruled Jun 3 #3
tirebiter Jun 3 #4
Sherman A1 Jun 3 #5
Mosby Jun 3 #15
Sherman A1 Jun 3 #17
Midnight Writer Jun 3 #18
SharonClark Jun 3 #6
Peregrine Took Jun 3 #7
WhiskeyGrinder Jun 3 #8
Mosby Jun 3 #16
safeinOhio Jun 3 #9
DeminPennswoods Jun 3 #10
Hav Jun 3 #13
DeminPennswoods Jun 3 #14
oasis Jun 3 #11
Initech Jun 3 #12
Duppers Jun 4 #19

Response to octoberlib (Original post)

Wed Jun 3, 2020, 11:54 AM

1. It's a start.

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Response to octoberlib (Original post)

Wed Jun 3, 2020, 11:55 AM

2. Police unions, like the republicon party, give, in general, unions and political parties -

a bad name.

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Response to octoberlib (Original post)

Wed Jun 3, 2020, 11:56 AM

3. What the main problem is,

Civilian Police Review Boards and whom and how they are constructed. When you have Local units of Government having Members taking Campaign Contributions from said Police Unions and Federations,you have a major problem.

It is called Conflict of Interest. Been down that road as a Union Board Member years ago. Seeing this shit first hand in my Ward with our Alder Person. All about endorsements by Police and Fire Departments. And if follow the money,well you get what you get,the best person did not win our Ward Alderman's spot,the least qualified won by touting endorsement by the Militarized Metro Police Department as well as Gun Rights issues.

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Response to octoberlib (Original post)

Wed Jun 3, 2020, 11:57 AM

4. Why can't other unions be as powerfuloL?

Was always my question.

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Response to octoberlib (Original post)

Wed Jun 3, 2020, 12:11 PM

5. Unions are not the problem

They are there to represent their members.

What is needed is a restructuring of regulations and laws that hold officers and their departments to standards which we all deserve. It is the failure of our elected officials (who are at least in theory the management of the police departments) to institute and implement the legislation necessary to hold police accountable, not the Unions that represent the members of their organizations.

blaming Unions is a cop out and very short sighted.

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Response to Sherman A1 (Reply #5)

Wed Jun 3, 2020, 01:12 PM

15. Except union contracts prevent reforms.

Did you read the article?

If a cop can't be immediately fired due to misconduct because the union contract doesn't allow it, the problem is the union, not management.



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Response to Mosby (Reply #15)

Wed Jun 3, 2020, 02:01 PM

17. Contracts are negotiated between the parties

It can be corrected at the bargaining table and the legislative process. No contract can be negotiated that would have something illegal within it. It is up to the local city councils and state legislatures to write and pass laws that prohibit excesses by their employees. It is up to the citizens to demand that their elected representatives do just that.

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Response to Sherman A1 (Reply #17)

Wed Jun 3, 2020, 04:38 PM

18. Exactly.

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Response to octoberlib (Original post)

Wed Jun 3, 2020, 12:16 PM

6. I'm from a union family and no one likes

police department union leaders. Where we live, they have always been right wing racist gun huggers. However, I haven’t heard anything about the current union leader so maybe he broke the mold.

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Response to octoberlib (Original post)

Wed Jun 3, 2020, 12:19 PM

7. I've always felt a college degree should be a requirement for a cop. n/t

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Response to Peregrine Took (Reply #7)

Wed Jun 3, 2020, 12:20 PM

8. Why?

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Response to WhiskeyGrinder (Reply #8)

Wed Jun 3, 2020, 01:18 PM

16. I think they should because they act as social workers mainly.

Last edited Wed Jun 3, 2020, 03:38 PM - Edit history (1)

And could benefit from learning more about the people they work with. They need skills like mediation, conflict resolution, crisis management. They need to be educated about neuroscience, social behavior, interpersonal relationships etc.

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Response to Peregrine Took (Reply #7)

Wed Jun 3, 2020, 12:49 PM

9. Police departments are always looking grads, in

fact if you have a degree in English, you will be hired. Most LEOs have a problem writing reports.

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Response to octoberlib (Original post)

Wed Jun 3, 2020, 12:51 PM

10. Manhattan Institute is a conservative think tank

No surprise they would seize this chance to make the case against police unions.

Not a fan of them, but I think the police unions are stuck when they have to defend cops who obviously go overboard and injure or kill citizens with little or no justification. It's the unions job to defend its membership, but an unfortunate fact that they can't pick and choose who they must defend.

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Response to DeminPennswoods (Reply #10)

Wed Jun 3, 2020, 12:58 PM

13. I don't know

Do other unions protect murderers and corrupt criminals, too? Do their members elect white supremacists to be their president?
If yes then they shouldn't do that either.

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Response to Hav (Reply #13)

Wed Jun 3, 2020, 01:01 PM

14. If you are dues paying member or covered as

a member of the bargaining unit, the union is obligated to defend you. I know unions have repeatedly tried to make covered, but non-dues paying members pay for their representation, but that hasn't always been successful.

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Response to octoberlib (Original post)

Wed Jun 3, 2020, 12:54 PM

11. K and R

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Response to octoberlib (Original post)

Wed Jun 3, 2020, 12:54 PM

12. Look at their bosses!!

I've been saying that too often the most corrupt sheriffs in the country run completely unopposed time and time again. This allows them to get even more corrupt as time goes on. Look at Joe Arpaio for instance and what a corrupt piece of shit that guy is.

If we want real change in this country, let's start by firing the sheriffs and replacing them with decent, honest human beings. Real change starts at the top.

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Response to octoberlib (Original post)

Thu Jun 4, 2020, 09:12 AM

19. Thanks for posting this!

You saw this:
Police Groups Break with Biden

https://www.democraticunderground.com/100213540326


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